Monday, February 9, 2009

Ingredient: Recado

This is one of the ingredients that most housewives have in their kitchen! Recado. This little red block of spice makes for a red gravy that ROCKS. Every time I make stewed chicken, it's cinches everything together!
Brands vary - I sometimes prefer the homemade, but this was available in the greengrocer and it's quite good actually - stronger than the usual.
Oh...and ALWAYS, ALWAYS be sure to wash your chicken in lime! Yes, lime. (or vinegar if you don't have limes on hand) One of the things that makes me cringe is watching Food Network stars simply rinsing chicken from the pack it came in - with just plain water. That's just ...eww!
You have to soak the chicken in some lime...squeeze one whole juicy lime over the chicken, mix, add some water till it just barely covers the meat and leave to soak a couple of minutes, then proceed with seasonings and cooking.
It makes all the difference.
Oh, and while we are on the subject of cooking, I gotta tell you. I had Rice and Beans, with Stewed Chicken, fried plantains, potato salad, a bit of corn, and Hot Stuff. I roasted habaneros, with diced tomatoes, onions, lots of juicy lime, salt and cilantro. The combination is unbelievable. It makes EVERYTHING taste so much better! Oh...I have got to post this many things to post, so little time. Till next time!


  1. I wish I could find Recado. I buy ingredients from the latino and Asian section in the grocery store all the time. I love findin' regional recipes from different places. Over the weekend I made a cuban meal, as I got a new cuban cookbook. It was soooo good, hubby and granddaughter loved it. I'm gonna go to a couple of other stores and look for Recado but I don't think it is available here. Is it just a block of spices? I never thought of soakin' chicken in lime or vinegar but the cuban chicken dish I made had me rub vinegar all over the chickin. I sometimes marinate chicken in buttermilk or olive oil and herbs with lime juice. After you soak with lime do you rinse or not. I find this very interestin' and would love some of your local recipes. Thanks for the chicken tip.

  2. You haven't found recado in the latino section? Hmm, that's not good! I wish you the best of luck in finding it. Wish I could just mail you a block of it. It is like a block of spices, but the base, which gives it that rich red, is Achiote. My grandmother used to make her own with Achiote that grew in her (large) yard. And soaking the chicken in lime does make a difference - rinse after its soak and season after and it is just fine :) I will hopefully post a new chicken recipe soon. It's Valentine's on Saturday, and I have been commanded by my lord and master to make him a steak, with some kind of potato and a (GASP!) green salad! If a man asks for green salad, it's best you get on it, right?