Mexican Food and Caribbean food is “IN”
When cooking authentic Hispanic dishes the food will taste and look so much better if it is prepared with traditional Mexican and Caribbean cheeses. Our spring inspired recipe today features Queso Oaxaca. Queso Oaxaca is a Mexican melting cheese that will not seperate into solids and oil when heated. This makes it perfect for quesadillas, chile rellenos, and any instance when you desire a softened but not a runny greasy cheese. It makes a great cheesy cheeseburger too!
Shrimp in Chipotle Salsa over fried Cheese / Camerones en Salsa de Chipotle sobre Queso asado This dish makes an impressive first course or luncheon entrée.
• 20 large shrimp, shelled ,deveined, and butterflied
• 3 chile chipotle in adobo, canned
• 1 white onion, charred
• 8 garlic cloves, charred
• 6 roma tomatoes, charred
• Salt and pepper
• 4 whole cloves crushed, or ½ teaspoon ground
• ½ teaspoon cinnamon, ground
• 1 teaspoon cumin, ground
• 2 tablespoons fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
• 2 teaspoons marjoram, dried
• 4 cups shrimp or fish broth
• 1 lb. Oaxaca cheese, queso Oaxaca
• ½ cup vegetable oil
• 2 egg whites
• 8 green onions, cut in half, tops feathered
• 1 bunch cilantro
In a blender puree the charred onion, tomato and garlic. Add the chipotle chiles with salt, pepper, spices and half of the broth.
Heat vegetable oil over medium high heat in a heavy skillet or saucepan. Press the chile mixture through a strainer into the hot oil. Lower the heat to simmer and continue to cook salsa for 20 – 30 minutes adding the remainder of bouillon in intervals to keep a sauce – like consistency.
Season the shrimp with salt and pepper and brush with melted butter or olive oil. Place under a broiler for two to three minutes. Turn shrimp and cook another minute or so until done. Do not overcook the shrimp or they will be tough and rubbery. Remove from heat and keep warm.
While the sauce cooks divide the cheese into four square portions. Dip into flour and dust off excess. Submerge cheese into beaten egg whites and fry in hot oil until lightly browned and the cheese has softened. Drain on paper towel. Keep warm
Roast green onions on a comal, season with salt to taste. To assemble, ladle salsa onto center of plate, place cheese on top. Arrange 5 shrimp around cheese in equal manner, place green onions upright and crossed over the shrimp. Decorate with a drizzle of olive oil and chopped cilantro.
*Chopped green onions may be sprinkled over the cheese and shrimp instead of the whole roasted green onion.
*Mexican Oaxacan cheese is perfect for this dish; it softens but holds its shape and does not ooze and separate. The taste is mild, similar to Muenster which complements the flavorful chile salsa.