If you are like me, you have never heard of Timor Leste, or East Timor.  This small island nation located between Indonesia and Australia is a relatively new nation, gaining independence from Portugal in 1975 before being taken over by Indonesia and eventually becoming a sovreign state in 2002.  I stumbled across it when I was doing research on countries that are participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics and was somewhat intrigued since I had never even heard the name before.  You can read a bit more about Timor Leste here.

Timor Leste has one alpine skier competing in the games this year.  This is somewhat ironic in that the official language of Timor, Tetum, does not have a word for skiing.  Yohan Goncalves Goutt's first slalom run will take place in two days, on Thursday, Feb. 22nd.

Our menu for Timor Leste was Batar Da’an and rujak. The recipe for Batar Da'an came from the 196 Flavor blog and the Rujak recipe came from the International Cuisine site. The kids and I thought the Batar Da'an was tasty and while we weren't overly fond of the dressing, we enjoyed the combination of flavors in the rujak(fruit salad). Chip didn't like either one. I will say that while it was initially filling, I was hungry again within an hour.

Batar Da'an

INGREDIENTS


1 lb fresh or frozen corn
½ lb dried mung beans
2 lb squash butternut squash, peeled and diced
4 cups water
2 onions, diced
8 garlic cloves, minced
3 TBSP olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

DIRECTIONS

Prior to cooking, soak the mung beans in water for at least 10 hours, overnight is best.

Drain the mung beans, then boil them for 10 to 15 minutes in a large amount of water.
Meanwhile, sauté onion and garlic in olive oil over medium heat for 6-8 minutes in a dutch oven or large pot. Add water, squash, beans and corn to the onion and garlic and increase heat to high. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally, until squash is tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Rujak

INGREDIENTS

1 orange sliced
1 mango, diced
2 cups watermelon diced
2 bananas, sliced
1 pear, diced
1 cup grapes
Whipped cream
½ cup toasted nuts

For the dressing: 2 green chillis (dice into very small pieces) 1 TBSP brown sugar 2 TBSP lemon or lime juice 2 TBSP fish sauce

DIRECTIONS

Mix all the fruit ingredients together.  Set aside.  Mix up the dressing and pour over the top. Add whipped cream and nuts.
There are 10 Israeli athletes competing in the PyeongChang Olympics.  Seven figure skaters, 1 short track speed skater, 1 alpine skier, and one skeleton racer.  As I type this up, I am watching an amazing performance by one of the Israeli male figure skaters and the next performer is also from Israel. 

Our menu for today consisted of shwarma, Israeli salad, and Elal Shani's famous cauliflower.  Everything was fairly quick and easy to prepare, which worked well for me after a full day of work and volunteering.  Dinner got a thumbs up from almost all of us!  I really liked the cauliflower and will prepare it that way again to break up the flavorless monotony of steamed vegetables. 






I'm going to start with the recipe for the schwarma, since it the chicken should marinate overnight.  The recipe for the schwarma is from The Joy of Kosher.  The youtube video on how to make Elal Shani's famous cauliflower was sent to me by my friend Cheryl.  The Israeli salad recipe comes from the Melanie Cooks blog.  The kids said that the salad and schwarma tasted just like the stuff we've gotten at the Mediterranean grill nearby - I think that means we did it right!


Schwarma

Ingredients

1 pound chicken breast
1/3 cup canola oil
1 TBSP turmeric
1 TBSP ground coriander
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cloves
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
pitas

Directions

Slice chicken into thin strips. Combine the oil and spices and mix into chicken. Marinate the chicken overnight in the fridge to intensify the flavor. Heat a frying pan on medium/high heat and place spiced chicken strips in pan. Cook in pan for about sixteen minutes - about eight minutes per side. Make sure chicken gets a nice crunchy exterior. Remove from pan and leave as is or chop chicken into even smaller pieces. Serve with chopped fresh vegetables (see Israeli salad recipe below) in a pita.

Elal Shani's Famous Cauliflower

View the video preparation on youtube.

Ingredients

Head of Cauliflower
Salt
Water
Olive Oil
Green Onion
Tahini Sauce 

Directions

Place the entire head of cauliflower into a large stock pot with a lid.  Add just enough salt water to cover the bottom of the pot about 1/4 inch.  Steam the cauliflower over medium high heat for 10-15 minutes.  Remove cauliflower from the pot and allow to cool completely.  Preheat oven to 430 degrees Fahrenheit.  Once cooled, spread a thin coat of olive oil over the cauliflower and salt generously.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Top will brown and crisp.  Slice and serve with tahini sauce and green onion.







