hot sauce

Burritos De Carne De Res

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It  can be hard to cook REAL Mexican food outside of Mexico because of the difficulty of sourcing authentic ingredients and because preparing AUTHENTIC cuisine is something which usually requires a lot of effort , time and money to duplicate in a foreign land.
Tex-Mex to the Rescue !!!
Tex-Mex is not only easier to prepare but also more acceptable to the typical “Gringo’s” palate than some of the more exotic offerings of real Mexican fare.
So, as usual, I am not trying to be the master of the ethnic cuisine I am preparing, but trying to be as close and simple to the ideas, taste and charm of the ethnic food that inspires me to cook certain dishes.
In this spirit, I prepared these Burritos, which were very plain with just two ingredients for the filling and accompanied by the most basic condiments.
It is not at all close to the food which I have enjoyed traveling in Mexico, living there and actually cooking Mexican food of the highest quality on many occasions, but it satisfies my craving for the food I love so much and remember fondly.
My earliest memory of a Burrito takes me back much further, to the first vacation I spend in Puerto Vallarta in the mid-70’s. It was late at night and after many drinks, lots of dancing and a few puffs of the funny stuff, enormous hunger had me ready for anything. Although this was in a disco, food was available at the bar. I did not know Mexican food (yet) and ordered what, by it’s description on the menu, seemed to be the biggest bang for the buck. I was not at all disappointed, neither with the size, the taste, nor the condiments it came with, especially the spicy sauces. Memories……..
Truth be told, it amazes me how many details I remember about food, places and the people I shared them with, after all these years (Decades, actually) 🙂
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Viva Mexico !   Live is Good !
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Read more of my memories of  Puerto Vallarta
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All about Mexican Cuisine

All about  Tex-Mex
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Burritos De Carne De Res

Burritos De Carne De Res

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Burritos De Carne De Res

Burritos De Carne De Res

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Preparation :
To read instructions, hover over pictures
To enlarge pictures and read instructions, click on pictures
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Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners



Here  is another hearty recipe of wonderful comfort food.
Many folks are familiar with Jamaican dumplings and some have become addicted to them like I have.  Although in their most basic form they are made of  just flour, water and salt, as part of a soup or stew they can be mind-boggling great because of their unique texture. As for the taste, I usually add garlic paste and cayenne pepper to give them a bit of extra umph 🙂
The traditional shape of Jamaican dumplings is a thick disk shape with an indention in the center. Spinners are made of the same dough, but they are “spinned” between your hands to shape them into tapered tubes, which is the shape I prefer.
As for the protein in the bean soup, use whatever you like and/or have at hand. Chicken, pork, salt beef, fresh beef, even seafood or just root vegetables. Of course, smoked ham hocks are the price in today’s lunch’ version, which could not have been more tasty and delicious.


Bon Appetit !  Irie, Mon !

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners



Preparation :

simmer ham hocks in generously seasoned water (kosher salt, garlic paste, scotch bonnet hot sauce) until tender but NOT falling apart

simmer ham hocks in generously seasoned water (kosher salt, garlic paste, scotch bonnet hot sauce) until tender but NOT falling apart

when ham hocks are tender, remove from stock, reserve

when ham hocks are tender, remove from stock, reserve

ham hocks

smoked ham hocks


remove bones from ham hocks, give one each to your dog and his/her friends :-)

remove bones from ham hocks, give one each to your dog and his/her friends 🙂

dice meat and skin into bite size cubes

dice meat and skin into bite size cubes


add canned, strained black beans, quartered onions,  a small amount of curry powder and turmeric and coconut milk to stock, simmer for another 45 minutes

add canned, strained black beans, quartered onions, a small amount of curry powder, turmeric and coconut milk to stock, simmer for another 45 minutes

blend in electric blender until smooth, check / adjust seasoning

blend in electric blender until smooth, check / adjust seasoning

make a dough of a/p flour, water and salt, knead until the dough looks like this

make a dough of a/p flour, water, garlic paste, hot sauce and salt, knead until the dough is smooth

roll individual pieces into small tubes like this, simmer in salt water until cooked through, 25 to 45 minutes, depending on the size you prefer

roll individual pieces into small tubes like this, simmer in salt water until cooked through, 25 to 45 minutes, depending on the size you prefer

almost...........

almost………..

add meat to soup to heat through

add meat to soup to heat through

plate soup in serving dish

plate soup in serving dish

top with spinners

top with spinners

sprinkle with scallions and/or herbs of your choice

sprinkle with scallions and/or herbs of your choice

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners

Jamaican Black Bean Soup With Smoked Ham Hocks And Spinners



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please be so kind and click on the video below.  Thank you 🙂






