August 17, 2023
Recipe and text by Ray Seraphin.
This picadillo recipe is part Mexican chiles en nogada and part Puerto Rican picadillo. The combination of olives and fruit may sound unusual at first, but it results in an umami bomb of flavor. Our Carlito's Rojito Yucatan blend brings all of these seemingly disparate ingredients together with warm, savory notes of cumin, coriander, citrus zest, and allspice.
Time: 1-1.5 hours
Yield: 6 servings
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 yellow onion, diced
1 poblano, diced
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1.5 lbs ground beef (80/20)
1 tablespoon Pacific Flake Sea Salt or Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt
1 tablespoon Oaktown Spice Shop Carlito's Rojito Yucatan
2 teaspoons amchoor powder
2 teaspoons ground ancho chile
1 14.5 oz can fire roasted tomatoes
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken stock
1/3 cup raisins
1/2 cup tart cooking apple (like Pink Lady or McIntosh), small diced
1/3 cup green olives with pimento, halved
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup toasted slivered almonds
squeeze of lime
1 cup toasted slivered almonds, soaked overnight or boiled for 10 minutes
1/2 cup full fat sour cream or Mexican crema
4 oz goat cheese
1/3 cup half and half
2 teaspoons Pacific Flake Sea Salt
2 teaspoons cane sugar
1 lime, juiced and zested
Apple Pico de Gallo:
1/2 tart cooking apple, minced
1 jalapeño, de-seeded and minced
1/2 onion, minced
½ bunch cilantro leaves, minced
1 lime, juiced and zested
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
First, make the almond crema: Rinse soaked or boiled almonds and then blend them with goat cheese, sour cream, half & half, sugar, salt, lime zest, and lime juice. Blend on high until the purée is mostly smooth — about 4-5 minutes.
Next, prepare pico de gallo: Toss the minced apple, jalapeño, onion, and cilantro in a bowl with lime juice, zest, salt, and oil. Allow to sit for 10-15 minutes until onion softens.
Make the picadillo: Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once oil is shimmering, add onion and poblano. Sauté for 5-7 minutes or until onion softens, add tomato paste, garlic, salt, Carlito's Yucatán Rub, amchoor, and ancho chile powder to the onion-poblano mixture. Cook the mixture until tomato paste begins to darken — about 2 minutes.
Add beef and break it into chunks with your spatula. Continue cooking for 5-7 minutes until the beef is browned. Add tomatoes, raisins, apples, olives, chicken stock, Worcestershire, and bay leaves. Reduce heat to medium-low heat. Cover the pan with a lid and continue cooking for 15-20 minutes or until almost all of the liquid is absorbed. Add almond slivers and season to taste.
Serve with tortillas or rice; optional garnishes of goat cheese, cilantro, and pomegranate arils; and top with almond crema and apple pico de gallo.
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