Collection of the ‘latin american’ Category

Spring pea soup with lime crema, chicken breasts poached in red wine and star anise and five spice fingerlings

This sounds like a complicated menu, but it’s a snap! Serve with a little salad and some strawberries (quartered and macerated with some of the port and little sugar) with whipped cream for dessert.



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One take on the classic arroz con pollo – Here are the recipes

Arroz con pollo in this area is a regional, classic dish and I truly love it. This is another take on this area staple, with Japonica rice (a black and mahogany rice) with saffron infused white beans and grilled chicken. It has very few ingredients, and other than the time it takes for the rice to cook itself, it’s a very simple dish. You can find this rice at most gourmet markets and health stores.



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Plantain-stuffed pork tenderloin, traditional black beans and rice and lime-yucca mash

This is a pork dish I developed a year or two ago for a potential restaurant menu. The plantain really sweetens and softens while it cooks, lending a complimentary flavor to the pork. Yes, I use Jasmine rice. I hate clumpy, gummy rice and I get the best results with Jasmine. It takes about 15 minutes to make the rice. This meal usually takes me about 45 minutes to cook and the pork comes out perfectly tender, juicy and flavorful.


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Minorcan-style clam chowder and white chicken chili with Datil peppers

Datil peppers arrived in Florida around 1777 when the Minorcans arrived in St. Augustine. While the pepper is related to other members of the capsicum family, it is very unique in flavor. It is as hot as a Habanero but also has a fruity quality. I’ve never tasted another pepper like it. They are very hard to obtain, but you can buy seeds for them. They are now almost exclusively grown in Florida in the St. Augustine area.


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Green bean casserole with chipotle cream sauce

This is a great new way to make green bean casserole. Check it out.



2 lbs fresh green beans, trimmed and cut into 2″ pieces
1 lb button mushrooms, sliced in 1/4 ” lengths
1/4 tsp thyme
3 TB flour
1 TB butter plus 3 TB butter
3 cups milk
1 large red onion
Enough grapeseed oil to fill 2 inches in a 2 quart saucepan
1 minced chipotle chili
1 1/2 tsp sea salt plus salt to taste
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Melt 1 TB butter in a large frying pan over medium high and add the mushrooms. Don’t touch them for about 5 minutes. Then stir once. Add a sprinkle of salt (about 1/4 tsp) and the thyme. After another 5 minutes remove to a bowl.
Add water to the saucepan up to 1″ below the top. Bring to a simmer. Add a bit to salt to the water (about 1 tsp). Add green beans and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove to a bowl.
In a two quart saucepan, add the oil. Heat to medium heat. Using a food processor slicing blade or a knife. Slice onion thinly. Add onions and monitor so they are just sizzling but not frying quickly. Turn down heat if necessary. When they are golden brown, use a slotted spoon to remove them to a paper towel.
Dispose of the oil and add 3 TB butter to the saucepan over high heat. Add the flour and whisk for a minute. Add the milk and whisk until incorporated. Add the chipotle and 1 1/2 tsp salt. Continue whisking and monitoring until the sauce thickens. Remove from the heat.

In a 9×13 baking dish, add the green beans and mushrooms, mixing to combine. Add the sauce. Bake for 45 minutes. 5 minutes before removing from the oven, add the onions on top. Serve.

Once you go Brazilian…

If you want to make a romantic lobster dish that’s a little different, check out my recipe for butter-poached lobster with red wine fettuccine in caviar sauce. It’s an easy dish you can make at home to “wow” your friends, family or date.

Party-sized, addictive Arroz con Pollo nachos

I just want you to know as I’m writing this, I’m eating these nachos. They are THAT good. Please excuse the crumbs.



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Cantaloupe crab chowder with ginger and smoked paprika

I don’t know about you, but I tire of the same old chowders and bisques. Here’s one I came up with that doesn’t require cooking (it’s served cold) and you can make it in minutes. The smoked paprika gives it a unique flavor. Be sure to use good quality sea salt for this. It makes a difference.

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