How It All Started

Bob Phillips

The title of this blog was inspired by one of my Spanish professor's at Miami University of Ohio, Dr. Robert Phillips, who died in the e...

Saturday, December 17, 2016

¡Ay, Patrón!

The title of this post refers to one of its least prevalent ingredients in this evening's preparation of champandongo, which I have also called Aztec Lasagna. See that post from earlier in the year for the geographic and literary background of this dish, along with a link to the basic recipe.

Since we have now made it several times, this post will focus only on the small departures from previous efforts. The first change was in the roasting of the peppers. We are fortunate enough to have two kitchens -- one in a place we find most weekends. The smaller "galley" at Whaling House has the essentials but not the frills, and it is where we are re-learning how to cook with an electric stove, just a few years after I had gotten comfortable roasting peppers directly on the burner of our gas stove.
Not a great photo, but at least I managed not to melt my phone!
Our alternative approach has been to buy roasted pepperrs (imagine!) or to roast peppers in the Cloverfield kitchen (yes, it is named for our former dog) before coming to Fairhaven. Friends recently told me of another way -- oven roasting. I did so this evening, and got the peppers both charred and gooey at the same time. I used one dark-red, long bell pepper and one jalapeño. The result was especially good for use in a sauce, as they were quite soft after I sweated them in a covered bowl. The only difficulty relative to roasting over fire was that the outer, charred skin was difficult to separate.

The other departure from our April endeavor was quite tiny -- when I was nearly done with the mole (mol-AY) sauce, I added just a splash of coffee-infused Patrón tequila. Thus this dish from a story in Coahuila (northern Mexico) used an ancient sauce from Puebla (central Mexico) and two ingredients from Oaxaca (southern Mexico). The other ingredient was the chocolate, brought recently from a friend who had visited Oaxaca last summer with our daughter.
How much coffee-infused tequila? Just a splash or three.

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