Eggs Benedict

Eggs BenedictEggs Benedict is  a  The classic brunch dish – something most people head to a restaurant for (including us most of the time) but we want you to know that making Eggs Benedict at home is not as hard as it may seem.

We’ve made a bit more work for ourselves by making the english muffins from scratch – because homemade english muffins happen to make a tremendous difference IMHO.  I realize that not everyone is interested in making their own bread, if you are however, we follow the recipe from the book Tartine Bread.  If you start the process on a Friday night (mixing the leaven and poolish) then you can be griddling fresh muffins to split and toast on Sunday morning.  The Tartine recipe makes about 16 muffins so it allows for plenty of extras to freeze for the week ahead. 

The intimidating part of Eggs Benedict is the combination of preparing Hollandaise sauce and poaching an egg.  While the former can be resolved with a good recipe (like the one we have included here courtesy of Carol – Thanks Carol!) the latter just takes a bit of practice.  

A tip I learned during this most recent batch of Hollandaise is to first clarify the butter that you will use to whip into the egg yolks.  Using clarified butter helps to prevent the mixture from splitting.  To clarify butter, melt it in a small saucepan, pour into a jar and allow to cool.  If you do this far enough in advance the butter will re-solidify into layers and the milk solids can then be easily scraped off the top.  When you re-melt the butter you will notice that it is clear or… you know… clarified.

We’ve cut the original recipe in half here so instead of serving four this version will make enough for two generous servings of hollandaise sauce.  

Enjoy!

Eggs Benedict

Ingredients / Ingredientes

Hollandaise / Salsa Holandesa

  • 2 egg yolks / yema de huevos
  • 2 tbsps lemon juice / cucharadas de jugo de limón
  • Pinch of ground white pepper / pizca de pimienta blanca
  • Dash of Worchestershire / pizca de salsa worchestershire (salsa inglesa)
  • 1/2 tbsp water / cucharadas de agua
  • 1/2 cup butter (clarified) / taza de mantequila
  • Pinch of salt /pizca de sal

Potatoes / Papas

  • 2 large russet potatoes / papas
  • Olive Oil /aceite de oliva
  • Salt and Pepper /sal y pimienta
  • Paprika / paprika (pimientón molido)
  • 4 eggs / huevos
  • 1 tsp white vinegar / cucharilla de vinagre
  • 4 pieces of back bacon (aka canadian bacon/peameal bacon) / tocino
  • 2 english muffins, split / panecillos ingleses (english muffins)

Instructions / Instrucciones

For the potatoes / Para las papas

  • Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment. / Calentar el horno a 400 grados y colocar papel aluminio a una bandeja para hornear
  • Wash and dry the potatoes and dice into cubes. / Lavar ,secar y cortar las papas en cuadritos.
  • Toss the cubed potatoes with a drizzle of olive oil, a large pinch of salt and pepper and a shake of paprika (mostly for color) / Agregar a las papas un poco de aceite de oliva, pizca de sal, pimienta y paprika.
  • Pour onto the prepared pan, spray the potatoes with cooking spray and place in the oven for approximately 30 minutes or until fork tender. / Colocar las papas a la bandeja para hornear y cocinarlas por 30 minutos hasta que estén blandas por dentro.

Oven fries - hashbrowns

  • To make the Hollandaise: Fill a saucepan part way with water and set over medium heat to bring to a simmer.  / Para la salsa holandesa: colocar una olla con un poco de agua a  fuego lento ( a punto de hervir).
  • In a metal bowl that fits inside that saucepan (without the bottom touching the water) whisk together the egg yolks, lemon juice, white pepper, worchestershire and water. / En un recipiente de metal que va a caber en la olla agregar y batir las yemas, jugo de limón, pimienta blanca, salsa inglesa y agua.

