We had a potluck, and I contributed taco fixings. I made a southwestern style brisket in my slow cooker. To accompany this, corn tortillas, slaw, roasted poblanos, salsa de chile árbol, pickled onions, pickled jalapeños, and refried black beans. Recipes for the salsa, pickled onions, and beans are below. I also am including a delicious nopales (cactus) salad recipe my friend brought, since I gave her the recipe.
Salsa de Chile Árbol (1 1/2 cups):
- 10 chiles árbol
- 1 1/2 cups tomatillos
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tsp salt, or to taste
- 3 garlic cloves
Boil the tomatillos until soft and dull green, then drain. Toast the chiles on a dry cast iron skillet, until changing color but not burnt. Blend the tomatillos, chiles, water, salt, and garlic until smooth, but not too much so.
Pickled Onions (about 2 cups):
- 1 large red onion, thinly sliced
- 10 peppercorns, crushed
- 4 allspice, crushed
- 1 tbsp Mexican oregano, crumbled
- 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 3/4 cup cider vinegar
- salt to taste
Mix all ingredients, place in a clean jar. Let sit in fridge at least 24 hours before serving.
Refried Black Beans (serves 4-6):
- 1 recipe frijoles de olla, made with 1/2 lb beans, liquid reserved
- 2 tbsp onion, minced
- 3-6 tbsp oil
Heat the oil, add the onion and cook until translucent. Add beans with their liquid a little at a time, mashing and scraping the bottom while stirring. When the mixture seems dry, add more beans. Continue this way until the mixture is dry and sizzling around the edges.
Nopales Salad (serves 6):
To cook nopales:
- 2 tbsp oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 lb prepared nopales in small cubes
- 1 green onion, finely chopped
- 2 chiles jalapeño, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 sprigs epazote, chopped, optional
Heat the oil and fry the garlic for a few seconds. Add remaining ingredients, except epazote. Cover and cook over low heat, stirring time to time, until the nopales are almost tender. Remove the lid and cook at slightly higher heat until the liquid dries, about 20 minutes. Stir in epazote 3 minutes before the end of cooking.
- 2 cups cooked nopales (above)
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 tsp lime juice or mild vinegar
- 1/2 tsp Mexican oregano
- 3 tbsp chopped white onion
- salt to taste
- 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
- strips of chiles en escabeche (optional)
- 4 oz crumbled queso fresco or feta
- 1 small red onion, sliced
- 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
Mix all ingredients except chiles in escabeche, cheese, and sliced onion and tomato. Arrange these on top.