Most hunters get up early for the opening day of deer season in Wisconsin. At our cabin, the alarm sounds before 5:00 AM. That annoying sound is followed by various grunts and groans as the guys crawl out of bed and pull on long underwear and heavy socks.
I am usually the last one up, but once I smell coffee brewing and hear Craig’s clattering in the kitchen I join the crew as we wait for “Huevos a la Mexicana,” or Mexican eggs. Craig’s version of this classic Mexican breakfast dish includes chorizo, a spicy sausage brought to Mexico by the Spanish but adopted and modified by the native people they found living there.
Craig and his wife Kathy discovered the joys of Mexican cuisine when they first visited the “Mayan Riviera” many years ago. Extending south from Cancun on the Caribbean coast of the state of Quintana Roo, the region offers beautiful beaches and many Mayan archeological sites including Tulum, the only known Mayan city built on the ocean. It also has a lot of good little restaurants that Craig and Kathy have discovered over the years.
Most recipes for Huevos a la Mexicana call for eggs, green jalapeños, white onion, and red tomatoes, the three colors in the flag of Mexico. Craig developed his version because he likes chorizo and cheese with his eggs. He substitutes the white cheese for the onions. Even at 5:30 in the morning it is a winning combination.
3 oz. chorizo sausage
2 large jalapeño peppers
1 medium Roma tomato
4 or 5 large eggs
2 T Mexican Queso Fresco
4 – 5 fajita-size tortillas (6 to 7 inch diameter)
Medium to hot salsa
Start by washing the jalapeños and tomato. Cut the stems from the peppers and slice them lengthwise into quarters. Remove the white membrane and seeds. If the pepper slices are more than a third of an inch wide, slice them in half. Chop the peppers into a quarter inch dice. Remove the stem scar from the tomato and chop it into a quarter inch dice as well.
Chop the chorizo into small pieces and fry over moderate heat for a few minutes in a large skillet. Add the jalapeños and tomatoes and continue to fry for three or four minutes. The peppers should be crunchy but warm.
Break the eggs into a measuring cup or bowl and beat them with a fork until they begin to turn lemon yellow. Pour the eggs over the chorizo, peppers and tomatoes and stir for about a half minute. Crumble the cheese over the top, reduce the heat and scramble the mixture with a wooden spoon until the eggs are cooked but not dry.
Heat the tortillas in a tortilla warmer in a microwave for thirty to forty-five seconds. Put the eggs into a serving bowl, remove the tortillas from the microwave and serve.
Make a sandwich by spreading sour cream on a tortilla and spooning on a few tablespoons of the eggs. Add some salsa, fold the bottom up, and turn the sides in. Eat hearty!
NOTES: With the quantities specified above, the recipe makes two very generous servings. When he makes Huevos a la Mexicana at the cabin, Craig doubles the recipe. There are four of us, and we need to be well nourished as we go forth to slay the wily whitetails.
Note that you do not add any salt or black pepper to the eggs.
Most of the heat in peppers is contained in the white membrane and seeds. Don’t remove them if you want spicier eggs.
There are three basic kinds of tortilla warmers. First, there are plastic or ceramic warmers that look like covered casseroles. Mexican restaurants often use this kind. Then there are fabric warmers that look like large potholders with a pocket. Craig uses this type. And finally there is the warmer we use, which is a plate with dampened paper towels at the top and bottom of the stack to keep the tortillas from drying out.
All these warmers are made to be used with microwave ovens. We use our primitive method because we are trying to keep from accumulating more kitchen gadgets and are willing to put up with having to reheat the tortillas from time to time. Commercial warmers will keep a stack of tortillas warm for at least half an hour.