Today I am going to introduce a wonderful blogger, Mary Jane from Mj’s Kitchen. Her blogs reflects South Western dishes especially from New Mexico. She works in the field of nanotechnology and also is a food blogger and recipe developer at MJ’s Kitchen. She and her husband Bob make wonderful dishes and shoots breathtaking photographs. Moreover, she is very friendly and a nice person, and when I asked her to do a guest post in my blog, she immediately agreed. Thanks MJ for doing a guest post for me.
MJ in her words,
Hello Everyone. I’m MJ of MJ’s Kitchen and am so happy to be over here in Swathi’s wonderful kitchen. Thank you so much Swathi for inviting me! Like Swathi I like to add a little spice to my dishes, but unlike her amazing Indian ingredients, I use more New Mexican and Mexican ingredients. So when Swathi asked me to share one of my southwestern dishes I was thrilled. I knew I wanted to introduce her readers to New Mexico chile peppers because we New Mexicans are very proud of our chiles and find every excuse in the world to add some to a dish. If you aren’t familiar with New Mexico chiles please visit my page “Chile or Chili?”.
The dish that I am introducing you to today goes by many names; for example, Southwestern Pileup, Santa Fe Pileup, Route 66 Pileup, Breakfast Pileup, and my favorite – Pileup at Central & Girard (the location of the restaurant that serves it). In addition to the many names, there are just as many version of this dish and so many ways to make it. I could literally write a book just about the pileup. However, since I’m a guest here, I don’t want to take up too much space in Swathi’s kitchen, so I’ll try to keep it short.
I know that “pileup”is not the most romantic name for a dish, but it does describe this dish perfectly. Regardless of the name, a pileup starts with the same basic ingredients – potatoes, onion, and bell pepper. The potatoes can be country fries cooked on the stovetop or in the oven, or they could be hashbrowns. The bell pepper could be any color – green, red, orange or yellow. Once the base is cooked, it is then piled high with a host of ingredients such as chopped green chile, red or green chile sauce, salsa, cheese, a protein or two, sour cream, and/or guacamole, just to name few. Once the chosen ingredients have been piled up, then it’s all topped off with one or two fried eggs – thus the pileup. Oh, but let’s not forget the “smothered” pileup. Some us choose to smoother each serving in more red or green chile sauce or in what we in New Mexico call “Christmas” – both red and green chile sauce. I chose to keep my pileup fairly simple for the pictures so that you could see the host of ingredients.
I hope you enjoy!
Serves: 2 servings
Prep and Cook time: less than 45 minutes
2 Tbsp. oil (olive or an infused oil such as garlic or chile)
2 medium to large yellow potatoes, scrubbed and cut into ½” cubes
½ medium onion, chopped
½ medium red bell pepper, chopped
2 large garlic cloves, minced
Salt and pepper
½ – 1 cup of your favorite salsa, red chile sauce or green chile sauce, or chopped roasted green chile peppers
1 cup cheddar cheese, grated
1 to 2 eggs per person
Proteins (choose 1 to 2)
1 ½ cups black or pinto beans, drained
½ pound Mexican chorizo
4 slices bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled
1 – 2 cups chopped, cooked meat (chicken, beef or pork)
Toppings and condiments
More salsa or chile
Chopped Green Onions or chopped regular onions
Heat the oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat.
Add the potatoes. Toss and spread potato cubes into a single layer.
Cover and cook 5 minutes. Flip cubes.
Cook, uncovered for another 5 minutes. Potatoes should be starting to brown at this point.
Salt and pepper taste.
Add the onion, garlic and bell pepper.*
Continue to cook the potatoes and vegetables, stirring occasionally another 5 minutes or until they begin to soften.
Add the beans, bacon or cooked meat, toss and heat through for 1 to 2 minutes.
Add the chile sauce or salsa and top with the cheese.
Place under the broiler until the cheese has melted and is starting to brown.
Fry the eggs in a touch of butter or bacon dripping, overeasy or sunny side up. Do not overcook. You want the yolks runny.
Divide vegetable and meat mixture between two bowls.**
Place one to two eggs on top of each bowl. Top with your choice of the additional toppings.
Serve and enjoy!
*If you are using an uncooked meat like sausage, add it with the vegetables.
**You could divide the mixture up into two skillets before adding the cheese and broil the servings individually. This way you could just serve in the skillets as many restaurants do.
The amount of chile sauce or salsa you use depends on the heat of the sauce and how hot you like it.
The pileup in the pictures is my vegetarian version. The protein I used was black beans. My favorite protein combination is black beans and bacon.
Again, thank you Swathi for inviting me over to your kitchen! I love visiting you and perusing your fabulous dishes, and was flattered to be asked to add one of mine to your collection.
Please hope over her blog to say hi, and sure you are going to find tasty southwestern dishes.