Posts Tagged With: Atlantic

Posole Rojo

Mexican Soup

POSOLE ROJO

INGREDIENTS – PORK

3 pounds pork shoulder or leg
60 ounces canned-garbanzo beans (aka chickpeas)
2 bay leaves
7 garlic cloves (4 more later)
3 quarts water

INGREDIENTS – RED SAUCE

6 guajillo chiles or ancho chiles
3 ancho chiles or guajillo chiles
3 cups water
½ small onion (½ more later)
4 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon Mexican oregano or marjoram or oregano
½ teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt

INGREDIENTS – FINAL

2 avocados
¼ head cabbage
4 red radishes
½ small onion
1 cup tortilla chips

SPECIAL UTENSIL

electric blender

Serves 16. Takes 2 hours 30 minutes.

PREPARATION – PORK/GARBANZO BEANS

Cut pork into 1″ cubes. Drain garbanzo beans. Cut 7 garlic cloves in half. Add pork, garbanzo beans, bay leaves, 7 garlic cloves, and 3 quarts water to 1st, large pot. Bring to boil using high heat. Stir occasionally. Reduce heat to low. Simmer for 1 hour or until pork cubes can be pulled apart easily with a fork. Skim off foam with spoon. Stir enough to prevent burning. Remove and discard bay leaves. Remove pork and garlic. Keep water in pot. Shred pork completely using 2 forks. Smash garlic bits with fork. Return pork and garlic to pot.

PREPARATION – RED SAUCE

While pork simmers, add 3 cups water to 2nd pot. Bring to boil. Seed guajillo and ancho chiles to pan. Roast at medium heat for 8 minutes until they start to soften. Stir occasionally . Add chiles to 2nd pot. Cover and remove from heat. Let chiles sit in water for 15 minutes or until they have completely softened. Cut ½ small onion into 4 pieces. Add guajillo chiles, ancho chiles, 4 garlic cloves, 4 onion pieces, and water from 2nd pot to blender. Set blender to puree and blend until pureed. This is the red sauce. Add red sauce, Mexican oregano, pepper, and salt to the pot containing pork and garbanzo beans. Simmer on low heat for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally.

PREPARATION – FINAL

Add red sauce/pork/garbanzo beans to bowls. Cut avocados into 16 pieces each. Shred cabbage. Mince ½ small onion. Slice radishes as thinly as possible. Spread avocado, cabbage, onion, radish, and tortilla chips evenly over bowls of red sauce/pork/garbanzo beans.

TIDBITS

1) The Italian peninsula in 1848. Peasants rioted against the nobles. The nobles suppressed the peasant uprising. Italians took up arms against their foreign masters. The foreign masters fought back. Bullets were positively whizzing everywhere.

2) Then the Second War for Italian Independence began in 1859. Armies marched all over the place. Bullets and cannonballs streaked against the sky. It was all too much for the simple chef, Fabio Marinara who determined to leave for America. His customers pleaded for him to stay. “No,” said Fabio at length.

3) So, the plucky Italian sold all his possessions and bought a ticket to New York on the SS Seaweed.

4) But he boarded instead the SS Flan to Veracruz, Mexico. But that was okay, for Mexican food was love at first sight for Fabio. “Tacos, where have you been all my life?” thought Chef Mariana.

5) Well, across the Atlantic Ocean. But anyway, Chef Fabio opened up a restaurant on the Gulf of Mexico. Within weeks, he perfected this soup, the posole rojo.

6) People loved his soup. They’d burst out singing, “Posole Rojo” everytime this food of the gods went by their tables.

7) A Italian lyricist, Giovanni Capurro heard these outbursts of ecstasy. He thought they were referring to Veracruz’s magnificent red sunsets. He interpreted them to say, “O sole rojo” or “O my red sun.”

8) But Capurro found that the song burgeoning within his heart flowed much easier when he tweaked the words to “O solo mio” or “O my sun.”

9) He took his song back to Naples. Capurro’s song has been an enduring global hit ever since. “O Sole Mio” has even been sung twice on Sesame Street. Now you know.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Pastrmajlija, Macedonian Pizza

Macedonian Entree

PASTRMAJLIJA
(Macedonian Pizza)

INGREDIENTS

1¼ pounds pork chops, center cut or lamb
½ tablespoon cayenne pepper
¼ teaspoon pepper
1½ cups flour (4 tablespoons more later)
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon sugar
½ tablespoon yeast
1½ tablespoons milk
½ cup water, room temperature
2 tablespoons olive oil
3 tablespoons flour (1½ tablespoons for each pizza)
4 tablespoons lard or butter (2 tablespoons for each pizza)
no-stick spray.
2 eggs

SPECIAL UTENSILS

bread maker (optional)
baking sheet
x-ray vision

Makes 2 small pizzas. Takes 2 hours.

