Only 2 more months in Chicago…
I’m definitely missing Austin, Mr. RWB, the puppies, my stocked kitchen and TexMex. So I’m not missing the 95+ degree weather but 65 was not exactly what I had in mind. While I have found one Mexican restaurant I like in Chicago, it’s nothing like the Texas counterpart so lately I’ve been making alot of salsa and mojitos (with mint from my garden!)
The Austin Food Blogger Alliance, of which I’m a member, put out an awesome cookbook this spring. Unfortunately I joined to late to get in there but hope to contribute next time. When Mr. RWB came to visit a few weeks ago, he brought me my copy of the cookbook. One of the things I love about AFBA is that it’s members are really involved. There are learning sessions, volunteer opportunities, happy hours and monthly challenges. May’s challenge was to make anything from the cookbook…and of course I waited until the 31st to try it out. Mind you the post was supposed be up by the 31st….I”m on summer time!
Even though I’m late, I did make 2 recipes. I mean you can’t have a drink without a snack!
First the drink – it’s a take on the classic Austin Mexican Martini. The spice comes from peppercorns and jalapenos (candied in my case) and it’s pretty darn good. I’m not sure I’d use the peppercorns next time but this is the closest recipe I’ve found to what I can get back home and perfect for summer!
Caliente Mexican Martini (adapted from the AFBA Cookbook)
3 candied jalapenos (used Campbell Gardens Candied Jalapenos)
10 whole black peppercorns (need to really like black pepper!)
Shot of silver tequila
Shot of triple sec
3/4 oz. lime juice
1 oz. orange juice
1/2 oz. olive juice (just do it!)
Salt for the rim
1. Put lime juice on the rim of a glass and dip in salt. Place glass in the freezer while making the drink.
4. Strain into cold glass and garnish with olives if you like.
Now on to the dip. If you’ve been around here a while you know I’m not big on cottage cheese, cream cheese or sour cream. Well I like this…it has sour cream AND avocados AND tomatillos! The recipe calls for 3 tomatillos, I think I used 5. These cousins to tomatoes are tangy and just so much fun. What’s nice about this recipe is that it’s made in the food processor so very little prep is needed.
Salsa Crema (adapted from AFBA Cookbook)
3 – 5 tomatillos (recommends peeling but doesn’t need it)
2 – 3 cloves of garlic
2 jalapenos (recommends seeded but I like it hot)
Handful of cilantro leaves
1/2 cup of sour cream
1/2 cup of milk
2 avocados, peeled and seeded
1/2 lime, juiced
2. Add avocados and lime juice and pulse until smooth.