Monday, April 18, 2011

Tacu Tacu (Peruvian Steak, with Rice and Beans)

This dish is by far one of the most interesting dishes I've ever made.  I cooked this is my culinary club along with the previous side dish posted.
 In order for this dish to be considered 100% fun, easy and positively delicious, you must follow each step carefully! It's a bit of a challenge, but I know you can do it!

-5 slices bacon
-1 medium onion (finely chopped)
-1tsp Chile powder
-1 1/2 cups canned red beans
-1 1/2 cups cooked white rice
-1 cup bread crumbs
-12 oz flank steak, sliced thin
-4 tbs unsalted butter
-6 tbs olive oil
-4 eggs
-salt to taste
-pepper to taste
-1 tsp parsley, finely chopped

1. In a medium sautée pan, cook bacon until crispy.   Remove bacon and leave drippings in the pan. add the chopped onion and chili powder and cook until soft and golden.
2. Add the beans and stir until pretty well broken up.  Add the rice and stir. Cook the rice, stirring constantly until heated through.  Remove from heat and season to taste with salt and pepper. Set aside. 

3. Lay steak on cutting board and pound with a mallet or small sautée pan to tenderize. Season with salt and pepper to taste on both sides. Set aside.
4. Using a 1/4 cup measuring cup, scoop out the slightly cooled rice and bean mixture and pat it out of the measuring cup.  Using your hands, form them into patties. Drop the patty into the breadcrumbs and press each side.
5. Heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil over medium high heat until hot. Fry the rice and bean patties cooking them for 2-3 minutes per side until golden brown and crispy.  Remove from heat and cover with foil to keep warm. 
6. Using the same skillet, add 2 tablespoons olive oil and heat until hot. Add the steak and cook it to medium rare, about 3-4 minutes on each side. Turn the heat down to medium and fry the eggs over-medium.  Season with salt and pepper while cooking.
(Over medium is when you crack an egg onto the skillet and cook it so that it is cooked on both sides but the yolk is of medium consistency)
7. Thinly slice the steak and set it aside.
8. Lay 2 rice and bean cakes side by side in the middle of a plate.  Lay the sliced steak over the top and place the egg on top of the steak.  Chop up the left over bacon and sprinkle over the top. 

Garnish with parsley and enjoy!

Special thanks to Katherine K. for allowing me to use your camera!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Ensalada de Choclo

The next couple recipes are a real treat because they are a peak into the organization that I lead, Miami University Culinary Association.  This class was Hispanic Cuisine themed and we made some delicious authentic cuisine.  One thing I love about Hispanic cuisine is the freshness of the ingredients. You'll notice a theme of frequent use of fresh vegetables and meats.  This recipe is a great side dish for any summer meal.  With lime and cilantro as the flavor boosters, you'll experience a mixture of zest and fresh tang! This recipe is most definitely fun, easy and positively delicious! There are only three simple steps!

-3 cups sweet white corn (precooked)
-1 bell pepper (red, orange, or yellow) (diced)
-1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
-8oz queso fresco 
-3tbs extra virgin olive oil
-1tbs lime juice
-2 tbs cilantro, minced 
-salt to taste
-pepper to taste 


1. Dice the onions, peppers and place them in a deep bowl
2. Crumble the queso fresco on top of the vegetables in the bowl
3. Whisk lime juice slowly into the olive oil and season with salt and pepper
4. Add all remaining ingredients and toss together well. Adjust seasoning and chill before serving.


Monday, April 4, 2011

Christina's Stuffed Puff Pastry

Yesterday was the first real taste of spring. It was warm and sunny so naturally, my first thought was "what should I cook today?!" I tried to figure out what I could cook that would be different and unlike something I've cooked before.  Considering I've touched a few cultures in my cuisine, I realized French was not one of them! Although I'm not 100% certain that this recipe deserves an " Imported From France" stamp pressed on it, I still think that if anything includes Brie and puff pastry as main ingredients, it gets my stamp of approval! 

So here it is ladies and gents, I've created a stuffed puffed pastry with a twist to it.  I've also included roasted asparagus because lets consider the delicious combination of Brie, puff pastry, prosciutto, browned-mushrooms, and asparagus. Can I just say, YUM!?  Wait till you try this fun, easy and positively delicious dish... It'll have you saying: Puis-je avoir un peu plus? (Can I please have more?)


-Stuffed Puff Pastry-
3oz Parma Prosciutto 
8 oz sliced white mushrooms
2oz Baby Brie (double-cream)
1/2 tsp pepper
5oz puff pastry (frozen section)
2 tbs butter
1 egg

1 package asparagus 
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper


1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit
2. wash the asparagus and cut off about an inch from the bottom to remove the bark texture
3. use aluminum foil to line a baking sheet and place the asparagus in a horizontal line across the pan
4. drizzle extra virgin olive oil atop the asparagus and mix them around with your hands so it's evenly distributed
5. line up the asparagus again and add a dash of pepper and salt evenly
6. bake in the oven for fifteen minutes
Stuffed Puffed Pastry:

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit 
2. lightly flour a clean, flat surface to place the thawed puff pastry
3. With a flour-dusted rolling pin, roll out the puff pastry to a thin layer of about 1/8 an inch
4. Place butter in a large sautee pan on medium-high heat and let it melt.
5. Place mushrooms in the pan and stir them until they're glazed. 
6. Be sure not to crowd the mushrooms so that they can brown evenly
7. As the mushrooms cool, cut the puff pastry dough into six even-square sections and separate them
8. Using a paring knife, cut a thin slice of baby Brie and place it in the centers of the sections
9. Take a slice of Parma Prosciutto and fold it evenly over the Brie
10. Use a fork or tongs to place three or four mushrooms atop the Brie and Prosciutto
11. Lightly fold together all the corners of the puff pastry so that there are no open holes
12. Whisk an egg into a small bowl and use a BBQ brush to brush the egg atop the puffs
13. Use a fork to pinch the folds of the puffs to ensure they're stuck together almost as if they're glued with the egg (the egg also makes the puff pastry golden and crispy)
14. Bake the puffs for fifteen minutes in the oven
15. Once finished, place a stuff puffed pastry atop neatly placed asparagus on a plate.

Serve hot and enjoy!