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Jambalaya and Andouille Sausage Burrito

With a Spicy Cajun Cream Sauce

Serves 4

Cook Time 20 minutes

PREP TIME: 20 minutes

For the burritos

  • 16 ounces Andouille sausage
  • 1 (8-ounce) package Zatarian’s Jambalaya Rice
  • 4 extra-large flour tortillas

For the Cajun Cream Sauce

  • 1 large red pepper, diced
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • Kosher salt, for seasoning
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun season
  • 1 cup grated parmesan cheese

Heat a grill for high two-zone cooking. Grill the sausages over direct heat to get some char and heat them through, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside. Over indirect heat cook the rice according to the package directions. While the rice cooks, make the cream sauce. 

 

Set a large skillet over high, direct heat. Melt the butter in the skillet and add the pepper and onion and season with salt, cook until softened about 5 minutes. Sprinkle on the flour and cook until it is no longer dry and smells like pancakes. Add the cream and cook until just beginning to thicken, then add the cajun seasoning and parmesan cheese. Remember the sauce with thicken more as it cools. Remove from the heat. 

 

Fill each tortillas with rice and sauce and wrap tightly. Toast the burritos over high heat, about 2 minutes each side. Cover in the cajun cream sauce and serve immediately.

Grilled Chorizo and Potato Breakfast Burrito

With Chipotle Crema Drizzle

Serves 4

Cook Time 20 Minutes

Prep Time: 15 minutes

For the burritos

  • 4 links basque-style chorizo
  • 1 large red pepper, chopped
  • 1 medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons Olive oil
  • Kosher salt, for seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon Red Tuxedo, plus more for seasoning
  • 1 (12 ounce) bag baby Yukon gold potatoes, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 4 big ass tortillas, at least 10-inch
  • 1 cup shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • 1/4 cup crumbled Cotija cheese

Chipotle Crema Drizzle

  • 1/2 cup mayo
  • 1/2 cup Mexican table cream
  • 3 chipotles in adobo, plus 1 teaspoon adobo sauce
  • 1/4 cup cilantro
  • 1 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 teaspoonRed Tuxedo

Heat a grill for medium high direct heat. Heat a large cast iron skillets directly on the grill. Cook the chorizo directly on the grill grates for 5 to 6 minutes. Add some olive oil and butter to the preheated pan, add the peppers, onions, potatoes, Red Tuxedo. Cook, stirring regularly until the potatoes are tender, about 8 minutes. Pull the chorizo off the grill and remove the potatoes to a plate. You can use that skillet to cook the eggs. 

 

Combine the mayo, crema, lime juice, chipotles and their sauce and the cilantro in a food processor. Season with a pinch of salt and process until smooth. 

 

Crack the eggs into a bowl, season with Red Tuxedo, and whisk to combine. If needed, add a tablespoon of oil to the pan – there may still be plenty from the vegetables and then add the egg mixture. Cook the scrambled eggs by gently turning the curds as the cook. Do your best not to over cook the eggs, some still wet looking areas are ok, these babies are going back on the grill in a bit. 

 

Build the burritos: Lay out a tortilla and layer in the potato mixture followed by the eggs, chorizo, a sprinkle of cheese, and cotija. Fold the side of the burrito in and then roll up the burrito. 

 

For serving, crisp the burritos over medium high direct heat, for just 2 minutes per side. Serve with a drizzle of the sauce and a sprinkle of fresh cilantro.

Chicken Al Pastor(ish) Cheese Skirt Tacos

With Pineapple Habanero Salsa!

Serves 2 to 4

Cook Time 30 Minutes

Prep time: 30 minutes, plus marinade time

For the tacos

  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 6 cloves of chopped garlic
  • 1/4 cup ancho chili powder
  • 1/4 cup guajillo chili powder
  • 3 tablespoon achiote (or achiote blend)
  • 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple (with juices)
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 pound boneless chicken thighs
  • 2 cups shredded queso quesadilla cheese
  • 8 small flour tortillas – sometimes labeled “street taco” size

Pineapple Habanero Salsa

  • 1 whole pineapple, peeled and quartered
  • 1 medium sweet onion, cut into thick slices
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (with stems)
  • 1 teaspoon Red Tuxedo rub
  • 2 habanero peppers – finely diced
  • Juice of 2 limes

To make the marinade for the chicken: We are using a Rick Bayless method for creating marinades from powdered chili instead of whole dried chili. Heat a frying pan on medium-high heat. Add the oil. Once the oil is hot, add the garlic and cook for about one minute. Then add the ancho, guajillo, achiote, pineapple, water, and salt and bring to a simmer. Cook for 5-8 minutes until it is reduced to a paste. Allow the marinade to cool, add it to the chicken, and place in the fridge for 4 to 24 hours.

