06 June 2007

Cilantro-Lime Chili with Brown Rice, topped with Cheddar

Tonight was at least acceptable to everyone. I'd decided to make chili, without realizing that the Carnivore had ordered chili for lunch; so there was a bit of ho-humness to the response.

I was inspired by our recent trip to Puerto Rico. The beans in PR are to die for.

Unfortunately, they're stock-loaded with sodium and msg in the form of Sazzon, which is a little, fabulous seasoning packet that tastes good, but does nothing for you.

Also they usually add pork to the beans, which is a no-no for us.

Oh, and did I mention that they use something called recao, which is like really strong cilantro (and improssible to get in PA)?? in addition to something called recaito (once again, filled with more ingredients that are hard to get, including more recao)???


Inspired is definitely the word.

Here's more pics of Dinner
(I'll explain what I did after):

Okay, beyond soaking the beans (pinto, this time)...

In my mortar bowl, I made a recaito by mashing together 2 cloves of garlic, a 1/4 cup packed fresh oregano, a 1/2 c packed fresh cilantro, stems intact, a 1/4 c fresh chives, a tsp of annato (american saffron), and a tsp of sea salt. I let this macerate overnight in the fridge.

The next day I reconstituted a cup of texturized soy protein in beef-flavoured bouillion ( I usually use brown miso, but I was out), with a splash of Bragg's liquid aminos and a dash of worchestershire sauce.

I cooked the beans and then added 1 1/2 c left-over marinara sauce (bottom of the jar -- waste not, want not!), the homemade recaito, and the tvp.

I cooked brown rice, Puerto Rican style (this means adding salt and oil before boiling).

I sliced several limes. When I assembled the chili bowls, I laid a layer of rice, then one of chili, squeezing a lime wedge over the entire thing, then topping with CHeddar CHeese. I then placed lime wedges for a garnish and served the meal with a nice, dry peach-kombucha.



Sea said...

This sounds amazing- I love the recaito recipe. So when you say you cooked the rice Puerto Rican Style, does that mean that you put salt and oil in the water, or do you do a kind of pilaf thing with oil and salt in a pan that you heat, add rice to, let go transparent and then add water? I think we should have dinner at our respective houses- I like your menus!


Slightly Off Balance said...

LOL! Thanks, sea. I lurve yours. I've never subscribed to a food blog before -- most people frankly don't cook the way I'd prefer, so... Puerto Rican style means everything goes in the pot before theheat is turned on, and then ignored. It actually makes a very sticky, shiny rice with a lot of flavour. Perfect for bean dishes. Hope all is well!