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Old 09-02-2006, 11:09 PM   #21
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A griddle or a comal works great - you just want them wilted not toasted.

This is one recipe for Achiote paste. Found on allrecipes.com I think, Steven that you are thinking of just the annatto seeds - which have very little flavor - but achiote has a lot of flavor

INGREDIENTS:

  • 5 tablespoons achiote (annatto) seeds
  • 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 8 whole allspice berries
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 3 habanero peppers, seeded
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
  • 8 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 5 lemons, juiced
  • 1 teaspoon premium tequila


DIRECTIONS:

  1. With a spice grinder, grind the annatto seeds, cumin seeds, peppercorns, allspice berries, and cloves to a fine powder.
  2. In a blender or food processor, mix the ground spices, habanero peppers, orange juice, vinegar, garlic, and salt. Blend until smooth. Mix in the lemon juice and tequila.
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Old 09-03-2006, 03:01 AM   #22
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hello harborwitch... i am currently living in central america and was born and raised here so i am very familiar with both achiote and annatto. i have used it extensively in cooking and purchased local "achiote" and "bijol" and annatto seeds whole and made annatto oil to be used in arroz con pollo and other dishes. when you provided the recipe above, i became very intriqued at what it was because it wasnt the "achiote" i was used to seeing locally in Panama... I further did some research and the conclusion is that ACHIOTE is the "bixa orellana" plant of which the annatto seeds come from. the "achiote" which i spoke of as "devoid of flavor" they sell here in little bottles and it is a bright red watery liquid, which i now know after further research happens to be made by stirring the seeds in water. my research led me to your "achiote paste" which is different to my "achiote" - this paste you speak of has its origins in Mexico and it is called in spanish "recado rojo" and is a blend of spices that also includes annatto... so these spices is where the flavor you speak of comes from. It is an originally Mayan blend now strongly associated with the cuisine of the Yucatan peninsula. Thanks for the feedback!
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Old 09-03-2006, 12:17 PM   #23
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Thank you for the additional information - I love learning more about cuisines from Latin America. They are my favorite cuisines, so varied, fresh, and just amazing. We have long talked where in Latin America we'd like to retire. We have friends in Mexico, Brazil, and Costa Rica. We think we were born in the wrong country!!

Well off to juice a bunch of citrus and go play with big chunk of piggy, get the black beans on, get the pupusas ready to cook. Wheeeee a fun day in the boat kitchen!!!!

Have a great daY!
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Old 09-03-2006, 07:32 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seven S
achiote is used extensively all throughout latina america, and gives a wonderful hue to meats and rice dishes, however, it is completely devoid of any flavor that i can detect
I've ground the stuff up AND added it to oil and chiles. It has a very subtle, earthy flavour. Not a spice ( in the sense that it doesn't really influence the flavour, unless you use loads of it), but an integral part of many Latin American dishes.
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Old 09-04-2006, 01:16 PM   #25
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The cochinita pibil came out great! We had lots of lovely munchies - one of our berthers brought beautiful Vietnamese egg rolls, and there were phyllo wrapped bundles of asparagus and peppers. Lots of lovely food. It was nice to spend the evening under the stars with great friends, good food and wine. Did I mention the margaritas????
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