Hollandaise

  • Set the bowl over the simmering water and continue to whisk.  Begin to pour the melted clarified butter into the yolk mixture a couple of tablespoons at a time – whisking constantly – and ensuring that the previous addition has been incorporated before adding more.  whisk and add more butter until all the butter has been mixed in.  / Colocar el recipiente encima de la olla (baño maria) y no pares de batir. Colocar la matequilla derretida en la mezcla de huevos, una cucharada a la vez, mezclando bien hasta que todo esté incorporado.
  • Remove from the heat and whisk in the salt, taste and adjust as necessary.  If the mixture is too thick, whisk in a couple tablespoons of warm water.  Place a large plate over the bowl to keep the mixture warm – Don’t keep over heat as too much heat will cause the emulsion to split and the sauce will be ruined. / Remover la salsa del fuego y colocar sal, adjustar el sabor si es necesario. Si la salsa esta muy espesa agregar y mezclar algunas cucharadas de agua tibia. Colocar un plato encima del recipiente para mantener la salsa caliente, no lo dejes en baño maria pues mucho vapor caliente puede arruinar la salsa.
  • To poach the eggs – Fill a saucepan with 3 inches of water and bring the water to a gentle simmer then add the vinegar – this will help keep the egg together as it cooks in its water bath. / Para cocinar los huevos: Llenar una olla con 3 pulgadas de agua a fuego lento hasta que esté a punto de hervir, colocar el vinagre.

Poaching an egg

  • Break the eggs into separate ramekins so that you can carefully add them to the water one at a time.  When the water is ready and the vinegar has been added, use a whisk to create a vortex in the saucepan then slide the egg into the center of the vortex.  The spinning water should help to keep the whites over the yolk and in one neat package. / Quebrar los huevos y colocarlos en una taza o recipiente para mejor resultado cuando los pongas al agua. Cuando el agua esté a punto de hervir y el vinagre esté incorporado, con una cuchara batir rápido el agua haciendo un agujero en el centro, en ese agujero colocarás cada huevo, esto ayudará a que la yema y la clara del huevo estén juntos.
  • Cook for 2 1/2 minutes then remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to an ice water bath to halt the cooking process.  Continue to cook the remaining eggs, one at a time, placing into the ice water bath when ready. / Cocinar cada huevo por 2 1/2 minutos y gentilmente sacarlos del agua y colocarlos en un recipiente con agua helada (esto evitará que el huevo siga cocinando)
  • Lay the back bacon on a foil rimmed sheet and bake in the oven at 400 degrees until browned on the edges.  / Colocar el tocino sobre una bandeja de hornear a 400 grados hasta que esté dorado en las orillas.

Fresh english muffins

  • Put it all together / Colocar todo junto
  • Toast the english muffins and begin to build your eggs benedict.  We’ve made the classic with back bacon as well as a shrimp and avocado Benny.  With the water over medium heat at a simmer – add the poached eggs back into the simmering water for 45 seconds to 1 minute to just heat through, then remove and drain on a paper towel lined plate before placing on top of the prepared english muffins  /  Tostar los panecillos y colocar encima el tocino o camarones con palta . Para calentar los huevos tienes que sacarlos del agua helada y colocarlos por 45 segundos de nuevo al agua caliente que está a punto de hervir. Sacar los huevos del agua caliente y colocarlos sobre papel toalla para secarlos.

Eggs Benedict assembly

  • The second to last step is to add a large spoonful of hollandaise sauce over each poached egg.  The LAST step is to serve it to someone you love and enjoy! / Agregar los huevos encima del tocino, colocar encima la salsa holandesa y sevir. Provecho!

Eggs Benedict… Provecho!

 

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Silpancho

SilpanchoAs is customary in many Latin cultures, at noon during the week my family would get together for ‘almuerzo’ (lunch).  The almuerzo would be our main meal of the day, and we would all come home from school or work to share it together.  One of the dishes that was always welcome was Silpancho.  Silpancho is a popular Bolivian dish that comes from the Cochabamba region of the country.  While Silpancho is a regional specialty, you can easily find restaurants that serve Silpancho almost anywhere in Bolivia.  

