~ A Versatile Tex-Mex Condiment: Chile-Lime Mayo ~
Today is the unofficial start to barbecue and grill season here in Central Pennsylvania. Whether your preference is the low-and-slow barbecue pit (Eastern or Western North Carolina-, Texas-, Kansas City-, or Memphis-style), or, the fast-and-furious charcoal or gas grill, from Cinco de Mayo to Labor Day, there will be plenty opportunities for all of us to show off and share our smoke and fire skills. We Americans love to cook, eat and drink in the great outdoors.
Joe and I don't pretend to be pit-masters or grill-masters, but, we do turn out some very tasty stuff, and, amongst our favorite recipes are those containing the bright, bold flavors of our American southwest, affectionately referred to as "Tex-Mex". For the next few months, the vegetable bin of my refrigerator will never be without bell and jalapeno peppers, tomatoes, cilantro and fresh limes. In my pantry, you'll find a reusable jelly jar full of ~ Jesse's Smokin' Rib Rub a la Jesse's Mom (Mel) + (My Tips & Technique for Gas Grill Smoked Ribs) ~. Just click in Categories 8, 10, 13, 15 or 17 to find out what goes into this flavor-packed concoction!
Consider this easy-to-make all-purpose condiment recipe your Tex-Mex version of French aioli (a garlic-flavored mayonnaise hailing from Provence). It can be used as a dip, a dressing or a spread, and it goes great with all sorts of meat, poultry, fish, seafood and vegetables.
1 1/2-2 cups minced, fresh cilantro (Note: Since the cilantro is going to be processed, including more stem in your minced cilantro than you normally would in other recipes is just fine.)
1 12-ounce jar sliced, pickled jalapenos, well-drained
1 large lime, all of its zest and all of its juice (Note: You want to add 2 tablespoons lime juice. If the lime is not particularly juicy, make up the difference with bottled concentrate.)
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
~ Step 1. Place all ingredients in work bowl of food processor fitted with steel blade. With motor running, process until smooth, 30-45 seconds. Transfer to a food storage container and refrigerate 2-24 hours, and, up to one week.
Note: This mayonnaise thickens as it chills, and, its flavor intensifies if the flavors are given time to marry, so, if you have the time to make it in advance, do it. Suggested uses:
(Just click on the Related Article links below to get the following three recipes.)
A DIP for my appetizer: Batter-Dipped Avocado Bites
Special Equipment List: cutting board; chef's knife; microplane grater; food processor
Cook's Note: My philosophy is, "if you're going to make your own rib rub, you ought to make your own BBQ sauce too." My ~ Kansas City BBQ Sauce: Sweet, Spicy & Smokey ~, found in Categories 8, 10, 17 or 20, is so good, it's on the menu, served with grilled chicken, at the Happy Valley Brewing Company in State College, PA!
"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti
(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2015)