A Taste of Guatemala

This month’s recipes come to you in honor of the recently completed Oklahoma Energy Trails electrification project in Guatemala where a team of volunteers from Oklahoma’s and Colorado’s electric cooperatives electrified two villages.

A Taste of Guatemala

Kak'ik

Kak’ik is a turkey soup that is very common in the Ixcan region of Guatemala, where the electrification project took place. The word Kak’ik is a Mayan word that means “red chili.” Try using leftover turkey bones and meat from holiday meals to make this savory broth.

Serves 6 to 8
Kak'ik

Ingredients

4 pounds bone-in dark meat turkey
1 dry Pasa chili*
2 dry Guajillo chilies*
1 bunch green onions
1 bunch cilantro
2 teaspoons salt
1 pound tomatoes
8 ounces tomatoillos, husk removed
1 red bell pepper
1 medium onion, cut into 8 wedges
2 heads of garlic, peeled

Directions

 

Place turkey in a large pot and cover with water. Add dry chilies, green onions, cilantro and salt. Place a lid on the pot, bring the mixture to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Turn the oven to broil. Place tomatoes, tomatillos, bell pepper, onion and peeled garlic cloves on a baking sheet. Broil vegetables for 5 minutes or until charred; flip and broil for 5 more. Transfer vegetables to a food processor or blender and puree. Add the pureed vegetables to the pot with the turkey. Continue to simmer the mixture for at least an hour. Pour the mixture through a fine mesh strainer into a serving bowl. The result will be a red-colored broth. Season with additional salt to taste. Serve with rice. *Note: if you can’t find Pasa and Guajillo chilies try adding a few tablespoons of chili powder and 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper.

 




Buñuelos

These Guatemalan fritters are often served during the Christmas season. The deep-fried dough is traditionally drizzled with an anise flavored syrup. You can also use honey, as suggested in this recipe. 

Yields approximately 2 dozen
Buñuelos

Ingredients

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
1 cup water
1/2 cup butter
3 eggs, beaten
Oil for frying
Honey for drizzling

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking power and salt. In a medium saucepan, boil the water and melt the butter. Remove the pot from the heat and stir the flour into the water mixture to form a thick dough; mix in the beaten eggs until fully combined. Use a cookie scoop or hands to form 1-inch balls of dough. Fill a medium saucepan half way with oil. Heat oil to approximately 350°F. Test one dough ball. Fry until golden brown and cooked through. If the outside is dark before the inside is done, reduce the oil temperature. Cook a few buñuelos at a time. Use a slotted spoon to remove buñuelos from the oil and place onto a plate lined with paper towels. Serve hot, drizzled with honey.




Refried Black Beans

While we might think of refried beans as a lunch or dinner dish, they are also found on the breakfast table in Guatemala, often topped with fresh cream. A typical Guatemalan breakfast will also include scrambled eggs, fried plantain bananas, corn tortillas and coffee.

Yields approximately 6 cups
Refried Black Beans

Ingredients

1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups dry black beans
1 bayleaf
2 bouillon cubes (any flavor)
5 cups water
2 tablespoons bacon grease

Directions

Place all ingredients, except bacon grease, into a slow cooker. Cook on low for 8 hours. Use an immersion blender to puree the beans; or transfer cooled beans to a blender or food processor and puree (work in batches if needed). Melt the bacon grease in a large skillet over medium. Add the bean puree and cook until the beans thicken. Taste and season with salt if needed.