Recipes from Tulum: From Hartwood with Love

If you’ve read my Tulum Restaurant Guide, you’ll remember that Hartwood was number one on the list. The food at Hartwood is always 100% locally-sourced, and the menu changes daily according to the ingredients available that day. The restaurant is completely sustainable and eco-friendly, which, somehow, makes the food taste even better. I crave Hartwood’s fresh flavors, and am so relieved that they have put out a cookbook: all Tulum cooking, all the time.

 

The following are two pretty rad Hartwood food and cocktail recipes that come straight outta the book.

 

Roasted Beets with Avocado-Habanero Crema and Chile Lime Salt

INGREDIENTS:
For the beets:
4 large beets, scrubbed
one 6-inch piece sugarcane, split in half (optional)
8 basil sprigs
olive oil for drizzling
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
ground allspice

For the avocado-habanero crema:
1 ripe Hass avocado, halved, pitted, and peeled
½ habanero, seeded (leave the seeds in if you want a hotter sauce)
1 cup sour cream
¼ cup olive oil
½ tsp honey
1 tsp kosher salt, or to taste
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper, or to taste
2 Tbsp chile lime salt, for garnish

For the chile lime salt:
4 dried árbol chiles
2 Tbsp kosher salt
grated zest of 3 limes

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Put the beets, sugarcane, if using, and basil in a baking dish and fill about one-third full with water. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 45 to 60 minutes, until a knife pierces all the way through a beet easily. Remove the beets from the liquid and let cool slightly. Increase the oven temperature to 425°F.

Meanwhile, make the avocado-habanero crema: Combine all the ingredients in a blender and blend on high for about 10 seconds. Turn off the blender and scrape down the sides with a rubber spatula to make sure everything gets a turn. Repeat until a smooth cream forms – this will take more than a few tries. Season to taste if necessary. Transfer to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate for about 30 minutes, or until ready to serve.

Cut the beets in half and place in a large cast-iron skillet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, until the beets are hot all the way through and the ends have started to crisp up.

Serve the beets topped with the crema, dusted with allspice and chile lime salt.

Chile Lime Salt
Toast the chiles in a dry cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Let cool. Pulse the chiles in a spice grinder to a fine powder. Mix with the salt and lime zest. Store in a tightly sealed jar in a cool place.

 

Piña-Habanero Margarita

Makes 1 drink.

INGREDIENTS:
Table salt
Chile Lime Salt (recipe follows)
1 scant shot tequila reposado
1/2 shot Habanero Tequila (recipe follows)
1/2 shot Cointreau
1/2 cup pineapple puree (or substitute fresh pineapple juice)

DIRECTIONS:
Combine all the liquor and the pineapple puree in a cocktail shaker filled with ice and shake vigorously. Pour into the glass and serve.

Habanero Tequila

INGREDIENTS:
4 ozs. tequila reposada, 100 percent agave
1 habanero, halved

DIRECTIONS:
Pour some table salt onto a small plate and the chile lime salt onto another one. Moisten the rim of a glass and roll it in the table salt, then in the chile salt.

Combine the tequila and habanero in a jar, seal tightly, and let infuse for 36 hours. (You can go as little as 24 hours or as long as 48 hours, depending on how much heat you want.) Remove the habanero and reseal the jar.

Chile Lime Salt

Makes about 2 tablespoons.

INGREDIENTS:
4 dried árbol chiles
2 T kosher salt
Grated zest of 3 limes

DIRECTIONS:
Toast the chiles in a dry cast-iron skillet over medium-low heat until fragrant, about 2 minutes. Let cool. Pulse the chiles in a spice grinder to a fine powder. Mix with the salt and lime zest. Store in a tightly sealed jar in a cool place.

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