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Oct 8, 2006 01:13 AM

Post your San Francisco Chowing with the Hounds Picnic 2006 Recipes Here!

We just had a wonderful picnic with the hounds in Golden Gate Park, and I will start a thread on the SF Board, but in the meantime, we encourage you all to post your recipes, or requests for recipes, here!

I'd love the recipe for the fig tapenade, just as a starter. Actually, I'd love more recipes but have to sober up from the wine to remember what else to ask about...

My recipe was easy: leave the house before dawn (well, that part wasn't easy, but the rest was), drive 5 minutes from house to Alemeny Farmer's Market by the light of the full moon (Which was quite a sight coming over the hill on my way home, and worth the early start!), buy two dozen tamales from the All Star Tamale stand, bring camp stove and steamer to the park, and heat them up! I liked the red salsa and pork variety, but there was too much of a crowd to try them all! :-)

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  1. PicNic Mole


    Chiles:Chilhuacle (black and red), mulato, pasilla, ancho. (take your pick)
    Banana very ripe or plantain
    Dry Bread (like Jewish halla works great!)
    Toasted sesame
    Nuts Pecans or walnuts
    1 burnt tortilla
    Mexican cinnamon
    Anis seeds
    Cumin seed
    Allspice (pimiento gorda)
    Mexican chocolate (La Soledad, Mayordomo or Ibarra are great) couple rounds
    Avocado leaves dry and toasted (sold in Mexican stores in spice section)
    Coriander seeds

    1. Most of the amounts are logical...same amount of each chili (1/2 cup?) About 1/3 cup of nuts and raisins and small amounts of spices. I actually used a pre-ground base paste and added all the other ingredients. You can use even some of the bottled ones (such as Mayordomo brand)

    2. Cook the chicken or turkey in water with onion, carrots, celery, bay leaves, peppercorns and garlic. Do not overcook! Take out and skim broth. Throw out veges.
    Take out chili seeds and only keep enough seeds depending on how hot you want the mole. Toast the chilies (all are dry). I use just a bit so it is not too hot.

    Last time I made the Mole I took the chilies, nuts and all dry ingredients to a grinding place when I was in Oaxaca (It is actually the chocolate factory la Soledad next to the Marketplace in Oaxaca city where they grind people's moles. Every family has its own recipe and they have it made to order!) Once I got my Mole paste I froze it when I returned to the States. I know you can probably grind the chilies in a food processor or blender after soaking the chilies for an hour (include the tortilla). The harder spices, nuts, chili seeds, raisins, etc need a spice or coffee grinder...after toasting them on a skillet.

    3. Fry onion, garlic, bread, banana, all nuts and raisins. Reserve. (I fry in oil, they recommend lard)
    Blanch tomatoes, tomatillo. Blend with a little water.

    4. Fry the chili paste, add the blended tomatoes, and add the fried ingredients above (also blended). Add the broth so that it is not too watery. Maybe 7-8 cups? Cook for 20 minutes. Add chocolate so it melts (I use a microwave to soften...) and the avocado leaves.
    Make sure it does not burn! Use medium/low heat so it is gently bubbling. After it thickens and the oil rises to the top (20-30 minutes), add the chicken pieces for a short while. Remove avocado leaves.
    Sprinkle some sesame seeds on top.

    4 Replies
    1. re: maus1

      Thanks for posting the recipe, I look forward to making it this winter.

      1. re: maus1

        I in awe. That looks like a lot of work. It certainly tasted like it with the complex layers of flavor. The mole was incredibly indulgent. I might make it if I'm feeling really daring and energized. Otherwise I'll just have to relive the picnic in my mind. :-)

        1. re: Peter Yee

          Peter, your pear and fig strudel was one of many highlights of the picnic for me. The pears had perfect texture, retaining some fo their firmness and I loved the extra depth of flavor from the figs. Even more impressive is that you made this from what you happened to have in the pantry.

        2. re: maus1

          Impressive! I've only made mole once many years ago but need to try again. I need clarification though--do you strain your mole at any point? I remember doing that before, which was a big PIA!

          The recipes so far sound delicious; I really missed out. Hope to see some photos soon...

        3. The tamales were great, we often drive down the coast to go camping so a tamale stop is definitely in order. Steaming them as you did on a camp stove was very clever, definitely something to add to the camp cook repetoire. Here is the link to the tapenade recipe:

          The changes I made were that I substituted pomegranate paste for the balsamic vinegar and added about a tbs of red wine vinegar as I prefer the app to be more tangy than sweet. This is definitely a taste as you go project in order to get the right balance of flavor. It's best to make it a couple of days before serving. I hand chopped all the ingredients on Thursday and then gave about 2/3 of the dish a couple of long pulses in the food processor on Friday. You can make it into a paste and smear it on grilled fish or use the paste to stuff some chicken thighs or breasts. I didn't use the walnuts or the goat cheese for the picnic but, have used goat cheese and pinenuts in the past.

          I am looking foward to reading all the other recipes as all the other dishes were amazing!

          5 Replies
          1. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L

            I don't know where you are Tracy, but I think the same tamales are available at the Old Oakland Farmers' Market on Fridays. They're right at the beginning of the Market (at Broadway) usually across from the Roli Roti truck. I get them and bring them to work and we all heat them in the microwave and gobble them down.

            1. re: oakjoan

              Thanks, I live in Sacramento but like to come to the Bay Area as often as I can. I'll keep this in mind as I have wanted to try the FM there.

            2. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L

              Thanks for the tapenade recipe! and, I am glad you liked the tamales...btw, you don't have to get there at crack of dawn (though I guess it does help to get the best selection): I've seen the All Star Stand going full guns at noon, for you late risers out there!

              1. re: susancinsf

                Thanks Susan, it's good to know they still have tamales later in the morning. My fellow campers and I are not exactly early risers. Can you purchase them cold or warm or both? It might be the perfect lunch stop.

                1. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L

                  you can get them cold or hot, and if you get them hot, they have tables and their salsa selection all set up!

            3. The recipe for the pear fig strudel can also be found on Epicurious:

              (Don't forget to click on the ginger cream link as well.


              Making that recipe came down to have a lot of fresh figs and pears (from a friend's trees). Most of the recipes I found used Calmyrna or dried figs.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Peter Yee

                I really enjoyed the strudel, you really inspired me to try baking one. Do you think it would freeze well? My fig tree is very prolific, I'd love to make several strudels as you did and freeze them to bring to parties later on.

                1. re: free sample addict aka Tracy L

                  Allegedly it should freeze well prior to baking. I've not tried that, but that's what other strudel recipes have shown.

              2. Thanks for the pointers on the tamales. Hadn't know about those being at the Alemany market. Hmmm. Got to find a free Saturday to go shopping.

                1. There are VERY few times I wished I lived in the Bay Area instead of NYC, but the SF 'hound picnic always makes me jealous.
                  Thanks for posting your recipes!