Coffee-Ancho Chili Spice Rub
- ½ cup ancho chili powder*
- ½ cup Ruta Maya Organic Coffee, finely ground
- 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon each of:
- Dry mustard
- Coriander, ground
- Black pepper
- Cayenne pepper
- Cumin, ground
Place all the above ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and mix well. (We recommend using organic, as much as possible). HOW TO RUB. After cooking, serve with a lime wedge and a sprinkling of fresh, chopped cilantro.
*If you cannot ancho chili powder this readily available; ancho chilies are generally available in cellophane packages, in the International Foods isle of most markets. Simply remove the stem end and seeds, and grind the flesh in a mill or small food processor, until fine.
Capirotada (pronounced – cah-pee-ro-tah-dah), or Mexican Bread Pudding
For many Hispanic families, Capirotada conjures up fond memories of our mothers baking a wonderful Sunday brunch – with wafts of cinnamon and vanilla floating in the air – and the aroma of fresh coffee brewing. Moments that bring a feeling of peace and gratitude. Try this Mexican classic – now with a new twist, coffee – for your Easter brunch.
Serves: 6 – 8
Vegetable cooking spray
6 ounces of challah bread (or other egg-based bread), cut into 3⁄4 -inch cubes. (Note: it is best not to use stale bread; as this traps moisture, and prevents through toasting).
2 cups half-and-half
2 tablespoon Ruta Maya Organic Coffee, ground 1/3 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3 egg yolks
2 whole eggs
1/3 cup walnuts, chopped and toasted 1/3 cup raisins
Serve with a sprinkling of confectioner’s sugar, and Neuchâtel (cream cheese) that has been softened with Greek yogurt and lightly sweetened with confectioner’s sugar.
Adjust oven racks to middle and lower-middle positions; and preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray an ovenproof, thick (glass, ceramic, or double-walled aluminum) 8x8 inch dish with vegetable spray, line with parchment paper, and spray again. Set aside.
Spread bread cubes in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake on the lower rack, tossing them occasionally, until crisp (but not brown); and turn the sheet halfway through the baking time, to ensure even toasting – 12 to 15 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
Making a coffee sachet: Place ground coffee in a doubled over (enough times to prevent grounds from escaping) cheese cloth; and secure with a cotton twine. Set aside.
Whisk eggs yolks and whole eggs, in a medium size bowl; set aside.
To Make the Custard: Heat the half-and-half in a saucepan over a medium heat, stirring gently to prevent scorching; until it begins to simmer at the edges. Remove from heat, add the coffee sachet and let sit for 5 minutes. After a couple of minutes of steeping, give the coffee sachet a few squeezes – using the stirring ladle against the side of the saucepan, to release the coffee essence. After the 5 minutes, remove the sachet, set aside and allow to cool. Once cooled, squeeze the last remains of liquid into the saucepan. Next, whisk in the sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt – checking to see the sugar is mostly dissolved.
It is important to temper the eggs before adding them to the saucepan mixture. To do this, temper the eggs by adding a few ladles of the warmed half-and-half. Then pour the (now warmed) eggs mixture into the saucepan.
Transfer the cooled bread cubes into a large bowl, and add the custard mixture, toss gently to coat. Add the walnuts and raisins; mix lightly and pour mixture into the prepared baking dish. Let stand for 30 minutes, to allow bread to absorb the pudding mix.
Place the baking dish on the middle rack, in the preheated oven, for approximately 25 minutes (or until inserted toothpick comes out only slightly moist), turning the dish halfway through the baking time. Remove from oven and let cool until pudding is set and just slightly warm. See serving suggestion.