Sunday, February 15, 2009

Tinga Tacos

Our contribution to our fun filled Mexican delicacy fiesta was Smoky Pork Tinga Tacos with Avocado and Fresh Cheese, a recipe from  Mexican Everyday by Rick Bayless.  This dish is Bayless' riff on the "spicy, chipotle-smoky shredded pork, local fresh cheese and intensely flavorful avocados" from his time spent in Puebla.  Bayless says, "I know this recipe may look long, but I've streamlined it so it's easy."  I found this to be true.  It's mostly just a "chop and drop" recipe where the hardest element is having to cut up the pork.  

1lb red or Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2lbs boneless pork shoulder, cut into 1 inch pieces
One 28oz can diced tomatoes in juice (preferably fire roasted)
3 to 4 canned chipotle chiles en adobo, seeded and sliced 1/4 inch thick
1T chipotle canning sauce
1T Worcestershire sauce
1t dried oregano, preferably Mexican
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed or finely chopped
1 medium white onion, diced
4oz fresh Mexican chorizo sausage, casing removed (about 1/2 C) (optional)
24 warm corn tortillas
1C crumbled Mexican queso fresco or feta cheese, for serving
2 large avocados, pitted, flesh cut from the skin and cut into  1/2 inch pieces, for serving

Spread the potatoes over the bottom of a slow-cooker and top with the pork.  In a large bowel, mix the (undrained) tomatoes with the chipotles, chipotle canning sauce, Worcestershire, oregano, garlic, optional onion and 1 1/2 t salt. Pour the mixture  evenly over the meat and potatoes. Cover and slow cook on high for 6hrs. 

When ready to eat, fry the optional chorizo in medium skillet until thoroughly done, about 4min. Sprinkle chorizo into mixture and stir everything together, breaking the pork into smaller pieces.  Serve with warm tortillas, crumbled fresh cheese and avocados.  

**Note: To go easy on the spice, only use 1 or 2 chipotle chiles. 

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Mexican Night

February cooking club + Mexican theme = SUCCESS!

Post your recipes.

Tres Leche Cake

Tres Leche Cake
adapted from a recipe by Alton Brown


For the cake:

  • Vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 c. flour, plus extra for pan
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 c. unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 c. sugar
  • 5 whole eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

For the glaze:

  • 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
  • 1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup half-and-half

For the topping:

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2/3 c. sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For the cake:


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil and flour 2 round cake pans and set aside.

Whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt in a medium mixing bowl and set aside.

Place the butter into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the paddle attachment, beat on medium speed until fluffy, approximately 1 minute. Decrease the speed to low and with the mixer still running, gradually add the sugar over 1 minute. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl, if necessary. Add the eggs, 1 at a time, and mix to thoroughly combine. Add the vanilla extract and mix to combine. Add the flour mixture to the batter in 3 batches and mix just until combined. Transfer the batter to the prepared pasn and spread evenly. This will appear to be a very small amount of batter. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 20 to 25 minutes or until the cake is lightly golden and reaches an internal temperature of 200 degrees F.

Remove the cake pan to a cooling rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes. Remove cake to wire rack set over a cookie sheet with high sides. Poke the top of the cake all over with a skewer or fork. Allow the cake to cool completely and then prepare the glaze.

For the glaze:

Whisk together the evaporated milk, sweetened condensed milk and the half-and-half in a 1-quart measuring cup. Once combined, pour half the glaze over the cake. Let rest for about 30 min. Turn cake over and pour the rest of the glaze over cake. Let sit until ready to frost, up to 4 hours.


Place the heavy cream, sugar and vanilla into the bowl of a stand mixer. Using the whisk attachment, whisk together on low until stiff peaks are formed. Change to medium speed and whisk until thick. Spread the topping over the cake and allow to chill in the refrigerator until ready to serve.