Recipe of the Day

Goat in Chile Marinade, Pit-Barbecue Style

 

Goat in Chile Marinade, Pit-Barbecue Style recipe

yield
8 to 10 servings (more for the lamb version)

Barbacoa de Cabrito

This goat barbecue typifies a style where the meat absorbs an adobo, a fragrant, spicy marinade of dried chiles and other seasonings.

I watched Zoyla Mendoza make this dish in her village, Teotitlán del Valle. Though she and her family can well afford to eat meat, they usually save it for special occasions, so they rejoiced when I asked them to teach me their favorite barbacoa. It was beautiful, breathing the scent of fresh avocado leaves and other herbs. The meat becomes unbelievably tender without drying out or getting mushy.

When I came back to my New York kitchen, I set to work to find other methods close to the tender savor of a true pit barbecue. For the type that Zoyla showed me, I feel the best results come from packing the marinated meat in a tightly covered pan just large enough to hold the ingredients and baking it for a long time in a moderate oven. A turkey roaster is good. If you don’t have a big enough pan with a tight-fitting lid, wrap several layers of aluminum foil very snugly around the pan to seal in the steam.

I make the barbacoa as Zoyla made it, with young goat (kid). Goat is available in some Greek, halalMuslim, and West Indian butcher shops and can sometimes be ordered from other butchers. Ask the butcher to cut it into quarters. Oaxacans always include and specially value the head, which has some extra-tender nuggets of meat. (This is optional for the doubting.) If goat is not available, lamb is the best substitute. At my restaurant, we use lamb shoulder. The dish can also be made with a whole fresh ham or a pot-roasting cut of beef such as round, though you may have to reduce the amount of marinade slightly and experiment with a shorter cooking time. Of course true pre-Hispanic barbacoa was made with turkey—not used as frequently nowadays, but still a notably authentic choice.

When the meat is cooked in an authentic pit it yields a lot of rich juices that never develop using the oven method. At my restaurant in New York we approximate this as follows: When the adobo (chile paste) is made, set aside 1 1/4 cup of the mixture and rub the meat with the rest. Cook as described below. When the meat is done, skim the fat from the pan juices and deglaze the roasting pan with 2 cups homemade chicken broth over medium-high heat, scraping up the browned bits. Stir in one 28- to 32-ounce can tomatoes, breaking them up with a spoon. Add the reserved adobo and simmer, stirring frequently, for about 30 minutes, or until reduced to about 4 cups. Let cool slightly and purée in a blender (working in batches as necessary) until smooth. Serve with the carved meat.

ingredients

  • 4 ounces guajillo chiles (about 16 large chiles), tops and seeds removed
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves, or 3/4 teaspoon ground
  • 10 allspice berries
  • 1/3 cup dried Oaxacan oregano or 1 tablespoon dried Mexican oregano, crumbled
  • 12 to 15 large sprigs fresh thyme (leaves only), or 2 teaspoons dried
  • 10 garlic cloves
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon salt or to taste, plus additional for seasoning goat
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 16-pound goat, quartered, or 6 to 8 pounds lamb shoulder, bone in, trimmed
  • 1/2 to 3/4 ounce dried avocado leaves, about 30 large leaves

preparation

Wash and griddle-dry the chiles by the directions below. Place in a deep bowl and cover generously with boiling water. Let soak for at least 20 minutes.

Grind the cumin, cloves, allspice, oregano, and dried thyme (if using) together in an electric coffee or spice grinder or with a mortar and pestle.

Drain the soaked chiles. Working in batches as necessary, place them in a blender with the ground herbs and spices (add fresh thyme at this point if using), garlic, onion, vinegar, salt, and about 1/2 cup water (or enough to facilitate the action of the blades). Process to a smooth purée (about 3 minutes on high), stopping occasionally to scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula. With a wooden spoon or pusher, for the purée through a medium-mesh sieve into a bowl. It should have the consistency of a thick but still moist paste.

Season the pieces of goat or lamb with salt and pepper. Slather the seasoning paste all over the meat. Arrange in a large bowl (or any non-reactive container that’s large enough), cover tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours. Remove from the refrigerator about 2 hours before beginning the cooking, to let the meat come to room temperature.

Preheat the oven to 325°F.

Choose a deep roasting pan or baking dish large enough to hold the meat snugly. Scatter half of the avocado leaves across the bottom of the pan and arrange the meat on them. Scatter the remaining leaves over the meat. Cover the pan (wrapping very tightly with several layers of foil if there is no lid) and bake 6 to 7 hours (4 to 4 1/2 hours for the lamb). The meat should be almost falling off the bone.

notes:Griddle-Drying Remove and discard the tops and seeds of the chiles. I leave in the veins (the hottest part), but you can cut them away if you want to tone down the heat. Rinse the chiles under cold running water and shake off the excess moisture, but do not dry them. Heat a griddle or cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat until a drop of water sizzles on contact. A few at a time, place the chiles on the griddle and let them heat, turning occasionally with tongs, just until any clinging moisture is evaporated and the aroma is released. Allow approximately 30 to 45 seconds in all per chile for most kinds, slightly less for guajillos (which are very thin-skinned). The chiles should just become dry, hot, and fragrant; do not allow them to start really roasting or they will have a terrible scorched flavor. Remove from the griddle as they are done.