Silpancho consists of rice, fried sliced potato, a fried piece of pounded steak, coated in breadcrumbs, a tomato salsa and is always finished with a fried egg.  A heavy meal by all accounts (and certainly not for carb watchers) but as it is generally eaten mid day we normally have all day to work it off.  

If you have the opportunity to visit Bolivia, you will see that the meat portion is so large that it will almost be spilling over the sides of the plate.  Since we were having ours for dinner we made a smaller portion as you can see.  Make the portions as large or as small as you like but you will find that even a little bit of meat will go a long way – as you pound it, you will notice that a simple steak grows fast, and can be used to serve several people dinner.  We hope you enjoy it.  

Ingredients / Ingredientes

For the meat / Para la carne

  • 2 Steaks, preferable thin cuts  / filetes de carne bien delgados
  • 150 grams bread crumbs / harina de pan
  • Salt and pepper to taste / sal y pimienta al gusto
  • 2 Tbs canola oil / cucharadas de aceite
  • 2 Eggs / huevos

Rice and potatoes / Arroz y papas

  • 1 Cup white rice / taza de arroz
  • 1 Tbs. olive oil / cucharada de aceite de oliva
  • 1 Garlic / ajo
  • 2 Cups of water / tazas de agua
  • Pinch of salt / pizca de sal
  • 1 Potato / papa
  • 1/2 cup of canola oil / taza de aceite

Salsa

  • 1 Tomato / tomate
  • 1/2 Red onion / cebolla
  • 1 Jalapeño / jalapeños o locotos picantes
  • 1/2 Tbs olive oil / cucharada de aceite de oliva
  • 1/2 Tbs white vinegar / cucharada de vinagre
  • Pinch of salt / pizca de sal

Instructions / Instrucciones

  • For the salsa that accompanies the Silpancho dice the tomato, onion and jalapeño, mix together in a bowl with the olive oil, vinegar and pinch of salt.  Set aside in the fridge while preparing the rest of the meal. / Para la ensalada que va a estar encima del Silpancho tienes que cortar finamente el tomate, cebolla y jalapeño. Poner en un recipiente y mezclar agregando la sal, aceite de oliva y vinagre. Poner al refrigerador mientras preparas lo demás.

Silpancho, pounding the steak

  • Place a sheet of parchment paper over a flat surface and place the meat on top of the parchment. Cover the entire steak with some bread crumbs and salt and pepper.  Place another sheet of parchment paper over the meat and start pounding the steak as much as you can, you will want the meat the be as thin and large as possible. Turn the meat to the other side, add more bread crumbs and salt and pepper and keep pounding. this will take about 15 to 20 minutes. The bread crumbs will keep the meat from breaking apart so keep adding bread crumbs as you go.  When the steak is at your preferred thickness, set aside. / Colocar papel pergamino sobre una superficie plana y poner la carne encima con la harina de pan, sal y pimienta. Poner encima otro papel pergamino y comienza a golpear la carne hasta que esté bien delgada y haya crecido. Volcar la carne y agregar harina de pan, sal y pimienta y continuar golpeando la carne. En todo momento agregar más harina de pan ya que así la carne no se romperá en pedazos. Poner a un lado cuando esté listo.
  • To cook the rice add some olive oil to a pan over medium heat, once the oil is heated, add the minced garlic and cook for about 10 seconds. Add the rice and let it cook with the garlic and olive oil until it gets toasted – continue to stir the rice to avoid burning.  moving the rice around the pan should change the color to a light brown – this will take between 3 and 4 minutes.  Add the water and let it cook uncovered until done. / Para cocinar el arroz poner en la olla el aceite de oliva y cuando esté caliente agregar el ajo molido o cortado finamente y cocinar por 10 segundos. Poner el arroz y cocinarlo junto al aceite y ajo por 3 a 4 minutos, batiendolo constantemente para no quemarlo. Podrás ver que el arroz cambia de color, agregar el agua y dejar cocinar hasta que esté listo.

