Today is National Corn Chips Day. Corn chips and Spicy Bean Dip are the perfect way to start a delicious, New Mexican Inspired supper, don’t you think? Put out the chips and dip to accompany the Margaritas to get our fiesta started.
Corn Chips and Tortilla Chips are often interchangeable, but they are not the same thing. Both are made with corn. However; how the corn is transformed into the chip are not the same. Tortilla corn is soaked in a lime-water solution that breaks down the hulls. This process creates a crisper, milder chip. The corn chip is thicker, sturdier and has a stronger corn flavor. When thinking corn chips, just think Fritos.
Refried Bean Dip with Corn Chips
2 (16 oz) cans Whole Pinto Beans
1-1/2 teaspoons New Mexican Red Chili Powder
1 teaspoon ground Cumin
Pinch Cayenne Pepper
Frito Corn Chips for serving
Drain whole beans, place in a bowl. Season beans well. With a ricer, mash beans.
Place in a skillet with a little lard or bacon drippings. Gently warm over medium heat, mashing beans smooth as needed.
Transfer beans to a ramekin or serving dish. Place in the center of a platter, surround dip with scoop corn chips.
Serve with margaritas and enjoy!
Now that the National Day is out of the way, let’s get down to what I’m truly excited about. Ever since our trip to New Mexico over the summer, I simply cannot get enough of those New Mexican flavors. The flavors of New Mexico are as colorful and stunning as their surroundings.
New Mexican Slow Cooked Shredded Pork Fajitas
New Mexican Red Sauce
10 New Mexican Red Chili Pods, stemmed
8 Garlic Cloves
1 White Onion
Water to cover
1 tablespoon Lime Juice
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
Optional Ground Ghost Pepper for added heat
Remove stems and some of the seeds. Peel and chop onion, peel garlic, leave whole.
Place pepper pods, onions and garlic in a stainless steel heavy-bottom stockpot. Add just enough water to cover the mixture. Simmer over medium-low heat for about an hour, until pods are soft.
Strain out the cooking liquid and reserve. Puree the chilis in a blender, adding the reserved liquid a little at a time to desired consistency similar to a tomato sauce.
Add lime juice and salt. Taste. If more heat is desired, add a pinch of fresh ground ghost pepper.
This sauce can be use immediately or stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 months.
Shredded Pork Fajitas
2-1/2 lbs boneless Pork Loin Roast
1-1/2 Yellow Onions, divided
2 cups Red Sauce (above)
Ground New Mexican Red Pepper to taste
10 Fajita-size Flour Tortillas
2 Bell Peppers, any color
3 large New Mexican Peppers
Shredded Mexican Cheese
Guacamole as desired
Sour cream as desired
Trim fat from pork, cut into large chunks and set aside. Peel and slice half an onion.
Place pork in the bowl of a the slow-cooker. Scatter onion over the top of the pork.
Pour red sauce over the meat. Turn several times to coat everything in sauce. Cover and cook on Low heat setting for about 8 hours.
Remove pork from cooker; place on cutting board. Strain out cooking liquid in a bowl and set aside.
Shred pork, using 2 forks. Sprinkle with red chili pepper, return pork to cooker. Moisten with some of the reserved sauce; mix well. Taste and adjust heat level as desired. Keep filling warm.
Stem, core and thinly slice bell peppers, set aside. Stem and slice New Mexican peppers. Peel and slice remaining onion into slivers, set aside. Warm a dry skillet over medium heat. Roast peppers with onions until tender, about 15 minutes. Keep warm.
Warm tortillas. Set up a fajita bar. Place meat filling on a platter with tongs for serving. Offer grilled vegetables, cheese, sour cream and guacamole for build your own fajitas.
Great with your favorite sides such as Refried Beans or Mexican Rice. Margaritas always welcome.