Puerto Aventuras – Restaurant Latitude 20 cooking classes and black beans with tortillas (Enfrijolada) receipe
Latitude 20 has taken on a club role here in Puerto Aventuras. In addition to good authentic food any time of the day, it’s the place to go to meet locals and other snow birds and ex-pats that spend several month a year here on the Mayan Riviera. The restaurant is owned and run by Peter and Danny, both personable and sociable and I know that Danny has significant talent in the kitchen.
I was delighted to find out this year the Chef Danny holds weekly cooking classes at Latitude, just around the corner from where we stay here in Puerto Aventuras and across the dolphin pools from the Dreams Hotel. Classes are demonstration only meaning Danny does all the work and we get to eat the food, which is fine by me.
Classes are held at the restaurant’s open air kitchen where we stand around the wrap-around counter watching Danny cook a three course meal. It’s amazing what he can cook with gas burners and a small toaster oven, and cook it all from scratch.
The classes are videotaped and posted on a youtube channel here.
The last class featured Mexican vegetarian cooking that as you can imaging worked perfectly for me. Danny prepared four dishes, including dessert.
All the dishes were delicious and I intend to get to all of them soon but I had to go home and reproduce the enfrijoladas that very evening because it was so good and also simple to prepare. I will post the RaJas Poblanas later because it was another dish that fits so well with my cooking.
Enfrijoladas are black beans, cooked and slightly mashed in a soupy broth in which you quickly wet corn tortillas, fold into quarters and ladle the beans over them on a plate. Simple but trust me, delicious. I am adapting the recipe a little so it may not be 100% authentic but that’s how I made it and we loved it, so here it is.
2 cups black beans, soaked overnight (see note below)
2 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 onion, diced
2 garlic cloves
4 cups water or broth (chicken or vegetable)
Salt to taste
12 corn tortillas
1/4 medium red onion, diced
1 tomato, seeded and diced
A handful cilantro, chopped
1/3 cup cojita cheese, crumbled, or use feta
Sort and rinse the bean, then soak overnight changing the water once.
Heat up the oil in a pot, add onion and saute until softened.
Add garlic and cook until fragrant but son’t let it brown.
Drain the beans and add them to the pot together with the broth. Do not add salt until after the beans are cooked. Adding the salt in the beginning will harden their shell and they will not cook properly.
Bring to a boil, lower heat to a steady simmer and cook until the beans are cooked through. You should have enough liquid left in the pot so you can wet the tortillas in it.
When the beans are cooked through partially mash them using a potato masher. I don’t mash them completely and leave some whole.
Warm up the corn tortillas.
Place a tortilla, one at a time, on top of the beans to wet the underside. With a fork or tongs turn it over to wet the other side.
Place on a plate and fold in quarters. Use 4 tortillas per serving.
Spoon some of the cooked beans and broth over the tortillas.
Top with diced red onion, cilantro, tomatoes and cheese.
Drizzle with Mexican crema.
Note: if you use canned beans follow the same process described for the beans above but add less water or stock because the beans are already cooked. Also note that Danny had more broth on the plate than I did and next time I will make it with more broth as well, although it was delicious just the same.