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  Yucutan Vegan Tacos



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8-12 long eggplant, about 8-10 inches long
1/2 ounce achiote seeds
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
3 whole cloves
1 inch Mexican canela cinnamon stick
3/4 teaspoon salt
3 large garlic cloves, smashed and chopped
Juice of 2-3 sour oranges OR 4 limes + 1 orange OR 1/3 cup lime juice + 3 T orange juice
A drizzle of olive oil

Preheat oven to broil and place rack 6 inches from flame.
Broil eggplant until easily dented with a fingertip. Set aside to cool.
In a small bowl, combine achiote seeds, oregano, peppercorns, cumin seeds, cloves and cinnamon stick.
Transfer to spice or coffee grinder and process until powdery. Combine spices with salt and garlic.
Mix in juice a little at a time to form a chunky paste.
To form a smooth paste, place powdered spices, salt, garlic and juice in a blender.
Remove stem end, peel eggplant and cut into bite-size chunks.
Combine eggplant with spice mixture until thoroughly coated.
Cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 2-24 hours.
At least three hours before serving, remove eggplant from refrigerator and bring to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Place marinated eggplant in a covered casserole. Drizzle top with a little olive oil.
Cover and cook 2-3 hours, until bubbly.
Serve in warm soft corn tortillas with Pickled Red Onions and habañero salsa.

Copyright © 2018 Stefanie Samara Hamblen