Wahaca - Mexican Food at Home

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Wahaca – Mexican Food at Home

Over the past 5 years we’ve had countless queries and requests from people wanting to recreate our magical Mexican street food in their own kitchen. We like their style. So with these hungry people in mind, Tommi has been compiling a book of her favourite recipes since we opened up our doors on Chandos Place and it hits the shelves on 21st June.

Just like the restaurants, the book is inspired by Mexico’s markets, cantinas and a love of parties, and it’s stocked full of recipes made using ingredients easily found in Britain so you can create authentic Mexican food without having to schlep across the Atlantic.

It has everything from breakfasts bursting with energy, hearty and healthy dinners, sensational puddings and zingy cocktails. There are little plates for sharing and larger dishes that are perfect for scooping up with a warm corn tortilla and a splash of your favourite salsa. And yes, it does have the much sought after secrets of our juicy Pork Pibil.

Having given away over 4.5 million packs of chilli seeds since we opened, there’s also a page dedicated to chilli growing with photos provided by the green-fingered readers of this very blog. A special thanks to everyone who entered our competition and sent in a photo (you’re on page 223!).

The book will be for sale in all of our our restaurants as well as in any bookshop worth its salt, but if you just can’t wait, you can order your copy online now.

Wahaca, Mexican food at home is our way of encouraging you to spread the word of Mexican food far and wide. We hope you’ll join in the fun.

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The Cacao Margarita

There’s a lot going on around London this week. Not only is it The London Restaurant Festival (Don’t forget to come along and try out our award winning menu before Monday 18th), but it’s also London Cocktail Week – A Celebration of London’s mixology heritage and a tribute to the world’s capital of cocktail culture.

So to mark this momentous occasion in the discerning drinker’s calendar we thought we’d give you a sneak preview of one of the new cocktails that will be hitting our menus in the next couple of weeks – The sublime Cacao Margarita.

Seldom has such a wonderful match of flavours been left undiscovered for so long, than that of tequila and chocolate, and the Cacao Margarita is the perfect way to indulge in this mystical pairing. Think velvety spice, with undertones of agave alongside the subtle kick that this slow burn margarita gives.

And here’s how you make it:

Be sure to use a good quality 100% agave tequila, any cheaper imitations just won’t do it justice.  We’ve used a blanco tequila in this recipe, but it works very well with the slightly sweeter reposado and añejo too.

35ml measure of 100% Agave Blanco Tequila
10ml cinnamon syrup
35ml milk
60gr chilli chocolate

First make your cinnamon syrup by melting 100g of sugar with 100ml of water and a stick of cinnamon. Once the sugar has completely melted, bring to a boil and simmer for about 5 minutes until it becomes a syrup. You can use the remainder to sweeten hot chocolate, or in your coffee.
In a saucepan, warm the milk and add the chocolate. Stir and continue to heat gently until completely melted.
Add all of the ingredients to a shaker with cubed ice. Shake well and strain the liquid into a chilled glass. Serve with a sprinkle of chocolate and a cinnamon stick. 

If you have a go at making the Cacao Margarita for yourself, we’d love to hear about it. Post a comment below, or why not whack a photo up on our facebook page.

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Huevos Borrachos by Gicela Morales

Heuvos Borrachos

One of the star recipes submitted for my Recipe Competition was by Gicela Morales a wonderful Mexican woman who is fiendishly good with salsas. Eggs are a staple in Mexico and there is nowhere that you will eat a better breakfast. The green sauce on these eggs is as fiery as they come and perfect for blowing through the steamiest of hangovers. It is also incredibly good for you, a properly healthy start to the day. If you are looking for a way to blow away some cobwebs then look no further. Over to Gicela:

This is a hot green salsa with eggs for anyone with a hangover. It’s very easy to make and only requires very basic ingredients and a few green chilles.

You can make it as hot or as mild as you wish, but the idea is to make it as hot as you can stand it! Also makes a good brunch.

Ingredients (serves 2)

For the eggs

5 free range eggs
1 small onion
2 table spoons of good frying oil
Salt to taste

For the salsa

3 to 5 green chilles
1 small clove of garlic
1 cup of water

Method

1. Seed the chilles and roast them with the chopped garlic. Remove any burnt skin and put them in a food processor with the water until chopped roughly.

2. Chop the onion. Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the onion. Saute the onion and add the eggs; mix until scrambled.

3. Add the green salsa to the egg and mix it gently. Bring it to to boil and add salt to taste.

Serve and eat with fresh bread, a roll or on a taco with a strong mug of coffee. Depending on the extent of your hangover, you may not even feel the heat!

Enjoy!

This is a great dish for blasting away a hangover. Thank you Gicela for sharing it.

Stay tuned for more contribution to my Mexican recipe competition. And if you make this dish please let us know how you get on by leaving a comment.

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Day of the Dead Celebrations

Any recipe that can lure a spirit back from the dead must be worth trying! So we thought we’d look at a few famous ideas from Mexico before we tell you what we’ll be doing next weekend.

Similar to many other countires, pumpkin is very popular in Mexico at this time of the year. Pumpkin slices are slowly simmered with Piloncillo (like Palm Sugar) and other spices to make “Candied Pumpkin”.

A special Bread of The Dead or Pan de Muerto is also cooked. This is a soft bread decorated with bone shapes or sometimes even moulded into the shape of skulls like the ones here from La Familia Brophy.

pan de muerto 2

The most famous delicacy over DOTD is the Sugar Skull. Simply made by moulding sugar, water and meringue powder into skeletal shapes, these skulls are highly decorated and handed out for all to enjoy. We found some great examples captured by Glen on Flickr:

SugarSkulls 2

Of course, no Mexican celebration would be complete without tequila cocktails! Highly prized competitions are held every year to see who can invent the tastiest concoction, often prepared in the craziest of ways. Who knows what our fabulous bar staff will create this year!

