Thursday, March 25, 2010

Pleased to meat you....

On this day in history in 1966 the Beatles posed with mutilated dolls & butchered meat for the cover of the "Yesterday & Today." I can't think of a better way to celebrate this than by talking about MEAT!

I grew up in the 70's and as a result I ate my share of ground beef. Regular staples in our household included; macaroni and meat, chili (or as I knew it-taco soup), hamburgers wrapped in bacon, tacos seasoned with McCormick taco seasoning, and a wide variety of other delicious recipes cut from the pages of ladies magazines. My mother provided very healthy and balanced diet for us growing up...healthy cereals , whole wheat bread, yogurt, fruits and veggies... but in the 1970's ground beef was the King for feeding a hungry family... and my early diet was shaped by this fact. So in 1988 when I turned to a life a vegetarianism I expected my family to be a little shocked. To my surprise they took it really well. In fact my mother became a vegetarian too. But this is not about my years as a vegetarian... and later a pescetarian. This is about carne and my transition back to being a carnivore.

In February of 2002 I was living in Mexico. I had been living there for more than 6 months already and I had done so as a vegetarian. Sure I had broken down once and dined on Rotisserie chicken... but overall I didn't find it that hard to maintain the diet I had been living by for 15 years. One day in that fateful February my husband proposed an experiment... A semana de carne... a week of meat. During this week we would sample a new meat dish from Mexico everyday and see where it took us. We did not start out slowly. Our first day we dined on barbacoa de borrego (BBQed sheep)... and during the week we sampled Chorizo, bistek, tacos de cabeza, tacos de pastor, and pica dillo. I expected to have digestive woes based on a belief that so many years as a vegetarian would strip my body of the enzymes needed to digest meat... but either this theory is a myth or the small amount of fish I consumed over the years kept my enzymes in check. I didn't end the week untouched by the experience, however... I was transformed. I became an unrepentant meat eater again... and I haven't looked back.

Tacos Bistek

skirt steak or bistek sliced thin
corn tortilla
pico de gallo
To make authentic Mexican style tacos salt beef or marinate it in a little soy sauce or salsa Inglesa (Worcestershire) . Cook it on the grill until fully cooked. The trick is to cut the beef into very small pieces to insure a tender texture. Place the cut meat on corn tortillas and serve with a variety of salsas, limes, grilled onions and pico de gallo.

Salsa Chile Guajillo

This simple recipe salsa does wonderful things for grilled meats or tacos. If
you have any left over, it will last in the refrigerator for several days. We
had friends visiting from Denmark over spring break and I made this salsa along with pico de gallo and my standard salsa to go with Mexican style tacos... It was wonderful!

12 chiles guajillos, seeds and veins removed
1 large tomato, roasted and peeled (I was out of tomatoes so I used about 1/2 c
- 1 cup of tomatoe sauce)
1 clove garlic (I used 3)
2 teaspoons of salt
1/4 cup water (It turned out a bit thick so I added about a 1/4 c more to thin
it out)

Directions for Salsa Chile Guajillo
On a comal or iron skillet, toast the chiles well, about 2 minutes. Rinse but do
not soak.

In a blender, puree the chiles withthe tomato, garlic, salt and water.

1 comment:

  1. twice in my life i have tried to 'go vegetarian' but have failed....the latest was when my first child was born, 13 years ago, as i had hoped never feeding her meat, she would not miss it. all that went out the door when she was at my mother-in-law's house [i was not there] and she was given a 'finger of ham' to gnaw on! there went that experiment out the door. at 3 years she asked me if you had to kill the chicken to make chicken strips - i said yes. she loved chicken and shrimp and of course ham which she ate up until two years ago. she first quit eating mammals and then eventually all animals. she admits she like the 'taste' but never the idea of eating, as she calls it, 'dead things'. i have yet to be able to resist it - i love to eat meat!



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