Monday, January 12, 2009

Calabacitas Guisadas (Sauteed Mexican Squash)

Very healthy vegetable dish, a great side for any Mexican meal. We served it in my house with rice, tortillas, "Carne de Puerco Con Chile" (Pork simmered in a spicy hot sauce) and some "Jalapeños en Vinagre" (pickled Jalapeños peppers, with pickled onion and carrot) but you can serve it with whatever you'd like.

This week at the store I went to (Vallarta) the Mexican Squash was 4 pounds for a 1 dollar USA very cheap, you may also use "Italian Squash" if you wish these are used interchangeably in Mexican cooking from what I have observed.

Main Ingredients
-2 lbs. Mexican Squash chopped into cubes (or Italian)
-2 medium fresh ripe tomatoes chopped
-1 medium onion chopped
-1 green chili pepper minced (only if you like it a little spicy)
-2-5 cloves garlic (garlic to taste we like a lot)
-1/2 a bunch cilantro washed, leaves only minced
-salt to taste
-ground black pepper to taste (about 1/2- 1 tsp.)
-extra-virgin olive oil (my mom likes it BUT traditionally lard or neutral flavored oil is what I see commonly used in MExican cooking, my mom prefers extra-virgin because we like the taste and living with my Spanish/ Cuban grandmother many years sorta re-inforced it haha my mother told me in Mexico her family would use olive oil for certain stuff, salads, making "escabeches" stuff like that)
-1-2 tablespoons butter (if you have it on hand, don't have it then don't worry but if you do DON'T SKIP IT!)

Optional Ingredients:
-fresh Mexican Cheese (traditionally) or grated "Monterrey Jack" (not traditional that's more American) (to top the finished dish we didnt add it this time because I am on an antiobiotic to make my skin clearer and better "Tetracycline" and I can't have dairy for now well only 2 hours before taking my pills)

(1)Heat olive oil on medium high sautee onions and chili pepper until translucent together with salt and black pepper, then add garlic sautee a little longer until fragrant, add butter stir until it heats through then add tomatoes chopped until they release juices.

(2)Add squash stir, cover and leave on medium high for about 5-7 minutes, uncover and stir, top with cilantro and if you wish grated cheese or crumbled fresh cheese.


Karen Brown Letarte said...

Ooooh, this is the best calabacitas recipe I think I have ever seen! I can't wait to try it! I have never seen "mexican squash" in the grocery here in NC-- can you use zucchini instead? (I'm guessing that's what you mean by Italian squash.) Sometimes I have used a mix of zucchini and summer (yellow) squash.

Also, do you think using canned tomatoes is ok if the fresh ones aren't very good?

Thanks for sharing! I'm looking forward to reading your filipino recipes. I lived there briefly when I was a child and still fondly remember the lumpia we used to eat.

Ben said...

Calabacitas is one of my all time favorite dish. If you add some bacon, corn kernels and epazote it will make it taste even better. Delicioso!

Nathan said...

Karen Brown Letarte,
Yes you can use zuchini, it's the same thing as "Italian Squash" I forgot that it also can be called Zuchini when making this post.

Thanks for the suggestion, I know Epazote is used in MExican cooking but I am not to familiar with it, what other stuff can I use it for besides what you suggested and also for black beans.

Nathan said...

Karen Brown Letarte,
Ooops sorry I forgot to answer some of your other questions.

You can use canned tomatoes if fresh isn't available :)

Also glad you enjoy my Filipino recipes, I am fond of Filipino food for how simple it can be and relatively healthy well some of it, today I am posting a new one it's "Opo & Spinach with Ground Pork" it's a very healthy dish. (Even if it has pork it only uses it as a flavoring and for texture)

Karen Brown Letarte said...

Hi, Nathan-- Just made this for dinner the other night and it was FANTASTIC!!! I posted about it in my blog. :)

Nathan said...

Karen Brown Letare,
Glad your enjoying and trying some of my recipes :) I like hearing from my readers :) I'll go check out your blog right now (or later today) I am currently in my Computer Science class... slacking off... but I'm still paying attention lol. I have time to leisure into my blog haha.