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Chef On A Shoestring

Alex Garcia
Calle Ocho
October 2, 1999

Spanish Stew

2 ea. Green peppers, washed, seeded and cut into large dice
2 ea. Spanish onions, peeled and cut into large dice
1 lb. Carrots, washed, peeled and cut into large dice
5 ea. White potatoes, scrubbed, skins left on and halved
1 ea. Medium size green cabbage, quartered
1 lb. Garbanzo beans, soaked overnight and rinsed
1 ea. 6 oz. can tomato paste
2 lb. Chorizo sausage
1 lb. Beef shoulder (London Broil), cut in 1 inch cubes
2 lb. Bone in chicken thighs, rinsed
2 lb. Smoked ham shanks
10 oz. Egg Noodles
3 cloves of garlic, crushed plus 1 clove, minced
1/4 cup plus 4 tablespoons olive oil
course salt and fresh ground black pepper
2 tablespoons oregano
2 tablespoons thyme
1 bay leaf
1 cup white wine

Saute peppers, onions, carrots and the three cloves of crushed garlic in 3 tablespoons olive oil in a saute pan until caramelized, about 5 minutes. Add tomato paste and dried spices and stir to combine. Deglaze with 1 cup of white wine and continue to cook until the wine has almost completely disappeared. Set aside.

In a large, heavy stock pot or dutch oven, saute beef, chicken and chorizo over medium heat in 1/4 cup olive oil olive until browned on all sides. Add shanks, beans, cabbage and potatoes, and the peppers and onions from the saute pan. Add enough water to cover all the ingredients. Simmer over medium heat for 45 minutes to an hour until the meat is tender and starting to fall away from the bone and the vegetables are soft. Using a slotted spoon, remove the meats to platter and the vegetables to a separate platter and keep warm. Strain the remaining liquid through a wire sieve and return it to the pot.

Bring liquid to a boil, season to taste with salt and pepper and add egg noodles. Cook the noodles until tender, about 10 minutes. Serve the soup with noodles as a first course.

Heat remaining clove of garlic in remaining tablespoon of olive oil and drizzle over vegetables. Serve meat and vegetables as a second course.

Dulce de Leche with Banana Crepes

1/3 cups whole milk, room temperature
1 cup all purpose flour
3 large eggs
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
Nonstick vegetable oil spray

Mix first 6 ingredients in blender just until smooth. Cover batter and chill at least 15 minutes and up to 1 day.

Spray 7-inch-diameter nonstick skillet with vegetable oil spray and heat over medium heat. Pour 2 tablespoons batter into pan and swirl to coat bottom. Cook until edge of crepe is light brown, about 1 minute. Loosen edges gently with spatula. Carefully turn crepe over. Cook until bottom begins to brown in spots, about 30 seconds. Transfer to plate. Cover with paper towel. Repeat with remaining batter, spraying pan with oil spray as needed and overing each crepe with paper towel. (Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.)

8 ea. Bananas, medium size, just ripe, sliced on a bias
1 ea. Sweetened condensed milk, 10 oz. can
Table sugar for garnishing

Place the can of milk , still sealed but label removed , in a small pot of water. Make sure can is completely covered by the water. Heat slowly and keep at a gentle simmer, making sure the milk is always covered in water, for three hours. Allow to cool completely. Open the can with a can opener, the contents should be brown, like caramel.

Drizzle or spread the caramel over each and places a handful of sliced bananas in the center of the crepe. Roll up or fold crepes so the bananas and the caramel are on the inside. Garnish each crepe with additional sliced banana and sprinkle with sugar. Brown under a broiler until sugar caramelizes. Serve immediately.

Cost Breakdown
Appetizer and Entree
Chicken Thighs
Beef Shoulder
Pork Shanks
Chorizo Sausage
Egg Noodles
Garbanzo Beans
Tomato Paste

Condensed Milk


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