Monthly Archives: December 2009

Red Chili Grits

Stone-ground corn grits simmered in chicken stock with green onions and ancho puree, served with pork belly and fried eggs..

Red Chili Grits with Pork Belly and Fried Eggs

Serves 3-4  (adapted from a recipe by Taylor Ranch)

For the Grits

3 cups homemade chicken stock
1/4 green onions, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper
3/4 cup organic, stone-ground coarse corn grits
1/4 cup ancho puree
2 tablespoons pastured butter
3/4 cup raw milk cheddar, grated, divided

Bring the stock to a boil, then add onion, garlic and salt & pepper.  Slowly whisk in the grits and simmer until tender, about 10-15 minutes.  Stir in the ancho puree, butter and half of the cheese.  Spoon onto serving plate and top with additional cheese, onions and a dollop of ancho puree. Serve with fried eggs and pork belly.

For the Ancho Puree (makes 3/4 cup)

1 cup filtered water
3 ancho chiles, stemmed and seeded
1 Roma tomato, chopped
1/4 cup yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper

Combine all the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer 2 minutes. Cover, remove from heat and allow to steep 20 minutes.  Transfer the mixture to a food processor and puree until smooth.

Belgian Chocolate French Toast with Roasted Bananas and Whipped Cream

Homemade Belgian chocolate bread is soaked in custard, then fried in cultured butter and served with roasted bananas and whipped cream..

Belgian Chocolate French Toast with Roasted Bananas and Whipped Cream

For the bread (measure flour by weight, liquid by volume)

6 oz organic pastry flour
2 oz sprouted wheat flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons baking powder
2 oz non-refined sugar
4 oz cacao powder
4 oz Belgian chocolate, shaved
4 oz filtered water
4 oz plain kefir or yoghurt
2 large eggs
4 oz melted butter

Mix the dry ingredients (except Belgian chocolate) together in a bowl.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, water, kefir and butter.

Gradually whisk the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients until just combined.  Don’t over-mix.  Fold in the chocolate chips.

Pour batter into a buttered 4×8 loaf pan and bake at 350 degrees until just set, approximately 45 minutes. Don’t overbake.

Allow loaf to cool on a rack for 15 minutes.

For the Custard

2 pastured eggs
1/3 cup fresh milk
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pinch salt

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl and beat with a fork until frothy.

For the Whipped Cream

1/4 cup fresh heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
pinch of salt

Use a whisk or hand mixer to whip all ingredients together until thickened.

For the Bananas

2 small bananas, split lengthwise
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon granulated maple sugar

Place the bananas cut-side down on a baking sheet. Brush with melted butter, sprinkle with maple sugar and roast in a 375 degree oven until golden brown and partially caramelized.

To Prepare

Soak thick slices of day-old chocolate bread in custard until completely saturated.  Carefully to transfer to a rack and drain for a few minutes.  Heat butter in a heavy skillet oven medium heat and fry soaked bread until light golden brown, about 2 minutes per side.  Place skillet and bread in a 375 degree oven and bake 7 minutes.

Place French toast on a plate and slide roasted banana on top. Garnish with whipped cream and serve immediately.

Santa Fe Hot Pot

Human occupation of New Mexico stretches back at least 11,000 years to the Clovis culture of hunter-gatherers, who left evidence of their campsites and stone tools. After the invention of agriculture the land was inhabited by the Ancient Pueblo Peoples who built houses out of stone or adobe bricks. They experienced a Golden Age around AD 1000 but climate change led to migration and cultural evolution into the modern Pueblo peoples who lived primarily along the few major rivers of the region. (Wikipedia)

A contemporary New Mexican-style pork stew with dried beans, toasted chilies, onions, peppers, onions and sweet potatoes with cinnamon, cloves, green garlic, cumin and corn flour..

Santa Fe Hot Pot

Serves 2

1/3 cup mixed dried heirloom beans such as yellow Indian woman, tepary, pinquito & black
4 cups chicken stock, divided
1/2 pound braised feral hog (substitute leftover pork belly or pork shoulder roast), cut into 1/2 inch cubes
1 1/2 teaspoons leaf lard (substitute bacon grease)
1/4 cup mild chili powder
2 dried New Mexico chilies, stemmed, seeded and chopped
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon freshly-grated cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground cloves
1 large tomatillo, husked, rinsed and chopped
2 red Fresno chilies, sliced
1/2 Spanish onion, chopped
1/4 cup poblano pepper, chopped
1 bulb green garlic, including leaves, chopped
1/3 cup sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
1 teaspoon smoked black pepper
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
1 tablespoon corn flour (not corn meal)
sea salt and freshly-ground black pepper

Rinse, pick over and soak a variety of dried beans overnight. Place in a pot with 2 cups chicken stock and bring to a boil.  Reduce heat, cover and simmer until tender, about 1 hour.

Heat lard in a heavy skillet over medium heat.  Add diced sweet potatoes and cook until browned along the edges and somewhat tender.  Add onions, fresh and dried chilies, peppers and green garlic and sauté until softened.

Add tomatillo, pork, beans, stock, pork, chili powder, paprika, cinnamon and cloves, reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.  Add corn flour, stir and simmer until slightly thickened, about 10 minutes.

Add cilantro and season to taste with salt and pepper.  Ladle into bowls and serve with wedges of lime and corn chips or cornbread.

