Source: Chef Richard Sandoval, Zengo, Washington, D.C. Avocados from Mexico
Although a traditional dish in South America, these arepas show a Nuevo Latino accent with their fusion of Asian and Latin flavors.
1 1/2 lb. pork butt
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 bunch cilantro
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup white vinegar
3 chilies de arbol
3 tbsp. achiote pepper paste
2 tbsp. ichimi togarashi (Japanese red pepper flakes)
2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup sour cream
2 jalapenos, seeded and sliced
Sesame seeds, for garnish
Arepas (recipe follows)
1/2 cup lukewarm water
2 tsp. salt
1/2 cup masarepa (yellow corn meal)
Guacamole (recipe follows)
3 small, ripe hass avocados
1/4 cup diced tomato
2 tbsp. finely chopped onion
2 tbsp. finely chopped cilantro
2 serrano chilies, seeded, deveined and diced
1 tsp. lime juice
1/8 tsp. salt
- Cut pork butt into smaller, uniform pieces to ensure equal cooking time. In a large pot, combine pork, onion, cilantro, hoisin, vinegar, chilies, achiote, togarashi and salt with enough water to cover the pork, making sure achiote and hoisin are completely dissolved. Bring to a boil; reduce heat to low, cover and simmer until fork-tender, about 3 hr.
- Remove pork from liquid and set aside to cool. When cool, pull pork with fingers. Strain liquid and return to cover pork, adjust seasoning. Set pork aside and keep warm.
- Meanwhile, prepare Arepas and Guacamole (below).
- For service, cut two of the arepas in half sideways and arrange on a small plate. Layer each half with small amount of pork, followed by 1 tsp. guacamole, 1/2 tsp. sour cream and a slice of jalapeno. Garnish with sesame seeds. Repeat with remaining arepas.
- In bowl, scoop out and mash avocados. Add remaining ingredients; mix well. Adjust seasoning as needed.
- In bowl, combine water and salt. Slowly mix in masarepa until absorbed. (It should have a firm consistency.
- Divide dough into 8 equal balls. Roll each in palms of hands to form a smooth ball; press into a disc, about 11/2-in. thick.
- Cook disks in nonstick pan over low heat until lightly browned on each side, about 2 min.