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Huevos rancheros as a work of art.

Huevos rancheros as a work of art

True lovers of the egg tend to prefer it delicately poached, or fried soft and sunny side up. Other frail souls cannot bear to confront so boldly the ultimate mystery of the source of life, especially if those great, staring yolks are bathed in the red chili sauce of the conventional huevos rancheros. (Perhaps some of them remember a touching ballad from the days when rhythm and blues was beginning its metamorphosis into rock and roll; the song was called "Don't Roll Them Bloodshot Eyes at Me,' and in it a swain begged his hungover lass to close her eyes.)

From Tucson, Doug Fulton sends a recipe that is a treat to the eye as well as the palate. He learned the secret of this dish from an elderly lady in Alamos, a little town in Sonora, Mexico. Chef Fulton regards it as the best of the many versions he has encountered. In it, the eggs-- scrambled to your liking--are served on a plate (minus the usual tortilla) and topped with a sauce containing chorizo sausages. Sour cream, cilantro, and sliced radishes complete the picture.

Huevos Revueltos Rancheros

1/2 pound chorizo sausage

1/2 cup thinly sliced green onions, including tops

1 large firm-ripe tomato, cored, seeded, and diced

1/2 cup diced tomatillos

1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies

10 large eggs

3 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons butter or margarine

1/2 cup thinly sliced radishes

Sour cream

Fresh cilantro (coriander) sprigs

Salt and pepper

Remove sausage casing and crumble (or cut up) meat into a 10- to 12-inch frying pan over medium heat. Cook, stirring often, until sausage is browned, about 7 minutes; drain off and discard fat. Stir onions, tomato, tomatillos, and chilies into sausage. Cook, stirring occasionally, until most of the liquid in sauce has evaporated and vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Keep warm.

Meanwhile, beat eggs with water until well blended. Melt butter in another 10- to 12-inch frying pan over medium heat; add eggs and cook, lifting cooked portion so uncooked eggs can flow underneath, until eggs are done to your liking. Transfer eggs to individual plates, spoon sausage mixture evenly over eggs, and garnish each serving with radishes, sour cream, and cilantro. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes 4 or 5 servings.

Doug Fulton Tucson

Recipes for baked beans, chowder, and chili con carne (or some variation on one of these preparations) come to the Chefs of the West tasting panel nearly every month. But Charles Shaffer's lima bean dish is, if not the first of its kind, certainly the first within memory of the current Sunset editors. Somehow, the rich, nutty lima has never enjoyed the attention that other beans have. It is unfortunate, since California leads the nation in producing limas and should lead the nation in ingenious ways of preparing them. All too often, limas are relegated to playing a supporting role to kernels of corn in succotash--that least innovative way of combining vegetables.

Shaffer's system in approaching the legume might (with a little stretching of the term) be called homeopathic: once he'd detected the positive essence of the lima, he reinforced it by adding ingredients with the same character--nuttiness. Nutty-tasting limas, nutty sherry, and (not surprisingly) some actual nuts-- cashews, to be exact--work together to produce a hearty, unusual vegetable dish.

Cashew Limas in Sherry Butter

1 package (10 oz.) frozen Fordhook lima beans


3 tablespoons butter or margarine

1/4 cup dry sherry

1 teaspoon lemon juice

1/3 cup coarsely chopped salted cashews

Salt and pepper

Cook lima beans in boiling water according to package directions; drain.

Meanwhile, melt butter in a 2- to 4-cup pan over medium-high heat; add sherry and lemon juice. Boil until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Pour butter mixture over limas, add nuts, and mix well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Makes 3 or 4 servings.

?? Los Angeles

Chicken split, then stuffed? Behold a mystery. If the chicken is split, the body cavity disappears, in much the same way that your lap does when you stand up. So what is left to stuff? John Bardo concocted a sensible solution. You simply flatten the bird's carcass, gently loosen the skin from the underlying flesh, and push the dressing between the two.

Why split the chicken? A flattened bird cooks through in less time than a bird-in-the-round, and it is somewhat easier to carve.

What's the sense in stuffing dressing between skin and carcass? The aromatics in the dressing are in close contact with the meat instead of being insulated from it by the rib cage. Moreover, the layer of fat beneath the skin helps keep the dressing moist while enhancing the flavor; fat is an excellent vehicle for extracting and carrying the herb flavors, which diffuse throughout the roast.

