Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Cuban Chicken Fricassee - Fricasé de Pollo

My Mom had been in Cuba for over a month and I not only missed her but I missed her cooking. I have been craving my Moms Chicken Fricasse and as soon as she got back from Cuba she came over and shared this long time family recipe. As with any traditional Cuban recipe you will find some variances on some of the ingredients used. I have seen many Chicken Fricasse recipes use a tomato base, but my mom never used a tomato base and I'm fine with that. To me this dish was perfect as is.

Cuban Chicken Fricassee


5 Lbs of Chicken (bone-in, skin-on)
Olive Oil (enough to cover pan)
1/4 Cup vinegar
1 Cup white wine
3 Tablespoons of Capers
1 Tablespoon Caper Juice
12 Manzanilla Olives
2 Bay Leaves
1 Tablespoon Cummin
6 Whole All Spice
1 Tablespoon Peppercorns
1 Whole Chopped Onion
1 Whole Green Pepper
1 Whole Red Pepper
6 Garlic Cloves
1 Pack of Sauzon Goya
Salt to taste

Season individual chicken pieces with salt. Add all ingredients in a container, cover and refrigerate 1 to 2 hours.

Cuban Chicken Fricassee

Remove chicken from the marinade.

Cuban Chicken Fricassee

Strain and reserve marinade juice.

Cuban Chicken Fricassee

Warm the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat and brown the chicken pieces. Pour into the pot all of the remaining ingredients , sauteing with the chicken until onions are translucent, about 3 -5 min.

Cuban Chicken Fricassee

Add reserved marinade juice. Reduce heat to low, cover pan and simmer for 30 min.

Cuban Chicken Fricassee

Serves well with white rice

Cuban Chicken Fricassee

Chicken Fricasse

Monday, August 17, 2009

Silvestre – Ensenadas Valle De Guadalupe Seasonal Restaurants Part 2

Silvestre Ensenada

This weekend I was sitting at the bar in Manzanilla Restaurant talking to a nice young couple from California about the great restaurants in Ensenada. The young couple was on their honeymoon and had heard about Manzanilla through a travel guide. They were really enjoying their meal and I suggested they also check out Grupo Manzanillas seasonal restaurant Silvestre located in Ensenadas wine country.

Silvestre makes the perfect spot for a romantic dinner, a rustic outdoor setting overlooking sprawling vineyards. Silvestre offers a Prix Fixe 6 course menu centered around local organic vegetables, fresh seafood, and mesquite grilled meats.

Silvestre Ensenada View

Chefs Grilling - Silvestre Ensenada

Some of the highlights of a recent visit included.....

Tomato and basil with cheese and olive oil
The tomatoes and basil tasted just-picked fresh and it’s no wonder the cheese and olive oil of Baja are gaining recognition outside the region.

Tomato Basil Cheese - Silvestre Ensenada

I have written about the mouth-watering oysters at Muelle Tres and Manzanilla before so I will just leave you with a photo.

Oysters - Silvestre Ensenada

Swordfish with Couscous
Fresh, light and packed of flavor the couscous was incredibly delightful and the perfect accompaniment to the moist grilled swordfish.

Pescado - Silvestre Ensenada

Couscous - Silvestre Ensenada

Mesquite Grilled Sonoran Rib Eye With Grilled Vegetables
A meal in itself this was my personal favorite. I took some of the juicy aged sonoran steak with cebollitas and placed them inside a warm tortilla, fantastic !

Rib Eye - Silvestre Ensenada

Silvestre is opened on Saturday and Sunday from 1pm to 6pm from June to October. Located on Carretera Ensenada-Tecate HWY 3 at KM 83. If your travelling from the coast its about a 20-30 min drive and is located right before the Domeq winery (number 2 on the map, you can click on the map and enlarge it in Flickr.). The summer is a perfect time to visit Ensenada especially with great seasonal choices like Silvestre.


Sunday, August 9, 2009

El Laguito - Ensenadas Valle De Guadalupe Seasonal Restaurants Part 1

On the Fourth of July weekend my family and I were looking for a place to relax and avoid the crowds. The tranquility of Ensenadas wine country sounded like the perfect solution so we headed straight to the Valle de Guadalupe. If you have not been through the Valle de Guadalupe this year the road is now nicely paved all the way through.

If your planning a trip to Ensenada during the summer months be sure not to miss one of the great seasonal restaurants open for business. The standouts are Benito Molinas Silvestre and Jair Tellez El Laguito. El Laguito (Little Lagoon) is located at Monte Xanic Winery. Prior to dining at Lauguito we stopped at the Monte Xanic tasting room to enjoy some of their great premium wines.

laguito sign

Monte Xanic

After a full round of tastings it was time to step outside and take in the view overlooking the sprawling vineyards, El Laguito is actually tucked away under the trees. Picnic tables are set up overlooking the lagoon and ducks roam freely around the park-like setting. Sipping on some Monte Xanic wine and gazing out to the lagoon provided the exact tranquil effect we were looking for.



El Laguito

We decided on a round of appetizers and the standout favorite of the afternoon would have to be the handmade sausage. Succulent juicy and grilled to perfection, the sausage is actually grilled using grapevine wood.

El Laguito grill

El Laguito

As a Pulpo (Octopus) lover the pulpo en escabeche has to be one of my favorite preparations

El Laguito

The menu features a variety of locally grown and produced food including pizzas, salads, steaks, and more. They have a drink called Agua del Lago that's infused with seven different herbs and is very refreshing don't miss it. El Laguito is open Saturdays and Sundays from 1200 to around 7pm and is located at Monte Xanic. You can click on the map below and enlarge it in Flickr. Monte Xanic is number 9 on the map.

Telephone 646 155 20 80
Email info@lajamexico.com
Web http://lajamexico.com/laguito