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Mexico -- One Plate at a Time with Rick Bayless Previous Broadcasts

Liquid Gold (Episode #713H)

KQED Plus: Sun, Sep 16, 2012 -- 1:30 PM

Rick and his daughter, Lanie, check out a fabulous fish fillet at a neighborhood restaurant in Mexico City, and then, at a seafood street stall, they get rapturous over a plate of succulent garlicky prawns that rivals the best scampi in the world. The common denominator of these two dishes? It's one of the cornerstones of Mexican cooking, Mojo de Ajo (literally, "bath of garlic") - a sauce made by slowly simmering garlic in olive oil and seasoning it with lime and chiles. Back home in Chicago, Rick shows us how he plants, grows and cures this flavorful garlic variety, then uses some to make a big batch of Mojo de Ajo - a jar of "liquid gold" to keep on hand for enhancing just about anything. First, he uses some of it to make Mixiotes of Woodland Mushrooms with Slow-Cook Garlic and Mexican Herbs, bathed in mojo and baked in parchment. Then Lanie uses a little more to make her favorite snack, fresh-popped Garlicky Popcorn with Mexican Queso Anejo "buttered" with mojo and sprinkled with chile powder. Now it's Rick's turn to whip up a quick Seared Fish Fillets in Fruity, Nutty, Garlicky Mojo. And finally, Lanie helps him make a favorite family specialty: Garlicky Linguine with Seared Shrimp, Chipotle and Mexican Aged Cheese. It all adds up to this: a splash of mojo de ajo can be the Midas touch that turns just about any ingredient into culinary gold.

Repeat Broadcasts:

  • KQED Plus: Sun, Sep 30, 2012 -- 1:30 PM

Chorizo Made Easy (Episode #712H)

KQED Plus: Sun, Sep 9, 2012 -- 1:30 PM

Chorizo, the succulent pork sausage seasoned with chiles, spices and a touch of vinegar, is the "bacon of Mexico" - the perfect accompaniment for eggs and, like bacon, a versatile ingredient for cooking that can give any dish a serious head start on flavor. At his neighborhood Mexican grocery in Chicago, Rick shows us fresh-made chorizo sold at the butcher counter and talks about how it is made. Buying a batch of the sausage to take home, he quickly turns it into a Caramelized Onion and Chorizo to use for a taco filling. Then he transforms that full-flavored mixture into a dressing for a Chorizo Spinach Salad with jicama, a Mexican-style take on the classic wilted spinach salad with warm bacon dressing. At the Medellin Market in Mexico City, he introduces us to green chorizo, a popular 20th-century innovation from the town of Toluca, made with fresh herbs and cilantro, now enjoyed all over Mexico. In the U.S., it's not easy to find. So, in his home kitchen, Rick shows how to make it from scratch, and then puts it to use in a classic way: Green Queso Fundido, a warm fondue-like melted cheese dip. Then it's back to Mexico City and the high-style Paxia restaurant where we get a look at the chef's whimsical, thoroughly modern reinterpretation of chorizo and eggs: tiny quail eggs served on dollops of light, frothy chorizo mousse. That prompts Rick to share with us his own "chorizo revisited" signature at his fine-dining restaurant, Topolobampo - Seafood Chorizo, a delicate poached seafood sausage, seared and served over a tangle of salad greens.

Tacos Hola! (Episode #710H)

KQED Plus: Sun, Sep 2, 2012 -- 1:30 PM

We find Rick and his daughter, Lanie, at the Mexico City's colorful Sonora Market, an emporium of medicinal herbs and the best place in town to buy cazuelas, the beautifully rustic earthenware cooking and serving casseroles that define a whole class of stews and taco fillings. We tend to think of taquerias for their familiar grilled and griddled fillings, like carne asada. But, Rick explains, there's a whole world of stands and shops that have no grill at all and specialize in satisfyingly homey, slow-cooked fillings made in cazuelas with everything from stewed meat to richly flavorful vegetables. Rick and Lanie check out El Guero, a Mexico City institution, popularly known as "Tacos Hola!," that specializes in slow-cooked taco fillings. Back home in Chicago, Rick and Lanie plan a cazuela-taco dinner. Lanie throws together a quick Pork with Smoky Tomato Sauce and Potatoes in the crockpot before heading off to school. By dinnertime, it'll be meltingly tender and richly flavored. Meanwhile, Rick gathers some chard in the garden, offering a quick intro to the care and tending of this hearty, easy-to-grow vegetable. Then, he turns his harvest into a filling of Creamy Braised Chard, Potatoes and Poblanos and also prepares a Veracruz-Flavored Chilled Seafood. The three fillings, mounded in those charming cazuelas from the Sonora Market, form the centerpiece for a cozy dinner with friends and family.

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