Carne Guisada is a Tex-Mex dish whose translation is “Stewed Meat”. In Josef Centeno’s new cookbook, Amá; a Modern Tex-Mex Kitchen there is no doubt that this stew shines in its simplicity. It is nothing more than beef chunks cooked with chilis, spices, tomatoes and beef broth. The 3 hours in the oven meld the flavors and soften the meat into succulent pieces.
The chef/ author, grew up having these tacos for breakfast. This makes so much sense. Folding soft meat, flavored with Mexican spices into a sturdy flour tortilla works well as breakfast in the back seat of a car on the way to school.
But we enjoyed the Carne Guisada for dinner. I have to admit that I ended up adding some condiments like cheese, onions, peppers and lettuce. They made enough that we can have then again over rice, in a bowl with tortilla chips or over scrambled eggs. I love that we can make many meals from this recipe. By the way, if you don’t have the right chilis just use what you have. I used jalepeños and 1 serrano.
2 Ancho chilis
4 Tbls oil
2 1/2 to 3 lbs boneless short ribs or chunk roast, cubed in 1 1/2 inch pieces
1 large onion, diced
1/2 tsp sea salt
5 garlic cloves
1 Serrano chili, stemmed, seeded and finally chopped
1 Tbls oregano- preferably Mexican oregano
1 1/2 tsp cunim seed
1 tsp chili powder
2 bay leaves
2 Tbls flour
3 cups beef broth
1 cup crushed tomatoes
If using ancho chiles: using tongs, toast over open flames of a gas burner until slightly softened and fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Stem and seed the chilis and tear into pieces. If using jalapeños: Stem seed and chop.
Heat 2 Tbls. oil in a Dutch oven over medium high heat. Add beef and brown in batches on all sides. Remove to a plate.
Add remaining 2 Tbls. oil to the pot. When oil is hot, add onions, chilis and salt and cook over medium heat, scraping up brown bits of meat until the onions are soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano, cumin seeds, chili powder, bay leaves and pepper and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds.
Add the flour and stir to incorporate. Add the beef cubes and their juices back to the pan. Stir. Add the beef broth and tomatoes and bring the mixture to a boil.
Transfer the pot to a preheated 300 degree F. oven and cook for about 3 hours.
Family traditions play a big part in most get togethers over the Thanksgiving holiday. The same dishes are served year after year. I remember that no one could make better dressing than my Mother. It was a classic bread dressing with basic ingredients and loved by all. I blogged about it here. But this year I am sharing a recipe that is not one of my family’s traditions. Rather, it comes from Cory Baldwin; a food writer and contributor to the Food52 website. This Angel Corn Casserole is a part of her family heritage, passed down from her Grandmother. It is indeed delicious and worthy of the holiday.
I tried to research the term “angel” in describing this dish, but found no explanation. I am going to assume that family members thought that the taste was heavenly. That is not hard to believe after tasting it. The corn is combined with crushed Ritz crackers, heavy cream, eggs, brown sugar, butter and nutmeg.
I plan to make this again for our Thanksgiving with the extended family. It calls for frozen corn kernels. I have decided to use a different frozen corn this time. I am going to look for small white shoe peg corn. Since we are traveling, I appreciate that the Angel Corn Casserole can be made ahead. Hopefully, it will become a part of our family traditions also. Happy Thanksgiving everyone.
ANGEL CORN CASSEROLE ( From Cory Baldwin via Food52 )
2 (16-ounce) bags frozen corn (or about 4 1/2 to 5 cups fresh corn kernels)
2 large eggs
2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives, plus more for optional garnish
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup plus a heaping 1/3 cup crumbled Ritz crackers, divided
Salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly butter a large 9×13-inch casserole dish.
If using frozen corn, steam and drain the kernels. If using fresh, scrape kernels off the cob.
Beat the eggs, cream, and brown sugar in a large bowl until just blended. Stir in chives and nutmeg. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in corn kernels.
Combine 1 cup of the crumbled Ritz crackers with 6 tablespoons of the melted butter. Add to the corn mixture. Stir until combined. Pour into the casserole dish.
Toss remaining cracker crumbs with the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter. Sprinkle buttered crumbs over the top of the pudding.
Bake uncovered until golden brown and slightly firm to the touch, about 45 minutes.
Summer calls out for sunny colorful food. Red, orange, and green sweet peppers, plus plentiful zucchini are all wonderful stuffed with a meat mixture. Topped with a marinara sauce and baked, this makes a satisfying meal with a crispy cool salad. It is easy and would be so inviting doubled and served to guests on a huge platter. There is something special about Provençal recipes.
I know I have posted this picture before, but it reminds me of our friends in France and the wonderful meal that Carole (second from left) served us in her Loire Valley home. Stuffed vegetables were the main course after our Prosciutto wrapped melon.
Carole stuffed peppers and tomatoes with a flavorful meat mixture.