Recipe of the Day

Capellini with Shrimp and Creamy Tomato Sauce

 

Capellini with Shrimp and Creamy Tomato Sauce recipe

yield
Makes 4 servings

active time
10 min

total time
15 min

The addition of the sweet vermouth here punctuates the natural sweetness of the canned tomatoes, making this quick sauce taste as if it’s been simmered for hours.

ingredients

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound peeled large shrimp
  • 3 large garlic cloves, forced through a garlic press
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 cup sweet (red) vermouth
  • 1 (14- to 15-ounce) can diced tomatoes, drained
  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 pound capellini

preparation

HEAT OIL in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers, then cook shrimp and garlic with oregano, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, turning once, until golden, about 2 minutes total. Stir in vermouth and tomatoes, scraping up any brown bits from bottom of skillet. Add cream and briskly simmer until sauce has thickened slightly, about 1 minute. Stir in lemon juice.

Meanwhile, cook capellini in a pasta pot of boiling salted water (3 tablespoons salt for 6 quarts water) until al dente. Reserve 1 cup pasta-cooking water, then drain pasta.

Serve immediately, topped with shrimp and sauce. Thin with some of reserved water if necessary.

Recipe of the Day

Crunchy Turkey Salad with Peanut Dressing

 

Crunchy Turkey Salad with Peanut Dressing recipe

yield
6 servings

ingredients

  • 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
  • 2 cups shredded cooked turkey meat
  • 1 cup shredded green or Napa cabbage
  • 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves with tender stems
  • 1 cup fresh mint leaves
  • 1 large carrot, shaved lengthwise with a vegetable peeler
  • Lime wedges for serving

preparation

Whisk 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter, 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, and 1 teaspoon Sriracha in a small bowl.

Mix 2 cups shredded cooked turkey meat, 1 cup shredded green or Napa cabbage, 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves with tender stems, and 1 cup fresh mint leaves in a large bowl. Shave 1 large carrot lengthwise with a vegetable peeler and toss into salad.

Spoon peanut dressing onto plates and mound salad on top; drizzle with more dressing. Serve with lime wedges.

Recipe of the Day

Butter-Roasted Turkey Breasts

 

Butter-Roasted Turkey Breasts recipe

yield

Makes 8 servings

ingredients

  • 2 skin-on, bone-in turkey breasts (3 1/2–4 pounds)
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
  • 6 sprigs thyme
  • 4 sprigs rosemary
  • 1 head of garlic, cloves peeled, crushed

preparation

Preheat oven to 425°F. Gently loosen skin from turkey breasts and rub butter under skin and all over outside of breasts; season with salt and pepper.

Scatter thyme sprigs, rosemary sprigs, and garlic over a large rimmed baking sheet and arrange turkey breasts, skin side up, on top. Roast turkey breasts, turning halfway through, until skin is crisp and golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of breasts REGISTERS 160°F (for optimal moistness, you will want to cook the white meat of the turkey breasts to a lower internal temperature than you would if cooking a whole bird), 45–55 minutes.

Transfer turkey breasts to a platter and let rest 10 minutes before carving.

Serve turkey breasts with pan drippings alongside.

Recipe of the Day

Tuna Tostadas, Contramar Style

 

Tuna Tostadas, Contramar Style recipe

yield
Makes 12 tostadas; serves 6

The first time we dined at Contramar, Mexico City’s lauded seafood restaurant, we had an awakening. Suddenly Mexican food wasn’t just the delicious, homey, “authentic” food of our previous travels (authentic being a nebulous word at best), but something sophisticated yet casual, urban, and exciting. And this signature dish of Contramar’s—a heavenly fusion of Asian and Mexican—is the ultimate example of that. To get it right, we even flew Telmo down to DF to stage (the culinary term for intern) in the Contramar kitchen.

ingredients

Chipotle Aioli:

  • 1 egg yolk, chilled
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup drained, chopped chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Tostadas:

  • Vegetable oil, for deep-frying
  • 12 (4- to 5-inch) corn tortillas (purchased this size or cut to size with scissors)
  • 3 large leeks, white and light green part only, halved lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/4-incht hick half-moons (3 cups)
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (from about 4 limes)
  • 1 pound sashimi-grade skinned tuna fillet, cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices
  • 2 avocados, halved, pitted, peeled, and cut into 24 slices each 1/8 inch thick
  • Kosher salt
  • 12 lime wedges (about 2 limes)

preparation

To make the aioli, combine the egg yolk, lemon juice, and garlic in a blender and blend for 30 to 45 seconds, until smooth. With the blender running, pour in the oil in a very SLOW, thin, steady stream until the mixture emulsifies and thickens. (If the aioli begins to break, try alternating the oil with drops of ice water until the mixture has emulsified.)

