Easy South American recipes from Celebrity Chef Tyler Florence

Celebrity Chef Tyler Florence is easily one of America’s most recognized and revered culinary stars. Cookbook author and host of three Food Network shows, including Food 911, How to Boil Water, and Tyler’s Ultimate, Tyler Florence has teamed up with Macy’s to launch a 12-series podcast and cooking video contest for home cooks. Read on for the contest details and a few of Chef Tyler’s flavorful South American recipes that can also be viewed via culinary podcast.

Tyler FlorenceYour best home cooked recipes can win you a trip to cook with Chef Tyler

The 12 cooking podcasts, featuring celebrity chef Tyler Florence preparing a delectable array of his favorite recipes, are all filmed on location at Chef Tyler’s Mill Valley, California kitchen. Podcasts also come with printable recipe instructions. Both podcasts and recipes can be found at www.macys.com/keepitcooking

The video contest is called Macy’s Keeps America Cooking and calls for viewers to record and upload their own videos showing how to prepare some of their favorite recipes. The video contest runs until April 13, 2009 (you still have time to enter!). The grand prize winner will receive a trip for two to San Francisco to cook with Chef Tyler, a shopping spree with the celebrity chef for new kitchen products using Macy’s gift of a $2,500 gift card, and a feature spot on their own Macy’s Keeps America Cooking podcast that will show them cooking with their new Macy’s kitchen products. Runner ups will also receive prizes for their efforts.

Recipes from Celebrity Chef Tyler Florence

Even if you decide to not enter, you can still glean inspiration from Tyler Florence’s cooking podcasts as well as the videos sent in by contest participants. Here are a few of Chef Tyler’s favorite South American recipes, which can also be viewed as a podcast at http://social.macys.com/keepitcooking/podcast.html?entry_id=316836.

Pork Shoulder “Pernil” with Cilantro-Citrus

Serves 4 to 6

1 boneless pork shoulder (about 4 pounds), skin on
5 garlic cloves, smashed
1 handful fresh oregano
1 bunch of fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 cup kosher salt
1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
Juice of 2 limes
Juice of 1 orange
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil

1. Place the pork, fat-side up, in a roasting pan fitted with a rack insert, and using a sharp knife, score the surface of the meat with small slits.

2. To prepare a mojo, in a food processor, add the garlic, oregano, cilantro, cumin, chile, salt and pepper. Squeeze in orange juice, lime juice, and add vinegar. Drizzle in olive oil and pulse until you have a nice puree. Split the mixture in half, reserving half to serve fresh and half to marinate the pork.

3. Rub the marinade all over the pork, being sure to get into the incisions so the salt can penetrate the meat and pull out the moisture – this will help form a crust on the outside when cooked. Cover the pork with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours or up to overnight.

4. Allow the meat to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking. Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Roast the pork for 3 hours, uncovered, until the skin is crispy-brown. Let the meat rest on a cutting board for 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with reserved fresh sauce.

Pigeon Pea Rice “Arroz de Gandules”

Serves 4 to 6

1 pound dried pigeon peas, picked through and rinsed
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup achiote oil (recipe follows)
1 medium white onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 green bell pepper, cored and diced
1 cubanella or Italian green pepper, cored and diced
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
2 cups long-grain rice
1/2 lime, juiced
1 tablespoon salt

1. Put the pigeon peas and bay leaves in a large pot, cover with 3 quarts of cold water, and place over medium heat. Cover and cook the beans until tender, about 1-1/2 hours. Check the water periodically. Add more, if necessary, to keep the peas covered. Drain the pigeon peas and reserve 4 cups of the cooking liquid.

2. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a large Dutch oven or other ovenproof pot with the achiote oil and place over medium heat. When the oil begins to smoke, add the onion, garlic and peppers. Cook, stirring, for 10 minutes, until the vegetables have softened, without letting them brown. Pour in the chicken broth and continue to cook until the liquid is evaporated. Stir in the cumin, coriander, and cayenne.

3. Mix in the rice and reserved pigeon peas. Pour in the reserved 4 cups of pigeon pea cooking liquid, lime juice and salt. Stir everything together. Cover and bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until the rice is tender and the liquid is absorbed.

Achiote Oil “Aceite de Achiote”

Makes about 1 cup

1 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons achiote/annatto seeds

To make the achiote oil, pour the oil and achiote seeds in a pot or skillet. Cook over medium-low heat for 5 to 10 minutes. The oil will be reddish-orange from the achiote. Strain the oil, discard the achiote seeds and set aside to cool.

Plaintain Chips

Serves 4 to 6

3 large green plantains, unpeeled
Vegetable oil for deep frying
Kosher salt, for seasoning

1. In a heavy based pot heat 2-3 inches of vegetable oil over medium heat to 375 degrees F. Using a mandolin, or sharp knife, finely slice plantains into chips (for a fancier presentation slice them lengthwise into ribbons with skin on).

2. Fry the plantains in small batches until crisp and golden, about 5 to 7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Season with salt immediately and serve.And if you looking for some expert advice to improve your home cooked meals, read Cooking tips from Celebrity Chef Tyler Florence.

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