Tag Archives: mojo

Recipe: Mojo de Cilantro y Perejil | Venezuelan Cilantro & Parsley Mojo Sauce

17 Jul Mojo de Cilantro y Perejil | Venezuelan Cilantro & Parsley Mojo Sauce

This is another type of mojo, like the ones most restaurants have at the table, just like they have salt and pepper.  Personally, I prefer the cilantro and parsley mojo over the mojo isleño.  You can use any mojo as a topping for tostones, hallaquitas, yuca sancochada, yuca frita, parrilla, and empanadas.  You can also use this mojo as a topping for grilled fish, chicken, pork or steaks.

Ingredients Mojo Venezolano

Ingredients Mojo Venezolano

What you need:
– 1 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil
– 1 to 2 Sweet Peppers (Ají Dulce)
– ½ Onion
– ½ Tomato
– ¼ Cup Cilantro Leaves
– ¼ Cup Parsley Leaves
– 1 Tbsp. Wine Vinegar
– 1 Tsp. Salt
– ½ Tsp. Pepper

Preparation:
1.  Do not wash the cilantro or the parsley at first.  Take the leaves and measure out first, not too tightly, and then proceed to wash them. (Note: It doesn’t matter if you use curly parsley or regular parsley)
2. Finely chop all the ingredients.

Finely Chop All Ingredients

Finely Chop All Ingredients

3. In a medium frying pan add the oil and begin to fry the onion and the sweet pepper for about 3 minutes.
4. Add the tomatoes, cilantro and parsley, and continue to fry for about 3 more minutes.  Remove from heat.

Fry All Ingredients

Fry All Ingredients

5. Add the wine vinegar, the salt and the pepper.  Try the mixture and add more salt to taste if necessary.

Mojo de Cilantro y Perejil | Venezuelan Cilantro & Parsley Mojo Sauce

Mojo de Cilantro y Perejil | Venezuelan Cilantro & Parsley Mojo Sauce

6.  Serve as a topping of your favorite recipes, such as fish, potatoes, meats, arepas, boiled yuca or hallaquitas.

Mojo de Cilantro y Perejil | Venezuelan Cilantro & Parsley Mojo Sauce

Mojo de Cilantro y Perejil | Venezuelan Cilantro & Parsley Mojo Sauce

¡Buen Provecho!

Recipe: Mojo Isleño Venezolano | Venezuelan Mojo Sauce

5 Jun Venezuelan Mojo Isleño

When I lived in Venezuela, going out to have lunch or dinner at a restaurant wasn’t an everyday thing.  It was more of a luxury.  Middle class families, such as mine, did not eat at a restaurant very often.  But one thing I remember about the few times we ate out is the mojo, or what people think its called Venezuelan Green Sauce.  Mojos are a type of sauce that most restaurants have at the table like they have salt and pepper.  It’s a must.  They are on the table for you to use as you wish.  You can use it as a spread on your bread or hallaquitas, as a sauce for your meat, as a dressing for your potatoes or yuca, even for your soup.  You name it.  Most mojos are prepared with a mixture of herbs, vegetables, oil and vinegar.  Every restaurant has their own recipe and ingredients and some serve both a regular version, and a spicier version.  Personally I like to use mojos as a topping for tostones, hallaquitas, yuca sancochada, yuca frita, parrilla, and empanadas.

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño Ingredients

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño Ingredients

What you need:

– 1 ½ Medium Onions
– 8 Garlic Cloves
– 1 ½ Cups Cilantro Leaves (no stems)
– ½ Cup Parsley Leaves (no stems)
– 1 or 2 Ajíes Picantes (Chili Peppers or Red Chilies)
– 1/8 Cup Bread Crumbs
– ½ Cup Beef Stock
– ¼ Cup Vegetable Oil
– ¼ Cup Vinegar
– ¼ Teaspoon Black Pepper
– 1 Teaspoon Salt
– ½ Tablespoon Paprika

Preparation:
1.  Do not wash the parsley and cilantro at first.  Take the leaves and measure out first, not too tightly, and then proceed to wash them.

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño Ingredients

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño Ingredients

2.  Using a food processor, blend the onions, garlic (I suggest you mince it first), parsley, cilantro, chili peppers (without the veins or seeds).

Blend Ingredients

Blend Ingredients

Green Paste

Green Paste

3.  After you have blended all the ingredients very well and obtained sort of a green paste, mix in the breadcrumbs with a spoon.

Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs

4.  Place the mixture in a pot and add the beef stock, vegetable oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, and paprika.
5.  Cook to a boil, and then continue cooking in high heat for about 12 minutes until it turns into a yellow-greenish color and a thick consistency.

Boil

Boil

6.  Serve as a topping for your favorite recipes, such as fish, potatoes, meats, arepas, boiled yuca or hallaquitas.

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño

Venezuelan Mojo Isleño

*Note:  My mojo looks very green, because I was unable to find the red chili peppers, so I used a green jalapeño instead.

¡Buen Provecho!

Recipe: Yuca Sancochada o Frita | Venezuelan Boiled or Fried Cassava

4 Apr

First and foremost, DO NOT EAT RAW YUCA!  Raw yuca contains two cyanogenic glucosides called linamarin and lotaustralin, which are decomposed by linamarase, thus liberating hydrogen cyanide.  I am no chemistry expert, but this stuff is highly toxic and you could become seriously ill and it could even be deadly.
So, now that I have scared you enough, lets talk about how yummy yucca is, if you dare to eat it, he he.  You have nothing to worry about, as long as you cook the yuca before you eat it.  In Venezuela we eat it all the time, and no one that I know of has ever died from eating yuca. So, seriously, don’t worry.  Just don’t eat it raw.
Yucca is a tuberous root, and in Venezuela we eat it in several different ways.  Yuca is served boiled as a side to our delicious parrillas, rotisserie chicken, or anything you can think of.  We also add it to soups.  We fry it to make delicious yuca fries.  We even prepare it differently to make casabe, a sort of yuca cracker.  So we use it much like you would a potato.  Boiled yuca is usually served hot with a little bit of butter, or a cilantro and parsley mojo, or Guasacaca (specially when eating at parrillas).  Fried yucca is usually served as a side much like French fries, with salt, but you could definitely dip it in a delicious Venezuelan Salsa Verde as well.

Cassava (yuca) roots, the Taínos' main crop

Boiled Yuca
What you need:

– 500 gr. yuca (about 1 large or 2 pieces)
– Enough water to cover the yuca
– Salt (to taste)
– Toppings (butter, cilantro and parsley mojo, guasacaca, salsa verde, etc).
Preparation:
1. Cut the tips of the yuca, then peel it and rinse it with water.

Cut, peel and rinse.

Cut, peel and rinse.

2. In a large enough pot, add the water and the yuca (make sure the water covers the yuca entirely).  Turn the stove to high heat until the water starts boiling and then continue to cook for about 30 minutes.

Boil the Yuca

Boil the Yuca

3. Add the salt and then continue to cook for about 15 to 30 more minutes or until the yuca is soft (test like a potato), or until it starts to open up.
4. Drain the yuca and serve hot.
5. You can serve it with butter, with salt, or with a cilantro and parsley mojo, salsa verde or guasacaca.

Yuca Sancochada | Boiled Yuca

Yuca Sancochada | Boiled Yuca

Fried Yuca
What you need:

– Same as above, plus oil for frying
Preparation:
1. Follow the instructions for Boiled Yuca.

Yuca Sancochada | Boiled Yuca

Yuca Sancochada | Boiled Yuca

2. Make sure you drain the yuca right away, and then let it cool completely. Or better yet, place it in your fridge for it to cool faster.
3. Cut the yuca into sticks.

Cut

Cut

4. Heat up enough frying oil and fry the yuca sticks until golden brown all over.
5. Serve hot and sprinkle with salt.
6. You can serve with a yummy dipping sauce like Venezuelan Salsa Verde or Guasacaca.

Yuca Frita | Fried Yuca

Yuca Frita | Fried Yuca

¡Buen Provecho!

Recipe: Venezuelan Tostones

21 Sep

Tostones are one of my favorite ways to eat plantains.   It is also one of the most common ways to eat unripe plantains, and easy to make as well.   Because they use green plantains, the texture of Tostones is dry and hard, and their flavor is salty.   The simplest way to serve these plantains is sprinkled with salt, but you can treat them as appetizers, like little disk-dish for other toppings such as cheese, mojo, salsa, Guasacaca, salads, butter, lemon juice and much more.   Usually they are served as a side dish in other Venezuelan dishes with sprinkled salt on top.   Then as you eat the rest of your shredded beef, rice, black beans, avocado or such, you can use them as a cracker to pick up other main components of your dish.

