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Celebrating La Virgen de Guadalupe with Sopapillas, Green Chile Stew and Angie!
Submitted by Pam on Wed, 12/09/2009 - 07:28
1 1/2 cups warm water - about 115 degrees
My favorite feast on December 12th, the celebration of La Virgen de Guadalupe, is a big bowl of Green Chile Stew and a basket full of pipping hot Sopapillas. I am sharing my recipes for both.
We start with Sopapillas.
The Sopapilla recipe I am sharing here is not for those flat, sugar and cinnamon covered impostors served at Mexican restaurants. This recipe is for the real McCoy! Served only in New Mexico! Perfect little pillows served hot right after cooking with a side of honey!
While I was growing up in Santa Fe, my favorite part of any meal at a Mexican restaurant was watching the waitress appear at table side with that basket of sublime goodness.
I am sharing the recipe I have used for years because it is made with yeast - the very best way to make Sopapillas. They can be made with baking powder, but I don't recommend it for two very good reasons: they just aren't as good as they are made with yeast, and if you are going to go to the effort to make them, the 30 minutes extra needed for the yeast to rise is no big deal. It takes almost that long to bring the oil up to temperature!
1 1/2 cups warm water - about 115 degrees
2 1/2 teaspoons SAF instant yeast
1 tablespoon sugar
3 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons shortening (lard is traditional but I don't use it)
Canola oil for frying
Place the water, sugar and yeast into a small bowl, stir to mix and let sit about 10 minutes until the yeast bubbles up.
In the meantime, mix the flour and salt together very well. Add the shortening and mix it in - I find for this little bit of flour, your fingers work best for mixing.
Add the yeast mixture and stir. Add flour if you need to to get a nice soft dough. It should not be too sticky.
Turn the dough out onto your work surface and knead about 10 to 15 times until it is smooth and elastic.
Like this! Now - cover with a towel and leave it for about half an hour.
Start heating your oil. You will need a deep sauce pan or skillet. Pour in about 1 1/2" oil. Heat to about 350 degrees. You can go a little higher, but not lower.
Divide the dough in half and roll out to about 1/4" thick. Cut into pieces. Perfection isn't necessary!
Drop a couple pieces of dough into the hot oil. The dough will sink and bubble like crazy!
Then the dough rises to the surface, still bubbling! Now watch! This is so cool!
They turn into pillows!
Once they are golden on the bottom, turn them over and fry a minute or so until they are golden and remove with a slotted spoon. Drain on paper towels and place in a warm oven until you have finished frying the whole batch.
Serve warm with honey!
1. This recipe makes a big batch - about 20 to 24. Sopapillas do NOT keep well so you might as well toss what you don't eat. Even I can't eat this many!
2. I usually halve the recipe, but when I do, I almost always need to add more than 1 1/2 cup flour - usually closer to 1 3/4 to 1 7/8 cups.
CHILE VERDE CON CARNE (GREEN CHILE WITH BEEF)
Simple ingredients but amazing flavor!
2 lbs. chuck cut into cubes no bigger than 1 inch. I make mine about 3/4"
16 to 20 roasted green chile ( peeled and seeds removed) OR 1 large 24 to 26 oz can of whole green chile cut into large pieces.
14 to 16 oz can diced tomatoes with juice
1 1/4 cup water
1 cup diced onion
1 - 2 garlic cloves diced very fine
1 teaspoon salt
Brown the chuck in two batches using just a little oil. When the meat is browned, add all the remaining ingredients and simmer gently for about 2 to 2 1/2 hours until the meat is very tender. You can add a little more water during cooking if necessary but a very slow simmer should make the addition of more water unnecessary.
As you can see, there is no "broth", just a lovely stew of beef, chile and tomato!
I love it just as it is! But Chile Verde Con Carne makes an excellent filling for burritos.
I hope some of you will be joining me on December 12th with a bowl of Green Chile Stew and a basket full of golden Sopapillas!
Or treat yourself to this perfect New Mexican comfort food during the dark, cold days ahead in January - maybe for Dia de Reyes.
Angie - At Home in Mexico - posted about La Virgen de Guadalupe last year. Do not miss visiting her post because she takes you on a delightful journey with her son as he joins his school mates on their annual pilgrimage to the Santuario de Guadalupe. Just look at these costumes the children wear for this occasion.
Poinsettias grow wild in Mexico and December is their natural blooming season in that country. I love this imageAngie shares of the Poinsettias blooming in the gardens where she joined other teachers for Retiro Aviento (Advent retreat).
Angie will be sharing more with us at the Feast of Guadalupe and throughout the Mexican holiday season which lasts until Dia de Magos on January 6th. I will be linking to her site throughout that time, but to be sure you don't miss anyuthing, you might want to keep tabs on her celebrations in your reader!
You might also wish to visit my post from last year with pictures of my own little collection of La Virgen.
I guess this is as good a time as any to mention that although I am not Mexican or Catholic, I take great joy in participating in the holiday celebrations of Mexico in my own way. I don't think I could state it any better than I did last year.
"Latinos are now the largest ethnic culture living in the United States. I have always found the Mexican people to be very kind, generous and loving. I hope you will make a craft or prepare a special meal or simply spend a little time on the internet getting to know more about the gifts the people of Mexico have brought to the world that enrich all of us."