Silpancho, toasted rice, salsa

  • Peel the potato and boil it whole for 10 minutes, remove the potato from the boiling water and slice into pieces a quarter of an inch thick. You will see that the potato is not completely cooked through but don’t you worry because you will cook it more later. / Cortar la papa y ponerla a hervir por 10 minutos, sacarla del agua y cortarla en rebanadas, puedes ver que la papa aún está un poco cruda pero no te preocupes porque la cocinarás más luego.
  • Add the oil to a fry pan and set over medium heat, when hot add the potatoes and fry them until golden brown. Transfer the potatoes to paper towels to drain excess oil / Freir las papas hasta que estén doradas y poner a un lado sobre toallas de papel.
  • To cook the meat you won’t need a lot of oil.  You can reuse some of the oil from the potatoes. I would say 2 Tbs oil of will be perfect but you can use less, as long as you can cook the meat with it. / Para cocinar el Silpancho no necesitas mucho aceite, puedes reutilizar el aceite en el cual freistes las papas y si es mucho puedes sacar y dejar sólo dos cucharadas de aceite.
  • Fry the Silpancho until golden brown. Don’t forget that it will cook fast, there’s not much meat and it is thin. When ready remove from the pan and place onto paper towels to drain any excess oil / Freir el Silpancho hasta que esté dorado. No te olvides de que cocinará super rápido debido a que la carne es delgada. Cuando esté listo colocar sobre papel toalla.
  • Fry the eggs over easy with a little bit of olive oil / Freir los huevos.
  • This recipe serves two people but if you will like to serve more people just add more steaks and eggs depending of the number of persons you are having. / Esta receta es para dos personas pero si quieres para más personas solo aumenta más carne y huevos a la receta.

Plating Silpancho

  • To serve your Silpancho, start the plate off with a mound of rice, add the sliced potatoes, the meat, the eggs and top it all off with a spoonful of the salsa. Serve immediately… and enjoy! /  Poner arroz en el plato, encima las papas, la carne el huevo y el ensalada . Servir caliente, Provecho!

Silpancho... provecho!

Salteñas

Salteña

Here is our recipe for the beloved Salteña.  This recipe, of all we’ve posted so far, and probably of all we will post in the future, has been the most revised, updated, modified, tweaked and perfected by us.

A salteña is what you see above, it is the image in our header, it is our favorite food for breakfast, lunch and dinner.  Salteñas are immensely popular in Fabio’s home country – Bolivia, they are probably as close as you will get to a Bolivian national dish as they are one of the only foods that are enjoyed in all corners of the country.  Also, no one has ever tried a salteña and not loved it… probably…

The appeal of the salteña to me is that it is so many things at the same time… To start with it is a sweet pastry, and it is filled with a sweet and spicy broth made with aji amarillo (yellow pepper) and the filling has chicken, potatoes, veggies, a slice of hard boiled egg and either an olive or a few raisins.  This is great comfort food and this dish just happens to reflect perfectly Fabio and my specialties in the kitchen as Fabio creates the broth (the salado/savory) and I create the dough (the dulce/sweet).

After countless batches of trial and error, this is our labor of love to share with everyone who has ever tried a salteña while traveling and needs to re-create it back home.  We hope you enjoy them as much as we do! Provecho!

The recipe as typed below makes 18 large salteñas.  The recipe for the filling and the dough can easily be halved to make 9-10 saltenas – this is the quantity shown in our photos.

