Go southwest for supper

I went to Sante Fe last week and fell in love with the art and the food.
All the recipes this week were gathered from the trip thanks to Leslie, our waitress at the Anasazi Restaurant, who got some of the information from their chef and Pam, our waitress at the Ore, for the information about the salad dressing and to Henry at the Villas De Santa Fe for sending us to a great Mexican restaurant for fry bread.
The food was excellent. We were surprised to see how different the flavors and selections were in New Mexico of Mexican dishes available at home.
And it isn’t all about the heat.
Yes, we had peppers in our hash browns, but the varieties of peppers, the amount of heat and the flavors apparently are limitless.

Glazed Ruby Trout
4 whole trout, cleaned
3 medium fresh jalapeno pepper, chopped
4 medium green onions, chopped
1 bunch cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup bell pepper, diced
1/2 cup peeled, diced ripe mango
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lime juice
garlic salt to taste
black pepper to taste

Preheat a grill for medium heat, and place the rack 3 inches over the coals.
In a medium bowl, mix together the green onions, cilantro, bell pepper, mango, olive oil, lime juice, garlic salt, and black pepper; set aside. Lightly coat four squares of foil with olive oil or cooking spray. Place fish diagonally on the foil, and stuff each with 1/4 of the mango stuffing. If it doesn’t all fit inside the fish, then just place the remainder on top of the fish. Fold the corners of the foil over the head and tail of the fish, then fold the remaining corners over the body of the fish.
Cook the packets on both sides for about 20 minutes total, until the fish has cooked and flakes easily.

Citrus Olive Almond Cake
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons orange zest
2 teaspoons lemon zest
1/4 cup whole milk
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted, coarsely crumbled
Powdered sugar, for sifting

Citrus Compote:
2 tablespoons grated orange peel
3/4 teaspoon orange blossom water, optional
3 oranges, segmented
2 pink grapefruits, segmented

To make the cake: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly oil an 8-inch-diameter cake pan. Whisk the flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl to blend. Using an electric mixer, beat the sugar, eggs, and zests in a large bowl until pale and fluffy. Beat in the milk. Gradually beat in the oil. Add the flour mixture and stir just until blended. Stir in the almonds. Transfer the batter to the prepared pan. Place cake pan on baking pan to collect any possible spills. Bake until a tester inserted into the center of the cake comes out with moist crumbs attached, about 35 minutes. Transfer to a rack and cool for 15 minutes. Remove cake and place on serving platter, top side up. Sift powdered sugar over the cake.
To make the citrus compote: Stir the orange peel, blossom water, and 2 tablespoons of accumulated juices from the segmented fruit in a small bowl to blend. Arrange the orange and grapefruit segments decoratively in a wide shallow bowl. Pour the blossom water mixture over. Cover and let stand 15 minutes for the flavors to blend.
Cut the cake into wedges and spoon the citrus compote alongside.

4 cups flour
1 ¼ teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons shortening
1 ¼ cups milk
vegetable oil for frying

Sopaipillas, a classic northern Mexican treat, resemble Southwestern fry bread is good served with honey and can be dusted with powdered sugar
In a large bowl, combine the flour, salt, baking powder and sugar. Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut in the shortening until it resembles coarse corn meal or small peas.
Add milk to form a soft dough, just firm enough to roll. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of ¼” and cut into diamond shapes.
Pour oil to a depth of 1inch in a frying pan, heat to about 375º and fry the sopaipillas on both sides, turning once so that they puff up. Turn a second time to brown evenly and remove to paper towels to drain. Serve with honey or the topping of your choice. Makes about four dozen.

Southwestern Salad with Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
Romaine lettuce
Handful of grape tomatoes
2 green onions, sliced
2 small baby bell peppers – red, yellow or orange, diced
1/2 cup black beans
1/2 cup sweet frozen corn, thawed
1 tbsp raw or toasted pumpkin seeds
1 avocado, diced
1 handful of tortilla strips for salads
2 tbsp cotija cheese (a hard cow’s milk cheese similar in flavor to Parmesan, which can be substituted)
Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette (recipe below) to taste

In a large salad bowl add chopped lettuce, tomatoes, green onions, avocado, bell peppers, black beans, corn, tortilla strips, pumpkin seeds and cotija cheese. Top the salad with the vinaigrette to taste and serve. Enjoy!

Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette
1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
1/4 cup canola oil
1-2 tbsp fresh lime juice
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar OR red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp oregano

Use an immersion blender or a regular blender to blend the dressing. Let the flavors mingle for at least 30 minutes before using.