Happy long weekend!
It’s FINALLY going to be sunny here which is really exciting, even though I kind of wish I was spending the holiday at camp with my family. My Timehop yesterday reminded me that 4 years ago we were also having an unseasonably hot weekend at the lake. Hot enough, apparently, for Kevin to get in the water. When I asked him how the temperature was, he described it as “cold, slash warm.”
Last weekend the GS and I had a fun day planned because we knew it was going to rain… again.
We went to Manor Hill Brewery for a beer tasting. We tried a little bit of everything..
Then we went to Kelly and Aaron’s new favorite restaurant in Baltimore, Alma Cocina.
The ceviche was incredible. And pretty! As was the red sangria.
We ordered a bunch of small things to share, and one of them was an arepa. Arepas are basically pita pockets made with corn flour. They’re crispier than a tortilla or a hamburger bun, but you can stuff them with pretty much anything. Ours had chicken, cilantro, and an avocado mayo.
I was immediately inspired and now I want to shove everything into a corn pocket.
I used pork tenderloin because they were BOGO a couple weeks ago so I had one in the freezer. You can use any meat, or keep it veggie! I marinated it in a concoction of spicy mustard, brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, and honey. And maybe some other things that I can’t recall. Vinegar? You can use whatever you want.
The arepas are literally just corn flour and water. BUT you have to buy a certain kind of corn flour. My research told me to buy something called P.A.N pre-cooked maize meal. Harris Teeter didn’t have it and I wasn’t in the mood for a field trip to the Mexican market on Eastern Ave. I bought Maseca, which is “instant corn flour” and was in the baking aisle. It worked just fine.
Mix equal parts flour and water (I did 3 cups of each) until thoroughly combined. It will be a very soft, somewhat sticky dough. Let it rest for about 10 minutes.
Form into patties. I did 4 big ones, but you could do more of a slider size. You just want to make sure it’s thick enough to be able to slice it open to stuff it. Pan fry in vegetable oil for 2-3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Then I baked mine at 350 for about 20 minutes, and the GS threw them on the grill for a few minutes, too. I read that they’re done when you tap on the top and it sounds hollow. I’m not sure I needed to cook them quite as long or in so many ways, but they weren’t overcooked!
For the filling, I basically made guacamole- avocado, garlic, cilantro, salt, lime zest and juice. I sliced up some radishes and red onion as well. My original plan was to copy the “avocado mayo” we had at the restaurant, but isn’t avocado really just nature’s mayonnaise?
These would be a fantastic idea for your MDW party. Make a bunch of arepas, have some different meats and toppings, and let people assemble their own. It’s going to be your pho party of the summer!