Ingredients (filling)

  • 3 Chicken breasts / pechugas de pollo
  • 1 Potato / papa
  • 1 Green onion / cebolla verde
  • 1/2 Yellow onion / cebolla
  • 1/4 cup peas / arbejas
  • 2 tablespoons yellow pepper paste (or more if desire to add more heat) /
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin / cucharilla de comino
  • 1/2 teaspoon oregano / cucharilla de oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt / cucharilla de sal
  • Pepper to taste / pimienta a gusto
  • 1 tablespoon sugar / cuchara de azúcar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vinegar / cucharilla de vinagre
  • 1/4 cup butter / taza de mantequilla
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley / cuchara de perejil picado
  • 4 cups chicken stock / tazas de caldo de pollo
  • 1 packet of gelatin /paquete de gelatina sin sabor

Instructions 

Dice the potato and add it to a pot of boiling water and cook for about 5 minutes, you don’t want the potatoes to be soft or they will fall apart in the broth, they will still cook a bit longer once they are added to the rest of the ingredients.  After 5 minutes, drain the potatoes and set aside / Cortar la papa en cuadritos y agregarlos al agua hirviendo por 5 minutos, las papas no deben estar tan blandas esto es debido a que van a seguir ser cocinadas luego.

Boil the chicken breasts in a pot of water until they are completely cooked through, let cool and then shred the meat into small pieces.  Set aside / Poner las pechugas de pollo a cocinar hasta que estén listas, luego desmenuzar el pollo y poner de lado.

shredded chicken, diced potato, onion, green onion, peas and spices

Shredded chicken, diced potato, white onion, green onion, peas, parsley, and spices (cumin, oregano, salt and pepper)

Melt the butter with the yellow pepper in a large saucepan over medium heat until the butter separates from the pepper, about 4 minutes / Derretir la mantequilla junto al ají amarillo hasta que veas que este se separa del ají amarillo , esto debe ser en 4 minutos de estar cocinando en medio fuego.

Turn the temperature to low and add the spices (cumin, oregano, salt and pepper) and let everything cook together for 10 minutes / Agregar el comino, orégano y sal y pimienta y cocinar todo a fuego lento por 10 minutos

Add the diced onion and cook it until it softens, then add the green onion as well / Agregar la cebolla y cocinarla hasta que este blanda, luego agregar la cebolla verde

Saltenas

Add the vinegar, sugar, parsley, potatoes and green peas and mix everything together well, add the chicken and the chicken broth as well and let it cook all together over medium heat for 5 minutes until the mixture is heated throughout.  Add the packet of gelatin to the mixture and then transfer to a large bowl and allow to cool completely in the refrigerator / Agregar el vinagre, azúcar, perejil, papas, arvejas y mezclar bien, luego agregar el pollo desmenuzado con el caldo de pollo, dejar en fuego medio por 5 minutos hasta que este bien caliente para agregar la gelatina sin sabor. Dejar enfriar y luego transferir al congelador

The gelatin will partially set the broth mixture as it sits and cools in the fridge.  Technically this is all you need to do before filling and sealing the salteñas, however, as working with the dough and the wet broth mixture can be difficult I  have devised an alternate method.  I construct tinfoil molds in the shape of salteñas and line them with plastic wrap then fill them with the broth and freeze them.  Once they are completely frozen I can remove them from the plastic wrap and place them directly on to the rolled out dough and seal up with the signature braided twist – the picos.  / La gelatine hará efecto cuando la mezcla este fría. Técnicamente esto es todo lo que se necesita para terminar las salteñas pero es muy dificil hacer esto cuando la mezcla está húmeda, por lo tanto hay un método el cual puede ayudarte. Puedes hacer moldes de papel aluminio y colocar la mezcla en ellos, poner en el congelador y así cuando quires ponerlos a la masa la mezcla estara moldeada y dura, será mucho más fácil, te lo recomiendo.

Whether you use this method (tinfoil molds) or the original (freestyle) make sure to include a slice of hard boiled egg, as well as a pitted olive (or a few raisins) before sealing the dough.  The egg, olive, and raisins you can adjust based on your own taste.  Previously I have been a firm believer that salteñas just had to be made with an olive, however the last time we made them as we didnt have any on hand we threw in some raisins instead and I’ve come around to the other side I think.  Fabio still requires an olive in his…  / Si utilizas este método (moldes de papel de aluminio) o el original (estilo libre), asegúrese de incluir una rodaja de huevo duro, así como una aceituna  (o algunas pass) a su gusto antes de sellar la masa.

