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Anonimo

Feb 4, 2009, 5:48 AM

Post #1 of 21 (11533 views)

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Oh, Cecina!

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How does one prepare cecina?
I bought a 1/4 kilo of cecina de res at a favorite carnicería.
I was hoping to use it as a substitute for chipped beef, as in creamed chipped beef over biscuits.

I had the cecina in a plastic bag for a bit less than a week. When I opened the bag today, it smelled very strong and there were patches of dull, greenish mold in a few places. I cut away and discarded the seriously moldy spots.

Undeterred, I poured boiling water over half of it, adding a teaspoon of baking soda.
What a rank smell! Ugh.

After about 15 minutes, I drained off that water, and poured on more boiling water, but without soda. Ugh.

I decided to pause there, and get some advice before proceeding.

So I ended up slivering two big slices of Wilson's Jamón Selva Negra into my cream sauce. It was pretty good, but now what to do? I have doubts remaining about using the cecina for any purpose. It is really pongy.
I suspect that closing it up in a plastic bag was a mistake.

Can this cecina be saved? If so, what's the best way to cook it?

Saludos,
Anonimo



sergiogomez

Feb 4, 2009, 1:48 PM

Post #2 of 21 (11503 views)

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Re: [Anonimo] Oh, Cecina!

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Number one rule of meat: if it smells, don't eat it. Whether it's fresh, dried, or partially dried, the only smell good meat should have is a faint fresh smell. Once it stinks, it's a goner, and the green mold definitely seals the deal. I've had to throw away my share of meat that I forgot in the bottom of the fridge. You know how it goes. Buy it, think of all the nice things you could make with it, forget about it, and discover it a week later in a slimy heap...just a day or two too late! I hope your cecina wasn't too expensive.

Preparing cecina? Fried, grilled, in tacos, served as a starter with queso fresco. There are lots of options. I like the taco idea myself. Things to accompany cecina with: avocado, nopal, green onion, onion, cheese, red salsa, and lime, of course. As you say, it would be great quickly pan-fried and served like chipped beef over biscuits. A little chopped pickled jalapeño gives it a Mexican twist.


esperanza

Feb 4, 2009, 2:02 PM

Post #3 of 21 (11500 views)

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Re: [Anonimo] Oh, Cecina!

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Pitch it. Moldy and smelly? Yuck.

Next time, make the Tierra Caliente specialty aporreadillo.

http://www.mexicocooks.typepad.com









Anonimo

Feb 4, 2009, 4:49 PM

Post #4 of 21 (11491 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Oh, Cecina!

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I'm pitching it next thing. Thanks for the feedback.

Saludos,
Anonimo


Carron

Feb 5, 2009, 12:29 PM

Post #5 of 21 (11462 views)

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Re: [Anonimo] Oh, Cecina!

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I have never bought cecina, but I do routinely make my own beef jerky. I always plan to save it for making just such things as biscuit gravy or beef and scrambled eggs, but, alas, almost as soon as it dries thoroughly my family usually scarfs it down as is and there is nothing left to save for later dishes.

Personally, I am not really enamored of plastic bags for storage. They seem to breed mold and slimey-ness. They keep moisture in and for some foods that is not really a good thing, as you discovered with your cecina. My husband and our kids are all bad about bringing fresh produce home from the store and leaving them in the plastic baggies. They go from gorgeous to goo in a day (the veggies, that is). I suspect your meat was not dried thoroughly when you purchased it and the residual moisture was then trapped by the baggie. Hence the spoilage.

This is my quick and easy recipe for what my family calls "Mom's Damn Fine Jerky" if you want to try it.

Packages of very thin steaks for Milanesa, available at any carniceria

Seasoned salt
Worchestershire sauce
Additional chile powder or liquid pepper sauce (optional or to taste)

Spread the thin steaks on a clean work surface. Trim off any pieces of visible fat; with this cut of meat there probably won't be any. Sprinkle on dry seasonings and rub in a bit. Splash a little Worchestershire over all and rub again. Let set for a few minutes. Turn meat over and repeat. Dry over racks in a low oven, on a clothes line outdoors if your weather permits, or hang them over night high above a wood burning stove as I do. The key to preventing spoilage is making sure the steaks are absolutely dry. I then put mine in glass Mason jars or Legal instant coffee bottles, which happen to make very pretty containers with their bright red plastic lids. I have never had any problems with bad meat when prepared this way and it does not require refrigeration when properly dried.


esperanza

Feb 5, 2009, 12:47 PM

Post #6 of 21 (11459 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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I wonder how I'd keep the cats off the counter during Part A.

BOY does this sound good, especially the woodsmoke version. I could put the anafre under the clothesline for smoking the hanging beef...assuming I could keep the cats off the counter for the first part of the recipe. *sigh*

Cats, can't live with'em, can't live without'em.

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Carron

Feb 5, 2009, 1:16 PM

Post #7 of 21 (11454 views)

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Re: [esperanza] Oh, Cecina!

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I, too, have a "gato de la cocina". I also have eight kitchen chickens who flutter in looking for scraps whenever they get a chance through the door and even a kitchen horse! At least the horse doesn't walk on the table top, though he would live inside if I would just let him.


MazDee

Feb 5, 2009, 8:30 PM

Post #8 of 21 (11438 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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I have never had cecina, not a Sinaloa thing I guess, but I saw it in Sam's the other day. I had thought cecina was dried, like Carron explains, but the Sam's meat was red and raw. Perhaps it is the cut that we should use to dry the meat. In this climate, I think it would mold before drying! Maybe people do it here, but I have not seen it.

