Rancheros!

We really outdid ourselves at the Manlovers brunch this morning. Maybe the best brunch yet? Amanda, our sassy hostess, was so busy slaving away that I barely got to chat with her. To make up for it, we just spent twenty minutes on the phone catching up, and she told me that I left my camera at her place. Nice, Kelly. I clearly don’t have a future career in food blogging. If I’m not breaking my camera, I’m forgetting it places. At least I have a key to her house and can recover it tomorrow… will post pics then.

A phone pic Sara took of our mimosas!

Anyway, here’s Isa’s recipe I made this morning (from her Post Punk Kitchen blog):

Butternut Rancheros

1 recipe Charbroiled Butternut Squash (exact recipe below)

2 teaspoons cumin seeds
2 teaspoons coriander seeds
2 tablespoons oil
1 yellow onion, diced medium
2 jalapeno peppers, seeded, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp maple syrup or agave
2 15 oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed

Sliced scallions to serve

Preheat a large heavy bottomed pan, preferably cast iron, over medium heat. Dry toast the seeds in the pan for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently, until they’re fragrant and a few shades darker, just be careful not to burn. Raise the heat to medium high, add the oil and saute the onion, peppers and garlic for about 10 minutes, until onions are browned. Add the tomato sauce, salt and syrup and cook for about 5 minutes.

Transfer to the blender or food processor and blend until smooth. If using a blender, intermittently lift the lid to let steam escape so that it doesn’t build up and explode and kill you.

Return sauce to the pan and add beans. Cook over medium heat until heated through, about 5 minutes.

To plate:

If you’ve got some large shallow bowls they would be perfect to use here. Pour a layer of saucy beans in the bowl and top off with 2 or 3 slices of squash. Garnish with scallions.

Charbroiled squash:

1 large butternut squash (about 2 1/2 pounds)

2 tablespoons walnut oil (olive oil is just great, too)

Salt

Preheat oven to 425 F. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Peel the butternut squash. Slice off ends. Chop the bulbous part off and scoop out seeds. Slice everything widthwise into just a little under 1 inch thick slices. The bulbous part will be sliced into pretty rings.

Drizzle one tablespoon of oil onto the baking sheet and dredge butternut slices in oil. Drizzle the remaining oil over the slices. Spray with a little cooking spray for good measure. Sprinkle with salt and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, then flip, sprinkle with a little salt, and bake another 15 minutes. It should be cooked through and a browned at this point.

Turn the heat up to broil. Place baking sheet under broil and cook for about 5 minutes, the squash should be dark brown in places caramelized. The rings may cook faster than the other slices, so remove them sooner if necessary.

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