Saturday, January 8, 2011

Breakfast time with chilaca

Chilaca pepper is a long green pepper. It's longer than a longhot and not as hot. It is spicy, but more like one of the milder poblanos.
Here is one next to an egg for scale. I have no idea if you can get chilacas in Florida. I haven't seen them. I brought this one back from Texas.

This is going to be a very colorful, spicy breakfast dish. And it's going to have something similar to a pancake for the starchy food element; this is in place of tortillas or potatoes.

Call it a corn crepe if you like (I haven't given it a name), but I'm going with a bread that is half biscuit flour and half corn meal. Add a teaspoon of baking powder or else the corn meal will keep your bread from rising and it will curl at the edges (you'll end up with something like polenta - I'm not a fan). The ratio is half flour to half corn meal, the aforementioned baking power, an amount of milk equal to the flour and corn meal combined. For my meal, that comes to a half cup flour and corn meal to a half cup milk.

I added one egg to this batter and stirred. Spread real butter on a hot grill and pour the batter and cook.

Now back to the main event. Apco Chorizo Especial, a bonafide 'Made in San Antonio, Texas' product. The mascot is 'Chorty Chorizo' (Get it? It's Tex-Mex slang). The chorizo links are shorter than a standard chorizo link.

This is made by San Antonio Packing Company on South Laredo Street. This is the same neighborhood where Kiolbassa brand sausages are located. Laredo Street has for generations been home to slaughter houses and meat packing operations. This is because this is where the cattle from South Texas ranches made their last stop at the now defunct Union Pacific Stockyards.

I took two links of Apco chorizo (because Chorty is short) and grilled them with slivers chilaca pepper.

Mmm! You've got to admit, that looks pretty.

Meanwhile our flour/corn cakes are cooking. They should come out thin and light and we'll spread them on the bottom of the dish. We have a "corncake" (how's that for a name?) foundation for what comes next.

Crack an egg and stir it into the chorizo and chilaca pepper. Don't overcook. Get it off the heat while it's still moist and pour it on top of the "corncakes."

Remember that hot sauce I made awhile back? Well, I'm sprinkling two spoonfuls of that on top. Since you don't have my homemade hot sauce (or maybe your made your own?), try Cholula. And, yes, you can find Cholula in Florida. Cholula is okay, but I'm not a big fan of bottled hot sauces and here's why - vinegar.

Vinegar is used as a preservative, but it's not there for the taste. I think vinegar detracts from taste. That is why in Mexican cafés the little cup of fresh salsa is such a mainstay. A hot sauce made fresh (sans vinegar) is tastier and healthier for you.

The colors! Somewhere under this pile, there's some "corncake."

I had this with  Café Bustelo, to which I added ground cinnamon (I just sprinkle it into the coffee grounds in the filter cup) and cream.

Buen provecho!

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