Saturday, May 06, 2006

Viva Fiesta!

Yesterday was the 5th of May, or Cinco de Mayo. Mexicans celebrate whooping some French butt on this day in 1862. I have quite a bit of time on my hands at the moment and decided to throw my own Tex-Mex Cinco de Mayo fiesta.

As well as more traditional Mexican dishes like enchiladas and plenty of margaritas I wanted to try out some more Tex dishes like ribs marinated with Mexican flavours.

I came across annatto paste while watching 'Once upon a time in Mexico' DVD. Johnny Depps's character has an obsession for a deep red slow cooked pork dish - Puerco Pibil. The DVD has a 10 minute cooking lesson on how to make the perfect Puerco Pibil from scratch -including grinding your own achiote paste. Anaotto seeds are deep red, triangular and very very hard. I had a great deal of difficultly grinding the seeds into a smooth paste and we ended up eating a pretty grainy but otherwise tasty Puerco Pibil.
This time I decided to take the less traditional but much easier route of buying achiote paste from The Essential Ingredient to make my recado (marinade) for my ribs. For two huge racks of pork ribs I disolved 2 cubes of paste in 1 cup of orange juice. I added the juice of one lime and 2 cloves of garlic. I seasoned the ribs with plenty of salt and pepper and then put them in a plastic bag and poured the achiote recado in and left them to marinate overnight in the fridge

While at the Essential Ingredient I came across a can of chipotle chillis in adobo sauce. When I opened the can and the smokey almost dirty, earthy smell wafted out I decided to make a second marinade with them. I blended 3 of the chillis and a little of the adobo sauce with a can of tomatoes. I added some brown suger, salt, garlic and lime juice and marinated the ribs overnight in the fridge.

After barbequing the achiote ribs were tender, deep red and had a tangy flavour - the spicy chipotle ribs were sticky and still had the smokey adobo flavour from the chillis. Unfortunatly the ribs were devoured before I could get a photo -I swear it had nothing to do the margaritas I drank before they were served!

¡Viva México!


nicole said...

Sounds delicious!

Did you make the cute cactus?

neil said...

Those chipotle chillies are just the best. Even if you didn't get a photo, everything sounded delish.