Meanwhile, I went to the little puebla of El Quelite yesterday, where there is a wonderful restaurant, and ordered their machaca. (I almost always get the carnitas there, or the tongue or grilled quail, but I decided to get something else this time and I am so glad!) I brought half of the machaca home with me, and tonight made "roast beef" hash that was sooo excellent! That, of course, is a way to get back to Anonimo's topic. He wants to get some of the old flavors from "home," and I think that is fine. As for me, I really wanted some creamed chipped beef, and asked a friend to bring me a jar. Now, it is sitting in my cupboard, too precious to open!


colibri1

Feb 22, 2009, 6:05 AM

Post #9 of 21 (11360 views)

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Re: [MazDee] Oh, Cecina!

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Creamed chipped beef???? Are you sure we're not in the "rather eat glass" thread...wakala...(that's how they spell it in the Barbarian North.) Sorry Anonimo and Maz Dee. I know, I know...one man's meat another's poison...
Colibri1


Carron

Feb 22, 2009, 7:38 AM

Post #10 of 21 (11353 views)

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Re: [colibri1] Oh, Cecina!

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Have you ever eaten "creamed chipped beef"? It is actually quite delicious. Real down-home comfort food. Little pieces of flavorful beef suspended in a rich country-style gravy poured over biscuits or toast. Wonderful eating.


Rolly


Feb 22, 2009, 8:35 AM

Post #11 of 21 (11345 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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Anyone who has ever served in the military will retch at the thought of creamed beef on toast, AKA SOS = s*** on a shingle.

Rolly Pirate


ms mac

Feb 22, 2009, 9:52 AM

Post #12 of 21 (11337 views)

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Re: [Rolly] Oh, Cecina!

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I llike creamed chipped beef once in awhile. With baby peas and served over mashed potatoes.
ms mac


Carron

Feb 22, 2009, 9:55 AM

Post #13 of 21 (11337 views)

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Re: [Rolly] Oh, Cecina!

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Obviously I have never served in the military. Can't stand Spam!! But I do like "creamed chipped beef" and I do know all the nasty names by which it is commonly known.

When my oldest daughter was a pre-schooler, I served it on toast for supper. Had her plate ready and on the table before I called her in to eat. She took one look and screamed "Mommy, somebody threw up on my toast!"


ms mac

Feb 22, 2009, 10:38 AM

Post #14 of 21 (11330 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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Funny!
ms mac


Rolly


Feb 22, 2009, 10:40 AM

Post #15 of 21 (11330 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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Thanks for my laugh of the day!

Rolly Pirate


colibri1

Feb 23, 2009, 4:15 AM

Post #16 of 21 (11299 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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Yes, Although my step-mom was a great cook, she DID make this dish WAY too often for my liking.
C1


colibri1

Feb 23, 2009, 4:18 AM

Post #17 of 21 (11298 views)

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Re: [Carron] Oh, Cecina!

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"Mommy, somebody threw up on my toast!" PERFECT!!! That's so funny!!!

(This post was edited by colibri1 on Feb 23, 2009, 4:24 AM)


Jetski

Mar 29, 2009, 5:03 PM

Post #18 of 21 (10943 views)

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Re: [Anonimo] Oh, Cecina!

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Like MazDee I haven't seen cecina offered for sale in the Mazatlan area other than as raw thin sliced meat, maybe ready to make a dried jerky meat type preparation. Just saying that machaca is the dried meat of choice here because of the northern Sonora influence I guess. I've seen a few recipes on the net for making dried machaca but what cut is the best, is there a particular recipe that works well and what would be the best for long term storage, closed jar, freezing, etc. We've had machaca everyway from melt in your mouth supurb to break your teeth gristle and I'm thinking diy might be the way to go.

.


Carron

Mar 30, 2009, 7:44 AM

Post #19 of 21 (10906 views)

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Re: [Jetski] Oh, Cecina!

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I always buy the thin cuts of meat for making "Milanesa de Res". I would guess it is from the round. It is almost paper-thin, has no fat or gristle, and dries quickly by whatever method is most convenient for you.

I have a couple of Mexican cookbooks which start with an entire roast and explain how you should cut the roast into one long strip before seasoning, re-folding, unfolding sometime later, and and finally hanging. Can't believe anyone other than a butcher could manage this complicated procedure. Just buy the Milanese.

Sounds like what some of you you are looking at may be the seasoned and re-folded (or re-rolled) raw beef for you to take home and dry.


Anonimo

Mar 30, 2009, 9:48 AM

Post #20 of 21 (10894 views)

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Re: [Jetski] Oh, Cecina!

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I've understood that all machaca was dried, by definition. I could be wrong. (Again?)

"En Boca Cerrada No Entran Moscas."

Saludos,
Anonimo


viejogatomalo

Apr 2, 2009, 8:34 PM

Post #21 of 21 (10846 views)

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Re: [Rolly] Oh, Cecina!

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AGREE great breakfast. We used to be served (thrown) SOS as a white sauce with chopped hard-boiled eggs, sometimes peas, and chipped beef on toast or biskets. Good solid breakfast for all those guys with great metabolisms. Then having a good porcelin cup of java.

Wish I could tolerate that now
 
 
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