Thursday, April 14, 2011

Harina Rellena (Corn Meal and Picadillo)

Harina Rellena seems to be another one of those signature dishes that abuelas and even abuelos are known for in their respective families. I didn't have an harina maker in my family, but after this recipe, I think I'll take that title over myself.

Harina maker. Has a nice ring to it.

Harina rellena con picadillo, like tonight. Harina con cangrejos, like back in September of last year. Harina with masitas de puerco (fried pork chunks), like one of my Facebook friends mentioned today as I posted my cooking progress.

Harina maker. Yep, that or cheesemonger. Two crazy careers I could totally see myself jumping into if I ever won the lotto.

iPhone 924

154: Harina Rellena


iPhone 914

1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1 3/4 cups course yellow corn meal (harina de maíz)
1 Tablespoon salt
8 cups water
1 recipe for Picadillo

1. Heat the oil in a pressure cooker and fry the garlic until just browned.

iPhone 915

2. Remove the pressure cooker from the heat.
3. Add the corn meal to the pressure cooker and toss in the garlic and oil.
4. Add the salt and water and mix well.

iPhone 916

5. Place back on the burner, on high heat.
6. Close the pressure cooker.
7. When the pressure sets (nozzle cover starts to rattle), turn heat down to medium and cook for 15 minutes.

* Note: you may have to keep lowering the heat until you find the right temperature. The right temperature will keep the pressure set but will prevent the corn meal from spraying out the top nozzle. If corn meal is spraying out, lower the heat until it stops. *
8. Prepare picadillo recipe.
9. When the 15 minutes have passed, turn off the heat from the pressure cooker.
10. When the safety valve releases, open the pressure cooker.
11. If the harina is still runny, turn the heat back on - to low, or simmer - in order to let the excess liquid evaporate.

iPhone 920

12. When you have a thick consistency, ladle a layer of harina into a greased pyrex.
13. Ladle a layer of picadillo over the layer of harina.

iPhone 921

14. Top with harina to form the final layer.

iPhone 923

* Note: let cool between layers. This dish can be served immediately, which will be more runny. It can also be served at room temperature, which will be more firm.