Tuesday, May 17, 2011


So, last week I spoke at a gig on Nuevo Latino Cuisine at Davis. The lunch was fantastic. Adriana from Pico Pico Maize Cafe in Napa and SF made Arepas with magnificent sides. And she explained to me how to make them. I haven't had a chance until today. BUT, in fact, today we have a guest contributor. My son, who wrote this recipe (and called them gorditas for a class assignment). But it is entirely his recipe as he wrote it (a very different style from my own, as you'll see). BTW - He's 14.

Gorditas by Ethan Albala

Meat and cheese-filled corn pocket
Serves 4 people
Prep/Cook Time: 1 hour and 15 minutes
1 pound ground beef, 1 onion, ½ of a green bell pepper, ½ of a red bell pepper, cilantro, salt, pepper, ½ teaspoon of cumin, ½ a teaspoon of oregano, “P. A. N.” pre-cooked white corn meal from Columbia, mozzarella cheese, 4 Roma tomatoes, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 chile mulatto, pinch of piloncillo, cinnamon, and nutmeg
1.) Filling
1. Heat olive oil in pan
2. Break up ground beef in pan, cook until brown
3. Add chopped onion to pan, along with the cumin, oregano, salt, pepper, bell peppers, piloncillo, cinnamon, and nutmeg
4. Turn heat down, and let filling simmer on low
5. Pass chile over open flame to soften
6. Break open the top of the chile and pour out the seeds
7. Soak chile in a bowl of 2 cups of hot water for 10 minutes
8. Blend chile with chopped tomatoes and soaking water until smooth, then add it to the filling in the pan.
9. Let filling simmer for ½ hour on low heat with the top off
2.) Wrap
1. Preheat oven to 350 F
2. Mix 5 cups of water and 4 cups of P.A.N. mix into bowl
3. Make 12 even balls of dough; racquet ball size
4. Flatten balls into a ¾ inch thick, 3 inch diameter even disc
5. Put patties into dry, hot pan to make a crust, then put in oven for 20 min at 3500 F
6. Slice the side of the Gorditas to make a pocket, do not cut all the way through
7. Fill pocket with filling, cheese, and cilantro, sour cream or yogurt optional
8. Eat and enjoy!


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