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Bienvenidos a Los Dos: Recipes

About Chef David Sterling
 

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CHILLED SALAD OF SHREDDED MEAT AND VEGETABLES

TSI'IKBIL BAK' YÉETEL U XA'AK' IS THE FULL MAYAN WORD FOR THIS DISH, more commonly reduced to just tsi’ik; literally translated it means “a mixture of shredded meat with condiments and other ingredients”. Tsi'ik is traditionally made with venison although many recipes substitute chicken, beef or pork. Venado (deer) is one of Yucatán's most popular game animals. In fact, it is so popular that overhunting has been a problem leading to government restrictions. The restrictions are set and lifted according to surveys of deer populations. The deer is cooked with achiote in a pib, or underground oven, and then shredded. This is clearly an ancient dish, since for millennia the Maya have shredded their meats and added torn or chopped vegetables to extend what may be a small quantity of protein. Citrus, cabbage, radishes and cilantro are post-conquest additions. Tsi'ik may be served as tacos or as a refreshing summer salad. Due to its ready availability, we have suggested chicken for this recipe.

• 1 recipe Pollo Asado, (or cooked venison, pork or beef) cooled and finely shredded
• 2 tomatoes, finely chopped
• 10 medium radishes, cut in fine julienne
• 1/2 red onion, finely chopped
• 6 Tbs. (20g) cilantro, finely chopped
• 6 Tbs. (20g) chives, chopped
• 1/4 small green cabbage, finely shredded
• 1 chile habanero, finely chopped
• 1/2 cup (120ml) naranja agria juice (Also known as sour orange or Seville orange. Substitute: 2 parts lime juice, 1 part each orange juice and grapefruit juice)
• Salt to taste

STEP 1  PLACE SHREDDED CHICKEN or other meat in a large non-reactive mixing bowl. Add vegetables and toss well to combine. Refrigerate at least one hour before serving.

STEP 2  JUST BEFORE SERVING, add chilled juice, toss and check for seasonings. Serve immediately.

NOTE: Adding juice and salt earlier will result in wilted vegetables and leached color from the radishes.

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