Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘Mexican Food’

UPDATE 5/1/16:  My Mom’s recipe (Anna’s Steak Ranchero) was picked by Sam Zien (Sam the Cooking Guy) to be part of his Reader Recipe Roundup!  Yay!    Sam used garlic powder instead of garlic salt (and in my opinion, you should prepare a recipe as given the first time and THEN do your modifications) and he used a different type of El Pato sauce I’d never seen before.  I put a picture up of the correct can of sauce. Someday maybe I’ll try the red can he used, which is MUCH spicier!  Anyway, here it is…hope you like it!

* * * * * * * *

Yup, that’s what my Dad used to call my Mom (Anna)…”Fastest” Cook in the West.  Now, you notice he didn’t say “Bestest” Cook in the West (and yes, Grammar Police, I know Bestest is not a word! Ha Ha!)  My Mom is a “good” cook but not what we would call a “great” cook.  She always worked while we were growing up.  She was a “Girl Friday” at a local newspaper, became a social reporter and eventually a columnist.  That kept her pretty busy so by the time she got home, she needed to whip something up quickly for her hungry brood.

This dish was one of her standbys.  It was relatively cheap (beef wasn’t outrageously priced like it is now), it was simple and it was quick.  This could be ready to eat in about 20 minutes but it tastes better if you let it simmer for at least a half hour and even better after an hour.

(Did you ever notice that the 3 basic ingredients that are used in a LOT of Mexican dishes are the same colors as their National Flag?  I just did…)

IMG_9769

ANNA’S STEAK RANCHERO

1 1/2 lbs Sirloin Steak

1/2 large green bell pepper, chopped

1/2 large white onion, chopped

1 tomato, chopped

1 8 oz can tomato sauce

1 8 oz can El Pato tomato sauce

Garlic Salt

Salt and Pepper to taste

Slice your sirloin into thin strips (across the grain for tenderness).  Saute in 2 TBSP vegetable oil until most of the pink is gone.  Add vegetables, seasonings and sauces.  Season with Salt and Pepper.  Cover and let simmer 20-30 minutes on low.  In the last 5 minutes, you can add chopped cilantro if you want.  This tastes even better the longer you let it simmer and is great for leftovers.  Serve with Spanish rice (look in the search box above to get my recipe – it is in the post for Albondigas soup) and refried beans and flour tortillas.

Sirloin Steak

Sirloin Steak

Slice into thin strips

Slice into thin strips

Saute in 2 Tbsp vegetable oil.

Saute in 2 Tbsp vegetable oil.

Season with a few sprinkles of garlic salt and salt/pepper

Season with a few sprinkles of garlic salt and salt/pepper

IMG_9778

1 regular tomato sauce and 1 spicy tomato sauce

1 regular tomato sauce and 1 spicy tomato sauce

The finished product!

The finished product!

After it simmers more, the meat becomes more tender.

After it simmers more, the meat becomes more tender.

Spanish Rice is a good accompaniment, along with refried beans.

Spanish Rice is a good accompaniment, along with refried beans.

So….tell me about your QUICK and EASY “go-to” recipe!

Read Full Post »

Being under the weather, I’m trying to think of things that are comforting.  For some reason, my Nana (my maternal grandmother) has been on my mind a LOT lately.  Maybe her spirit is trying to soothe me.

Nana always had something on the stove that filled her humble little house with the BEST aromas! She was well-known in the little border town of 10,000 I grew up in.  Every Sunday she would prepare mass quantities of food to be sold after the services to those hungry souls who’d fasted before coming to church.  My grandmother never had a car but never needed one as someone would stop and give her a ride when they saw her walking to and from the grocery store or other destinations.  Her hobbling gait that could best be described as being like the back and forth motion of a metronome,  made her easy to spot as people were driving.  I was amazed at her ability to prepare these huge pots of menudo (tripe soup), breakfast burritos, and delicious machaca (shredded beef) burritos along with homemade salsa and chorizo (mexican sausage) .   Her energy level always left me in awe.  You know, they tasted EXACTLY the same, week after week.  I strive to have that consistency but she set a high standard that I have yet to meet.

Recently I made my “budget” empanadas that were just like the machaca-filled ones that my Nana always made but I filled them with picadillo (pronounced peek-ah-THEE-yo) which is a hamburger, potato, onion, green pepper mixture that fills the stomach and doesn’t empty the pocketbook.

Look tempting?  Here’s how you make ’em…

 

Little dough balls are prepared and kept moist under floursack towel

Little dough balls are prepared and kept moist under floursack towel

Filling is added leaving a 1 1/2" margin for crimping
Moisten the edges & crimp edges

Moisten edges & crimp

 

Ready to hit the hot oil

Ready to hit the hot oil

My sweet Nana

My sweet Nana

 

I’ve seen some amazing food blogs and I feel a little inadequate because I don’t purport to be a great photographer OR writer.  I just want to share my love of food, much in the same way my Nana did.  I can’t invite you to my home to share, so I hope you enjoy these pages!

Empanadas

 

3 cups of all purpose flour (LA PIÑA brand is preferred)

1 tsp. salt

3 Tablespoons Crisco shortening (original recipe called for lard)

1/2 c. warm water

1/2 c. milk

 

Spoon flour lightly into measuring cups. Add salt to flour. Cut in the shortening using a pastry cutter or fork until mixture resembles small peas.  Add milk/water mixture a little at a time until the dough holds together. Knead it just a little to get it soft and smooth. If it’s not, add a little more shortening to the palm of your hand and incorporate into dough to make it a soft dough. 

 

On a large wooden cutting board, form little balls about the size of a ping-pong ball.  Cover them with a dampened flour sack dishtowel and let them rest for at least 30 minutes.  Roll out into a circle about 5 to 6 inches across and place meat mixture in the center.  Leave a 1″ space around the edge.  Moisten with water and fold the bottom edge over the top and keep crimping all the way around to make a good seal.  Fry in hot oil or Crisco.

 

The hamburger (picadillo) filling can be made whatever way you choose.  The basic ingredients are 1 1/2 lbs. hamburger, 2 medium-size finely diced russet potatoes, 1/4 cup finely diced green pepper (or Anaheim chili) , 1/4 cup finely diced onion, 1/4 c. tomato sauce (if you can find El Pato brand, it adds a little kick to the meat) salt, pepper and garlic salt to taste.  Some people add olives to their picadillo or jalapenos, or raisins and other spices.  Feel free to come up with your own favorite!

 

Read Full Post »