Chef Bueno: From the desert to Chef Bueno’s table

Hello friends! Once again, I bring you a story filled with flavor.

This time we will talk about the flavors of Los Cabos. In the desert, we find several ingredients that are considered exotic in the kitchens of Baja California Sur.

In this edition, I will tell you how to prepare a recipe with two of the most enigmatic and popular products in our gastronomy: Oregano of the desert, or oregano del monte, and damiana.

Ten years ago, I went for a walk in the desert and came across these magical ingredients. They have been my allies ever since in preparations such as wood fired chicken, hare stew, chimichurri, vinaigrettes, salts and even marmalades.

Interestingly, in addition to unusual flavors, both plants have healing properties. Damiana is used in infusions. There are those who add it to honey and milk. The plant can relieve headaches and is said to be an aphrodisiac.

Oregano is typically used in preparations such as machaca burritos, fish stew, sauces and marinades. The taste it gives the food is impressive and its aroma is so intense, it can find in the desert by the smell.

Allow me to take you to the kitchen and prepare a mango jam with damiana and oregano.

 

Mango, damiana and oregano marmalade

  • Mango Pulp in Medium Cubes 500gr
    • Damiana (only the leaf) Fresh 25gr or Dry 10gr
    • Desert Oregano dry leaves 2gr (One Pinch)
    • Apple Vinegar 2.5 Tablespoons
    • Piloncillo of the Baja 50gr
    • Chile Güero finely chopped 20gr
    • Chile Serrano finely chopped 7gr
    • Salt 1.5 Tablespoons
    • Water 200ml

Boil the water in a pot along with oregano and damiana leaves. Once the boil breaks, let it reduce for 10 minutes and add the piloncillo. Let the mixture cool and strain, reserving the liquid.

Mix the mango with the peppers and add the reserved liquid. Let it simmer for about an hour without boiling until obtaining a consistency of jam. Add salt, vinegar and continue cooking for 10 minutes more.

Let it cool and store in the refrigerator. You can use this marmalade to serve with fresh cheese and bread or even for grilled chicken, pork or turkey.

 

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