Friday, March 03, 2006

Nuevo Mexico!

I can eat Mexican and Mexican-inspired food everyday. I never (or very rarely) get tired of it. I love the endless variations of beans, rice, corn (in its many forms), tomatoes, onions, garlic, cheese...oh my!
The other night I decided to make some Mexican-inspired (I like to think of them as Nuevo Mexcian) dishes.
The first was Drunken Pinto Beans with Charred Onions and Chilis from Jack Bishop's A Year in a Vegetarian Kitchen (from the winter section). Here is a picture of them in a bowl (they are a little bit soupy) with some queso fresco on top.

I also made Spicy Corn Cakes with Smoked Cheese and Chilis (in the foreground).

The corn cakes were interesting. I compared them to Mexican Egg Foo Yung (sp?). I used tofu in place of the ricotta (maybe a little too much tofu), and didn't have any cayenne pepper so I subbed Fajita seasoning (salt-free). Next time I make these I will use corn meal instead of flour, and really spice them up. Also, it made a ton! They were good (maybe even better) leftover the next day at lunch.

Spicy Corn Cakes with Smoked Cheese and Chilies
from Fields of Greens

1/2 tablespoon light vegetable oil

1/2 medium red onion, diced, about 1 cup


3 ears of corn, shaved, about 3 cups kernels (I used frozen)

1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

2 or 3 jalapeno chilies, seeded and thinly sliced

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

2 eggs, separated

1/2 pound ricotta cheese, about 1 cup

1/2 cup milk

1/2 cup unbleached whie flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 ounces smoked cheese, grated, about 3/4 cup (I used smoked gouda)

light vegetable oil for the pan

Heat the oil in a large skillet; add the onion and 1/2 teaspoon salt

Saute over medium heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the corn and the cayenne; saute for about 5 minutes, until the corn is tender. Add the chilies and lemon juice to the warm corn, transfer to a bowl, and allow the mixture to cool.

Beat the egg whites to stiff peaks.

In a medium-size bowl, combine the egg yolks, ricotta, and milk. Stir in the flour, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and the baking powder, then add the smoked cheese. Stir the corn into this mixture, then fold in the egg whites.

Spoon the batter into a lightly oiled skillet over medium-high heat, making 3-inch cakes. Cook for about 3 minutes on each side, until the cakes are lightly browned.Makes 24 three-inch cakes; serves 4 to 6


Cate said...

Dinner looks delicious ... thanks for the recipe, going in my to try pile.

Randi said...

I love those cakes, I've had them at Greens in SF, an amazing vegetarian restaurant.

kickpleat said...

oh wow, those corn cakes look amazing!!