Try your hand at these recipes from James Beard-award winning chef Iliana de la Vega for an authentic Oaxacan dining experience.
Since 2012, El Naranjo has brought its patrons delicious traditional Mexican dishes inspired by Chef Iliana de la Vega's Oaxacan heritage. Now, she's sharing her traditions with you. Give these authentic Oaxacan recipes a go.
Sopa de Pepino, Yogurt y Chile Jalapeño
6 cucumbers peeled, de-seeded
3 cup plain bulgur-style yogurt
1 small garlic clove, peeled
1 – 2 jalapeño chiles stems removed (do not remove the seeds)
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
⅓ bunch fresh cilantro
Salt to taste
3 corn tortillas
½ cup canola oil
Cilantro leaves or cilantro microgreens to garnish
Cut the prepared cucumbers into rough pieces. Place in a blender along with yogurt, garlic, chiles, and extra virgin olive oil. Blend until smooth. Add salt to taste. Add cilantro and blend until well incorporated, but not too blended. Taste for salt. Chill.
Cut the tortillas in small squares.Heat oil and fry the tortillas until golden and crisp, remove with a slotted spoon, and drain on racks.
Serve the chilled soup and garnish with the tortilla squares and cilantro.
Serves 2 (as an appetizer)
½ cup crema Mexicana or crème fraîche
1 – 2 chipotles en adobo, canned
½ tablespoon canola oil
½ white onion, thinly sliced
1 garlic clove, minced
8 ounces small shrimp, peeled, uncooked
2 teaspoon cilantro, chopped
4 white corn tortillas or tostadas, warmed
Salt to taste
Purée the crema Mexicana and the chiles. Reserve.
Heat the oil in a skillet and sauté the onion until translucent. Add the garlic and shrimp and sauté until the shrimp is cooked. Add the chipotle crema and heat through. Season with salt to taste, mix in the cilantro, and add a splash of lime juice. Remove from heat and serve immediately with tortillas or tostadas.
To serve as a main course, use larger shrimp and serve with white rice.
To learn more about the James Beard award-winning chef and her restaurant, El Naranjo, click here.
Photography: courtesy of El Naranjo