I wasn’t sure how I was going to make Cinco de Mayo work during our 100 days of barbecue but I did it! Even though I know it’s fairly common, I have never actually grilled meat that we later ate in a taco or tortilla. Weird, right? Well, tonight, we changed that, but let’s go in order.
|When I was making a snack for the littles this afternoon, I wanted to try to keep it on theme and whipped up some chips and guacamole. Ok, so the guacamole was mostly for me but they loved the chips! Making chips for guacamole or salsa is not hard at all.
All you need:
I used a pizza cutter to make pie slices from my tortillas and then fried them in just a couple inches of oil. I was Facetiming with my friend Brigid while I was doing this so I totally spaced and didn’t take pictures, but it’s pretty self explanatory. Once the oil is hot, your tortilla wedges become chips in about 15 seconds so as soon as you get the last one from each batch in the pan, you’re ready to take out the first one. Once they were all out and dry, I squeezed a couple limes over them and then sprinkled with salt.
My guacamole is painfully simple, it’s just an avocado and 1/2 a red onion. I know, but that’s how I like it. 😉
My bestie in Seattle, Brigitte, called me this afternoon to alert me that she discovered the pit comes jumping out at you on it’s own when you squeeze a ripe avocado. ‘Did you know this?! Why is this information not shared with the world?’ I mentioned that I discovered this little tidbit recently by accident when I squeezed a ripe avocado a little harder than I intended while trying to pry the pit out. It’s true though, I didn’t know till I did it by accident, so there’s your PSA about avocado pit removal, courtesy of my girl Brigitte. <3 The chicken was interesting because I have never done any kind of marinade that involved tomatoes. Anything can be a marinade and I never realized how limiting it is to not use ingredients like that in them. This was real quick and simple. All I did was butterfly two small chicken breasts, add some taco seasoning and salsa to a gallon zip bag and add the chicken. I mushed it around and my 9 year old came in from fort making just in time to help! After we made sure the flavor had been massaged into the chicken, I let it sit in the fridge for about 4 hours. Then we grilled it for just a few minutes on each side to get some color and moved it to the higher rack with the barbecue off to finish cooking. Then I brought it in and chopped it up before adding it to some super simple mexican rice and wrapping it up in a soft tortilla, burrito style! It is tangy and taco-y without being just taco seasoning on chicken, the tomatos in the salsa really made it something special. I liked it a lot.
I also made two desserts today. I made churros for the first time, and I made a very loose interpretation of ‘Jello Salad’. First up, these churros. I think they could have been cooked just a teeny tiny bit longer, but they worked! The recipe is really neat too, it was posted on my FB in the form of a video!
1/3 cup butter
1 cup water
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
First, melt the butter, then add the water, brown sugar and salt. I whisked this together and thought it really smelled very Christmasy! I don’t know what’s up with that, but it did. Now you let it boil and then add the flour. Turn your heat off and swap your whisk for a wooden spoon. Mix it into a dough and let it cool for 10 minutes before adding the egg and vanilla.
Now, transfer the dough to a pastry bag and heat up a few inches of oil. Frying time will depend totally on the thickness of your churros. Just keep an eye on them, make sure they are not black on the outside and uncooked on the inside. If that happens, just turn the heat down and watch your next batch closer. 😉
Now, roll in the sugar and cinnamon! Well, roll the churros in the sugar and cinnamon. Done! Look what you can do!
Let me give you a little background to make this next recipe make sense. I’m from Canada. You know this. I’m from a really insulated part of Canada that thinks it’s the center of the universe (of course, now that I am here I understand that the center of the universe is actually, in fact, Los Angeles). So we don’t know some of the more random quirks of the rest of the country until someone from one of those far off corners moves to Toronto and we become friends and I am schooled. My dear friend Talea (who has no blog for me to link to at the moment
ugh) is from Saskatchewan and they are big on Jello Salad out there. Let me tell you, it sounds almost as messed up as it is, because essentially it’s jello with some type of fruit or vegetable in it. Imagine shredded carrots suspended in jello. I know!
The concept of using a complementary fruit seems normal enough, after all jello is fruit flavored, right? The addition of a creamy texture can only be an improvement, so when Talea introduced me to this recipe five years ago (originally blogged about here), I was totally down except I wasn’t into the huge chunks of fruit. So I made it again and omitted the fruit and was so happy with the results I almost ate all of it. Ahem.
For the record, the proper recipe is called Ice Salad and is made with pineapple juice/chunks, lemon jello and vanilla ice cream.
Today’s Lime Jello Salad follows the same basic principal of juice, jello and ice cream – but no chunks.
1 cup lime juice (actually, all my limes only made 3/4 cup juice so I topped it up with water as the original recipe instructs)
3 oz lime jello powder
2 cups vanilla ice cream
Watching me make this really messes with my 9 year old because melting ice cream to make something else from it is weird and wrong.
Heat the juice until boiling and add the jello, turn the heat to low and make sure all the jello has been dissolved. Now, add the ice cream and still until melted. Now just pour into your containers and chill for a few hours. Done! These little guys were so tart the kids were not into them, but I thought they were perfect.
It was a fun little feast tonight, and the kids learned more about Cinco de Mayo than most adults probably know! Happy, Happy Cinco de Mayo everyone!