Tag Archives: Garlic

Grilled Pork Steak~ Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas

Inspiration for this dish? We’re hungry! Lol! But seriously, my foodie friend Laura Lynn Lopez had been telling us about how delicious the garlic mojo recipe was. And it just happens to be a recipe developed by one of my all time favorite chefs, Rick Bayless. I have all of his books and I read the recipe, but like so many recipes in books, I don’t think about them once I close the book. I have prepared garlic mojo several times, but I made the fresh, uncooked version. Slow cooking the garlic in oil, there is nothing like it! For todays blog post, I had lots of wonderful garlic, already peeled and ready to go. I purchased it that way at my favorite market for a good price. It made things alot easier when you need almost 4 full bulbs of garlic cloves. So, I figured once I prepared the garlic mojo, marinating and grilling something was bound to happen. And to me, garlic mojo and pork are just meant to be. Garlic Mojo Marinated Pork Steaks is what I prepared. Great the first day, hot off the grill and garnished with more garlic mojo, tasty!! Second and thirda days….Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas. Some of the most flavorful pork tacos I have had in a while. The bonus part og the garlic mojo recipe is that it can be used in so many recipes. Great for crostini garlic bread, dressings, marinade, seasoning, pasta, salsa’s and so much more!  

 

Garlic Mojo

Garlic Mojo

*This recipe was adapted from chef Rick Bayless, love him!

2 full cups  of garlic, cloves peeled
1 cup avocado oil
1 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
6 chile de arbol, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons mexican oregano, crushed
1/2 cup fresh lime juice

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. In an 8X8 baking dish, add the garlic, oil, salt, chile de arbol and oregano. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes.

2. After 45 minutes, add the lime juice and bake for another 20 minutes. Remove from oven. Using a potato masher, break down the cloves of garlic garlic. Let cool at room temperature. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 months.

Garlic Mojo

After grilling the pork steak, top with a little more mojo.
After grilling the pork steak, top with a little more mojo.

 

Garlic Mojo Marinated Pork Steaks

Garlic Mojo Marinated Pork Steaks

Ingredients

2 1/2 pounds pork steaks, 3 steaks
salt
pepper
3/4 cup garlic mojo

Mojo Marinated Pork Steaks

Garlic Mojo Marinated Grilled Pork Steaks

Directions

1. Season the pork with salt and pepper on both sides. Transfer to plastic storage bag or baking dish. Cover with garlic mojo. Marinate for 2 to 4 hours.

2. Remove the pork from refrigerator at least 30 minutes before cooking. Prepare grill preheat to medium/high heat, 350 to 400 degrees.

3. When ready, grill pork steaks for about 3 to 4 minutes per side or until internal temperature reads 145 degrees F. Remove from grill onto plate. Cover with foil and let sit for 5 to 7 minutes. Yields 6 serving

Garlic Mojo Marinated Grilled Pork Steaks

 

Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas 

Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas

Ingredients

Grilled pork steak, about 1 1/2 pounds
2 to 3 tablespoons garlic mojo
16 corn tortillas (double tortilla tacos)
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
1/3 cup onion, diced
Your favorite hot sauce or salsa
Lime wedges

Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas

Directions

1. Slice and chop the pork steak into small pieces. Preheat skillet to medium/high heat for 5 to 6  minutes. When hot, add the pork and stir fry for a few minutes. Add the garlic mojo and cook for 2 more minutes. Cover and keep warm on low. The key is to cook the pork at high heat so it begins to caramelize and brown. This will give it a more carnitas flavor without all the frying.

2. Heat tortillas on large comal or griddle and keep warm. For a more traditional street taco, I like to double up on the corn tortillas for a hearty taco. Divide the carnitas into 8 double tortilla tacos. Garnish with cilantro, onion, salsa and lime. Yields 4 servings.

Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas

Garlic Mojo Tacos de Carnitas

 

 

Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri Style Sauce

Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri  Style Sauce Sauce was my husband Richard’s request for our Valentines day dinner this year. Let’s just say, he did not have to twist my arm. Today was the coldest day of this winter so far. So spending the good part of the day in the kitchen was the best place to be on such a bitter cold day. There are a few variations to preparing a chimichurri sauce. Some people like them blended and with more olive oil. I like to chop all of my ingredients finely by hand. I also like adding sweet and hot chile peppers to mine. During the summer when I have  a porch full of fresh herbs I prepare chimichurri quite often, sometimes adding fresh basil and tarragon into the mix. Someday, I would love to enjoy dinner at an authentic Argentinian restaurant just so I could try some real chimichurri! I have to say, that cooking  my loved ones favorite dishes brings me great joy. Making great food memories one plate at a time….

Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri Style Sauce
Seared Scallops in a Chimichurri Style Sauce

For Chimichurri Sauce
1/2 cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
1/4 cup cilantro, finely chopped
1/3 cup finely diced red bell pepper
2 green onions
11/2 teaspoons dried crushed oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 chile serrano, minced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teasponn smoked paprika
1/2 teaspoon fresh cracked pepper
Salt to taste
Juice of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/3 cup olive oil or enough to cover chimichurri generously

You will also need
8 sea scallops
salt and fresh cracked pepper
chili oil
1 tablespoon butter

Sea Scallops
Sea Scallops
There are many variations of a chimichurri sauce. I like to chop mine fine by hand and add sweet and hot chile peppers to my recipe.
There are many variations of a chimichurri sauce. I like to chop mine fine by hand and add sweet and hot chile peppers to my recipe.
A quick sear on each side and right into the zesty chimichurri!
A quick sear on each side and right into the zesty chimichurri!
The scallops were delicious in the chimichurri sauce!
The scallops were delicious in the chimichurri sauce!

1. Mix all of the ingredients for the chimichurri sauce at least an hour before cooking your scallops, taste for salt, cover and set aside. This recipe makes more sauce than you will need, but I use it on everything, lol!

2. When ready to cook scallops, make sure you gently press out any excess moisture out with paper towels. Season lightly on both sides with salt and pepper.

3. Preheat 2 tablespoons chili oil with 1 tablespoon butter to medium heat for a few minutes. When good and hot, sear the scallops for about 3 to 4 minutes per side or until opaque in color. Transfer to serving dish that has some chimichurri sauce on the bottom. Add more chimichurri sauce to the top of each scallop before serving.

See you next Valentines Day!
See you next Valentines Day!

Chimichurri A Salsa? A Relish? Spanish Tapas Style Recipes

Chimichurri. What exactly is it? A salsa? A relish? I only discovered this delicious, Spanish influenced recipe a few years ago. My first attempts at preparing chimichurri were nothing to blog about, ha ha!! Throw it all in the blender and done! For me, to really appreciate the flavors of a chimichurri, one should take the time to finely chop the ingredients by hand. I find the whole process quite relaxing as each ingredient gets added to the bowl. I just want to put it out there that I am no authority on Spanish foods. I am just eager to learn some basics so that I may enjoy them at home. The whole idea of serving a tapas style dinner (small plates of food) for dinner parties or special occasions is such a great idea and so much fun. I have prepared several dinners with this same theme for friends several times. I try to mix up the menu by preparing some Mexican, Spanish and Asian dishes all in one night. Many of the recipes I choose can usually be prepared ahead and then I just warm them the night of the dinner. I am able to spend more time enjoying the company of my friends this way.  For the first entry I wanted to start with a few chimichurri recipes I have prepared in the past year. I will add more recipes as they develop and post some from my past tapas style dinner parties. Small plates of food. Genius idea!

Chimichurri that was all finely chopped by hand, served over a beef and potato stuffed empanada
Chimichurri that was all finely chopped by hand, served over a beef and potato stuffed empanada


1/2 cup parsley, finely chopped
1/2 cup cilantro, finely chopped
1/3 cup red bell pepper, diced small
2 green onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeño, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
3 to 4 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1/2 tablespoon oregano
1/2 tablespoon dried sweet basil
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

 

Finely chopped chimichurri, delicious! Finely chopped chimichurri the next day, fantastic!
Finely chopped chimichurri, delicious! Finely chopped chimichurri the next day, fantastic!

 

Directions

1. Finely chop and dice all of the ingredients by hand or pulse in the food processor. Add in the olive oil and season to taste with salt ans pepper. Cover and let stand for at least one hour before serving. Will taste much better, the longer it sits.

2. Serve sauce over any grilled meats or seafood. I love serving it with savory empanadas. Makes about 2 cups. Store in airtight container in the refrigerator. Let come to room temperature before serving.

Next day chimichurri over beef picadillo and potato stuffed empanadas.
Next day chimichurri over beef picadillo and potato stuffed empanadas.

 

 Smoky Chipotle Chimichurri 

Smoky Chipotle Chimichurri over a chicken paella stuffed empanada
Smoky Chipotle Chimichurri over a chicken paella stuffed empanada


½ cup cilantro, finely chopped
½ cup flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
½ cup sweet yellow pepper, finely chopped
1 jalapeño, minced
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon oregano
1 tablespoon chipotle flakes or  chipotle in adobo, minced
Juice of 1 lemon
4 tablespoons red wine vinegar

1/3 cup olive oil

½ teaspoon pepper
Salt to taste

Prepping for smoky chipotle chimichurri...chipotle was not added when I took the picture.
Prepping for smoky chipotle chimichurri…chipotle was not added when I took the picture.

 

Combine all of the ingredients. Stir well to combine, taste for salt. Cover and chill over night or at least a few hours before serving.

Smoky Chipotle Chimichurri over an empanada stuffed with chicken paella
Smoky Chipotle Chimichurri over an empanada stuffed with chicken paella