27 July 2012

GUEST BLOG: Mexican magic

By guest blogger TRACEY

We regrouped for the last session of our course at the Approved Premises on Wednesday 18 July. The guys were keen to get started and, knowing the drill, began peeling, chopping and slicing the salad and vegetables for the final feast, which was Mexican in theme. 

The chillies were deseeded and the garlic was chopped really fine and salted to draw the water out. Chicken pieces were sprinkled with salt and a dash of oil was added to the tin, then placed in the heated oven to roast. The guys were keen to try the refried beans, so thoroughly washed and drained the beans then roughly mashed half the mix while the red onions, garlic, cumin and chilli were caramelizing on the heat. The aroma filled the room, aiding and inspiring the almost tangible concentration among the team. The mixtures were combined, then lime juice, coriander and salt and pepper were mixed in. They were delighted with the result!

There was some reluctance to try the guacamole, as the texture and consistency of avocado was unfamiliar to some. Rob decided a smooth consistency might work better, so out came the hand blender and the ingredients were blended down to a fine and tasty saucy dip – perfect for dipping a tortilla chip into!

Sweet potatoes were peeled and cut into wedges, then sprinkled with the smoky paprika spice. They looked wonderful and tasted delicious once roasted. The guys really enjoyed making the bread wraps and were surprised at just how the simple ingredients of flour, butter, baking powder, salt and water could create a tasty blanket for the delicious foods they made to go in it!

It was great to hear the guys saying how much they had enjoyed and benefited from the course of six sessions. Some agreed that they learnt new recipes; others had improved on their knowledge and skills. But I was particularly pleased to hear that one individual’s love of cooking had been revived.

Well done, guys, and thank you for providing such a wonderful feast!

You can see more photos from this session on the Cracking Good Food Facebook page.

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