Israeli Salad

Ingredients

3 medium tomatoes
3 mini cucumbers 1 medium onion
½ bunch parsley
2 TBSP olive oil
1 TBSP lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Dice the tomatoes, cucumbers and onion into small pieces, put in large bowl and mix well. Put parsley in a food processor and pulse several times, until minced, then add to vegetable bowl and stir until combined.  Put olive oil and lemon juice in a cup and whisk with a fork until combined. Pour over the salad and toss until combined.  Salt and pepper to taste and mix well.




Just to let you know, we are taking the next several days off from Olympic cooking due to one of our children being on a school trip.  We will resume next Tuesday!
Ecuador is making its Winter Olympic debut featuring Cross Country Skier Klaus Jungbluth Rodriguez. The 15km freestyle race takes place on Friday, the 16th.  While he isn't expected to medal, what an accomplishment to have been the first athlete in his country to compete in the Winter Olympics!

Our foray into Ecuadorian food was to try mote pillo and ensalada mixta.  Both recipes were quick and easy to make.  I had high hopes for the mote pillo since it is basically scrambled eggs, but only one member of the family - the one who doesn't like much flavor - enjoyed it.  The rest of us are apparently too married to the way we usually make scrambled eggs.  The ensalada mixta was great - but it's hard to go wrong with a salad.  That said, give mote pillo a try and let us know what you think!  



Both recipes below are exactly from their original source.  For the Mote Pillo, that source is the Latin Kitchen website and for the ensalada mixta, the source is Laylita's Recipes blog.


Mote Pillo

INGREDIENTS

1 tablespoon Olive Oil
3/4 cup finely chopped red onion
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground achiote (annatto) powder
1 pound cooked hominy
4 large eggs, lightly beaten
1/3 cup skim milk
4 ounces crumbled queso fresco plus extra for serving
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
ground cumin, to taste
chopped fresh cilantro

DIRECTIONS

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, garlic, and annatto powder. Sautee until the onions turn translucent.

Add the cooked hominy and stir to incorporate all the ingredients. Season with salt, ground pepper and ground cumin to taste.

Add the eggs and the milk, and stir to cook the eggs.

Taste for additional seasoning. Remove from the heat.


Add the queso fresco and stir to incorporate and melt the cheese. Serve warm with chopped cilantro and additional queso fresco.



Ensalada Mixta

Ingredients

  1 head of lettuce, washed and leaves cut or torn into large pieces
  2 tomatoes, sliced or quartered
  ½ red onion, thinly sliced
  1 avocado, sliced or diced
  1 TBSP finely chopped cilantro
  Juice of 2 limes
  2 TBSP olive oil
  Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

  To make the dressing whisk the chopped cilantro, lime juice,
  olive oil, salt and pepper together.
  
  Combine the lettuce, tomatoes, onions and avocado in a large bowl.
  
  Toss the salad with the dressing and serve.
Scotland.  Although they compete as part of the Great Britain team, there are quite a few Scots participating in the 2018 Olympic Games.  You can read about all of them in this article from the Scotsman.

Today's story is all about how difficult it is to get certain ingredients for these multicultural recipes here in the US.  I determined fairly early on that we were going to make Cullen Skink.  I didn't think  it was going to be a problem to find everything.  Boy was I wrong!  It was next to impossible to find smoked haddock.  I called about 8 groceries within a 20 mile radius who have specialty seafood departments.  I called the seafood store in the town next to us.  I looked online.  Well, the only place i could order Finnan Haddie (brand name for most smoked haddock) would have cost me $21 in shipping fees above the $20-40 cost.  So as much as I try to make these recipes as authentic as I can, I also don't have $40-60 to drop on each country.  Thus smoked haddock was out.  After some further research and discovering that Cullen is the name of the fishing town on the Moray Firth where the recipe originated and skink means beef soup (right?!) I decided to attempt the skink with smoked whitefish instead of smoked haddock.  I know the flavor won't be exactly the same, but hopefully we get a taste of Scottish cuisine.


I purchased the only smoked whitefish I could find and it came fully scaled with an eye.  This is not really my thing, so I passed the duty of scaling and filleting to my husband.  One funny side note though - isn't this an interesting case of truth in packaging...