Ingredients (dough)

  • 4 cups flour / harina
  • 1/2 cup sugar / azúcar
  • 1/2 tsp salt / sal
  • 2 eggs / huevos
  • 1 stick (half cup) butter / mantequilla
  • about 1 cup of warm water / agua tibia

Instructions

In a large bowl mix together the flour, sugar and salt. In a separate bowl Lightly beat the egg and in a small saucepan melt the butter. Add all this to the flour mix  with some warm water (approx 1 cup) and mix well until it forms a dough / En un contenedor mezclar la harina, azúcar y sal. En otro contenedor batir el huevo suavemente y en una olla derretir la mantequilla. Agregar todo esto a la mezcla de harina con un poco de agua tibia (aproximadamente 1 taza) mezclar bien hasta que tome la forma de una masa
In order to obtain the traditional color for our saltenas we use a natural colorant from Bolivia called Urucu.  As you cannot get these little pebbles outside of Santa Cruz, if you are after the signature saltenas shade - add some yellow food coloring when you melt the butter

In order to obtain the traditional color for our salteñas we use a natural colorant from Bolivia called Urucu. As you cannot get these little pebbles outside of Santa Cruz, if you are after the signature saltenas shade – add some yellow food coloring when you melt the butter

Let the dough rest on the counter (covered in a towel so that it does not dry out) for about 10 minutes.  Afterwards, divide the dough into smaller pieces and roll out, flouring as needed, into approximately 15cm diameter circles around a 1/4 cm thick. / Dejar reposer la masa (cubierta en una toalla para que no se seque) durante aproximadamente 10 minutos. Luego, dividir la masa en pedazos  pequeños,poner harina cuanto necesiten, y hacer los pedazos de masa en aproximadamente 15 cm de diámetro círculos con cm 1/4 de espesor.

Take a frozen mold of saltena filling from the freezer or a large scoop of the gelatine set filling and place it in the middle of the dough being sure to include some raisins/olives/sliced egg, wet the edges of the pastry and close together sealing the filling inside well, pinching and twisting the edges to ensure a strong seal.  This is a very important step as how well you close the saltenas will determine whether or not they open in the oven later when you are baking them.  / Tomar un molde congelado de salteña del congelador o una cucharada grande del relleno con gelatina y lo colocar en el medio de la masa y asegúrese de incluir algunas pasas / aceitunas / rodajas de huevo, mojar los bordes de las salteñas y cierre, pellizcar y retorcer los bordes para asegurar un sellado fuerte.

Closing a Saltena

Add the finished salteñas to a parchment lined cookie sheet and store in the freezer until you are ready to bake them / Poner las sateñas en el congelador en un contenedor hasta el momento que quieras ponerlas al horno

Preheat your oven to 500 degrees, line a cookie sheet with tinfoil, and grease with non stick spray / Calentar el horno a 500 grados, poner las sateñas en un recipiente con papel aluminio y aceite en spray  para que así no se pegen

Once the oven is at its maximum temperature, add the saltenas to the pan, brush with a beaten egg (for shine) and place in the oven until the salteñas are browned (approx 15 minutes) if the tops are browning too quickly, place another sheet of tinfoil overtop and continue cooking.  You want to be sure that the filling is completely heated through.  / Pintar las salteñas con un huevo batido para poner brillo y colocarlas al horno bien caliente hasta que hayan cambia do de color (apróx. 15 minutos)

Halloween Saltenas ready for the oven! (we used a little too much regular food colouring this batch)

A batch of Halloween Salteñas ready for the oven! (confession – we used red food coloring this batch (pre-urucu) and learned that if you are using food coloring it is better to go with yellow – unless it’s halloween of course.

Remove from the oven and let sit for 5 minutes and enjoy!

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