food for thought

by michelle

grilled chicken mexican style + black beans + guacamole

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Delicious with tortillas and all the usual mexican accompaniments this chicken is equally good as part of any barbeque. Rub skinless chicken pieces with a mixture of smoky paprika, chipotle powder, salt, lime juice and vegetable oil and allow to marinate for at least an hour or overnight in the fridge. Cook over hot coals or under a hot grill.

And here are two  traditional and excellent accompaniments to any Mexican meal:

1. Refried beans (black are my favourite) are much better home-cooked than any canned variety. To make this you must first soak the beans. For 1 cup of beans allow 4 cups of water (this will produce 2½ cups of cooked beans). If you remember, you can soak them overnight but I usually use the quicker method of boiling them for 4 minutes and then soaking them for 1 hour. Next they need to be cooked for 45-60 minutes (or 10 minutes in a pressure cooker) until tender. Drain and set aside. In a saucepan, heat a generous amount of vegetable oil and sauté 1 finely diced onion and 1-2 cloves of garlic until translucent. Add the beans, ¼ a teaspoon of ground cumin and salt to taste. Now mash the beans with a potato masher until the consistency is to your liking and continue to cook until the mixture is pulling away from the sides of the saucepan. When ready to serve, gently roll the mixture out of the saucepan onto a serving plate. This shows that you have really refried and not stewed the beans.

2. Guacamole  – two versions. The first is partly cooked and makes up in taste what it lacks in appearance. Sauté a chopped onion and 1-2 diced chillies in vegetable oil until the onions are translucent. Add 1-2 chopped tomatoes and cook until they are quite soft but not sauce-like. Place this mixture in a bowl and allow to cool before adding 2 ripe avocados, lemon or lime juice  and salt to taste. Gently mash the avocado through the tomatoes with a fork. The second guacamole doesn’t require any cooking and is made with avocadoes, lime juice and finely chopped tomatoes, onion and coriander (cilantro). Leaving the avocado pip in the guacamole will prevent the avocado from discolouring.

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Written by michelle picker

April 25, 2011 at 4:58 pm

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