Our menu for today:  Cullen Skink, bannock, spinach, and cranachan for dessert.



Overall, the Cullen skink was pretty good.  It was a good combination of flavors, without being overwhelmingly fishy.  I would make it again, but it won't make it into our regular rotation.  The bannock was good in small chunks with some butter.  My biggest disappointment was the cranachan.  The adult version was just too dry/bitter for my taste.  The kids version was sweeter and more palatable, in my opinion.

The recipes below reflect the changes I made and translated from metric to standard measurements.  For the original recipes, please click on the recipe link in the title of each recipe or on the individual links to the blogs listed below.

In the Cullen skink recipe, which originally come from the BBC Good Food blog, I substituted the smoked whitefish for smoked haddock and increased the amounts of potatoes, milk, water and fish used.  For the bannock, the main recipe from the Curious Cuisiniere I used has a detailed history of Scottish bannock and details on how to make it over the campfire.  I found a few other recipes that explained how to make it with oats and milk, rather than wheat flour and powdered milk so I altered that to what you will read below. Again, follow the link for the original recipe.  And lastly, the Cranachan was made following the very detailed directions with pictures from Christina's Cucina.  I read somewhere to change out the Scotch whiskey for orange juice to make a more child-friendly version, so I halved everything to create an adult and child version.

Cullen Skink (with smoked whitefish)

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon butter
1 medium onion
3 medium potatoes, peeled and cut small cubes
3 cups water
12 oz smoked whitefish
2 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
2 TBSP finely chopped chives

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat, then add onion and fry gently until transparent. Cook for about 5 minutes but do not allow to brown.  Add potatoes and water and bring to boil. Simmer for 10-15 minutes until potatoes are tender.

Meanwhile in another pan, cover the haddock with the milk and cook gently for about five minutes until just tender. Remove from the milk and, when cool enough to touch, flake gently into large pieces, removing bones. 

Add milk and flaked fish to saucepan containing potatoes and other ingredients and cook for another 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with chopped chives.


Scottish Bannock

Ingredients

1 ½ c unbleached all-purpose flour
1 ½ c ground old fashioned oatmeal or oatmeal flour
2 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp butter
1 - 1 ½ c milk

In a medium bowl, mix the flours, baking powder, and salt. Add the butter and cut into the dry ingredients until well mixed.





Add the milk gradually, mixing until the batter has a thick dough consistency.  You may not need to use the full amount of milk.
 
Grease a 9-inch skillet and warm over medium heat. Place the batter into the warm skillet and press it to roughly 1 inch thick. 





Cook the bread for 10-15 min. Once the bottom is a dark golden and the top of the batter is starting to dry out, flip the loaf. Our bread split into smaller chunks when I tried to flip it, so we flipped all the little pieces.  Bake the loaf on the second side for about 10 minutes. 




Let the bread cool for 5-10 minutes before serving. 


Since I followed the Cranachan recipe almost exactly (remember I split everything in half and substituted orange juice for the Scotch whiskey for this half), I will just put the link to Christine's very detailed directions below.

Cranachan



Ghana.  Not a country you might think of when you think of the Winter Olympics.  In fact, Ghana has one athlete competing in the skeleton event and his name is Akwasi Frimpong.  You can read more about his journey to the PyeongChang Games here and watch him compete on Thursday the 15th.  It's also worth mentioning that a Ghanian born athlete, Maame Biney, became the first African American woman to qualify for the US Olympic team in speedskating.  You can watch her compete tomorrow (Feb 13) in the short track event.

For the dinner menu, I prepared Chicken Chinchinga, yam balls, and Ghanian vegetable curry.  Full disclosure:  I modified the recipes slightly, mostly because I didn't need to make as much as it wanted me to make.  What follows below is my modified versions.  For the original recipes, please click on the name of the recipe.   For the chicken recipe, it called for grilling the kebabs with onion and green pepper.  Since we had a very similar kebab two days ago, I decided to forgo the grilled veggies and just made chicken kebabs.  Following my forgetful pattern, I forgot to add the suya powder to the chicken before my husband began grilling, so he spritzed the 1/2 cooked chicken with water and added it at that point.  I also had a weird mishap (read deep frying oil volcano) with the yam balls which resulted in me having to throw a batch away.


