The entrée of our menu from Veracruz was ‘Huatape Veracruzana con Camarones’. Traditionally, special large sweet prawns are used in this dish, and Chef Rossana felt that the BC spot prawns would be a perfect substitute. They were cooked in a light ‘mole’ which means that we only used 10 chiles, not 50! Served with a Mexican-style white rice (fried before adding the seasoned chicken broth) and topped with fried plantain chips, this was an unusual and tasty mole…
- the 5 chipotle and 5 gaujillo chiles for the Huatape Veracruzana mole.
- the dried chiles were boiled until soft, and the rice was fried until it turned golden and sounded like ‘sand in the pan’.
- the boiled chiles were blended with onion, garlic, water and a pinch of epazote.
- pungent, and redolent of mint, licorice and a delicate kerosene, epazote adds a distinctive taste to the mole. Remove the stems before adding to the sauce as they are quite woody. Rossana says epazote adds a certain extra to plain quesadilla, and is practically a requirement for bean dishes as it counteracts unpleasant beany side effects.
- The ‘masa‘ (corn dough) was turned into a liquid paste to act as a thickener for the mole
- Spot prawns were added to the thickened mole.
- Once the prawns were added to the Huatape sauce everything was cooked another six minutes.
- Meanwhile plantains were cut up and deep-fried.
- Huatape Veracruzana con Camarones served with Mexican-style white rice topped with fried plantain chips.