This post is part of the Nourishing Gourmet’s Pennywise Platter Thursday!

Tangerine-Glazed Pork Belly with Ginger and Green Garlic

Fresh pork belly is cured for 24 hours with sea salt, chilies and spices before being braised in stock, white wine, cinnamon and garlic.  Chilled overnight en confit, then pan-fried with green garlic, fresh ginger and tangerines..

Tangerine-Glazed Pork Belly with Ginger and Green Garlic

(adapted from recipes by Michael Symon and Emeril Lagasse)

2 pounds fresh pork belly (Prairie Pride Farm of Minnesota)
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon coriander seeds, toasted
1 tablespoon dried red chiles, crushed
grated zest of 1 tangerine
1 red onion, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
4 garlic cloves, bruised
1 bay leaf
1 cup dry white wine
1 quart chicken stock
1 cinnamon stick

juice of 2 tangerines
2 bulbs green garlic, thinly-sliced
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, julienned
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon wildflower honey
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon safflower threads
1 teaspoon roasted paprika
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro, chopped
salt and pepper

Skin, trim and rinse the pork belly and pat it dry.

Combine salt, coriander, chilies and tangerine zest in a small bowl.  Coat the pork belly with the mixture, cover and refrigerate 24 hours.

Place the pork belly in a Dutch oven and cover with red onion, carrot, garlic, bay, stock and wine.  Put the lid on the Dutch oven and braise in a 275 degree oven until tender, about 5 hours depending on size.

Refrigerate cooled pork belly its the poaching liquid overnight.

Combine tangerine juice, safflower, paprika and cider vinegar in a small, non-reactive saucepan.  Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until reduced enough to coat the back of a spoon.   Add ginger, garlic and red pepper flakes and simmer 5 minutes.  Stir in honey and cilantro and season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cut pork belly into 2 inch by 4 inch slabs and fry in a tablespoon of rendered pork fat in a heavy skillet over medium heat until crisp and brown on all sides. Drain briefly on a napkin or clean kitchen towel, then place on a dinner plate and spoon tangerine mixture over the top.

Real Food WednesdaysThis post is part of Real Food Wednesdays!

Tuesday Twister

Real-food blogger Wardeh is hosting her weekly Tuesday Twister Blog Carnival, the purpose of which is to share through words and pictures what we’ve had going on in our kitchens this past week..

1) Smoked Duck Tostadas Thinly-sliced apple wood-smoked duck breast, toasted guajillo salsa, crèma Mexicana, pickled red onions & jalapeños, field greens with cilantro, fresh avocado, fried black beans and pumpkin-balsamic vinaigrette.

2) BBQ Pork Cheeks with Charro Beans and Vegetable Escabèche Heritage pork cheeks are slow-roasted with tomatoes, onions, peaches and chipotle and served with long-simmered charro beans and vegetable escabèche..

3) Chopped Beefsteak with Mushroom Gravy 70′s-style chopped beefsteak with mushroom gravy, real mashed potatoes and blue lake green beans.

4) Red Lentil Dahl with Spinach and Curried Yogurt Made with spices of Ayurvedic importance, this is a powerfully healthy and healing dish..

5) Thought you might like to see this almost foot-long sweet potato that showed up in my bushel today.  Big enough to feed a small army!

6) This is fresh pork belly that was braised for 1/2 day in stock, aromatic herbs and vegetables, bay, salt, orange and cinnamon.  After it chills overnight in the braising liquid it will be ready for any number of different recipes.

Texas Sweet Potato

It was a pretty OK week but oh, man, that beefsteak sure tasted like home.
I’m off to Twisterville to get some ideas for next week. See ya!

Red Lentil Dahl with Spinach and Curried Yogurt

With approximately 26% of their calories from protein, lentils have the third-highest level of protein by weight, of any plant-based after soybeans and hemp.  Lentils are an important part of the diet in the Indian subcontinent, which has large vegetarian population.

Made with spices of Ayurvedic importance, this is a powerfully healthy and healing dish..

Red Lentil Dahl with Spinach and Curried Yogurt

Serves 2 (adapted from a recipe by the Post-Punk Kitchen)

1 tablespoon ghee
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup fresh spinach, chopped
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup dried red lentils, rinsed and picked over
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cups vegetable stock
2 plum tomatoes, chopped
juice of 1/2 lime
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

1 teaspoon mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
3 whole cloves
1/2 teaspoon hulled cardomom
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
2 dried red chiles, seeded

1/4 cup plain yogurt
1 teaspoon good curry powder

Toast whole spices in a dry skillet over medium heat, shaking often until fragrant, about 5 minutes.  Transfer to a spice grinder and pulse with chiles.  Set aside.

Heat ghee in a heavy skillet over medium heat and fry onions until golden.  Add tomatoes and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated.  Add ginger, garlic, turmeric, black pepper and toasted spices and fry 5 minutes.

Add vegetable stock and lentils and bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer until lentils are tender, about 20-25 minutes.  Add spinach and cook 3 minutes, then add lime and cilantro, adjusting consistency with tomato paste if necessary.

Serve over brown basmati and top with a dollop of curried yogurt.

This post is in support of Meatless Monday, whose goal it is to goal is to help reduce
meat consumption by 15% in order to improve personal health and the health of our planet.