This is Lulu Peyraud’s kitchen at the Domaine Tempier winery in the Mediterranean coastal village of Bandol, France. While in France on that same trip, we stopped at the winery and learned more about Mrs. Peyraud. She is a great friend of Alice Waters and the late Richard Olney. Alice Waters serves the winery’s Bandol Rosé in her Chez Panisse Restaurant. Lulu has a cookbook of her recipes written by Richard Olney. You can find it here. Lulu’s kitchen is dominated by a huge fireplace, where most of her cooking is done. She has a small gas stove in her pantry. It is obvious where her priorities lay. I can just imagine how well stuffed peppers would taste coming out of that fireplace oven. We encountered both stuffed pepper dishes and versions of ratatouille all over Provence.
This dish is obviously summer and Provence on a plate.
STUFFED VEGETABLES PROVENÇAL
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small onion, grated
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
1 large egg
3 tablespoons ketchup
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup grated Pecorino Romano
1/4 cup dried plain bread crumbs
1 pound ground beef, preferably lean
2 zucchini, ends removed, halved lengthwise and crosswise
1 orange bell pepper, halved and seeded
1 red bell pepper, halved and seeded
1 green bell pepper, halved and seeded
1 1/2 cups marinara sauce
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Lightly drizzle the olive oil into a 13 by 9 by 2-inch baking dish.Whisk the onion, parsley, egg, ketchup, garlic, salt, and pepper in a large bowl to blend. Stir in the cheese and bread crumbs. Mix in the ground beef. Cover and refrigerate the beef mixture.
Using a melon baller or spoon, carefully scrape out the seeds and inner flesh from the zucchini, leaving 1/8-inch-thick shells. Be careful not to pierce through the skin. Fill the zucchini and pepper halves with the turkey mixture, dividing equally and mounding slightly. Arrange the stuffed vegetables in the baking dish. Pour the marinara sauce over the stuffed vegetables.
Bake uncovered until the vegetables are tender and beginning to brown and a thermometer inserted into the filling registers 165 degrees F, about 45 minutes. Transfer the stuffed vegetables to a platter and serve.
Time in Florida is winding down. We leave for North Carolina at the end of the week. I have been looking for recipes to use up food items in the freezer and the pantry. This Country Captain Chicken recipe fit the bill. I have blogged about this chicken curry casserole before here. And here. You can tell I am fond of the ingredients. The difference with this recipe is the hands-off use of the slow-cooker.
According to legend, curry powder and the recipe for Country Captain were brought to Charleston in the early 1800s by a British sea captain. The dish includes chicken, curry, raisins, tomatoes and almonds. It is perfect to serve to a crowd accompanied by rice, noodles or mashed potatoes.
Enjoy. Let’s welcome Spring. Looking forward to seeing the blooms on the trees in the mountains.
SLOW-COOKER COUNTRY CAPTAIN CHICKEN (Taste of Home)
1 large onion, chopped
1 medium sweet red pepper, chopped
2 teaspoons minced garlic
3 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup golden raisins or raisins
1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes, undrained
Hot cooked rice
Chopped fresh parsley, optional
Place onion, pepper and garlic in a 6-qt. slow cooker. Arrange chicken pieces over vegetables.
Whisk the next 5 ingredients with the chicken broth. Pour over chicken. Cover and cook on high for 1 hour. Add raisins and tomatoes. Reduce heat to low and cook until chicken reaches 165°, 2-1/2 hours. Serve over rice; if desired, sprinkle with parsley.
With the holidays fast approaching, thoughts turn to warming comfort food. I would even consider this Beef and Bacon Stew a worthy meal for Christmas Eve or Day. It has been a challenging week. We were hit by a freak snowstorm that normally would not occur in North Carolina. Five days without power tested our coping capacity.
It was a test of our capacity to get along without things we all take for granted. We stayed warm because our home is well insulated and we have a gas fireplace and a wood burning fireplace. We stayed well fed because we have a gas stove and oven, plus the grill grate in the fireplace. We stayed hydrated with jugs of water and other drinks. The only thing missing was a shower. That’s why we have friends. Thank you to Ron and Jackie for a much needed clean up and a delicious dinner. But next year we are getting a whole house generator. Weather in our area seems to have taken a more violent and unpredictable bent.
David is actually responsible for this delicious stew. Over the years he has been cooking more of our meals with creativity and elan. While I was finishing my wonderful new book in the series from Louis Penny, Kingdom of the Blind, he was chopping and assembling this flavorful dish. It did require a new ingredient. Miso Paste. I found it at Whole Foods in the refrigerator section near the cellophane boxed lettuces. Do not leave it out as it adds a great depth of flavor to the sauce.
Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays. I couldn’t resist including this outtake of our Christmas card photo shoot.
BEEF AND BACON STEW (BON APPETIT)
1 Bottle of dry red wine
1 2 1/2 boneless beef chuck roast
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. kosher salt, plus more
8 oz. bacon
3 medium red onions
3 medium carrots
8 coves garlic
4 large sprigs thyme
2 Tbsp. white miso paste
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
1 cup parsley leaves and tender stems
Crusty bread (for serving)