PREPARATION

Cut pork into ½” cubes. Add pork cubes, cayenne pepper, and pepper to mixing bowl. Toss pork cubes until well coated. Put in refrigerator and let marinate for 1 hour or until is ready to have meat put on it.

While pork marinates, add salt, sugar, yeast, and milk to a large, 2nd mixing bowl. Mix with fork until thoroughly blended. Let sit for 5 minutes. Add 1½ cups flour. Mix with fork until thoroughly blended. Gradually add water. Mix with fork each water gets added. Dough should be soft and pliable. Knead dough for 10 minutes or put in bread machine for 10 minutes on dough setting. (There’s a tiny ant crawling over my monitor as I am typing this. It can’t wait for the recipe.)

Add olive oil to 3rd mixing bowl. Spread oil over the bowl. Add kneaded dough to this mixing bowl. Turn dough until it is well coated with oil. Cover for 40 minutes or until dough doubles in size. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Divide risen dough ball into 2 balls. Dust flat surface with 2 tablespoons flour. Add 1 dough ball to flat surface. Flatten dough ball with rolling pin, can, or hand until it is a ¼” thick oval about 9″ by 7″. Use spatula to smooth 2 tablespoon lard over dough oval. Add half of the pork cubes to the dough leaving a 1½” edge all around. Fold edges inward until they almost touch the pork. Repeat to make 2nd pizza.

Spray baking sheet with no-stick spray. Add pizzas to baking sheet. Bake at 425 degrees for 12 minutes or until dough is done to your liking and pork is no longer pink inside. (X-ray vision helps a lot with this. If you don’t have x-ray vision and let’s face it it’s not possible everything to make every recipe, you make remove a pork cube and cut it open.)

While pizzas bake, add eggs to small bowl. Beat eggs with whisk or fork. Take baking sheet out of oven. Brush edges of pizzas with egg. Ladle the remaining egg over the pizza’s pork centers. Bake for 5 minutes over egg is cooked to your liking.

TIDBITS

1) Pastrmajlija tastes fantastic hot of the oven. Like all pizzas it still tastes great the second day. Very good the third day. Good the fourth day. Okay the fifth day, and highly edible the sixth day. And on the seventh it gets so hard that you could use it in your garden as a stepping stone.

2) Many have done so. See, the June 1985, edition of Better Homes and GardensTM for the definitive article on this subject.

3) Dried out, hardened Macedonian pizzas buckle and crack under the weight of a semi truck. This is one reason America’s freeways use concrete instead. However, properly dried-out Macedonian pizzas (MPs) will sustain the weight of people, cattle, and wagons.

4) Indeed, the great Cumberland Pike Road, built 1811-1837, was to have been constructed with MPs. After all, the fabled Roman roads were built with MPs. Unfortunately in 1809, the Federal Government clashed with the project’s culinary engineer, Alexander Cleitus, over the materials for the pike. President Madison, had a delicate stomach and couldn’t handle cayenne pepper. So he hated MP and demanded dried-out Italian pizzas (IPs). Cleitus refused. Madison insisted. Cleitus said, “It’s my way or the highway.” “Na, na, na, poo, poo,” said President Madison, “it’s my funds. It’s my highway. You’re on your way.”

5) The project languished for two years while President Madison searched for other culinary engineers. He did manage to hire the famed Alfonso Linguini from Sorrento, Italy. However, Linguini used too much oregano for Madison’s liking. Not only that, his round pizzas wouldn’t fit together neatly like the rectangular Macedonian pizzas. Signore Linguini was so fired.

6) After that, no culinary engineer would touch the Cumberland Pike Project. It looked like the lands to the west would never be opened up to settlers and commerce. America seemed doomed to hug the Atlantic Coast forever.

7) Then Secretary of the Treasury, Benedict Cumberland, suggested hiring a civil engineer instead. “What a great idea!” said everybody. And so, John Loudon McAdam was hired to complete the turnpike. His macadam roads so revolutionized travel that no one considered using pizzas as materials ever again.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Piragi

Latvian Entree

PIRAGI

INGREDIENTS – DOUGHpiragi

⅓ cup warm water
1 teaspoon sugar (3½ more tablespoons later)
2 tablespoons yeast

¾ cup butter
1½ cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
3½ tablespoons sugar
1 egg yolk (1 entire egg later)
1 tablespoon sour cream
5 cups flour (2 more tablespoons later)

INGREDIENTS – FILLING

1 pound bacon
1 small onion
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon salt

INGREDIENTS – ASSEMBLY

2 tablespoons flour
1 egg

SPECIAL UTENSILS

2 cookie sheets
pastry brush
parchment paper

Makes 30. Takes 3 hours.