Stuffed-under-the-Skin Roast Chicken

1/2 cup (1/4 lb.) butter or margarine

1 pound mushrooms, finely chopped

1 cup finely diced celery

1 clove garlic, minced or pressed

2 cups 1/2-inch cubes stale French bread

2 teaspoons dry tarragon

1 large egg, slightly beaten


1 roasting chicken (5 1/2 to 6 lb.)

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1/2 teaspoon paprika

Melt butter in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan over medium heat; set 2 tablespoons melted butter aside. To pan add mushrooms, celery, and garlic; cook until juices have evaporated and mixture is just beginning to brown, about 20 minutes; stir often. Remove from heat.

In a bowl, combine the bread cubes, tarragon, egg, and sauteed vegetable mixture; squeeze mixture with your hands to break up bread cubes. Season to taste with salt.

Remove giblets from chicken; reserve for other uses, if desired. Discard lumps of fat. With poultry shears or a sharp knife, cut chicken apart along backbone, then place, skin side up, on a board and press down to flatten. Rinse chicken and pat dry. Gently loosen, but do not remove, skin from meat by sliding fingertips under skin, first from breast, then from thighs, and finally from drumsticks. Do not tear skin. Take a small amount of the stuffing at a time and tuck it under the skin; stuff drumsticks first, then thighs, and finally the breast.

Brush skin with remaining 2 tablespons melted butter; sprinkle with pepper and paprika.

Place chicken, skin up, in a 12- by 15-inch baking pan. Roast in a 400| oven until thigh meat is no longer pink at bone, about 45 minutes; cut from underside-- not through stuffing--to test. Transfer to a serving platter; cut up with poultry shears or knife. Makes 5 or 6 servings.

?? Oxnard, Calif.

Wayne Silkett devised this dish while serving with the Second Battalion, Sixth Infantry Division, Berlin Brigade. With a diplomatic nod to Sunset's regional nature, Major Silkett suggests that we might call it Beef West Berlin.

His creation is notable for its elegant simplicity: beef, onions, flour, a few basic seasonings, rice, and a bearnaise sauce are the ingredients, and preparation could hardly be simpler.

Beef Berlin

1 1/4 to 1 1/2 pounds boneless top beef sirloin

2 medium-size onions

5 tablespoons butter or margarine

1 clove garlic, minced or pressed

Salt and pepper

Hot cooked rice

Bearnaise sauce (recipe follows)

Trim fat from beef and discard. Cut meat into 1 inch cubes; set aside. Peel onions and cut each into eighths.

Melt 3 tablespoons of the butter in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan over medium heat; add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are very limp and sweet to taste, about 20 minutes. Lift out onions and keep warm.

In the same pan, melt remaining 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat; add garlic. Sprinkle meat cubes lightly with salt and pepper and add about a third at a time to pan. Cook, turning as needed, until cubes are well browned but still pink in center, about 7 minutes for each batch; cut to test. As meat is done, lift out with a slotted spoon and put with onions; repeat to brown remaining meat. Return onions, meat, and any juices to pan and mix well. Serve meat and rice with bearnaise sauce. Makes 4 to 6 servings.

Bearnaise sauce. In a 6- to 7-inch frying pan over medium heat, combine 1/2 teaspoon dry tarragon, 1 tablespoon minced shallot or onion, and 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar. Cook, stirring, until liquid has evaporated, about 3 minutes.

In a blender, whirl shallot mixture, 1 large egg yolk, 1 tablespoon each lemon juice and water, and 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard until well blended. With motor on high, add 1/2 cup (1/4 lb.) hot melted butter or margarine, in a slow stream at first, then faster as mixture begins to thicken. Serve immediately or keep warm by setting blender container in a pan of water that is hot to the touch. Makes 3/4 cup.

?? Colorado Springs, Colo.
COPYRIGHT 1986 Sunset Publishing Corp.
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1986 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:includes various recipes
Date:Oct 1, 1986
Previous Article:Shanghai spareribs were imported by a couple fleeing China, passed on like a state secret.
Next Article:September menus: potato platter for a cool supper, a Mexican stir-fry dinner, waffles with applesauce and sausage.

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