 

To make the salsa: Liberally coat the onion and pineapple with our very own Red Tuxedo (available from Spiceology) and grill. Once you get a nice char on all sides remove from the grill. Dice the onion and pineapple and combine with the cilantro, habanero, and lime juice. Give it a taste and see if it needs more salt.

 

To cook the chicken: we preheated our Big Green Egg to a medium-high direct heat with FOGO Charcoal. Grill the chicken direct until 165º internal and a bit crispy on the edges. Dice the chicken and set it aside.

 

Place a comal (or plancha or griddle) on the grill and pre-heat it. We used the Made In Cookware comal. Do as many tacos as your pan fits at a time. Lightly brush the pan with oil. Then place 1/4 cup of cheese in a small pile where each tortilla will go. Place the tortilla on top of the cheese and add the chicken. Allow it to cook until the cheese has cooked into a golden brown crunchy crust.

 

Remove, top with chicken and salsa and serve!

play video Nathan Congleton / TODAY
Steak

Steak Tacos

With Tomatillo Salsa

Servings 6

Cook Time 75 Minutes

Ingredients

  • Four 1.5″-thick prime or upper 1/3 choice sirloin cap steaks, about 1/2 pound each (also referred to as “picanha” and “coulotte”)
  • 3 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 3 limes (zest one, then cut each into eight wedges)
  • 1½ cups roasted tomatillo salsa
  • 18 flour tortillas
  • 12 ounces Oaxaca cheese (pull the whole ball into shreds)
  • 1 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1 cup Mexican crema
  • Hot sauce, to taste

Everybody loves tacos, but we love these because they are stuffed with juicy, tender steak that will make you feel like you ordered tacos at a high-end steakhouse.

Combine salt, lime zest, chipotle powder, garlic powder, onion powder, dried oregano, cumin and pepper. Rub to coat the steaks and marinate 1-4 hours in the fridge. Remove the steaks and set them out at room temp for 45-60 minutes before cooking.

Preheat oven to 325°F. Heat a cast iron skillet on high until it smokes. Place the steaks in the pan (cook in two batches if needed to avoid crowding and steaming). Sear all four sides of each steak 1-2 minutes or until a crust forms. Place steaks on the baking sheet with a cooling rack insert (an insert will protect the seared crust on the bottom side and allow for even cooking). Allow to sit for 5-7 minutes, then place in the oven. Remove the steaks when they reach an internal temp of 130°F. Allow to rest for ten minutes while you get the tortillas ready.

Grill the tortillas on both sides. You can do this on a grill over direct heat, directly over a gas flame on a stove or in a skillet. After the tortillas are grilled, wrap them in a barely damp kitchen towel, place them on a plate and put them in the oven to keep them warm.

Slice the steak very thinly, cutting across the short side of the steak. Top with tomatillo salsa, cheese, crema, cilantro, lime and a dash of hot sauce. Start with just enough slices for a first serving all around, so the steak will still be warm when people come back for seconds and thirds.

Technique tips: Sear the steaks on a hot cast iron skillet, let them rest, then finish in a low-temperature oven for a great crust and edge-to-edge pink.

 

Swap options: These also make amazing quesadillas or sopes. You can also swap out the sirloin cap (aka picanha) cut for flank or skirt steak.

 

play video Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Mexican Hasselback Potatoes

Cook Time 75 Minutes

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 4 pounds russet potatoes (cleaned and scrubbed)
  • 1 cup Mexican crema
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro (leaves and stems)
  • 1 cup cotija cheese (crumbled)
  • 1 lime, zested then cut into eight wedges
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons cumin
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper to taste

We love that this recipe puts a new spin on the baked potato, and you can make any twist you like. It’s also great for parties — you can do most of the work in advance with easy clean up!

 

Technique tip: Use two wooden spoons to keep from cutting all the way through the potato.

 

Swap options: You can use Parmesan, feta or jack cheese instead of cotija. Does your dinner party all love heat? Swap out the ancho chili powder for cayenne.

 

Preheat oven to 425ºF. Combine oil, ancho chili powder, cumin, garlic and 1 tablespoon of the lime zest. Set aside.

 

Set up two wooden kitchen spoons parallel to each other about two inches apart on a non-slip cutting board mat (or use a wet towel to anchor your board). Using a large kitchen knife, make slices in the potato about 1/4-inch apart, using the spoons to keep the knife from sliding all the way through the potato. Repeat with all the potatoes.

 

Brush the potatoes with oil (saving at least half of the oil), place on a foil-lined baking sheet or oven-safe pan and sprinkle with salt and pepper. (We like to use a large cast iron skillet with large, course rock salt on the bottom to nestle the potatoes in for a great presentation).