PREPARATION – DOUGH

Add 1 teaspoon sugar and warm water to mixing bowl. Whisk until sugar dissolves. Sprinkle yeast over sugary water. Let sit for 10 minutes or yeast becomes foamy.

While yeast foams, add butter to small pot. Melt butter using medium-high heat. Add milk, salt, and sugar. Heat until milk is almost ready to boil. Stir constantly. Remove from heat.

Add milk mixture into mixing bowl with yeasty water. Add egg yolk and sour cream. Gradually add flour. Blend with electric beater set to low until dough forms. Cover bowl with thin towel and let sit for 1½ hours.

PREPARATION – FILLING

While dough rises, dice bacon and onion. Add vegetable oil, bacon, and onion to pan. Sauté at medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Stir frequently. Add pepper and salt. Remove from heat and let cool in refrigerator for 10 minutes.

PREPARATION – ASSEMBLY

While dough rises and filling cools, knead dough by hand or by bread machine for 20 minutes or until dough is elastic. Dust roller and flat surface with 2 tablespoons flour. Add dough to flat surfarce. Roll out dough until it is ¼” thick.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Separate egg. Make 3″ circles in dough. A drinking glass works well for this. Add 1 teaspoon to center of dough circle. Brush a thin strip of egg white along edges of dough circle. Fold dough circle in half. Use tip of fork to seal edges together. Repeat until all dough and filling is used. These are the piragi.

Put parchment paper on cookie sheets. Place piragi on parchment paper. Beat egg yolk with fork or whisk. Brush egg yolk over piragi. Heat oven to 400 degrees. Bake for 12 minutes or until piragi turn golden brown

TIDBITS

1) “Piragi” is an anagram for “Air Pig.” It’s a hidden bit of history, but many of our commercial planes were once flown by pigs.

2) Oil prices soared during the Oil Embargo of 1973 So did the price of aviation fuel. Airlines became frantic in their search to reduce fuel costs. One way was to reduce of a fully-loaded plane. So, for a brief time, stewardesses threw passengers out the emergency door, starting with those who didn’t listen to the pre-flight safety instructions. The technique worked! Fuel costs plummeted.

3) So did ridership. A dead passenger is not a return passenger. Plus, people became skittish about booking a flight when it might mean being ejected over the Atlantic. Passengers became downright resentful toward stewardesses. Indeed, the very word “stewardess” became a curse word. This is the reason they are now called flight attendants. It’s kinda like calling used cars “pre-owned.”

4) The average feral pig weighs 125 pounds. (Only wild pigs can be trained to fly jets. Who knew?) The average man tips the scale at 170. A small difference to be sure, but enough over the course of millions of flights to cut fuel costs to the point of keeping air travel economically viable. Whew.

5) Unfortunately, the pig pilots buzzed workers at pork rendering plants. In 1974 alone, four crashes resulted from such behavior. This being the 70s, airlines listened to customer concerns and fired their pig aviators. There are persistent whispers, however, that shadowy governmental agencies still employ pig pilots in covert operations. These critters are tough. Don’t discuss bacon around them.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, history, international | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Sococho (Panamanian Soup)

Panamanian Soup

SOCOCHO

INGREDIENTSSococho-

4 garlic cloves
1 large onion
2 tomatoes
2 pounds yucca or cassava root
1½ pounds potatoes
2 pounds boneless chicken parts
2 teaspoons olive oil (additional ½ tablespoon later)
1 tablespoon cilantro
½ teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
4 cups chicken stock

SPECIAL UTENSILS

Dutch oven
rocker knife or knife with thick blade

Serves 8 bowls and can take up to 2 hours to prepare depending on the battle between you and the yucca root goes.

PREPARATION

Mince garlic cloves. Dice onion and tomatoes. Peel yucca and cut it into ½” cubes. (Cutting yucca root is much easier with rocker knife or thick-bladed knife.) Chop potatoes into ½” cubes. Cut chicken into 1″ cubes. Add 2 teaspoons olive oil, cilantro, oregano, salt, and chicken to mixing bowl. Thoroughly coat chicken with herb/salt/olive oil mix. Let marinate for 20 minutes.

