Creamy Habanero Salsa


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If you’ve followed this blog for a while, you might have seen me mention my love of habaneros before. There are some dishes (from the Yucatán Peninsula) that just wouldn’t be the same without some Habanero salsa on the side, like Cochinita Pibil, Papadzules, tacos, etc.
This recipe is rather easy to make; the salsa lasts at least 2 weeks in the fridge, and goes well with grilled meats, roasted chicken, fried fish, and –my favorite– hot dogs. Yes, I said hot dogs. The first time I tried this salsa was at a hot dog street stand in Chetumal, Quintana Roo. With just one bite of that hot dog I was completely blown away, the Habanero salsa really changes the whole concept of the popular American street food. The way to prepare this salsa is very similar to an aioli, but without the eggs, and using Habanero Peppers (by the way, you can also substitute any other pepper, dried or fresh). I also like the árbol pepper version of this salsa.Creamy Habanero Sauce1
Habanero Peppers are commonly eaten in the Yucatan Peninsula, and are usually sold fresh to make salsas. They where not readily available all over Mexico until a couple of decades ago, when they started growing in popularity and started to appear even in the northern states of Mexico. Today, I can easily buy them even here in the US. The Habanero Pepper is considered an exceptionally hot pepper by the Scoville Scale. If you are trying this pepper for the first time, and are not used to hot peppers, be sure to have a glass of milk nearby to mitigate the burning sensation after tasting it. I don’t like to add any additional herbs or spices to this sauce, in order to enjoy the aroma and flavor of the Habanero peppers.
MAKES ABOUT 1/2 CUP
INGREDIENTS:
  • 6 Habanero peppers
  • 1 small garlic clove, peeled
  • 1 cup of water
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • Salt to taste
DIRECTIONS:
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1. Place peppers, garlic and water in a small saucepan (with the lid slightly covering it) over medium heat and cook until peppers are soft and tender, about 10-12 minutes. You will need to open your kitchen windows to keep the area well ventilated, or turn on the exhaust fan to avoid eye irritation. I live in an apartment, and usually turning on the exhaust fan and placing the lid on the saucepan is enough to avoid any discomfort from the pungent steam coming out of the cooking peppers.
2. Once cooked, remove the peppers and garlic from the saucepan and place into a blender with the remaining cooking water, which by this time has been reduced.
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3. Let the peppers cool for some minutes and then turn your blender on to puree the peppers. Open the lid while the blender is still running and slowly add the oil in a steady stream. This last step will emulsify the salsa, giving it a creamy texture. Pour salsa into a small bowl and season with salt. Enjoy with some Steak and Chorizo Tacos!
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Now, you tell me… what is your favorite salsa?

¡Buen provecho!

Mely

Mexican Chicken Salad Recipe... Pin That Twist!

This post has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PinThatTwist #CollectiveBiasMexican Chicken SaladA1
Some might say that this is not a “traditional” Mexican recipe, but it is one that has been in our culture for so long that many believe it to be traditional. Why, you may ask? Because it is a long-time favorite among Mexicans for family reunions, children’s parties, picnics, and even beach days. Here at home, it is also one of my son’s favorite dishes; ever since he was a small school kid, he loved to come home from school and have this for lunch, and often requested it for his birthdays. It is eaten with saltine crackers or in sandwiches, and, as you can see here, served alongside a creamy macaroni salad with Kraft Natural American Cheese. As mentioned before, chicken salad is extremely popular at children’s birthday parties, since the hostess (Mom) can prepare it ahead of time, and still be able to enjoy the party. If you have a Pinterest account, please pin the recipe. Pin That Twist! The Mexican twist to a classic salad.

This chicken salad recipe is a Mexican adaption of the famous Russian salad, but with chicken added (chicken is the main ingredient in this salad). The salad has some of the same ingredients as the Eastern European version, but the Mexican version has several variations, that include ingredients like red peppers or corn. I like to add celery and apple to mine.
 
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The ingredients can be found at your local Albertson supermarket. Look at all those Kraft products! Out of their several Mayonnaise products, my favorite is the creamy Home-Style Mayo, and I like to use the Kraft Natural Cheese for the macaroni salad.
SERVES 8
INGREDIENTS:
  • 16 oz chicken breast, cooked and shredded
  • 8 oz carrots, cooked and diced
  • 14 oz potato, cooked and diced
  • 5 oz celery, finely chopped
  • 6 oz canned sweet peas, drained
  • 1 apple, peeled and diced
  • 1 cup Kraft Mayo
  • 1 parsley spring to garnish
TO SERVE:
  • Saltine crackers
  • Pickled jalapeños and carrot slices
Mexican Chicken Salad2
FOR THE MACARONI SALAD*
  • 16 oz elbow pasta, cooked according to package instructions
  • 1 cup of sour cream or Mexican cream
  • 1 package of American or sharp cheddar Kraft Natural Cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

 
NOTES:
*Some recipes also add diced cooked ham to the macaroni salad.

INSTRUCTIONS:
Mexican Chicken Salad1A
1. Place the cooked and shredded chicken, potatoes, carrots, celery, sweet peas and apple into a large bowl.
 
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2. Mix gently and stir in the Kraft mayo (carefully, to avoid breaking or mashing the cooked vegetables).
 
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3. Season with salt and pepper. Refrigerate for about 4 hours to allow the flavors to blend. Believe me, it is worth the wait, as it will definitely taste better.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR THE MACARONI SALAD
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1. Dice the Kraft Natural Cheese into small cubes, and make sure the cooked macaroni is cool, otherwise it will melt the cheese.
2. Mix in the Mexican cream or sour cream. Stir and gently add the Kraft Natural Cheese, making sure it is well mixed. As mentioned above, some recipes also add diced cooked ham (if you choose to do so, add it along with the cheese). Season with salt and pepper. Stir and refrigerate until cool to serve alongside the Mexican Chicken Salad.
To serve, provide some saltine crackers, and for the adults, add pickled jalapenos & carrot slices.
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This is one of our family’s favorite dishes for parties and special occasions. Leave a comment, I would love to hear about your family’s favorite party meals!

Stop by the Albertsons Pinterest board to enjoy many other recipes with a Latino Twist HERE!
 
¡Buen provecho!

Mely



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