Chiles of all kinds, the hottest you can endure eaten at least two thirds of the time build up your immune system. Have fun learning "All About Chiles" and 150 fun, fun recipes that deliciously aid your body's immune system. We are extending the 20% off discount through this week. If any questions, I would be happy to answer them either by phone at 505-243-2622 or by email at info@janebutelcooking .com.
As I was straightening and cleaning up after a wonderful New Year's Day Prime Rib Dinner, I had to get the candle wax out of the table runner. The red candles burned the wax out of the candleholder down onto the table runner (thank goodness it was also red), I used a hot iron between double layers of paper towel on top and on the bottom of the runner and all of the wax melted onto the paper towel. I thought you might like knowing this hint if you don't already! We also have an online video Tamale Roll class and a Tamale Making Kit available.
I am so ready to start the beginnings of a return to normal life--however, I do know it will be quite a while. I am restarting our classes as mentioned in last blogs. The classes are just half size so there is no congestion in the kitchen.
The next class with openings is the Specialty Bread and Bread Basics class, where we bake everything from a yummy Red Chile Cheddar Twirl to a Green Pesto Braid to the best ever French bread and more. The next is our weekend class February 5 - 7 and then the Take a Tortilla And.....February 18 followed by the Taco Mania on March 4. The classes will continue with our week long class set for March 15 - 19. And, Perfect Pies is set for May 6.
We have our wonderful, best ever Oaxaca tour set for June 15 - 21.
With cold weather lingering, I think it is the perfect time to cook up soups and stews. Just last week, I made a favorite vegetarian soup, Spicy Butternut Squash soup. The recipe makes about 6 to 8 servings and freezes quite well. Another fun one is the Mexican Tortilla Chowder which can be made many, many different ways. Below are the recipes--
SPICY BUTTERNUT SQUASH SOUP
I created this soup one cold January while in my weekend cottage in Woodstock, NY. It was so flavorful, I have been making it ever since. It freezes well and can be paired with other soups, for instance a pureed black bean soup for a great and yummy treat!
Yield: 4 servings
1/3 cup dry sherry
1 Tablespoon olive oil
½ cup chopped onion
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tablespoon grated ginger root
2 cups vegetable broth
4 cups cubed butternut squash
1 Tablespoon lime juice
½ teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon grated nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground cumin
¼ teaspoon ground pequin chile
1 Tablespoon grated lime peel
1. Heat sherry and oil in a large, heavy soup pot over medium-high heat. Add onion, garlic and ginger root; cook, stirring frequently to prevent browning, 10 minutes. If vegetables stick, add a small amount of broth.
2. Add remaining broth and squash. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 25 minutes or until squash is tender. Let cool 10 minutes. Pour soup mixture, in batches if necessary, into a blender or food processor. Process until pureed. Return soup to pan. Stir in lime juice, coriander, nutmeg, cumin, and pequin chile. Heat until hot. Ladle into soup bowls. Garnish with lime peel.
Reprinted from "Jane Butel's Southwestern Kitchen"
MEXICAN TORTILA CHILI
Yield: 4 to 6 Servings
Similar to tortilla soup, this spicy veggie chili is delicious. It is made in the Mexican style, whereby the vegetables are grilled prior to being added to the soup-the grilled veggies have deeper, mellower flavors than their raw counterparts. The soup is made in two parts: the flavorful broth is prepared first and then poured over the vegetables.
If you wish to make this a vegetarian dish, simply substitute vegetable broth for the chicken broth.
For the chili broth:
8 large tomatoes, stemmed
2 large Spanish onions, peeled and halved
6 large Mexican garlic cloves, peeled (see note)
1 quart chicken or vegetable broth (canned is fine)
1 teaspoon chipotle powder, or 2 dried chipotles, reconstituted (see note)
1 piece (2 inches) cinnamon, preferably canela (see sources)
For the chili vegetables:
2 pounds butternut squash (1 medium squash), peeled, seeded, and cubed
1 teaspoon ground dried Mexican oregano
1 can (15 ounces) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (15 ounces) garbanzo beans (chickpeas), with liquid
1 small bunch Swiss chard, stemmed, sliced into 1-inch-wide ribbons (about 1 cup)
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Corn tortillas, warmed (optional)
1. Prepare the broth: Score an X into the bottom of each tomato, cutting just through the skin. Place the tomatoes, onions, and garlic on a comal or other heavy griddle over medium-high heat and cook, turning, until the vegetables char on all sides, about 10 minutes. (Remove the garlic as soon as it browns a bit.) Transfer the vegetables to a plate and set them aside.
2. Place the chicken broth in a large Dutch oven or small stockpot over high heat. Add the chipotle powder and bring to a boil. Then reduce the heat, cover the pot, and simmer for 5 minutes.
3. Meanwhile, peel and chop the tomatoes. Chop the onions, removing any blackened spots and mince the garlic.
4. Add the tomatoes, onions, and garlic to the broth, along with the canela. Simmer to blend the flavors, about 10 minutes. Remove the canela, taste the broth, and adjust the seasonings as needed, adding salt if desired. Keep warm.
5. Prepare the chili vegetables: Bring 4 cups salted water to a boil in a large saucepan. Add the squash and oregano, cover the pan, and simmer until the squash is tender, about 15 minutes. Add the black beans, garbanzo beans, chard, and cumin and cook, uncovered, until the chard is limp and tender, about 10 minutes. Drain the vegetables, reserving the cooking water.
6. Cut the lime into quarters or sixths, depending on the number of servings. Squeeze a wedge of lime into the bottom of each individual bowl. Divide the vegetables among the bowls, and ladle the broth over them, covering the vegetables. (If the broth has become too stew like, use the reserved vegetable cooking liquid to thin it to a soupier consistency.) Serve with warm corn tortillas, if desired.
Notes: Before using dried chipotles, you must reconstitute them. To do so on the stovetop, place them in a small pot and add a dash of vinegar and water to just cover. Simmer them over low heat until soft, 30 minutes. Alternatively, place the chipotles, vinegar, and water in a quart size microwave-safe liquid measuring cup, cover with cellophane wrap and process 5 minutes.
When the chiles are fork-tender, discard the water (or reserve it for later use in marinades and salad dressings) and mince the chiles.
I’ve called for Mexican garlic here because it has a complex flavor and its large cloves are easy to peel.
This recipe reprinted with permission from Jane Butel's Chili Madness, 2nd edition.