 

Place potatoes in the oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove and brush with more oil, using a paring knife to open up the slices and get the oil down into the crevices. Put the potatoes back in the oven and cook for another 30-45 minutes or until cooked through.

 

Remove potatoes from the oven and drizzle with crema, then top with cotija and cilantro. Squeeze lime juice over them and serve! Try to get the toppings into the cracks. And don’t forget the hot sauce or your street cred will be shot.

play video Nathan Congleton / TODAY
Southwestern

Hanger Steak Salad

with Grilled Corn

Servings: 4

Cook Time 35 Minutes

Prep Time:

For the steak

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons lime zest
  • 1/2 teaspoon ancho chili powder
  • Pinch cayenne pepper
  • 1 pound USDA prime hanger steak, trimmed

For the dressing

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons champagne vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 tablespoon honey
  • Kosher salt, for seasoning
  • Black pepper, for seasoning

For the salad

  • 2 ears sweet corn
  • 1 large pepper, sliced
  • 1 large onion sliced into rings
  • Olive oil
  • Kosher salt, for seasoning
  • Green leaf lettuce
  • 1 large avocado, sliced
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 3-4 tablespoons crumbled Cotija cheese

If you want the robust flavor of a great steak but don’t want all the heavy sides that usually accompany it, this Southwestern-inspired salad invites the garden to the party for a light, yet meaty, dish.

 

Swap option: If you hate cilantro and think it tastes like soap, swap it out for fresh parsley!

 

For the steak:

Set up a gas or charcoal grill for medium-high direct heat.

In a small bowl, mix all the spices together. Then rub the mixture liberally on hanger steak. Let sit and come to room temperature.

Place the steak on the grill and sear on all sides, approximately 1½-2 minutes a side (all four sides), steak should be at 130°F for medium rare. Remove and let rest 5 minutes before slicing.

 

For the dressing:
Place all salad dressing ingredients into blender or mixer then pour in olive oil slowly to incorporate all ingredients evenly. Set aside.

 

For the salad:

Rub corn, peppers and onion with olive oil and salt. When grill is ready, place veggies on the grill and char on all sides (being careful not to burn them, just grill marks). Remove and let cool.

 

Chop grilled veggies and place in a serving bowl with the lettuce, avocado and tomatoes. Slice steak against the grain and place on top of salad. Drizzle dressing over top. Sprinkle cheese over the salad and serve.

play video Tyler Essary / TODAY

Pork Carnitas Quesadillas

Serves 6 to 8

Cook Time 1 1/2 to 2 hours

Prep time: 20 minutes

Ingredients

  • one 4-pound pork shoulder
  • 1 strip orange zest
  • 1/4 cup chopped white onion
  • 5 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 12 ounces Mexican lager beer
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons Mexican oregano
  • 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 16 flour tortillas
  • 4 cups shredded Oaxacan or mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup diced white onion
  • 1/2 cup finely diced red jalapeño
  • 6 lime wedges
  • Tomatillo salsa
  • Crema

Nobody likes to be stuck cooking while guests are at the house. We love this recipe because you can make the pork the day before and even pre-assemble the quesadillas.

 

Technique tip: Cook the quesadilla over charcoal for an extra smoky flavor.

 

Swap option: You can swap in queso fresco for the cheese, sour cream for crema and use pico, or any other salsa that you love, in place of the tomatillo.

 

For the pork:
Preheat oven, grill or pellet smoker to 300 degrees.

 

Slice the pork into 2-inch chunks and trim off excess fat. Arrange in an ovenproof pan or Dutch oven and top with zest, onion, garlic and bay leaf. In a mixing bowl combine the beer, stock, salt, oregano, pepper and cumin. Pour the mixture over the pork and add water to cover the meat by one inch.

 

Place the pan on the stovetop on medium-high and bring to a simmer. Place the pan in the oven, grill or pellet smoker until it becomes tender and falls apart, 1½-2½ hours (add hot water if needed to keep covered).

Remove zest and bay leafs, pour off most of the braising liquid, and shred with a fork. Set aside.

 

For the quesadillas:
Lay out eight tortillas on a sheet tray. Place a 1/4 cup of cheese on each tortilla. Top them with the shredded pork, a few tablespoons of onions, chiles to taste, another 1/4 cup of cheese and then the second tortilla.

Heat a grill to medium direct heat. You can also use a grill pan or cast iron skillet.

Brush the grill with a little oil and place the quesadillas on the grill. Cook on both sides until the tortilla gets crisp and cheese is melted.

To serve:
Cut the quesadillas into wedges and serve with crema, salsa and limes on the side.