Ingredients

Ingredients

Ingredients
– 1 unripe/green plantain
– 1½ cups of vegetable oil (enough for frying)
– 1 cup of water
– Garlic Powder (or 2 garlic cloves)
– Salt
– Olive oil
– Tostonera
– Bowl

Tostonera

Tostonera

Preparation

1. Add the oil to a small frying pan and heat it up on high temperature.
2. Mix the salt and garlic with the cup of water in a bowl, to create salty and garlicky water.
3. First cut the top and bottom of the plantain, just the tip.   Then cut a slit from top to bottom through the skin, until you touch the pulp.   Use a little bit of olive oil on your hands to separate the pulp from the skin, so that you avoid the pulp from blackening quickly.

Cut Tips and Slit

Cut Tips and Slit

Remove Skin

Remove Skin

4. Now cut the entire plantain in rounds of about half an inch each.

Cut In Circles

Cut In Circles

5. Fry the plantain rounds about 2 minutes on one side.   Then turn and continue frying another 2 minutes on the other side.

Fry

Fry

Turn

Turn

6. Carefully remove the plantain from the pan and lay them on top of some paper towels to soak up the excess oil. Do not turn off the stove just yet.

Lay on Paper Towels

Lay on Paper Towels

7. Now you will flatten the rounds in to the famous “Tostones” shape.   You can do this easily with a “Tostonera”, which is simply a wooden press created specifically to make Tostones.   But if you don’t have one, you can use a mallet or the bottom of a plate.   Make sure you don’t press too hard or the tostón will break.   Leave them at about ¼ of an inch thick.

Flatten Plantain Rounds with Tostonera to form Tostones

Flatten Plantain Rounds with Tostonera to form Tostones

Repeat with each plantain round

Repeat with each plantain round

8. Dip each tostón in the salty/garlicky water mixture and then place them back in the pan to fry them a bit more.

Dip in Salt/Garlic Water

Dip in Salt/Garlic Water

9. Once golden take them out and lay them again on paper towels to soak up the excess oil.

Fry a second time and remove excess oil with paper towels again

Fry a second time and remove excess oil with paper towels again

10. Sprinkle with salt and serve.

Serve Hot & Sprinkle with Salt

Serve Hot & Sprinkle with Salt

* 1 plantain makes about 10 Tostones (depending on how long the plantain is and on how thick you slice it).

Venezuelan Tostones

Venezuelan Tostones

Venezuelan Tostones

Venezuelan Tostones

¡Buen Provecho!

Recipe: Salsa Verde

17 Aug

So, one night my cousin tells me I have to try this “guasacaca”, and then she says it has no avocados.   This is why I am telling you we Venezuelans call every green sauce “Guasacaca”.   However, as I have explained before, this is not true.   I have already given you the recipe for Guasacaca, and this green sauce is not it.   For starters it has no avocados!

I know there are some similar green sauces that we Venezuelans call “Mojo” (Mo-ho).   This is also NOT a Mojo, because it contains mayonnaise.   Therefore I have nothing else to call it but green sauce (Salsa Verde).   Although, I my friend came up with a more clever name, she tasted it, then savored it, she thought about it, and then she said, “It’s like a Mexican Ranch”.

I have tried this Salsa Verde both on top of grilled skirt steak and inside tacos, and it is delicious with both.   I have yet to try it as a veggie dip, but I think it would be a good combination.

Ingredients for Salsa Verde

Ingredients for Salsa Verde


Ingredients

1/3 onion, large
1 clove of garlic
1 teaspoon of vinegar
1 handful of parsley
1 handful of cilantro
4 or 5 dollops of mayonnaise
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons of olive oil

Ingredients for Salsa Verde

Ingredients for Salsa Verde

Preparation

Add all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend them well. Serve. You can keep the leftovers in the fridge for about a day. Also the sauce will thicken as it sits, but if not, you can add cornstarch to thicken it, without changing the taste.

Salsa Verde in the Food Processor

Salsa Verde in the Food Processor

Like the Guasacaca, you can serve this Salsa Verde atop your parrilla (steak), and also inside tacos.

* Makes about 1½ cups.

Salsa Verde

Salsa Verde

¡Buen Provecho!

%d bloggers like this: