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Thursday, March 8, 2012

Basic Sofrito

So what is Sofrito?

Think chopped seasoned vegetables which are seasoned and lightly sauteed. This is used in cooking many Latin American foods as the "base". Try this simple Sofrito. Other cultures use this cooking method, also known as epis (Haitian), Guiso (Colombian), it is also used in Mexican, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese, as well as Cuban, Puerto Rican, Caribbean cuisines and so forth.

Once you have learned to make Sofrito. Add vegetables to your taste and proceed to make the recipe your own - based on your likes, dislikes, local fresh vegetables available and recipes you wish to incorporate the Sofrito in.

1 T vegetable oil
1 onion, chopped
1 large green bell pepper, seeded, devoid of membrane, chopped
1 large yellow bell pepper, seeded, devoid of membrane, chopped (may substitute an orange bell pepper)
1 large red bell pepper, seeded, devoid of membrane, chopped
3 cloves minced garlic
1 t salt
1 t fresh cracked black pepper
1/2 - 1 t fresh cumin, ground
cilantro to taste, chopped or crushed (about 1/3 to 1/2 cup)

Heat the oil, add the peppers and onions. Cook until onions are translucent, add salt and pepper. Stir and mix well. This will take about 10 minutes. Add your cilantro and allow it wilt. Stir and use immediately, or you may keep in the fridge for about 4 days or better yet, freeze any you are not using for up to 2 mos.

Here are a few options to consider:
  • Tomatoes
  • Bay leaf
  • achiote (annato seeds)
  • pork
  • ham
  • lard
  • capers
  • turmeric
  • cardamon
  • Oregano 
  • Habaneros or other chile

Makes approximately 2 cups of Sofrito.

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