While chicken marinates, add ½ tablespoon olive, garlic, and onion to pan. Sauté on medium-high heat for 5 minutes or until onion softens. Add chicken and its herb/salt/olive oil marinade to large soup pot. Cook on medium heat for 10 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink inside. Stir occasionally. (How about “Pink Chicken” as a name for avant garde band?)

Add chicken stock to soup pot. Keep heat on medium. Add potato and yucca to pot, cover, and cook for 45-to-60 minutes or until potato and yucca are tender. Add tomatoes and cook for an additional 5 minutes.

TIDBITS

1) Van Halen has a song called, “Panama.” A lot of people thought the words were actually “Padded bra.”

2) Either version makes as much sense in the song.

3) I keep hearing Chrissie Hynde and the Pretenders singing, “I’m gonna make you, make you malteds.” I like the idea of a famous singer making me a malted. I do prefer them over milkshakes.

4) Does anyone else hear “Do the hustle” as “Tuna hustle?” How does a tuna hustle?”

5) And of course, Creedence Clearwater Revival tell us, “There’s a bathroom on the right.” That’s nice to know.

6) Okay, okay, tidbits 1) to 5) are a prime example of what happens what I look up fun facts for a country and find nothing exciting except . . .

7) In Panama, the sun rises in the Pacific and sets in the Atlantic.

8) This is because time runs backward in Panama

9) In Panama, the people use American dollars for transaction involving paper currency, but their own home-grown coins, the Balboas for vending machines and buses.

10) Panama’s coins are named after Rocky Balboa the hero of all those Rocky boxing movies.

11) How is it possible that the Balboa coins came before the Rocky movies but are named after the series’ main character? Time runs backward in Panama. Remember tidbit 8)?

12) People in Panama win all the American lotteries, since they know all the winning numbers.

13) But they lose the big jackpots when they exchange all that loot when they buy their lottery tickets. Does this frustrate the Panamanians?

14) Yes it does.

15) Invariably the American lotteries are then won by Americans or by citizens of other nations where time moves forward.

16) Augh! I’ve lost my train of thought.

17) Whew, I’ve got it back. Time gets a bit dicey when passing from a country where time moves forward to Panama where it regresses. Often people crossing the Costa Rica/Panamanian border find themselves in a sort of stasis field where time doesn’t move at all.

18) Which is a boon for parents of surly teenagers. If you have the cash, simply deposit your young know-it-all, whatever, in anyone of the stasis fields dotting the border there and leave him there.

19) Don’t forget to take your child home when he’s old enough to leave home for good.

20) You get up to eight years of clean bedrooms and the teenagers won’t get embarrassed by your ignorance. It’s a win-win situation.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

Categories: cuisine, food, history, humor, international, recipes | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pico de Gallo

Mexican Appetizer

PICO DE GALLO

INGREDIENTSPicoDeGallo-

4 Roma tomatoes
1 medium white onion
1 jalapeno pepper (1/2 or even 1/4 if you like it milder)
1 tablespoon fresh cilantro
4 teaspoons lime juice
1/2 teaspoon salt

PREPARATION

Dice tomatoes, onion, and cilantro. De-seed and dice jalapeno. (Wash hands afterward. If you touch your face before washing, it will burn.) Put tomato, onion, jalapeno, cilantro, lime juice, and salt in bowl. Mix with spoon.

TIDBITS

1) You really should listen to the song “Pico de Gallo” by Trout Fishing in America. The link to the song is: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2kL5f0np7EU. Visit Trout Fishing in America’s website at: http://www.troutmusic.com/.

2) Pico de gallo goes well with tortilla chips.

3) Guatemala has suffered through many years of civil wars. Peasants would often take to the hills to avoid the guerrillas and the government forces. The villagers’ main source of sustenance was the humble tortilla. However, old tortillas dry out and become hard to eat. So the peasants would fry their tortillas in oil to make tortilla chips which lasted longer.

4) Humanity began its ascent in the Americas with the development of the first tortillas in 10,000 B.C.. Beer provided the upward impetus across the Atlantic Ocean. Civilizations such as the Aztecs and the Mayans flourished because of the tortillas and indeed they developed advanced art, architecture, math, astronomy, and pico de gallo. America has the world’s largest economy because of its great tortilla chip and beer industries.

5) The Spanish royalty dispatched Christopher Columbus in 1492 to find these fabled tortilla lands. In 1519 Hernando Cortez conquered the Aztecs on Central Mexico securing a Spanish tortilla monopoly. Mexican tortillas would provide the sustenance for the many and mighty armies that held together the vast and numerous of the Spanish empire..

6) In 1993 China began producing flour tortillas. China will soon have the world’s largest economy.

– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef

My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.

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