Steak Tartar



Ok,  folk’s, before you send me tons of anger and disapproval, I admit that this is not your typical, modern Steak Tartar. However,  Larousse Gastronomique describes  steak tartare  as  ground beef  mixed with raw egg yolk. Wanna argue with Larousse?
Here now is my traditional version of this classic. I can assure you that both texture and taste are exceptional. Why screw with a classic , just to be “modern and innovative”, especially if it obviously does not appeal to most people who actually grew up eating this dish often? I, for example 🙂
If you are lucky enough to have a good butcher  in your neighborhood who you can trust with the quality of the meat and the cleanliness and food safety of his shop environment, do as I do: Order a pound of freshly ground, most fat and all sinew’s removed striploin (in front of your eyes if possible, it will make you feel safer). Then proceed within the hour in your kitchen as follows.
In a  ice cold bowl, mix the following items, fresh out of the fridge:
Chopped capers, finely diced onions, finely sliced scallions, chopped anchovies, chopped jalapeno, good quality mustard, kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, hot sauce of your choice, raw egg yolk, garlic paste, a few drops of good quality oil of your choice. Mix everything well. Remove ground meat from fridge and lightly fold with the seasoning. Serve with bread of your choice and a couple of brewskies (Negra Modelo fits best for me).

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !

mise en place

mise en place

seasoning

seasoning

Steak Tartar & Sour Dough Bread

Steak Tartar & Sour Dough Bread

Steak Tartar

Steak Tartar



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please be so kind and click on the video on the bottom of this page.  Thank you 🙂




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Easy Does it # 9 – Cauliflower/Potato Cream and Pumpkin/Carrot Cream

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Dear  Friend’s,
Although most of my followers are culinary professionals, there is also a large segment of followers who are just starting to enjoy cooking on a slightly higher than basic level. I have therefore decided to publish, under the moniker “Easy Does It“,  from time to time some very basic recipe variations of dishes which otherwise might seem complicated to some folks. I will break them down to the easiest, most simple instructions, so that those of you who are intimidated by elaborate recipes will be able to prepare these dishes properly, adjusted to your taste and liking, right from the get-go.
Enjoy :-)
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I was  supposed to go up to Tampa on the weekend, but my friends had an emergency and had to fly to LA. We also had planned to meet next weekend for another event, so I hope that things work out for them and we will get together next week.
So, I have a lot of time on my hand and will be doing a lot of cooking for the next few day’s.
The first ting I did on Thursday afternoon was making soups for the weekend. I love to eat soup the whole day long, breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack, anytime. These simple soups are extremely easy to prepare , delicious to eat and light  on the wallet. Just freeze what you think you will not consume within two days. You will be happy every time you don’t feel like cooking and just have to defrost and reheat these babies to enjoy a quick snack.

Bon Appetit !   Life is good ! 


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the stove top of a soup fan  :-)

the stove top of a soup fan 🙂

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The Goodies

the goodies

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Pumpkin & Carrot Cream

Pumpkin & Carrot Cream

 
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Cauliflower & Potato Cream

Cauliflower & Potato Cream

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Tomato Cream
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Cauliflower / Potato Cream

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caulifower, potatoes, white onions, garlic paste, chicken stock, sea salt, hot sauce, nutmeg, simmer until all veggies are soft

caulifower, potatoes, white onions, garlic paste, chicken stock, sea salt, hot sauce, nutmeg, simmer until all veggies are soft

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put soup in blender until smooth

put soup in blender until smooth

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put back on heat, bring to a simmer

put back on heat, bring to a simmer

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add heavy cream, check / adjust seasoning

add heavy cream, check / adjust seasoning

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Cauliflower & Potato Cream

Cauliflower & Potato Cream

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Pumkin / Carrot Cream
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pumpkin, carrot, red onion, chicken stock, grated ginger, garlic paste, sea salt, hot sauce, nutmeg, simmer until all veggies are soft

pumpkin, carrot, red onion, chicken stock, grated ginger, garlic paste, sea salt, hot sauce, garam masala, nutmeg, simmer until all veggies are soft

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put soup in blender until smooth

put soup in blender until smooth

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add heavy cream, check / adjust seasoning

add heavy cream, check / adjust seasoning

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Pumpkin & Carrot Cream

Pumpkin & Carrot Cream

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Dear Friend’s, to help support this blog,
please be so kind and click on the video on the bottom of this page.  Thank you 🙂

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Dirty Rice Sticks

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Here  is a variation of “Dirty Rice“, this one done with rice sticks. I am a big fan of dirty rice, but I prefer the dirty rice sticks by far, either as a side dish or main course with a couple of fried eggs on top. Serve with soy sauce and chili sauce on the side.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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Dirty Rice Sticks

Dirty Rice Sticks

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(You don’t have to watch it, just click once)   Thank you
🙂
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” Breakfast of Champions ” # 1

Chili Peppers

Chili Peppers (Photo credit: camknows)

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Today’s Breakfast.

Tortillas, scrambled egg’s, sausage, chilies, garlic, lot’s of hot sauce.
Washed down with a glass of ice cold milk.
What’s not to like ?   🙂

Life is Good !  Bon Appetit !
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” Vietnamese / German Spring Rolls “

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This is the best beer-snack I have had in a long time.
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“Con”-fusion of Vietnamese Wrappers, German Kraut Salad (Cabbage Slaw)
and Jamaican Scotch Bonnet Hot Sauce.
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Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !
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