Monday, May 5, 2008

Fabulous Cinco de Mayo Fiesta!

For those of you celebrating Cinco de Mayo today, here's a few recipes courtesy of our friends at the Food Network to get you started. Save a margarita for me!

Tyler Florence's Chunky Guacamole
4 ripe avocados
3 limes, juiced
1/2 red onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 serrano chiles, sliced thinly
1 big handful fresh cilantro, finely chopped
Extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Halve and pit the avocados. Scoop out the flesh with a tablespoon into a mixing bowl. Mash the avocados with a fork, leaving them somewhat chunky. Add the remaining ingredients, and fold everything together to gently mix. Lay a piece of plastic wrap right on the surface of the guacamole so it doesn't brown and refrigerate 1 hour before serving.

Tortilla Soup
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 chipotle in adobo sauce, minced
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
6 cups chicken broth, low-sodium canned
1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen and thawed
1 ripe tomato, chopped
1 cup shredded cooked chicken
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes)
About a dozen corn tortilla chips, broken a bit
Lime wedges, optional

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, chipotle, chili powder, and salt and cook until the onion softens, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken broth, bring to a boil, reduce the heat slightly, and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Add the corn and cook for 5 minutes more.
Pull the saucepan from the heat and stir in the tomato, chicken, cilantro, and lime juice. Divide the tortilla chips among 4 warmed bowls, ladle the soup on top, and serve with lime wedges, if desired.

Emeril's Kahula Flan
3/4 cup sugar
4 large eggs
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
2 tablespoons coffee-flavored liqueur (recommended: Kahlua)
Mexican chocolate shavings and cocoa powder, garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a small saucepan, cook the sugar over medium heat until it starts to melt. Lower the heat and cook until caramelized to a golden brown. (Do not stir or touch the sugar, but swirl the pan to melt evenly.)

Pour into a metal flan mold or 9-inch cake pan. Turn the dish and swirl to evenly coat the bottom. Let caramel cool and harden.

Place the dish in a larger roasting pan and add hot water to come halfway up the sides of the baking dish. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs. Add the condensed and evaporated milks and Kahlua and whisk well to blend. Pour into the prepared pan. Bake until set and just firm in the center but still jiggles slightly, 50 minutes to 1 hour. Let cool on a wire rack. Refrigerate until well chilled, at least 2 hours.

To serve, run a thin sharp knife around the rim of the flan. Place a platter or large plate on top of the flan and gently flip over so the plate is on the bottom. Lift away the mold. Garnish with powdered cocoa and top with Mexican chocolate shavings.

Cut into wedges and serve immediately.

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