The Verdict:  The chicken was very tasty!  I would definitely make it again.  The yam balls were also surprisingly good (and I do not like yams usually).  I am not a curry fan, but this one was a decent blend of flavor.  My oldest really liked the curry but wasn't a fan of the yam balls.  The younger two liked the chicken, didn't care for the curry, and thought the yam balls were just okay.

The recipes for Chicken Chinchinga and the yam balls came from the Waakye Leaf food blog.  The recipe for the Ghanian vegetable curry came from Recipes Wiki.

Chicken Chinchinga

Ingredients
3 chicken breasts, cut into cubes
2 TBSP olive oil
2 large cloves of garlic
2 TBSP grated ginger
1 small onion
1 chicken bullion cube

Suya spice
2 TBSP roasted peanut powder (I used my food processor and ground dry roasted peanuts into a powder)
1 TBSP chili powder
1 TBSP paprika
1 TBSP of garlic salt
1 TBSP  Onion powder
1 Maggi cubes
Salt to taste

Directions 


Blend the ginger, garlic, onion, stock cube and Maggi seasoning with the oil to form a smooth paste.  Put the chicken in the marinate, and refrigerate for at least an hour.  Remove from fridge and skewer the seasoned chicken pieces on kebab sticks.  

Combine all the ingredients for the suya seasoning and mix together.  Sprinkle the skewered chicken with the suya seasoning and grill until chicken is fully cooked, rotating during cooking to brown all sides evenly then serve.  

Yam Balls


1 medium Yam
7 TBSP butter
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp paprika
1 egg yolk (keep the egg white)
1 egg (add the remaining egg white and whisk into a mixture)
Pinch of ground white pepper
Pinch salt
1-2 cups Panko breadcrumbs

Directions

Peel and cut the yam into one inch cubes.  Place them in a pot of water and boil until the yam pieces are soft.  It took maybe 8-10 minutes.  Drain the water from the pan, add the butter, egg yolk, garlic powder, white pepper, paprika, and salt.  Mash all the ingredients together while the yam is still warm, then put the mixture in the fridge until it cools.

While it is cooling, place the leftover egg white and the 2nd egg in a bowl and whisk until fully blended.  Put breadcrumbs in a separate bowl.

Once the yam mixture has cooled, roll into small balls, dip into the egg mixture and dredge through the breadcrumbs, making sure each is coated evenly.

Heat oil in a wok or large saucepan. Carefully drop a few of the balls into the hot oil with a wooden spatula and cook them until they rise to the top and are golden brown and crisp. This usually takes about 3 minutes if your oil is the correct temperature.  Once golden brown, remove the yam balls and allow them to drain on paper towel, then place them in a warm oven until ready to serve.  Repeat this process until all balls are cooked.

Ghanian Vegetable Curry

Ingredients
1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
1 medium eggplant, cubed
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 red bell pepper, chopped
3 carrots, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
6 TBSP olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp ground tumeric
2 tsp curry powder
1 tsp cinnamon
3/4 TBSP salt
3/4 TBSP cayenne pepper
1 15 oz can chick peas, drained 
1/3 cup sliced almonds
1 zucchini, sliced
2 TBSP raisins
1 cup of orange juice
10 oz fresh spinach leaves

Directions 

Heat 3 TBSP of oil over medium heat in a Dutch oven.  Once heated, add sweet potato, eggplant, peppers, carrots, and onion and saute for 5 minutes.

Heat 3 TBSP of oil in a medium sauce pan over medium heat.  Add garlic, tumeric, curry powder, cinnamon, salt and pepper and saute for 3 minutes.

Pour garlic and spice mixture over the vegetables in the Dutch oven.  Add the chick peas, almonds, zucchini, raisins, and orange juice.  Cover and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add spinach to the pot and cook about 5 more minutes, until spinach has fully wilted.  Serve warm!

Since the Olympics are being held in Pyeongchang, South Korea this year, our focus for the second night of Olympic cooking was Korea.  A friend of mine gave me some suggestions and referred me to two websites to find recipes.  I opted to go with one of her suggestions, Bibimbap.  We are fortunate enough to live near an H-Mart which is where we were able to find a few of the ingredients:  the gosari and the Korean cucumber (K-Cuke).

I have to say that if I was regularly cooking Bibimbap, I would need a much larger kitchen, several more bowls, and a few sous chefs!  I had all of my family helping chop, mix, and saute.  




