This is a marinade that celebrates flavors of New Mexico and at the same time is highly versatile and can be used on all kinds of foods with equally delightful results: asparagus, bell peppers, mushrooms, cauliflower, zucchini, eggplant, tofu, shrimp, salmon, chicken, beef flank steak, hanger steak, skirt steak, sirloin steak, brisket, pork chops, buffalo, elk, etc.
The technique of marinating is twofold. At the end of the day, it’s about tenderizing and adding flavor. Each food falls on a spectrum of absorbability and toughness, some foods benefiting more from tenderizing like a tough skirt steak, and others from the addition of flavor like vegetables.
Marinating times depend on the acidity of the marinade itself and the burliness of the food you’re marinating. Some kind of acid is important, especially if you’re wanting your marinade to do some heavy lifting in the tenderizing department. As the acidity of your marinade increases, the time required decreases otherwise your fish could be at risk for turning into ceviche. Here’s a general guide for marinating times:
- Vegetables: 20-30 minutes
- Tofu: 20 minutes – 24 hours
- Fish & Shellfish: 20 minutes – 1 hour
- Chicken pieces: 30 minutes – 3 hours
- Whole Chicken: 24 hours
- Pork, Beef, Wild Game: 30 minutes – 24 hours
This recipe is so versatile because it’s medium acidity (from the yogurt) and loaded with flavor. After the marinating time is over, what you do next is up to you. You can grill, bake, roast or saute. My only suggestion? Call it a party, just because you can.Print
High Desert Everything Marinade
This is a marinade that celebrates the flavors of New Mexico and at the same time is highly versatile and can be used on all kinds of foods with equally delightful results.
- Prep Time: 30
- Total Time: 30 minutes
- Yield: 1 cup
- Category: spring
- 2 dried ancho chiles
- 2–4 dried chipotle chiles depending on size
- 4 garlic cloves, skin left on
- 1 large lime, zest only
- A handful of fresh cilantro, stems, and leaves roughly chopped
- 2 t. honey
- 1/2 t. Cumin, ground or seeds
- 1/2 t. Coriander, ground or seeds
- 1/4 c. plain yogurt
- 1 T. olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- In a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, add the whole peel-on garlic cloves and both types of chile. In a separate kettle or pot bring around 2 cups of water to a boil. The garlic will take longer to brown on all sides, but keep your eye on the chiles. We want them to smell fragrant and slightly brown on all sides but not char. Remove the chiles and place them on a clean board or plate. Remove the stems and seeds (or leave the seeds if you like it hot) and place them in a heat-proof bowl and pour over hot water to cover them. Let the chiles relax in the hot water for around 20 minutes.
- While the chiles are soaking in their bath, prepare the rest of the marinade. Once the garlic is finished toasting on all sides, carefully remove the cloves from the pot and when cool enough to handle, the cloves should slip right out of their skins. Add the garlic cloves to a blender or food processor (I use my nutri-bullet).
- Now add the lime zest, cilantro, honey, cumin, coriander, yogurt, olive oil, and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Once the chiles are finished soaking, remove them from the water and add this to the blender as well. Blend until smooth. Viola! A marinade that shouldn’t be confused with the word serenade even though it’s sure to make whatever you’re cooking sing.
Keywords: marinade, tenderizing, grilling, meat