¡Me Encanta Perú! - that was the name of this past months challenge Daring Cooks challenge - and it means I love Peru. The challenge actually included four separate recipes - we had to make at least one of the main recipes and the rest were optional. We could make Papas Rellenas and/or Ceviche.
The timing of this challenge was perfect. I have been taking a Spanish class for the last few months - don't ask me to say anything in Spanish - my old brain is not picking it up very quickly. Anyway, the class was having a food night this past week where everyone brought a Latin American dish. I asked my Puerto Rican teacher if they have Papas Rellenas in Puerto Rico and she was very excited at the idea of me making them for class.
I pretty much stuck to the recipe in the challenge except I added butter and a little bit of flour to the potatoes - and I left the raisins out of the filling. The recipe was pretty straight-forward. It does take a while to complete because the different components all need time to cool - but everything could be made ahead of time and assembled when it comes time to cook it.
For my class I made a small version of the Rellenas. The small version only took a teaspoon or two of filling. I also made the Salsa Criolla in the challenge. They were a big hit at our dinner. Everyone was asking about them. The real test was my teacher. It passed with flying colors - my teacher went back for seconds, took one home for her husband, and asked for the recipe. She said she had not been able to get a crispy crust like this recipe. One interesting thing she told me was that in Puerto Rico it is common to have some of them made of beef - and some with corned beef. I would really like to try a corned beef version.
I did make a large version a few days later with the left over filling. I was able to put a lot more filling in these. The main thing I noticed with these was - the Salsa Criolla was much better after sitting a few days. The flavors really had time to meld - and they even turned a little pink and looked nicer on the plate.
This was a great first challenge for the Daring Cooks. I look forward to many more. Thanks to Kathlyn of Bake Like A Ninja. Love the name of the blog and her slogan. I need a cool slogan like that - any ideas? The recipes are all included in the pdf challenge here.