Stay tuned to hear what we’ve got planned to celebrate Day of The Dead at Wahaca.

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Chocolate Chocolate Chocolate!!!!

churros

To celebrate Chocolate Week that starts on Monday 12th October we thought we’d share our delicious chocolate sauce recipe for those out there with some serious cravings! Or if you’re feeling adventurous come try our new Chilli chocolate tequila toddy – an intense hot chocolate shot with a dash of tequila which will warm you up on a cold winters day!

Wahaca chocolate sauce recipe

200g dark chocolate

75g milk chocolate

1 tbsp golden syrup

200ml double cream

150ml milk

A good pinch cinnamon

Mix all over a very low heat and enjoy with churros or over vanilla ice-cream (preferably with a good dash of plata tequila!)…

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Tommi's recipe competition results

Tommi wants you

Thank you so so so much for all the recipes that you sent in for my recipe competition in August.  The winning entry was submitted by Steve Gale, a delicious tostada salad using the sweet-sour flavours of the chilli salt mix that Mexicans use on the streets of Mexico to season mouthwatering slices of mango, pineapple and jicama.  His recipe will be published in my new book, ‘Mexican food made simple’ which comes out at the beginning of March next year (yikes).

But there were quite a few other delicous recipes that we felt we had to publish too.  I particularly loved the delicious green sauce on eggs that Gicela Morales entered – this recipe is a sure fire way to beat any hangover and perk up the tiredest of parents, teenagers or kids on a weekend morning.  Try this recipe this weekend and tune in next week for more competition runners-up…

Gicela Morales’ Huevos Borrachos

This is a hot green salsa with eggs for anyone with a hangover. It’s very easy to make and only requires very basic ingredients and a few green chilles.

You can make it as hot or as mild as you wish, but the idea is to make it as hot as you can stand it! Also makes a good brunch.

INGREDIENTS (serves 2)

FOR THE EGGS

5 free range eggs
1 small onion
2 table spoons of good frying oil
Salt to taste

FOR THE SALSA

3 to 5 green chillies, depending on your tolerance…
1 small clove of garlic
240ml of water

1. Seed the chilles and roast them with the chopped garlic. Remove any burnt skin and put them in a food processor with the water until chopped roughly.

2. Chop the onion. Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the onion. Saute the onion and add the eggs; mix until scrambled.

3. Add the green salsa to the egg and mix it gently. Bring it to to boil and add salt to taste.

Serve and eat with fresh bread or roll and a strong mug of coffee. Depending on the extent of your hangover, you may not even feel the heat!

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Tommi Thanks You

We’ve had a great response to Tommi’s request for your Mexican recipes to go into her new book, Mexican Food Made Simple, and we are now closed for entries.

We’ve spent the last month collecting together your wild, wonderful and occasionally mind blowing recipe suggestions, so there’s lots of deliberation, cogitation and digestion to be done before we make our final choice of whose recipe will be published for the world see.

Watch this space for more from the British Chilli Revolution soon.

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Recipe Testing for Winter Menu

Tommi and Gavin
Our new menu is set to go live towards the beginning of October so we were testing some new dishes in the White City kitchen the other day. There were a few things we were playing with.

Vegetable Taco

For our seasonal vegetable taco we were debating whether to go back to the savoy cabbage/ mushroom mix that we’ve had before. Or trying it with seasonal greens (spring greens at the moment). Firstly we made a rich chilli sauce with ancho chilli’s, which have a slightly sweeter flavour than the pasilla chilli’s we have used previously. Then we cooked off our veg on the flat top and mixed it with the chilli sauce.

Veg on the Flat Top

It has quite a meaty taste to it, thanks to the mushrooms and the rich ancho sauce.

Chilli Squash Winter Burrito

Chilli Squash

We used fresh butternut squash which we dice, mix with a little cumin and our home made mojo de ajo (a potent garlic concoction) and roast it in the oven. Really delicious in a vegetarian burrito.

Black Bean Tostada

Black Bean Tostada 1

The black bean tostada omes from our intense love of our frijoles and black beans. It’s such a simple snack, but so delicious. In our first attempt, we took a tostada (fried pure corn tortilla) topped it with some frijoles, shredded lettuce, salsa fresca, crema, and Lancashire cheese.

It was a very tasty combo, but perhaps not the most attractive looking tostada. Especially since I was a little over generous with the frijoles and it started oozing over the sides.

Black Bean Tostada 2

The second more attractive attempt created by Tommi and Gavin, utilised our whole black beans, and corn, which gave it some welcome texture and a meatier, more robust consistency.

Our next step is testing different MSC approved seasonal fish for the menu – something we are really passionate about and keen to get right. If you’ve got a point of view on what we’re up to let us know by leaving a comment.

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Frijoles Recipe

Chorizo Frijoles

A few weeks ago, we got a comment on the blog from Liz saying how much she liked our frijoles and asking whether she could have the recipe… so here it is courtesy of Tommi:

We do two frijoles dishes at Wahaca – one with chorizo crumbled on top and the other with Lancashire cheese and sour cream… so feel free to adapt as you wish.

Serves 4

400g cooked black beans
½ red chilli
2 stems of coriander
At least 50g butter
1 small white onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

To serve

Crumbled chorizo or grated Lancashire and sour cream

Method

Cook the onion in the butter until soft then add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Drain the beans reserving the cooking liquid. Add the cooked beans with a little of their cooking liquid and whiz in the food processor. Remove to a bowl and season to taste.

Allow to cool and serve with finely chopped shallots, a garnish of coriander and a crumbling of chorizo. It’s ideal with a bowl of torilla crisps and a cold beer.