Absolutely nothing hits the spot like piping hot, home made Huevos Rancheros. Stacked corn tortillas smothered in mildly spicy Guajillo sauce, slow cooked cumin spiked beans, a fried egg and of course salty Cotija cheese. A party in your mouth. South of the border style.
The summer monsoon season has reached us just in the nick of time. Even the cacti splattered across our yards and neighborhood are looking painfully destitute here in the Phoenix desert. Every day when I drag my tired, hot bones past them on the walk way I say Hang in there! As I quickly retreat into the air conditioned house.
We've all been restlessly watching the Arizona skies for any sign of the summer storms that inevitably roll in with a vengeance. The huge dark clouds never fail to impress me nor does the amount of rain that manages to rip out of the ominous beasts and overwhelm the rock hard desert ground.
i love it.
The Scoville Chile Pepper Heat Chart ranks Guajillo [gwah-HEE-yoh] peppers somewhere in the lower half of the index, just below jalepeno's. They are one of the most commonly grown chiles in Mexico and are used in salsa's, pastes, sauces, mole, pozole and also for harissa. This chile requires a longer soaking period than most due to its leathery skin. It's worth the little bit of effort to make your own sauce in the blender and it will keep well in the fridge for a week or two.
Guajillo peppers are probably my favorite because of their complex palate. A little smokey and surprisingly sweet, think dried cranberries and they supply just the right amount of heat to give you a little kick in the head. They are very simple to turn into a paste or sauce. They transform an every day Mexican dish into a creative culinary masterpiece.
YIELDS 2 1/2 CUPS TIME 45 MINUTES
RECIPE FOR THE RED CHILE SAUCErecipe from Rick Bayless (slightly adapted)
6 garlic cloves, unpeeled
16 medium, dried guajillo chile peppers (about 4 oz)
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
1/4 teaspoon black pepepr
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 1/2 cups chicken broth
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
SERVES 6 TIME 20 MINUTES
12 yellow corn tortillas
1/4 cup vegetable oil
6 whole eggs
2 cups of prepared red chile sauce
2 cups of cooked black beans
1/4 teaspoon cumin
1 cup of crumbled Cotija cheese
chopped green onions
PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER
In a deep skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Carefully add the tortillas one at a time and cook for 2-3 minutes until lightly browned and crispy. Using tongs, remove from pan and set an a stack of paper towels to drain.
Meanwhile, heat your beans in a pot. Add cumin. Cover and simmer while you prepare your tortillas.
In a separate, non stick pan cook eggs to your liking, fried, poached or scrambled.
On individual plates add a tortilla, spoon on the beans and drizzle with some of the sauce. Add another tortilla, more sauce, the egg and the cheese and garnishes.
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