It was good family time!  We made a few amendments to the recipe, shredding the carrots in the food processor instead of cutting them in matchsticks; and since we were all scrolling through the recipe on my ipad, I missed adding the egg during the final step.  Oh well.  We had plenty of protein.  




Overall, we all enjoyed the meal.  Four of the five of us had sirloin, while one opted for the tofu protein option instead.  Three of us put the Bibimbap sauce on the top of our food, while the younger two dipped pieces in a separate bowl of sauce.  We went with slightly less gochujang (red chili pepper paste) than the recipe called for and it was spicy enough for me! The only part that most of us didn't fully enjoy was the gosari, which had a unique texture.  It wasn't bad, just different.  

If you chose to make Bibimbop, I would highly recommend that you click through the link to the Korean Bapsang blog for detailed directions and photos of each step.  The photos and tips were very helpful!  This recipe made plenty for our family of 5.
The Olympics have rolled around again.  I was kind of hoping to take the year off, but the kids have grown up with us cooking around the world during the Olympic games over the last 10 years and the older two practically begged me to continue.  It's getting tougher to pick out recipes.  We have more dietary restrictions than previous years with one child following a diabetic meal plan, not eating red meat, and eating chicken under duress, but after hours of researching recipes and traditional foods, I think we are set.

So, night one of Olympic cooking followed our tradition of starting the Olympics with the location where the games began - Greece.  Tonight's menu was chicken souvlaki and 

yellow split pea puree (fava).  






I had high hopes for tonight.  The marinade for the chicken smelled wonderful and I thought that I would really like the fava based on the ingredients.  Instead, the chicken was just okay and the fava was very bland.  I am pretty sure that I messed up the fava a bit because I added too many peas, so I may make it again at a later point to see if that was the problem.  I served the fava with some raw veggies.  Anyway, the kids ate everything except the mushrooms without complaint, so that's a positive.  

Both the recipe for the chicken souvlaki and the fava came directly from the Girl Cooks World blog. I've copied them both here while adding my own comments into the directions.  For the original recipes, please follow the links.


Chicken Souvlaki

Ingredients:

 1/2 cup olive oil
 1/4 cup lemon juice
 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
 4 cloves of minced garlic
 1 tsp dried oregano
 3 chicken breasts, cut into chunks
 2 green peppers, cut into large chunks
 1 red onion, cut into large chunks
 8 ounces fresh button mushrooms
 skewers (metal or wooden, whichever you prefer)

Directions:

Combine the olive oil, lemon juice, red wine vinegar, minced garlic and oregano in a large bowl and stir to combine. I use a large Tupperware container.  Salt and pepper to taste. Add chicken to marinade and refrigerate for 3-4 hours. If you are using wooden skewers, soak them in water while the chicken is marinating.
After marinating, alternate the chicken with the sliced peppers, onions and mushrooms on the skewers.  I tend to like my mushrooms a bit less done when grilled so I put all the mushrooms on a separate skewer. Brush with the leftover marinade and grill.  The recipe said approximately 5 minutes per side, but we found it took a bit longer than that.  You want to grill until the chicken is done and the veggies are slightly charred.   Once done, serve immediately.


Greek Fava

Ingredients:

1-1/4 cups dried yellow split peas
3 shallots, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup plus 1 TBSP olive oil, divided
2 TBSP lemon juice
2 TBSP chopped green onions
1/2 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper

Directions:

Rinse the split peas and put in a large saucepan and over with several inches of cold water. Bring to a boil on the stove top, and then reduce heat and simmer, skimming if necessary, until the peas are very soft.  This took about 40 minutes for us, so plan accordingly.
While the peas are cooking, heat a TBSP of olive oil in a frying pan over medium heat and saute the shallots and garlic until lightly browned. Remove from heat.
Drain the cooked peas, reserving the cooking liquid if you desire. Transfer the peas to a food processor, add the shallots, garlic, 1/4 cup olive oil, and lemon juice and process until smooth. If the mixture is too thick for your taste, add a little of the reserved bean liquid.
Add the green onions and thyme and season with salt and pepper to taste, stirring by hand. Transfer to a bowl and top with oregano and an extra drizzle of olive oil, if desired.
Well, it's the end of our Olympic cooking experience for 2016 today.  It's been a fun 10 days, but boy has it been busy.  I saved one of the easiest recipes for today, knowing that it was going to be a hectic day with little time to cook or eat.  Thankfully I ended up with a little more time than I expected, so Bug baked us a loaf of crusty bread to enjoy with dinner. 

