Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Tuetano......Roasted Bone Marrow

Requested by mister Masa Assasin and glad to oblige.
Our recipe for roasted bone marrow with salsa negra:
The deal with this one.. its all in the sauce, its all in the bread, its all in the quality of the bone marrow.
Get your butcher to get you the best parts of the femural bone, cut in 2 inch pieces (the butcher knows its the center cut of the bone) rub with oil and coarse sea salt, pepper optional and pop in the oven at max heat until well browned ( time will depend on the size of the bone and your oven).
Sauce is basically your classic pasilla sauce,

Get a couple of tomatillos
a ripe roma or perita tomato
half an onion dice
1 garlic clove
3 pasilla chilis toasted
2 guajillo chilis toasted
1 Chile de Arbol toasted
Sweat the onion with the garlic and fry the tomato and tomatillo,
put all the ingredients in the blender and blitz, just add salt and pepper to taste
you can also add some cilantro if you want.
Toast a few slices of good old rustic country bread...."Hogaza" makes some great bread but we make our own..and just smear the bread with the buttery soft and wonderfully sensual bone marrow, drop a dollop of our black sauce, some sea salt and enjoy my friend, cause you are in for a treat.
Try some great hand made flour tortillas instead of bread if thats your thing...its perfectly acceptable but I love the crunch we get from our baguettes.
Buen provecho amigo.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Just another laid back beer drinking Sunday

As if it wasnt enough with the near indigestive state we found ourselves after our pork overdose, we headed back to "La Piazza" which was closed of course, opened only to us and by no means serving italian cuisine, but the remainder of the exquisitly poached beef tongue, thinly sliced and served as a taco....taken to another level with an eclectically mouthwatering red radish, serrano and red onion salsa.

Try this beautiful and stupidly delicious pink salsa at home:

4 Radishes.. brunoise
1/2 a red onion.. brunoise
a couple of hot serrano chilis.. diced
a small bunch of cilantro ..chiffonade
the juice of 4 to 5 limes
salt and pepper to taste

Just mix all the ingredients in a bowl and let marinate over night in the fridge.

Beef tounge was poached in seasoned water with a couple of bay leaves, 10 pepper corns, half an onion, a clove of garlic and a guajillo chili (opcional) for two to three hours.

Cool beef tounge, thinly slice and reheat in a skillet at low heat and serve with fresh corn tortillas.

P. S. La Piazza serves Baja cuisine with an Italian flare so you won´t find this dish on the menu, you will, however find delicious local, product based dishes and freshly made pasta, monday through saturday from 1.00pm to 12.00 am, mexicali ,baja tel 686 569 37 54.

Porchetta at the Mercuri´s

The perfect table setting...............

The antipasti .... sliced pork rump roast with vegetable aioli, baked yellow peppers and tomatoes stuffed with rice, scalloped beef tounge with lime vinagrette, red onions and raddish. Mango, lettuce and cucumber salad. The pasta... farfalle con funghi.

Prosciutto and cheese stuffed focaccia, topped with olives and cherry tomatoes.

The star, roasted crispy porchetta with baked new potatoes. not a very summery dish, but hell if we care...

...porchetta goooooooooood.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Makin-bakon´.......Porchetta at the Mercuri´s

About two hours east from San Diego and just south of the border is Mexicali, Baja´s state capital and probably the one of its least popular destinations due to its blistering heat. There is another side to Mexicali, it is home to some of the warmest funloving people in Mexico. Mexicali is also a close second to Tijuana for industrial and international investment and is responsable for lots of the states profit.

Summers might be unbearable yet almost any desert-trotting "Cachanilla"(Mexicali native) might just toss you an ice cold beer as soon as they meet you. Not exactly a big touristy town, locals tend to work hard and party harder yet food is really not a big part of their lifestyle, limited mostly to Chinese food (which is huge ) tacos and Sinaloa style seafood due to it´s large Chinese and Sinaloan migration.

There are however, a few culinary treasures hidden under all that sun and sand, Mexicali, after all is a land of opportunity for many families and you might even find a few here and there coming form Italy, Spain, France, Switzerland, Cuba, Colombia, Japan, or Korea that have brought their ever thriving love for food and culinary culture. One of those families is the Mercuri familiy, husband Alessandro Mercuri and wife Elda Giuliano, lived practically all over Italy before moving to Mexico with their two sons; first Mexico city, Guadalajara and finally Mexicali where they found their home in 1984.

Elda, however, is not just a diehard foodie, but a longtime passionate home cook coming from a long line of Italian chefs and restaurantuers. Her holiday spreads usually include 3 antipasti, a couple of pasta courses, a meat and fish dish, 2 or three sides, a few cakes, cookies, and candied fruit. There she entertains friends, family and a few saliving crashers that understand just how good Elda´s food really is. Food and wine is never scarse at the Mercuri household and should you be fortunate enough to be invited to one of their traditional mouthwatering Italian grubfest be sure to bring loose pants ´cause I garantee you, you will need them by the time you are through.

One of Elda´s most sought after and celebrated dishes pays tribute to an Italian classic...the Porchetta; pork meat seasoned with rosemary , sage, fennel sead and garlic rolled in its own skin, cured and roasted to an almost pornographically suculent, caramelized crisp perfection.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Baja Food & Wine

Few cuisines better represent an everchanging trend, classic meets modern or rather local, than the excitingly new yet barley emerging Baja Cuisine. Chefs like Jair Tellez, Benito Molina, Diego Hernandez and Guillermo Barreto have been slaving away in their kitchens in Tijuana, Ensenada and even Mexicali trying to come up with new and exciting ways to use the vast array of fresh and locally grown ingredients from Baja´s fertile lands and rich limitless seas.

Baja is quickly turning into one of the most important culinary hotspots in Mexico and maybe even Latin America with its complex yet luscious wines from winemakers Hugo D´acosta, Jose Luis Durand, Reynaldo Rodriguez and newcomers like Adrian Garcia, Bruno Madrazo and boutique winemaker/brewer Alvaro Alvarez as well as many others.

Baja is now producing not only great wine but exquisite artesanal cheeses, exceptional beef, delicious lamb, sustainable farmed tuna fish, kumamoto oysters and abulone as well as olives, olive oil, honey, and organic produce to name a few.