As I was making the Blueberry Lavender Jam, I couldn’t think of anything better than to pair them with crepes. It’s been awhile since I’ve made crepes and thought to myself “what better time than now”. These crepes are so versatile and can be filled with sweet jam, cream cheese, or sprinkled with sugar. But as good as sweet crepes are, they are equally delicious with savory fillings. Crepes are so easy to make, the batter is quickly made in a blender and then swirled in a non-stick skillet with melted butter. Crepes are light but hold their shape and appear as if they are lace doilies on a plate. The crisp edges are my favorite part especially when they are freshly made. I’m including a recipe for Chicken Enchilada Crepes for a savory filling that you might enjoy. The filling includes chicken, cheese and a green chile bechamel sauce. It’s topped with the remaining cheese and bechamel sauce and then heated until it’s bubbling hot. It was a delicious savory meal that Joe and I enjoyed immensely. Crepes are so versatile for sweet or savory fillings, or even to enjoy with a sprinkle of sugar.
It’s almost lavender season here in New Mexico. Normally there would be lavender festivals at Los Poblanos Farms in Albuquerque and at Purple Adobe Lavender Farm in Abiquiu over the next few week; however they will be cancelled for a second year in a row due to Covid. Luckily I live close to Los Poblanos which includes the Los Poblanos Historic Inn, Hacienda Spa and CAMPO restaurant that uses their own harvest vegetables to make up their menu. They also have a farm shop with a bakery and many lavender products including culinary lavender and lavender honey. And they make lavender lotions, soap and hand sanitizers plus many more items. Our first lavender festival experience was just after our move back to New Mexico. We went to the Purple Adobe Lavender Festival near Abiquiu. We had a wonderful time and would encourage anyone who has a chance to visit next year in late June or first of July to please check out these wonderful festivals. Earlier in the week I visited the farm shop and picked up some lavender and honey to make Blueberry Lavender Jam. It was a wonderful combination of slightly sweet blueberries with a hint of lavender flowers in the background.
Breakfast tacos are easy to make and scrumptious to eat. I like to make them with creamy scrambled eggs and toppings that include cheese, bacon, avocado and tomato with a drizzle of salsa. There are so many options that might go into a breakfast taco . . . maybe some diced onion or red peppers, green chile, spinach, or herbs. When it comes to toppings it’s all up to you. What I really want to talk about is the cheesy hash browns on the side. They are fantastic. If you order hash browns at a dozen different restaurants you’ll probably get a dozen different tastes and textures. I like my hash browns crispy outside while creamy inside. That’s a rare find but I think I’ve found a way to make them at home. After testing boiled potatoes and baked potatoes, I tried using dehydrated hash browns that you find in a box. The dehydrated shredded potatoes were the one that achieved that perfect combination of crispy and creamy hash brown. The addition of flour and butter makes the potatoes crisp on the outside while the cheese and egg keeps the inside creamy. I plan on testing some other additions like sour cream or yogurt instead of cheese to see how that alters the taste and texture. I’ll update you on my findings but in the meantime enjoy some breakfast tacos with some cheesy hash browns on the side.
Posted at 10:34 am by NativeNM, on February 9, 2021
One of the most popular breakfasts in New Mexico is Huevo Rancheros. It’s traditionally made with soft corn tortillas topped with 2 fried eggs smothered in red chile sauce. And most likely you’ll find a side of pinto beans and fried potatoes on the side. It’s delicious!! Normally I have homemade red chile sauce on hand but this time I am trying one of our locally made sauces. It made this breakfast a breeze to put together. I know from experience, it’s not always easy to find dried red chiles or the right chile powder to make your own sauce, especially if you live in a different state or different part of the country. In a pinch you can always use a can of red enchilada sauce to smother your eggs. The crispy breakfast potatoes and beans on the side complete this meal. If you haven’t had Huevos Rancheros it should be on your bucket list. I think you will find it one of the most enjoyable meals any time of day! Continue reading →
Posted at 12:16 pm by NativeNM, on January 29, 2021
Chilaquiles is an easy dish made from fried tortillas tossed in red or green chile sauce and topped with a fried egg. That’s it! There are toppings involved that are optional for every individual taste. Most recipes add a crumbled cheese such as queso fresco or cotija, cilantro and chopped red onion. Some simmer the tortillas in the sauce which softens the tortillas, however I like the tortillas to have a little bit of texture and crunch. In the past I usually make a red sauce with dried red chiles, a combination of NM Red, Guajillo and Ancho chiles. This time I’m trying something new, a sauce by “The Fresh Chile Co.” which is made from Hatch fresh red chiles. The sauce is a puree of red chiles, garlic, salt, and citrus which makes a beautiful red sauce that is fantastic! If you are looking for a spicy breakfast or brunch, chilaquiles is the perfect choice. Continue reading →
Posted at 11:06 am by NativeNM, on January 5, 2021
