"I am an idealistic, naive, passionate, truth-seeking, spiritually motivated artist, unschooled in the science of law and finance." --Wesley Snipes

Tuesday, February 03, 2004

Baylesses on Chile/Chili

Rick Bayless, semi-celebrity chef and self-appointed Mexican cooking authority, has a program on PBS in which he and, sometimes, his daughter, cook "classic" Mexican dishes. The schtick is this: he goes to Mexico, researches a recipe and tastes it in several local incarnations, and then develops a sort of "mainline" recipe that is meant to approximate as closely as possible what the average Mexican would consider an "authentic" version of that dish.

Today's episode, serendipitously enough, focused on red chile, or chile colorado! The two versions he made, though, were both that extreme variations on the classic recipe he includes in his cookbooks.

Rick made his with dark toasted chile puree thinned with a bit of broth and roasted garlic. He added this sauce to browned lamb shoulder and simmered with some epazote (his daughter turned up her nose at this addition) and sliced mushrooms.

Lanie (Rick's daughter) used ground beef (not uncommon in the household of my youth), fresh garlic, and (this is the kicker) added tomatoes AND pinto beans, for a more American-style chili. Note the spelling change: when you add beans and tomatoes, I think, it goes from being "chile" to "chili."

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