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Huevos Rancheros – Making Global, Local

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I’ve decided to embark on a personal challenge through this blog for 2011.  As an Asian-American, I’ve grown up straddling pieces of two very different cultures.  Its allowed me to learn to be open to cuisines from all regions.  I’m fortunate that Hubby has greatly broadened his horizons over the years, from meat and potatoes, to sushi and Thai basil (although I still can’t get him to eat tofu).  One major challenge of global cuisine, however, is finding ways to stay true to using local, fresh ingredients.  I often find myself a flip-flopper in the kitchen, either going local, or going global.  Why not both?

Honestly, I recognize that this part of the country will probably never produce a citrus fruit, much less an avocado (one of my guilty pleasures).  Part of my goal, though, is to prove that for the majority of our meals, we incorporate what we CAN get here to stay local – but think global.  After all, I grew up with a grandmother whose central NJ garden consisted of winter melon and long beans, not tomatoes and peppers.  Last summer we even grew Thai and lime basil off our deck.

The Challenge: Source locally but still produce food with international flair.

I’ll let you know how I do.

Tip: To help get through the winter months where very few fresh ingredients are available, leverage frozen or canned goods preserved from the summer and fall.  Hard squashes are also great to store in a cool location and will last for months.

Huevos Rancheros
Original Recipe

1 15.5 oz can of black beans, drained (or 2 cups dried black beans, soaked overnight and boiled until soft)
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 green bell pepper, diced
1 small onion, diced
1 cup salsa
4 large eggs
2 large flour tortillas

1 scallion, chopped

Bring beans, cumin, and garlic to a simmer over medium heat.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil and saute peppers and onions until slightly tender.  Add peppers and onions to beans and keep warm over low heat.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in the skillet (less if using a non-stick).  Add eggs, keeping them separated, and fry for 1 minute.  Cover skillet and cook for an additional 2 minutes or until white is cooked through.  Remove eggs to a plate.  Heat tortillas in the skillet.

Stack tortillas, 1 per plate, with salsa, eggs, bean mixture, and scallion.  Serve with avocado slices if desired.

Local Sources Used
None Such Farms salsa, made over the summer and defrosted
Happy Farms pastured eggs – 2x the Omega-3s and 50% less cholesterol
Homemade flour tortillas (stored in freezer)

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