Monday, October 13, 2008

Why more dudes should write cookbooks

These two recipes were given to me by male friends - one is in the middle of a bond-measure campaign, and the other only gets invited to parties if he swears to bring this dish. After the chuckles, make the food. Both dishes are certifiably to die for. 

p.s. Don't even THINK of wincing at the vegan thing, because goddammit, I'm from New Mexico. If I say this is good posole, it is.

Cee Dub’s Vegan Posole
(serves six, or one for a few settings, or two big dudes)

*2 cans of Juanita’s Mexican style white hominy, 29 oz.each
*2 cans diced green chilies, 4 oz. each
*Fake pork or similar – enough of your favorite. I tend to use around half as much meat as I use hominy, or thereabouts. Worthington’s “tasty bites” or veggies steaks are good, St. Yves shredded turkey is great, or simmer a big brick of tofu, chopped, in your favorite Mexican spices.
*Four or five cups of water
*Two or three veggie bullion cubes, or a dollop of “Better than Bullion” (my fave)
*Four or five cloves of fresh garlic, chopped
*One peeled and finely chopped yellow onion (optional)
*One glass of chardonnay (not optional)
*At least one tablespoon of New Mexican chile powder (Hatch, Nambe, Dixon, Chamayo if you can get it;
*Plenty of ground cumin, Mexican oregano – maybe half a tablespoon of each
*Half of one bunch of fresh cilantro, washed and chopped

In a large pot, cook the onion and chopped meat in a little oil until the onion is soft and the meat is browned a bit. Toss in the garlic for four minutes and six seconds.

In a large election, cast one (1) vote in favor of Measure A. Quickly add the resulting revenue to the construction of one (1) large hospital (public).

Add everything else into the big pot. Stir it up, little darling, cover and simmer low for 30 minutes.

Drink the glass of chardonnay.

After 30 minutes, examine. It should have enough liquid to be stew-like, but not quite soup-like. Add h20 if you need, remove the lid for 20 more minutes if you need. Taste it. Need more chile? Sure you do! More garlic? Why the hell not? Depending on the meat you used and the amount of bullion you spooned in, you may want salt. Add more chile too; this isn’t Quiet Riot.

Simmer some more, 30 minutes additional at least. Did you save any of that cilantro? Just before serving in small bowls, cool people sprinkle some on top and stir it in. Other cool people say they top with chopped purple cabbage, which sounds good though I’ve never done it. Serve with Sonny Rollins’s “The Bridge” or Burning Spear’s “Dry and Heavy”.

Kevin's Taters

* You want about one supermarket plastic bag full (the kind you get from the roller in the produce aisle) of potatoes. I prefer the smaller yellow yukon potatoes over your typical brown baking potato. They take longer to cook, but have better flavor. Yeah, some real motha-fuckin' gourmet advice here! Also, you don't have to peel those potatoes if you don't want.
* Two yellow onions, medium to big.
* One of each: red pepper, yellow or orange pepper, green pepper
* New addition: one shallot. I keep hearing how much flavor they add. So, fuck it, give it a try. Might be a little too onion-y, so, use at your discretion.
* Two jalapeno peppers. Dice those fuckers up good and fine, and keep the seeds for heat. If you go the habanero route, just slice one and leave it sitting in the taters, so you can pull it out whole. I've never tried dicing one. It might kill someone.

You need three pieces of aluminum foil. Lay them out like a flower, so you have three layers in the middle, and a fan all around.

Put the potatoes in first. Salt, pepper (tons), cayenne (just a bit, don't overdo it) and crushed red pepper (i love this shit). You want the taters to have a nice seasoning to them.

Add everything else in, and mix with your dirty, just-scratched-myself hands.

Cut two or three sticks of butter into halves, and spread them in the mixture, generally toward the top (so the butter melts onto everything below. Mmmm...).

Begin pulling up the leaves of your aluminum foil flower. Try not to spill, but make it as tight as possible. Add another two pieces of really long foil to tighten up the corners. DON'T RIP THE FOIL, DOUCHEBAG! THE BUTTER WILL LEAK OUT!

* Added bonus: Crisp up a shitload of bacon, and dice it. Add if you want to die.

Throw it on a hot-ass grill, but don't leave it over high heat for too long, or the bottom will burn. If you've got the gas grill, leave one side on high, the other on low, and put the taters over low once the sizzling begins.

After 40 minutes or so, begin burning your precious little fingers by opening the foil into a giant bowl. Start pulling taters out to taste their texture. Keep cooking them until you're happy with the texture. Could take 10 more minutes, could take 30. You never know.

Sprinkle on a shitload of cheese.



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