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home > recipes > meat > pork and quinoa atamalado
Makes 6 to 8 servings. Peru's most famous chef in the United States was undoubtedly the late Felipe Rojas-Lombardi. In the 1980s he owned and cooked in the Ballroom, New York's very hip tapas restaurant, where he used classic French cooking techniques to modernize and popularize traditional Spanish cuisine. He died in 1991, before he had a chance to do the same for the food of his native Peru. But just before his death, he completed "The Art of South American Cooking" (HarperCollins, $30), a cookbook in which the soup called chairo and the stews called atamalados get proper respect. Atamalados, for instance, usually combine meat, chicken or seafood with a grain -- rice, barley, orzo pasta or, best of all, quinoa. Beautiful, fiery-red annatto -- or achiote seeds -- are used to both color and flavor the stew. (The seeds, when cooked, turn food bright yellow; when you buy them, they should be red. If they are brown or dark burgundy, they've lost not only their color but much of their flavor as well.) PORK AND QUINOA ATAMALADO 2 pounds lean pork loin, leg, or shoulder Garlic-cumin marinade (recipe follows) 2 dried ancho chiles, seeded 1 fresh or dried mirasol chile or dried red chile, seeded 1 fresh jalapeno, arbol or serrano chile, seeded and roasted 1/5 cup vegetable oil 2 tablespoons achiote oil (recipe follows) 2 medium onions, finely chopped 1 clove garlic, minced 2 teaspoons coarse (kosher) salt 6 cups boiled quinoa (recipe follows), plus 3 cups cooking liquid or water 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro Wipe pork with a damp kitchen cloth. Cut into 2-inch cubes and place in a stainless-steel bowl. Pour garlic-cumin marinade over pork; mix thoroughly. Cover bowl and set aside to marinate for 3 to 4 hours at room temperature or overnight in the refrigerator. Crumble dried ancho and mirasol chiles into a bowl. Add 1/2 cup warm water. Soak for 15 minutes. Place chiles with soaking liquid and roasted jalapeno chile in a blender or food processor; puree. Set aside. Drain pork and pat dry with paper towels. Heat vegetable oil and achiote oil in a large, heavy saucepan over high heat. Add pork and quickly brown evenly on all sides, stirring. Transfer to a large plate and set aside. Add onions, garlic and salt to saucepan. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, until onions are golden around the edges, about 8 minutes. Add pureed chiles and cook 5 minutes longer, stirring constantly, until all liquid has evaporated. Add reserved quinoa cooking liquid, blend thoroughly and bring to a boil. Add pork with juices left on plate and boiled quinoa. Stir, lower heat and gently simmer for 30 minutes, or until pork is tender. If pork isn't tender after 30 minutes and quinoa has dried out too much, add more water and continue cooking until pork is tender. (Quinoa should be moist.) Adjust seasonings to taste. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve hot. Garlic-Cumin marinade 1/2 cup orange juice 1/2 tsp honey 2 tablespoons canola oil 1/2 tsp garlic powder 2 teaspoons ground cumin 1/4 tsp ground black pepper Mix all marinade ingredients, stir or whisk to combine.

Pork and Quinoa Atamalado


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keyword: quinoa
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ethnicity: south american
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(posted November 12, 2004)

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Peru's most famous chef in the United States was undoubtedly the late Felipe Rojas-Lombardi. In the 1980s he owned and cooked in the Ballroom, New York's very hip tapas restaurant, where he used classic French cooking techniques to modernize and popularize traditional Spanish cuisine.

He died in 1991, before he had a chance to do the same for the food of his native Peru. But just before his death, he completed "The Art of South American Cooking" (HarperCollins, $30), a cookbook in which the soup called chairo and the stews called atamalados get proper respect.

Atamalados, for instance, usually combine meat, chicken or seafood with a grain -- rice, barley, orzo pasta or, best of all, quinoa. Beautiful, fiery-red annatto -- or achiote seeds -- are used to both color and flavor the stew. (The seeds, when cooked, turn food bright yellow; when you buy them, they should be red. If they are brown or dark burgundy, they've lost not only their color but much of their flavor as well.)

PORK AND QUINOA ATAMALADO

2 pounds lean pork loin, leg, or shoulder
Garlic-cumin marinade (recipe follows)
2 dried ancho chiles, seeded
1 fresh or dried mirasol chile or dried red chile, seeded
1 fresh jalapeno, arbol or serrano chile, seeded and roasted
1/5 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons achiote oil (recipe follows)
2 medium onions, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
2 teaspoons coarse (kosher) salt
6 cups boiled quinoa (recipe follows), plus 3 cups cooking liquid or water
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro

Wipe pork with a damp kitchen cloth. Cut into 2-inch cubes and place in a stainless-steel bowl.

Pour garlic-cumin marinade over pork; mix thoroughly. Cover bowl and set aside to marinate for 3 to 4 hours at room temperature or overnight in the refrigerator.

Crumble dried ancho and mirasol chiles into a bowl. Add 1/2 cup warm water. Soak for 15 minutes. Place chiles with soaking liquid and roasted jalapeno chile in a blender or food processor; puree. Set aside.

Drain pork and pat dry with paper towels. Heat vegetable oil and achiote oil in a large, heavy saucepan over high heat. Add pork and quickly brown evenly on all sides, stirring. Transfer to a large plate and set aside.

Add onions, garlic and salt to saucepan. Cook over high heat, stirring frequently, until onions are golden around the edges, about 8 minutes. Add pureed chiles and cook 5 minutes longer, stirring constantly, until all liquid has evaporated.

Add reserved quinoa cooking liquid, blend thoroughly and bring to a boil. Add pork with juices left on plate and boiled quinoa. Stir, lower heat and gently simmer for 30 minutes, or until pork is tender. If pork isn't tender after 30 minutes and quinoa has dried out too much, add more water and continue cooking until pork is tender. (Quinoa should be moist.)

Adjust seasonings to taste. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve hot.

Garlic-Cumin marinade

1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 tsp honey
2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground black pepper


Mix all marinade ingredients, stir or whisk to combine.


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