Today was Portugal day.  Portugal has 94 athletes at the Rio Games and has one bronze medal in Judo thus far.  Our menu was a Portuguese Kale and Chourico soup with a crispy bread.



The Verdict:
The soup was quick and easy, tasty and delicious.  The chourico sausage gives the soup a full flavor and the kale gives it great texture. 




Portuguese Chourico and Kale Soup (Original recipe from Food Network)

Ingredients:
2 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
3 medium white waxy potatoes, like yukon golds, peeled and diced
2 medium onions, chopped
4 to 6 cloves garlic, chopped
2 bay leaves, fresh or dried
1 pound kale, coarsely chopped
Coarse salt and pepper
15 oz of chick peas, drained and rinsed
1 can diced tomatoes
1 pound diced chourico, casing removed
1 quart chicken broth
Warm, crusty bread


Heat oil in a deep pot over medium high heat. Add potatoes and onions, cover and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.



Add garlic, bay leaves, and kale to the pot. Cover pot and wilt greens 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.



Add beans, tomatoes, chourico, and broth to the pot and bring soup to a full boil. Reduce heat back to medium and cook 5 to 10 minutes longer or until potatoes are tender. (Since the sausage was raw, I let it simmer for about 40 minutes and it was just about perfect.  I also think I forgot to add the tomatoes...  hmmm).



Serve soup with hunks of crusty bread and butter.  We made this bread (not a Portuguese bread, just a quick one!)


Today's dinner inspiration was Peru.  Peru is located in South America and has 29 athletes participating in the 2016 Olympics.  When I was looking for recipes, a friend of mine sent me some Peruvian dishes, including lomo saltado.  When I saw a recipe that contained fries, I knew it was something that Ebabe would at least try without complaint.  So our dinner tonight was Peruvian Lomo Saltado with frozen limonada to drink.



The Verdict:
Tonight was a hit!  Great flavor in the meat and veggies - not too too spicy, but with a bit of a kick.  I served the kids fries without the sauce since I knew that they wouldn't want them mixed in.  The limonada was gone in no time and we will be making it again as an after school refreshment next week!





Peruvian Lomo Saltado (recipe a blend of those found on Food.com and AllRecipes)

1 (16 ounce) package frozen steak fries
1 1/2 lb beef tri-tip, sliced into 1/8 to 1/4 inch thick pieces
1 12 TBSP crushed garlic
12 tsp salt
2 tsp ground coriander
1 12 tsp ground black pepper
2 TBSP rice vinegar
2 TBSP soy sauce
2 TBSP canola oil
1 red onion, cut into strips
15 oz can diced tomatoes
1 jalapeno pepper, cut into thin strips
14 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
12-1 teaspoon paprika
canola oil, for frying

Instructions:
Make a paste by combining the garlic & salt. Whisk together the garlic paste, rice vinegar, soy sauce, canola oil, cumin, & ground black pepper.

Place the steak in one bowl & the onions in another. Divide the marinade between the 2 bowls & let set in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

Prepare the bag of French fries according to package directions, sprinkling them lightly with paprika before putting in the oven.
 
While the French fries are cooking, heat the oil in a wok over medium-high heat.  Once the oil is hot add the steak with marinade & cook until brown. Add the drained tomatoes & simmer for a few minutes.

Next add the jalapeño, cilantro, & onions with marinade to the wok, slowly stirring until well blended. Simmer for 5 more minutes.
 
Once fries are completely cooked, add to the other ingredients in the wok until coated with sauce. Then serve.



Peruvian Limonada Frozen (original recipe About.com)

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 8-10 small key limes
  • 6 cups of crushed iced

Zap the limes in the microwave for 10-15 seconds.  You want them to be slightly warm, not hot.  Once they are warm to the touch, put them on the counter, press down and roll them around.  Cut them in half and squeeze them over a measuring cup.  You need 1/2 cup of key lime juice. 
Strain out any seeds or pulp (if you don't like pulp).
Make a simple syrup by bringing the water and sugar to a boil, stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Remove it from heat and allow to cool.  In a blender, mix the simple syrup, lime juice, and ice. Blend until just slushy. Serve immediately. 


If you are preparing the limonada to serve with the saltado dinner above, start the simple syrup when you put the fries in the oven.  That will give it ample time to cool before you need to mix it, just as you plate your saltado.