One of my favorite combinations is cranberry and orange. Let’s face it, these two just belong together, whether it’s scones, muffins, cranberry sauce or cranberry relish. Cranberries are in season now so if you love this tarty fruit you might want to pick up a bag or two and put in the freezer. I started freezing them so that I had some to cook with all year long. I prefer fresh or frozen berries to dried cranberries plus they don’t have the added sugar that dried cranberries do. Along with antioxidants, they provide many vitamins and minerals that we all need in our daily diet. I must confess, sweet rolls probably negate all the positives of eating cranberries but after the year we’ve had I’m going to give myself a break and indulge in a few rolls. The rest can be frozen for up to a couple month’s. I like to freeze 2 rolls per package and that way I can have a sweet roll now and then. These rolls are messy and don’t look as perfect as some of my other sweet rolls but the taste is among the best. For me it always starts with brioche dough, I never waver with any other dough, it’s just that good. The cranberry orange jam was adapted from “Plated Cravings”. I had an idea of what the filling should be and this recipe was about as perfect as I could have imagined. And if that’s not enough I made an orange glaze that soaked into every crack and crevice of these rolls. I hope you’ll keep these in mind next time you are craving sweet rolls. They have a festive feel for the holidays but I think they would be perfect any time of year. Continue reading →
Posted at 10:54 am by NativeNM, on December 29, 2020
Around the holidays one of the things I enjoy most is a cup of hot chocolate. Just holding a cup of hot cocoa brings a warmth and serenity especially during the cold winter days and nights. I’ve made my own cocoa mix many times but this year I varied just a bit and made some Mexican blend with a hint of red chili and cinnamon. It tastes so decadent and creamy. On the weekends I enjoy some quiet time with a good book and a cup of cocoa. If you like this pretty cup you can find it at Persephone Bakery Cafein Jackson Hole, WY. I hear the pastries, sandwiches and coffee are to die for. It’s where Josh calls home now and is a barista by day at both Persephone Bakery and Picnic. With Covid 19 this past year we cancelled our plans to visit but fingers crossed we will make it up to Jackson Hole next summer and let Josh be our guide around the Tetons and beyond. Continue reading →
Posted at 10:14 am by NativeNM, on October 9, 2020
Awhile back I picked up some red plums that were some of the best I’ve ever tasted. They were naturally sweet and flavorful, perfect for making jam. I’ve only made jam a few times but I’m learning more through each process. To preserve the jam I like to pack it in jars and seal using a hot water bath. It’s easy and has so far been very reliable. The one thing I’ve found is that the more naturally sweet your fruit is, the less sugar you need to add. Ball has a “Low or No Sugar” pectin that is an easy way to thicken your jam without all the sugar. Now that I’ve figured that out I plan to pick fruit when it is in season and at the height of sweetness. If you make a few jars here and there you will have a variety of jam to enjoy for several month’s or share with family and friends. Continue reading →
Posted at 12:42 pm by NativeNM, on September 25, 2020
There are recipes that I’ve collected over the years that I have tucked away. Along with my hand written recipe cards and favorite cookbooks, I have kept some old magazines that have tried and true recipes that are like an old friend. I pull them out from time to time and the other day I came across an old Good Housekeeping magazine from March, 1988. On the cover is Elizabeth Taylor and one of the articles is on the International Hamburger Cookbook with recipes from countries around the world. I tried several of their recipes but the one that stands out is the Spanish Beef and Potato Pie. Throughout the years I’ve made this dish many times but I’ve added a New Mexican twist with roasted red and green chiles, often called Autumn roast, and seasoned with a green chile salt blend. It’s so delicious and makes a complete meal. Just yesterday Joe and I went to Sichlers and got some red and green chile. They roasted it separately but within the green batch there were several chiles starting to turn red. I was so happy to have a batch that I could freeze together for an Autumn roast blend. And the roasted red is so good this year, a bit hotter than the green but with that hint of sweetness that makes it so perfect. Earlier in the season we picked up a small amount of green chiles so I am beyond myself with the good fortune of having a variety of roasted chiles to experiment with. Hope you enjoy this NM Inspired Spanish Beef and Potato Pie, it is delicious, I promise! Continue reading →
Smoothies have become my newest comfort food. The cool creamy flavor combinations make me feel better after having one. Maybe it’s because they provide more fruit and vitamin D than I would otherwise have in an average day. They taste great and you can put almost anything in them for a healthy boost. Josh has been making them for years, adding an assortment of healthy fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds. While Josh will add anything and everything, I prefer a variety of frozen fruit with yogurt, milk and honey. I’ve always been one to pick up extra fruit on sale to put up in the freezer. Some fruits that freeze well are berries, cherries cranberries, grapes, mango, peaches, pineapple and bananas. You can also add citrus fruits to the mix such as lemon, lime, oranges and grapefruit. It’s really all about what you have on hand and what tastes good to you. This week I’m running low on milk and tried reconstituting instant dry milk. It was a great substitute, you cannot taste any difference when you add the fruit, yogurt and honey. Two cups of frozen fruit will make approximately 24 ounces or fill 2 (12 oz) glasses. I have been enjoying them a couple times a week and find them filling and refreshing. Continue reading →