Add the chiles and salt and process for an additional 30 seconds, until the chiles are fully incorporated. Transfer to a covered container and refrigerate until needed; it will keep for up to 3 days. To make the tostadas, pour the oil to a depth of 1 inch into a large, deep, heavy skillet and heat to 375°F on a deep-frying thermometer. Line a large plate with paper towels. Add the tortillas, one or two at a time (depending on the size of the pan), to the hot oil and cook, turning once with tongs, for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes on each side, until a uniformly deep golden color and crisp. Transfer to the towel-lined plate to absorb the excess oil. Fry the remaining tortillas the same way. Set aside.

Remove the pan from the heat, reserving the oil in the pan to fry the leeks.

Put the leeks and just enough water to cover in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over high heat. Remove from the heat, drain into a colander, and place under cold running water for about 30 seconds, until completely cool. Press gently on the leeks to remove any excess water, then press between paper towels to wick away excess moisture.

Line a small plate with paper towels. If the tortillas have absorbed some of the oil in the skillet, add more oil until it is again 1 inch deep. Place the skillet over medium-low heat and heat the oil to 325°F. Carefully add the leeks to the hot oil and fry, stirring once about halfway through the frying, for about 5 minutes, until golden brown and crispy but still a little green. Be careful not to let them burn. Using a SLOTTEDspoon, transfer the leeks to the towel-lined plate to drain.

Stir together the soy sauce and lime juice in a glass or ceramic bowl. Add the tuna slices and stir gently, coating all of slices with the marinade. Let marinate for 5 minutes, then pour off the excess marinade.

To assemble the tostadas, place the tostadas on a flat work surface and spread about 2 teaspoons of the chipotle aioli on each tostada. Place 3 tuna slices on top of the aioli, then top each portion of tuna with about 2 teaspoons of the leeks. Finally, top each tostada with 2 avocado slices, then season the avocado with a tiny pinch of salt.

Serve the tostadas immediately, accompanied with the lime wedges.

Recipe of the Day

Roast Pork Tenderloin with Carrot Romesco

 

Roast Pork Tenderloin with Carrot Romesco recipe

yield
Makes 4 servings

Romesco is to Spain what pesto is to Italy. Typically made with red peppers, this carrot version led to some new ideas.

ingredients

  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1 1/2 pounds small carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise if larger
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 large pork tenderloin (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 1 small garlic clove, finely grated
  • 1 teaspoon Aleppo pepper or 1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar, divided
  • 2 cups spicy greens (such as watercress or baby mustard)

preparation

Preheat oven to 350°F. Toast pine nuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing occasionally, until golden brown, 8–10 minutes; let cool.

Increase temperature to 450°F. Toss carrots with 1 tablespoon oil on another rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and black pepper. Roast, tossing occasionally, until softened and browned, 15–20 minutes; let cool slightly.

Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Season pork with salt and black pepper and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown, 10–15 minutes. Transfer skillet to oven and roast pork until a thermometer inserted into thickest portion REGISTERS 145°F, 8–10 minutes. Let rest 5 minutes before slicing.

Pulse pine nuts, garlic, and remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a food processor to a coarse paste. Add Aleppo pepper, one-fourth of carrots, 1 tablespoon vinegar, and 1 tablespoon water. Process, adding more water as needed, to a coarse purée; season romesco with salt, black pepper, and more vinegar, if desired.

Toss greens with remaining carrots and remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar in a large bowl; season with salt and black pepper. Serve pork with romesco and salad.

Recipe of the Day

Cod with Potatoes and Preserved Lemon Relish

 

Cod with Potatoes and Preserved Lemon Relish recipe

yield
Makes 6 servings

For this rustic interpretation of brandade, Aizpitarte uses desalinated salt cod, which is not easy to find. We got great results (and the right texture) by simply using fresh cod, but when it comes to the addictive relish spooned over the top, we wouldn’t dare change a thing.

ingredients

  • 1/2 medium onion, unpeeled, halved
  • 1/2 head garlic (halved crosswise)
  • 1 lemongrass stalk, trimmed, tough outer layers removed, finely chopped
  • 4 sprigs thyme
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 4 cups low-fat milk
  • 1 1/4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes (about 4 large), scrubbed
  • Flaky grey sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds skinless cod fillet, cut into 2″ pieces
  • 1/2 preserved lemon, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped chives (from about 1 large bunch)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon hot smoked Spanish paprika

preparation

Bring onion, garlic, lemongrass, thyme, peppercorns, and milk to a boil in a large saucepan. Reduce heat to low and simmer 20 minutes. Strain infused milk into a medium saucepan. Discard solids.

Meanwhile, cook potatoes in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender, 25–30 minutes. Drain, then peel potatoes and coarsely mash in a large bowl with 1/4 cup oil; season with salt.

Bring infused milk just to a boil. Add cod, reduce heat, and simmer until flesh begins to flake and is cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove cod with a SLOTTED spoon and transfer to a plate.

Combine preserved lemon, chives, lemon juice, paprika, and remaining 3 tablespoons oil in a small bowl; season relish with salt.

Mix 1/4 cup infused milk into potatoes. Place cod over potatoes; spoon relish over.

DO AHEAD: Relish can be made 2 days ahead. Cover and chill.

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