Friday, November 2, 2012

Olé and Molé

First some Olé  Your lesson in Spanish

The language of Mexico is Spanish, the native languages of the Aztecs and Mayans are pretty much gone.  But even though the language is "Spanish", Mexican Spanish has a few different words.

In Mexico     brown - café     In Spain - marron
                      snacks- botanas               - tapas
                      pen - pluma                     - boligrafo
                      bus - camion                   - autobus

But of course some of the words and phrases are the same:

1- uno 2- dos 3- tres 4- quattro 5- cinco 6- siete
8- ocho 9- nueve 10- dies

Hello - hola    How are you? - Como estas?    Goodbye - Adios
Thank you - gracias      Cheers - Salud       I Love You - te amo
                       Bon Appetit - Buen Apetito

and on that note we will move to our next section - FOOD!

The unique taste of Molé

I've seen and heard about Molé, it's a sauce used in Mexican dishes that has chocolate in it.  Now, I love chocolate but I just couldn't imagine what it would taste like in a meat dish so I've never ordered it or made it.  My friend Stephanie had a recipe in her cookbook that we could do in the crockpot, so we gave it a try.  It is really very tasty but different than any other Mexican sauce I've had before.  It's a little bitter from the chocolate but you get sweet every so often from the raisins.  The meat gets all tender and the nuts give it yet another texture.  It was really good with some rice and a little sour cream and we made homemade tortillas (read on for recipe) to go with them.  We finished off the meal with some Pan de Muerte, a sweet bread made in honor of Dia de los Muertos (I will post about that tomorrow after the festival).  It was a very tasty meal and here are the recipes if you would like to try something a little different.  Enjoy!


Recipe from Make it Fast, Cook it Slow
For the recipe you will need:
  • 1/4 c raw sesame seeds
  • 1/2 c raw slivered almonds
  • 2 lbs beef ( I used stew meat)
  • 1/4 t ground cloves
  • 1 T chili powder
  • 1/2 t ground coriander
  • 1/4 t anise seeds
  • 1 dry California chili pod (or more chili powder)
  • 1 yellow onion chopped
  • 1/3 c raisins
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 can of diced tomatoes in juice (14 oz)
  • 1 can tomato paste (6 oz)
  • 1/4 c tequila ( and a shot for yourself since your going to all this trouble)
  • 1 - 2 oz unsweetened chocolate.  I used 2, might've preferred 1
  • salt to taste
There are a lot of ingredients but it's really not a lot of work. 
1. In a small pan brown the seeds on the stove so they are golden brown and toasted.
2. Dump the toasted nuts/seeds and everything else into the crockpot.  Cover and cook on low for 8 hours.  Serve with some rice and some homemade tortillas.

Homemade Corn Tortillas

For the recipe you will need:
  • Masa - ground corn flour.  I found this next to the flour in the baking section.  I was also informed that some Mexican markets sell it already made into dough.
  • Water
  • Salt
  • Plastic wrap
  • Tortilla press - totally optional but I saw it at the Mexican market and it was only $13 so I bought it.  A rolling pin or a heavy pan would work too.
1. Follow the directions on the masa for making the dough.  Ours used 2 cups flour and 1 1/4 cups water and some salt.
2. Make a little ball of dough and put on plastic wrap.  Cover with another piece of plastic wrap and squish flat with the tortilla press.  The kids had a ball doing this and were fighting over turns!!
3. This part I learned from experience - either cook them immediately after you take them off the press or use the plastic wrap to keep them separate.  Ours started out perfect but stuck together when we tried to take them off the pile! 
4.  Cook your tortilla on a hot griddle or frying pan. 
5.  Spread with a little butter and ENJOY!

Tomorrow we are going to a Dia de los Muertos festival so I will leave the dessert portion of our meal for that post.  Hope you have a great weekend!  Buenos Dias!