For those from the Southwest and Texas, posole needs no introduction. It's a long-simmered, heart-warming, traditional pre-Columbian soup from Mexico that's traditionally made with pig's head, nixtamalized cacahuazintle corn, chile peppers, and meat — usually pork. Filling, flavorful, hearty — posole would seem to be a soup that should be more renowned. But the cooking time associated with traditional posole recipes often deters home cooks; between preparing hominy and boiling the pig's head, many are inclined to put off making the soup. Which is why not so long ago, it was interesting to note one attempt to bottle the soup.
Featured Interview: Sharon Ely, founder of Holy Posole
It's also why this homemade, largely healthy, set-it-and-forget-it recipe for posole verde with chicken is a godsend. Light, flavorful, bright and colorful, it's a delicious bowl of soup to brace against the elements with. Just don't forget the accoutrements. They're the difference between a good bowl of soup, and a great one.
If you’re already outdoors and grilling up some steaks, why not slice them up and eat them in a tortilla with lots of fresh and delicious toppings? Shredded cabbage and thinly sliced radishes add amazing crunch to soft shell tacos and pickled red onions and a squeeze of fresh lime juice add a bright, tart flavor to the meat.
"When entertaining, consider having a tostada bar. Hormel® Taco Meats™, which are all natural and pre-cooked, make a perfect pairing with your favorite taco toppings. For this recipe we chose an unexpected fruit slaw with watermelon and mango for a refreshing twist. But you can also provide a host of salsas, cheeses, vegetables, and peppers, giving your guest the freedom to create their own super fun tostadas.” – Chef Angela Sellers
Don't just make sliders — make international ones, like American, Italian, and Southwest varieties. The American is a classic combination of Cheddar cheese and bacon, the Southwest gives guacamole a new meaning beyond a dip for a chip, and the Italian solves the dilemma of whether to serve meatballs or sliders at your next party.
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Making a burrito isn't as labor-intensive as you think, especially because most of the ingredients can be bought ready-made at the store — salsa, guacamole, canned beans, and in this case, even cooked shrimp, if you're feeling particularly, ahem, lazy.
But if you're going to make something from scratch here, I would insist on the salsa. You don't even need to chop anything for this one; just throw everything into a food processor and you'll have a fresher-tasting salsa than anything store-bought, with a balance of tanginess and heat that will make this burrito something special.
Click here to see 6 Burrito Recipes: Simple or Sophisticated, You Decide.
Joe Gracey on these enchiladas: "Enchiladas… are a part of all Mexican regional cooking, but each area’s enchiladas are different, with different peppers, sauces, and fillings determined by local custom, climate, and produce. The Texas enchilada (… Texas does have its own unique, valid form of 'Mexican' food… ) is a corn tortilla wrapped around a cheese or meat filling and heated in a red chile sauce. Unfortunately, over the years it has tended to devolve into what I call the 'truck stop enchilada', which usually means corn tortillas stuffed with ground beef and covered in canned beef chili and tons of yellow Cheddar cheese from Wisconsin. I love Wisconsin Cheddar and I also make my own fabulous Texas chili con carne… but to put them into an enchilada dish is to misuse both with unfortunate results, both culinarily and digestively. I remember when in my DJ days in the early '70s Ry Cooder came to Austin to do a concert on the UT campus and I took him out to eat Tex-Mex at one of the '50's style joints in town. He got one of those big ol' giant platefuls of truck stop enchiladas with rice and refried beans and it was all he could do to go onstage that night for the massive stone lump in his stomach."
"A good 'real' Texas enchilada uses a light flavored, decent white Mexican cheese or a Monterey Jack, and not a whole lot of it, and a red pepper chile sauce with no meat in it. Filling, yes, but also digestible."
Good chicken stock will improve this dish. Better yet is Gracey's Mexican-Style Chicken Broth.
This untraditional lasagna recipe swaps traditional Italian flavors for classic Mexican ones, using queso blanco instead of mozzarella and topping it off with fresh avocado, cilantro, and sour cream.This recipe is courtesy of Wisconsin Cheese and Karen of 365 Days of Slow Cooking.
Tacos! Who doesn’t love tacos? This traditional Mexican dish has certainly become a beloved American food, and it’s easy to see why. Tacos are incredibly versatile (they can be stuffed with just about anything), they’re easy to make, they’re nutritious, and, most of all, of course, they’re incredibly delicious.
This recipe highlights what’s most compelling about tacos: the way humble ingredients can be assembled into something utterly satisfying.
Here the pan-roasted jalapeños and spices add a lovely kick to the mellow black beans. The cabbage brightens each bite with delicate crunchiness. The avocado and cheese lend their marvelous creaminess to the whole dish. And the cilantro exudes those potent fresh-herb aromas.
This is the kind of comfort food I love to sink my teeth into! How about you?
This simple side dish of zucchini cooked with garlic, tomato, and scallion, topped with queso blanco cheese, is a delicious accompaniment to just about any Mexican-inspired meal. I put my own spin on it with a zippy Cilantro-Cotija Pesto.
Click here to see 5 Authentic Mexican Dishes for Cinco de Mayo.