Sizzle into Summer: Chef Rick Bayless

May 20, 2008 10:07:08 AM PDT
Celebrity chef Rick Bayless shares some Mexican recipes. "Brava" Steak
Carne Asada Brava

Serves 6

For The Marinade:

  • 6 large garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 4 fresh serrano or 2 fresh jalapeño chiles, stemmed
  • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable or olive oil, plus more for the steaks
  • Salt
Other:
  • 6 ribeye steaks about 1 inch thick (they'll weigh about 10 to 12 ounces each)
1.The marinade. In a small ungreased skillet, roast the unpeeled garlic and the chiles over medium heat, turning occasionally, until both are soft and blotchy black in places-5 to 10 minutes for the chiles, 10 to 15 minutes for the garlic. Cool, then peel the garlic. Place both garlic and chiles in a food processor along with the lime juice and oil. Run the machine until the mixture is as smoothly pureed as possible. Season highly with salt, usually about 1 ½ teaspoons.

2.Marinating the steaks. Smear the mixture over both sides of the steaks, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

3.Grilling the steaks. Light a charcoal fire and let the coals burn until they are covered with gray ash; position the grill grate and let it heat for a couple of minutes. Spray or brush the steaks on both sides with a little oil. Lay on the grill grates and let cook for 3 or 4 minutes, until the grates have nicely seared beautiful grill marks into the meat-don't attempt to move the steaks until you can see nice grill marks. Flip the steaks and cook until as done as you like (typically about 2 to 3 minutes longer for medium rare). I like to let the steaks rest for a few minutes (on a cool part of the grill, a grate suspended over the back of the grill or a very low oven) before serving to allow the meat to reabsorb all the juices. Serve with Salsa Huevona (page 000) or another salsa or hot sauce of your liking.

"Lazy" Salsa Salsa Huevona
Makes 2 1/2 cups, serving 6 generously

  • 4 medium-small, red-ripe round tomatoes (about 1 ½ pounds)
  • 1 large onion, cut in half
  • 3 or 4 jalapeños, stemmed
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Salt
1.Charring the ingredients. Light a charcoal fire and let the coals burn until they are covered with gray ash; position the grill grate and let it heat for a couple of minutes. Lay on the tomatoes, onion halves, jalapeños and garlic. (To keep the garlic from dropping through and to make cleanup easy, I typically lay one of those perforated grill pans on the grill grates, heat it up, then lay on the vegetables.) Grill the ingredients, turning occasionally, until they are well charred-about 10 minutes for the garlic, 15 minutes for the chiles and 20 minutes for the tomatoes and onions. As they are done remove the ingredients to a rimmed baking sheet. Let cool. Peel the garlic. If you wish, you can pull the charred skins off the tomatoes.

2. Finishing the salsa. In a food processor, combine the garlic and chiles. Pulse until coarsely pureed. Add the tomatoes and any juices that have collected on the baking sheet, and pulse until roughly chopped. Chop the charred onion and place in a bowl. Stir in the tomato mixture, along with a little water (usually about 2 tablespoons), to give the salsa an easily spoonable consistency. Taste and season with salt, usually about 1 teaspoon.

Mexican "Crudite" Platter with Chamoy Dipping Sauce
Botana de Verduras y Frutas Crudas con Chamoy

Serves 10 generously

For about 1 cup of the dipping sauce:

  • 2/3 cup apricot spread (not jam)
  • 1/3 cup Tamazula (or other Mexican) hot sauce
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
For the vegetables and fruit:
  • 1 pound jícama sticks (I get these from the salad bar at my grocery store)
  • 1 pound cucumber round (from the salad bar, too)
  • 1 pound radishes, cut in half
  • A generous pound (usually 2) peeled and cored pineapple (these are available in most well-stocked grocery stores in the produce section)
  • 4 limes, cut into wedges
For the sprinkle:
  • 1 teaspoon powdered hot chile (I like guajillo or ancho, because it's not as hot as cayenne or arbol)
  • 1 teaspoon salt (regular table salt mixes in better than coarse salt)
1.Make the dipping sauce. Scrape the apricot spread into a food processor and add the hot sauce and lime. Process until blended and smooth. Scrape into a small serving bowl.

2.Arrange the vegetables and fruits. Set the dipping sauce in the middle of a large round platter. Stand the pineapple on a cutting board and cut it into quarters. Cut the quarters crosswise into ½-inch slices. Arrange the pineapple, jícama, cucumber and radishes into quadrants around the dipping sauce, filling the space between each one with lime wedges.

3.Serving. Mix together the powdered chile and salt. Sprinkle it over the fruits and vegetables (it's easiest to sprinkle evenly if you put the mixture in a small shaker). You're ready to serve.

For more information visit www.rickbayless.com.

FRONTERA GRILL
445 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60610
Phone: 312-661-1434

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445 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60610
Phone: 312-661-1434


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