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Slow-Cooked Red Beans

Slow cooked pot of spicy red beans. mjskitchen.com

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When it comes to red beans, it seems that the larger kidney bean gets most of the attention.  Of course this could possibly be due to the classic red beans and rice, “an emblematic dish of Louisiana Creole cuisine“.  To be honest, red beans and rice is normally our go to dish for red beans.  However, sometimes I like to cook up the small red bean.  It’s more tender than the kidney bean and has a sweeter, more delicate flavor, in my opinion.

This red bean recipe yields a flavorful bowl of tender beans that’s savory, spicy and quite versatile. As with most beans, we love to eat these as just a bowl of beans with some cornbread or tortillas and maybe a topping or two. But you could also add them to salads or soups, serve them on top of a bowl of rice, or wrap them in a tortilla and smother with red chile.  Lots of possibilities…

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Blue Cheese Mashed Potatoes

Blue cheese mashed potatoes make the perfect complement to beef, especially prime rib / ribeye. mjskitchen.com

For Thanksgiving this year Bobby smoked a standing rib roast and for one of the sides, we made these Blue Cheese Mashed Potatoes.  What a fantastic pairing!  The roast was smoky, medium rare with a spicy crust on the outside.  The potatoes provided a creamy, buttery, and slightly cheesy complement.   Other sides included this Candied Pecan, Pear & Pomegrante Salad but with a white balsamic vinaigrette, a relish tray that my SIL put together of a variety of homemade pickles along with deviled eggs, roasted vegetables, and fennel infused onion.  What a feast!!!

In addition to serving along side standing rib roast, these blue cheese mashed potatoes also make a nice side dish for roast chicken, grilled ribeye, pulled pork and much more.  Of course you might just find yourself forgoing an entrée and just eating the potatoes.  🙂

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The Hatch Chile Store – From Farm to Table

The Hatch Chile Store Logo | mjskitchen.comRecently, my friend Su Anne and I had the privilege of traveling to Hatch chile country to explore the vast agriculture of the area, visit the The Hatch Chile Store and meet its owners – Preston and Elaine.  Preston and Elaine are young entrepreneurs who started The Hatch Chile Store because of their mutual love of green chile and the Hatch Valley in southern New Mexico.  Their family history in the Hatch Valley dates back over 5 generations which essentially means that Hatch chile is in their blood.  In just a few years time, they have put together a successful company that shares their love of chile with the rest of the world through an online shop. To learn more about Preston and Elaine and their business, check out these links:  Our Story and Our Team.

A field of chile in Hatch, New Mexico | mjskitchen.com

As part of our visit, Su Anne and I traveled through the Hatch Valley, a beautiful valley that runs along the Rio Grande from north of Hatch, New Mexico (NM), to Las Cruces, NM. We saw fields and fields of chile along with cotton, alfalfa, and hundreds of pecan groves.  The pictures below attempt to share our experience by taking you from the Hatch chile fields through the process of roasting and packaging chile at The Hatch Chile Store.  By placing an order online, you could have Hatch chile on your table in just a few days.

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Apricot Clafoutis and What To Do With Lots of Apricots

Apricot Clafoutis - A delightful custard type dish with fresh apricots and a touch of sweetness. | mjskitchen.com

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As you’ll see in the second part of this post, I’ve been dealing with a great crop of apricots this year.  Because of a warm spring with no late frost, the apricot trees in the area produced quite heavily.  Thanks to my gracious neighbor, I was able to gather enough apricots to jam and freeze, plus try out a couple new recipes – one recipe being this Apricot Clafoutis – a light custard with sweet and tasty apricots. Because of the sweetness of the apricots, this Apricot Clafoutis requires very little sweetener – just a little maple syrup and a sprinkle of brown sugar.

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Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce

Spicy Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce - Use a dash or two for any dish that needs a bit of spice | mjskitchen.com

 

Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce is a great little sauce for when you just need a dash or two to spice up eggs, soup, or a bowl of beans.  Normally, you might grab a bottle of Tabasco or Sriracha. However, with a few ounces of HOT dried chile pods like de arbol chiles, you can make your own hot sauce.  This Chile de Arbol Hot Sauce yields the heat and a unique flavor one wants in a hot sauce, but doesn’t require days or weeks of fermentation. With a little bit of effort and a small amount of time over a three day period, you can create a very spicy hot sauce with the natural smokiness of the de arbol chile.

Excerpt of comment from reader:

“Magnificent recipe and magnificent result. . . The taste was extraordinary, and better than any sauce I have previously made and better than any store bought sauce I purchased in the past…”  (You can read the full comment below.)

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How to Make Corn Tortillas

An instructional guide on how to make corn tortillas | mjskitchen.com

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When it came to learning how to make corn tortillas it was something that I had to do a few times in order to get an easy process with consistent results.  And now that my process and results are quite consistent, making tortillas is as easy as throwing together a salad. Plus, I love making them and eating them! Being able to take a warm tortilla right off the griddle and slather it with butter is a culinary delight, not to mention the tacos and enchiladas (listed below) that are even better with homemade tortillas.

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Home Fries and Their Many Possibilities

An easy method for making tasty potato home fries on the stovetop mjskitchen.com

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Home fries are a wonderful addition to so many meals and in some cases, can be the primary ingredient that you build a dish around.  For example, this Southwestern Pileup uses a skillet of home fries to support a mix of vegetables and proteins, and your choice of red or green chile.

Home fries make a complement side to huevos rancheros, migas or a meat entree’ like green chile cheeseburgers,  pulled pork or smoked brisket.  And if you aren’t a fan of white or yellow potatoes, then never hesitate to make sweet potato home fries. They make a great substitute for the hash browns in this sweet potato and green chile dish.

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Chocolate Tamales with Port Infused Cherries

Chocolate tamales with port infused cherries and toasted pecans | mjskitchen.com

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When you think of dessert, does “tamale” come to mind?  Well, if not, maybe I can change that with these chocolate tamales with port infused cherries.  Inside of these little corn husk packages are individually sized chocolate cakes, packed with dried cherries that have been re-hydrated in sweet Ruby Port.  The “cakes” or tamales are made with masa (corn flour), cocoa, and a few other choice ingredients.  Served these tamales warm with a small scoop of vanilla bean gelato and you’ll feel like a kid at a birthday party eating chocolate cake and ice cream.

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The Easiest Turkey-Chicken Stock You’ll Ever Make

An easy method of making turkey-chicken stock with minimal effort and very little waste #stock #turkey #chicken #broth @mjskitchen

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How to make a pot of turkey-chicken stock is something that many of us learned from our mothers. My mother taught me that you never, never, never throw out the carcass or any of the inedible parts of poultry before you cook them down into a tasty stock.  All in all making stock is a very simple process and yields a stock so much better than anything you can purchase.

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