Mexico is known for its tequila, arguably even more than the Russians are known for their vodka. Tequila is the basis of one of the most popular cocktails on the planet: the margarita. No prizes for guessing that one. It serves as the lead off for many a story, most of which, change every time they’re told… for a number of reasons.
However, we’re not only drinkers of our self-acclaimed national beverage. That’s right, you guessed, it holds great value in the kitchen. That’s in the cooking, not in your glass, at least for the purposes of this article. There are thousands of recipes that involve tequila. Here, we mention a few that may be worth giving a try when you’re craving that agave taste and not a hangover.
Phoo-d show us a fantastic twist on a popular appetizer:
Chorizo Tequila Stuffed Mushrooms
24 large white or brown Mushrooms (I used portabellinis), about 24 oz
5 Tablespoons Olive Oil
3 Tablespoons Tequila
1 Lime, zested and juiced
1/2 lb Mexican style chorizo sausage
1 medium Leek, white part only, minced (about 1 cup)
3 cloves Garlic, minced
2/3 cup Panko bread crumbs
6 oz Queso Fresco, chopped into small cubes (use fresh mozzarella if you can’t locate Queso Fresco)
2 Tablespoons Cilantro, chopped
Salt and Pepper
2 9×13 baking dishes
– Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees F.
– Separate the stems from the mushroom caps and chop them finely. Set the chopped stems aside. In a medium bowl, combine the mushroom caps, 3 Tablespoons of olive oil, tequila, lime zest, and lime juice. Toss until the mushrooms are well coated. Set bowl aside.
– In a large skillet over medium heat, add the remaining 2 Tablespoons of olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the chorizo, cutting it into crumbles with a spatula. Cook the chorizo for 8-10 minutes, until it is completely browned. Add the chopped mushroom stems, leeks, and garlic to the skillet. Sauté for another 2-3 minutes, until the leeks and mushrooms have softened. Add queso fresco and panko crumbs to the skillet, and cook for another 5 minutes, stirring frequently, until the cheese has softened slightly (it will not melt). Turn off the heat, and stir in the cilantro and salt and pepper to taste. Let the filling cool slightly.
– Use a small spoon to fill each mushroom generously with the chorizo mixture. Set the mushrooms in the baking dishes in a snug single layer. Drizzle any remaining liquid from the mushroom bowl over the top of the filled mushrooms. Bake the mushrooms in the oven for 50 minutes, until the stuffing is browned and crusty. Serve warm.
For the main course, Foodie presents enchiladas, with a kick!
Tequila Lime Chicken Enchiladas
3 boneless skinless chicken breast
1/4 cup of Tequila
1/4 cup of lime juice
1 teaspoon grated lime peel
1/2 cup salsa
salt and pepper to taste
2 Tablespoon olive oil
1 cup of shredded Mexican cheese
1 cup of shredded cheese for topping
Tortillas (corn or flour)**
– Cut chicken breast into small pieces and place in a bowl. Add tequila and lime juice and let sit in refrigerator for 30 minutes. Heat olive oil in large skillet on medium high heat. Saute your chicken until cooked completely and browned slightly. Add remaining ingredients and continue to saute until chicken for 2 more minutes. Set to the side.
– Assemble the your enchiladas with the chicken and cheeses. Roll and place side by side in a deep baking dish. Cover with desired amount of sauce and then top with remaining cheese. Let bake in a 375 degree oven until bubbly and cheese is melted. ENJOY!
**If you are using flour tortillas, let your enchiladas bake sauce free for 15 minutes. This will prevent them from getting soggy in the oven when the sauce is added.
Simple Enchilada Sauce
makes 4 cups
1 Tablespoon olive oil
4 Tablespoons Flour
1 Tablespoon Cumin
1 Tablespoon Paprika
1-1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
1 Tablespoon Chili powder
4 cups of chicken or beef stock
1/2 cup of tomato sauce
1/2 cup of salsa
Saute oil, flour, and spices in a large sauce pan and make a roux. Whisk frequently to break up and flour. Your roux should be thick and bubbly. Add stock, sauce, and salsa and let simmer of medium heat, stirring frequently until thickened and smooth.
And here is a tequila dessert to satisfy your sweet tooth from The Hunnie Pot.
Tequila, Lime and Coconut Macaroon Bars
2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
2 cups sugar, divided
1/2 cup cold butter, cut into pieces
4 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut
1 teaspoon lime zest
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
3 tablespoons tequila
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Garnishes: powdered sugar, lime rind curls
– Preheat oven to 350°. Line bottom and sides of a 13- x 9-inch pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, allowing 2 inches to extend over sides; lightly grease foil.
– Stir together 1 3/4 cups flour and 1/2 cup sugar. Cut in butter with a pastry blender or fork until crumbly. Press mixture onto bottom of prepared pan.
– Bake at 350° for 20 to 23 minutes or until lightly browned.
– Meanwhile, whisk eggs in a medium bowl until smooth; whisk in coconut, next 3 ingredients, and remaining 1 1/2 cups sugar. Stir together baking powder, salt, and remaining 1/4 cup flour; whisk into egg mixture. Pour over hot crust.
– Bake at 350° for 25 minutes or until filling is set. Let cool 1 hour on a wire rack. Lift from pan, using foil sides as handles. Remove foil, and cut into bars. Garnish, if desired.
Our mission here is to tempt you to mix in a little tequila the next time you fancy yourself as a Mexican cook. Think of it as wine, we just advise you don’t add as much. Either way, get adventurous and please share your experience with us.
If you love tequila as much as we do, be sure to visit your closest Acapuclos Mexican Family Restaurant & Cantina. We have 12 locations throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut, where you can enjoy authentic Mexican dishes. Not to mention our wide variety of tequilas from all over Mexico.