Sunday, May 31, 2009

Dim Sum Sunday - South of the Border

I can honestly say this was my hardest Dim Sum Sunday yet. My knowledge of Mexican food is extremely limited. I do know that what is available here in Kansas City is really Tex-Mex and wasn't really the authentic Mexican cuisine I was looking for. Which meant that a restaurant visit wasn't going to cut it. I would have to try and recreate a Mexican dish. My online research turned up the usual suspects, Rick Bayless seemingly dominating the market. I kept searching. It wasn't until I read the article Five Senses of Frida that I started to get excited. There was a cookbook of Frida's food. Written in part by Diego Rivera's daughter, Guadalupe, this was more of what I was looking for, Mexican recipes written by Mexicans.Book in hand and just a little poorer after venturing into the bookstore I set out to discover the food world of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera. Frida not only loved to eat but she was also an excellent cook. Baptisms, national holidays, and galas were all opportunities to gather the freshest produce and flowers to entertain her friends and family. I now had to choose which dish to reproduce. Since the book is organized by creating a fiesta for each month, it wasn't hard. June's month featured Pork Ribs and Potato Tortitas.
A slab of pork ribs baked in a poblano tomato sauce served with grilled vidalia onions and potato tortitas or potato cake. If you like your meal just a little more spicy than the rather mild poblano can deliver then there's the Sweet Sour sauce that is served with the ribs. Comprised mostly of pickled jalapeno chiles it will certainly wake your tongue up.
While I might have been reluctant at first to try and make authentic Mexican food in the end I'm very glad that I pushed outside my comfort zone and tried something new. Thanks goes to Dani at Gardening Under the Florida Sun for suggesting this week's theme.

18 comments:

Susan said...

What a beautiful post, beautiful images and delicious looking food. Well done. Love the squash butterfly plate ? Come on over to 29 Black Street for Que Cake & Ice Cream Pasa - a crazy Canadians interpretation of North (I mean South) of the border.

I'm sorry ... I have failed yet again. I don't know what's happening maybe it's the day of the week. Sunday's and me and cooking. I did make Salsa Verde Chicken Enchiladas this past Monday ... Honest !!??*!

Big Shamu said...

I think it's ok Susan, considering your South of the Border is New York. All the artwork is Frida's. Sadly I had no parrots or monkeys to add to my Frida meal portrait.

Coming over for dessert.

Susan said...

beautiful, beautiful ... see ya soon.

TROLL Y2K said...

Very interesting and unexpected dish. And truly unique inspiration source.

I'm UP!

The Phosgene Kid said...

Real Mexican food? The Aztecs ate a lot of insects and their eggs. Still popular in some parts of Mexico. In the Yuccatan corn tortillas are eaten with peppers on the table. Corn, Beans and Maize were the food triad throughout Mexico and Central America, along with some native seeds and roots. With a government driven surplus of corn in the US, we have surpassed Mexico in corn consumption, mush of it in the from of processed derivatives.

All that being said I have to admit to being a tamale junkie... Check out some of Rick Bayless's books...

Boxer said...

I have my favorite/quick South of the Border components up. No recipe, no final picture... it's also a sneak peak for the Food Challenge Throwdown.

But you said it could be "anything".

:-)

I'm "up".

Big Shamu said...

Hey Phos, I'm sure the Bayless books are fine but sometimes I want the original versions of a cuisine not an American's take on that cuisine. The cookbook I used has some tamales recipes in it, so you might see those in a future Dim Sum Sunday.

Dani said...

I love what you did!! I'll have to check at the library in the morning to see if they have that cookbook. Sounds like a great read.

I'm up!

Sharon said...

Yum! I want to get my hands on those potato cakes. You did an amazing job and love the beautiful post.

moi said...

I love Mexican food. Which, BTW, is different from NEW Mexican food. Although, we are highly influenced by Mexico. Those ribs look super yummy! And your presentation is always so beautiful and appetizing-looking.

Big Shamu said...

Moi, I put a Fresca in there just for you.

K9 said...

you put a fresca in the shot for moi!! i love your attention to detail. and the meal looks great. love mexico city food. and also the seafood heavy western coast of oaxaca. yum! nice job here and what a great plate.

Buzz Kill said...

The pork ribs look really good. Did you grill them or slow roast them in the oven? I could eat ribs all day long.

I may have an entry in the next day or two, we'll see.

Happy DSS!

LaDivaCucina said...

Hi Happy Dim Sum Sunday! I love Mexican food but am now dieting and eating salads so boring for now and no appropriate dish to post this time! The food looks great, Sham, as per usual.

I just wanted to give everyone a "heads up" on Gourmet magazine's TV show "Diary of a Foodie"

http://www.gourmet.com/diaryofafoodie

They did an entire show on Oaxaca and last week did a show on chilis featuring food made my Susan Trilling who also has a Mexican cooking school in Oaxaca. You can watch the old shows on the computer.

If any of you enjoyed the movie "Like Water for Chocolate" you'll love the recipe of Chiles en nogada con salsa de chocolate (stuffed poblanos with nut sauce and chocolate pomegranate molasses drizzle!) yum.......

Big Shamu said...

Slow roast in the oven Buzz and they are certainly a departure from the many sauces we have here in the US. Good but different.

Diva, I'm sure I should follow your example....but it's too much fun not to follow that path. Will check out that tv show, hope it's on a channel I get.

moi said...

The Fresca! I didn't catch it the first time around! So cool, in the bottle. Where did you find it?

Big Shamu said...

One of the many little hispanic, asian or indian grocery stores I haunt. I'm going to get a can of Fresca and compare tastes.

Dani said...

Just stopping back in to see what everyone was up to. Have a good morning. :)