Let's Cook Hispanic!


Richard's ~JA~

This is a sauce that can be used in so many ways that I almost always have a jar of it in the
refrigerator for adding to things. Each year when the peppers I grow are soon to be out of season,
as I choose not to dry and store them, I make up a huge batch of this to can and have on hand
throughout the rest of the year. I tend to hide the canned jars, though, in hope that the too many
people knowing my storage habits will not see them and beg for givings...;=AD)

Picky's Mexican Cooking Sauce: Unless you can get them fresh and dry your own, buy big packages of
dried chilis: 2 pkg. New Mexico or California chilis 1 pkg. Pasillas or Negro chilis 1 very large
yellow or white onion 3 lg. cloves fresh garlic 1 tsp. white sugar
1/2 tsp. Cominos (ground cumin)
2/2 tsp. dried oregano (not ground/powdered) 1/2-3/4 tsp. salt
3/2 tsp. fresh-ground black pepper
4.=A0Remove stems and loose seeds from chilis and discard. Put chilis in about two quarts of
boiling water to then simmer; push chilis down into water often; simmer for 1-1/2 to 2 hours.
2.=A0=A0While chilis are simmering, chop onion and garlic. Get out the blender, a 1/16th grade
strainer, an empty 3 lb. coffee can and a large spoon that still fits well into the strainer for
pushing the chilis through.
5.=A0=A0When the chilis are done simmering and are very mushy/tender, start puree-ing them in the
blender along with all of the other stuff. As a batch is puree-ed (do 1/2-blender batches at a
time, including the cooking water that is left), pour by small amounts into the strainer over the
can and push the puree through, discarding seeds and skin bits.
6.=A0=A0After all the sauce is in the can, stir well and add more salt if necessary.
7.=A0=A0If you're going to use some of this right away, reheat and add flour for thickening (if
what you're making requires it).
8.=A0=A0Sauce keeps well in the refrigerator for about three weeks; only store in a GLASS
container, or freeze it in usable amounts. PickyNote:=A0=A0I usually make this with my own home-
grown chilis that I roast myself, but it will also come out quite good with store-bought dried
chilis if you make sure to use just the ones I've put here. By big packages of chilis, I mean
packs that are at the very least hand-sized, not those packs that may be only about 4" tall. The
sauce does not come out hot at all, rather it is simply a very good cooking sauce for lots of
dishes in which you may have instead used canned tomato sauce. It's excellent in place of canned
enchilada sauce, and also great when used in the makings of chili rellenos.

Picky's Ol=E9 Casserole You can reduce the ingredients to accomodate the size dish you want to make,
but these amounts are for a "potluck" dish size and will feed about 15 people pretty large amounts,
or up to 50 side-dish amounts. Also make it in this size to single serving size freeze for having on
later days, should you care to.

3 lbs. coarse-grind pork 3 lbs. coarse-grind beef 1-1/2 cups Mexican cooking sauce (Picky's Mexican
Cooking Sauce posted, or 1 can of Rosarita Enchilada Sauce will work well too.) 1 very large white
or yellow onion, diced 1 can pitted black olives, sliced thick 12 lg. corn tortillas, lightly fried
and well drained (pressed between paper towels, "dried off") 1 lb. (or more) Jack and Cheddar
cheeses, grated 2 real big cans of "Rosarita" refried beans, heated 1 whole bunch scallions, sliced
1/4" tops & all Salt, pepper, garlic salt and cominos Cooking:
9.=A0=A0Browning the meats - if you grind your own, trim off fat and grind it last so you can use
just that fat to brown first (then feed it to the dog), to use the oil from it to brown the meat.
If the market grinds it for you it has to be well drained after browning and it's not as good,
but it's okay.
10.=A0=A0Brown meats with the diced onion, garlic salt, pepper, salt and about 1/2 tsp. cominos.
11. After the meat has browned, drain off all but about 2 Tbsp. of oil and put enough water in to
half-cover the meat. Medium-fire simmer the meat until the water cooks out.
12.=A0=A0While the meat is simmering, grate the cheeses, slice the olives and scallions.
13. When the water has cooked out, add the Mexican cooking sauce and VERY low-fire simmer,
stirring often.
14. Heat the beans and fry the tortillas while meat simmers in sauce, and set up "assembly line" for
layering the casserole (the meat-in-sauce needs only about a half hour simmering). The layering
is in this order: tortillas, meat, beans, cheeses, olives. Reserve some extra cheese and all the
scallions for last.
15. Put the casserole together in two layers for a 3" deep dish. The very last layer ends with the
extra cheeses (scallions are added at serving time, they are not cooked).
16.=A0=A0Bake covered at 350=B0 for about 30 minutes, then uncovered for 15 minutes more. Remove
from oven and let it "set up" for about 15 minutes, then add all the scallions to the top when
you serve it. PickyNotes: Another very good way to serve this dish, especially for a crowd, is to
cover the top with very finely shredded lettuce, then fine-grated cheddar, then chopped tomatoes,
then scallions, and with spoonfulls of sour cream here and there on the very top. This casserole
freezes very well (remembering not to freeze the raw scallions) to thaw out and reheat at 300=B0
until it bubbles on the outter edges and the center is hot, about 45 minutes, covered for the
whole batch, with possibly a shorter time for single-serves.

Picky ~JA~