When you hear "Mexican food" do you think of tacos, yellow cheese, and salsa? Marcela Valladolid of Food Network's Mexican Made Easy is out to prove that there's much more to our southern neighbor's cusine! Mexican food can be sophisticiated and even makes for a great addition on your holiday menu.
Sauza Tequila has partnered with Chef Marcela to present "Ladies Night In" events. I attended the Chicago event just a few weeks ago and picked up some great recipes for you. These dishes are unique but still have a healthy dose of holiday comfort and cheer:
Brussels Sprouts in Morilla Cream Serves 4-6
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 pounds brussels sprouts. halved
1 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup roasted sunflower seeds
3 scallions (white and pale green parts only)
1 morilla chile, stemmed, seeded, and very thinly sliced
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
Salt and pepper to taste
Melt 2 tablespoons of butter in a large heavy saucepan over medium high heat. Add the brussels sprouts and stir for 1 minute to coat them with butter. Add the broth, cover, and simmer for 7 minutes, or until the brussels sprouts are tender. Uncover and continue to simmer for 4 minutes, or until all of the broth evaporates. Transfer brussels sprouts to medium bowl.
Melt remaining 1 tablespoon of butter in same pan. Add the sunflower seeds, scallions, and chile and saute for 2 minutes, or until the nuts are toasted and chile is tender. Stir in the cream and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, return the brussels sprouts to pan, and toss to coat them with the cream. Season the brussels sprouts to taste with salt and pepper.
4-6 chicken pieces
1 1/2 cups apricot preserves
2 tbs crushed chile de arbol
1/3 cup Sauza Tequila Blanco
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350°F. Combine apricot preserves, chile de arbol and tequila in
medium pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Season
chicken with salt and pepper on all sides and place on glass baking dish. Brush
apricot mixture on chicken and pour left over mixture all over chicken. Roast for 80
minutes or until chicken is fully cooked and crispy.
Roasted Chipotle Acorn Squash Serves 4-6
2 acorn squash (1-11/2 pounds each)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground chipotle chile
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven to 400°F. Cut the acorn squash in half lenghthwise. Then cut each half crosswise into 3/4 inch thick slices. Remove and discard the seeds from the squash pieces. Transfer the squash to a baking sheet. Mix olive oil, garlic, ground chipotle, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Pour the mixture over the squash pieces and toss to coat. Roast for 20 minutes, or until squash is tender.
Naturally, with Sauza as the sponsor we sampled delicious cocktails throughout the night.
The overwhelming favorite was this warm tequila cider...one of my friends pronounced it "Christmas in a glass!" upon tasting.
The recipe will be featured in my December newsletter (comes out Monday 12/6). Subscribe so you can make it, too...it's really different and delicious!