Monday, February 6, 2012

RECIPE - Panelada

Should you decide that you want to make the traditional Brazilian stew called panelada, you're likely to run into two obstacles en route to a culinary home run at the dinner table. First, if you live in North America or metropolitan areas of Europe you're likely to have problems finding sources for some of the ingredients that the dish demands. Things like cow stomach (including but not limited to tripe) and cow intestines. The other problem (at least if you consider honesty a virtue) is convincing family members, dinner guests or amyone else to whom you serve the dish to try panelada with an open mind. (If you don't consider honesty a virtue and try to lie your way into general acceptance of panelada the shape and form of the stomach and intestines will probably give your game away.)

But there are always those culinary pioneers who boldly go where no cook has gone before, and for them we offer this recipe for panelada from the northeastern Brazilian state of Ceará, where panelada is considered an iconic dish.
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RECIPE - Panelada
Serves 4

1/2 lb (250 gr) cow stomach (tripe may be substituted)
1/2 lb (250 gr ) cow intestine
juice of 3 limes
1/2 Tbsp salt
2 large tomatoes, seeded and chopped
2 medium onions, chopped
1/2 Tbsp annatto powder (sweet paprika may be substituted)
2 bay leaves
1 red or green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1 cup chopped cilantro
fresh-ground black pepper to taste
6 cloves garlic, minced
1 jalapeno or serrano chili
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Using kitchen scissors, cut the stomach (or tripe) into small squares and the intestine into 1/2 in (1 cm) rings. Wash them very well in several changes of water. Put them in a heavy saucepan, cover with cold water, add the lime juice and bring to a boil over medium high heat. Let boil for one minute, then drain them in a sieve. When cool, wash again in several changes of fresh water.

In a large pan, combine the washed stomach or tripe and intestine, the salt, the chopped tomato and onions, the annatto or paprika and the bay leaves. Heat over medium heat, partially covered. Stir from time to time to mix ingredients and to help the tomato to break down. When liquid comes to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for approximately 40 minutes, adding a small amount of water from time to time if the dish appears to be drying out.

Stir in the bell peppers, the garlic and chilis. Cover the pan and cook over low heat until the meats can be easily pierced with a fork and are tender.

Remove from heat, pour into a deep serving bowl and mix in the chopped cilantro. Serve immediately accompanied by white rice.

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