Cook’s Corner

Mercadito chef shares spicy short-rib recipe


Sleuth’s Corner

Q. Many years ago at Cye’s Rivergate on Brickell they served a dish called Cye’s Chicken. I would love to have the recipe.

Lola Goldberg , Miami

Main dish

Mercadito’s Short Ribs in Mole-Q Sauce

Piloncillo, available in Latin markets, is made from unrefined sugar and tastes much like brown sugar and molasses. If you cannot find it, substitute 1/2 cup dark brown sugar. The sauce has a lot of heat; you may wish to adjust the quantity of chiles accordingly.

1 tablespoon canola oil

4 pounds short ribs

Salt and pepper

1/2 medium onion, diced

4 garlic cloves

1 sprig fresh rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried

2 chipotle chiles

2 ancho chiles

2 pasilla chiles

1 (32-ounce) can peeled whole tomatoes

2 cups red wine

1 medium-size cinnamon stick

2 tablespoons dry mustard

3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1 cup apple cider vinegar

1 (4-ounce) piece piloncillo

3 cloves


Cilantro, chopped, for garnish

In a large skillet, heat the oil. Season short ribs generously with salt and pepper. Add to the skillet and cook over moderate heat, turning once, until browned and crusty. Transfer the ribs to a large baking pan, in a single layer.

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Add the onion and garlic to the same skillet and sauté until onions are browned. Add rosemary and chiles, stirring constantly, until lightly browned. Add the remaining ingredients (excluding tortillas and cilantro) and bring to a boil over high heat.

Pour over the short ribs, cover with foil and bake about 2 1/2 hours, until tender. Remove short ribs from the sauce and allow to cool. Place the sauce in batches in a blender or food processor and puree. When short ribs are cool enough to handle, remove meat from bones and chop into bite-size pieces. Return to sauce and mix well. Serve with tortillas and cilantro garnish. Makes 8 servings.

Per serving: 561 calories ( 41 percent from fat), 25 g fat (9.9 g saturated, 11.2 g monounsaturated), 134mg cholesterol, 45 g protein, 26 g carbohydrates, 1.9 g fiber, 426 mg sodium.

Main dish

Lutece Coq Sauté au Riesling d’Alsace

1 (2 1/2- to 3-pound) broiler-fryer chicken, cut up

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons butter

1 medium onion, chopped

1 garlic clove, minced

1 bay leaf

2 whole cloves

1 cup riesling or dry white Alsatian wine

1 cup whipping cream

2 tablespoons flour

3 egg yolks, beaten

Dash ground nutmeg

Hot cooked noodles

Sprinkle chicken pieces with salt and pepper. In a 12-inch skillet, slowly brown chicken in the 2 tablespoons butter (about 10 minutes). Add onion, garlic, bay leaf, cloves, wine and 1/2 cup water. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Cover and simmer till chicken is tender, about 30 minutes.

Remove chicken to platter and keep warm. Discard bay leaf and cloves. Skim excess fat from pan juices. Quickly boil pan juices and onion, uncovered, till reduced to 1 1/4 cups. Strain juices, discarding onion pieces; set aside.

Shake together whipping cream and flour. In saucepan, combine this mixture, pan juices, egg yolks and nutmeg; cook and stir until thickened but do not boil. Season to taste. Serve chicken and sauce over hot noodles. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 568 calories ( 58 percent from fat), 36g fat (20 g saturated, 10.9 g monounsaturated), 350mg cholesterol, 39 g protein, 9.2 g carbohydrates, .5 g fiber, 211 mg sodium.


Ice Cream Cone Cakes

You can use any flavor of cake mix as well as flavored or colored cones. After frosting, you may sprinkle the cone cakes with graham cracker crumbs, mini chocolate chips, chopped nuts or another favorite topping. Help steady the cakes on a serving plate by putting a small amount of frosting on the cone bottom.

1 box rainbow chip cake mix

Water, vegetable oil and eggs called for on cake mix box

24 flat-bottom ice cream cones

Homemade or canned frosting

Heat oven to 350 degrees (325 for dark or nonstick pans). Place paper baking cup in each of 24 regular-size muffin cups.

Make cake batter as directed on box. Divide batter evenly among muffin cups (two-thirds full). Place ice cream cone upside down on batter in each cup.

Bake 16 to 22 minutes or until toothpick inserted in cake comes out clean (cones may tilt on batter). Cool completely, about 30 minutes. Remove paper baking cups. Generously frost cakes and decorate as desired. Store loosely covered. Makes 24 cone cakes.

Per serving: 158 calories ( 30 percent from fat), 5.2 g fat (.8 g saturated, 1.4 g monounsaturated), 7.7mg cholesterol, 1.6 g protein, 26 g carbohydrates, .3 g fiber, 176 mg sodium.

With barbecue season upon us, chef Patricio Sandoval of Mercadito Midtown shares a recipe quite different from the usual carnitas. Succulent short ribs are slow cooked in a spicy “mole-Q” sauce, Sandoval’s take on traditional mole with a barbecue sauce edge. The restaurant serves the short ribs as a special with cauliflower and celery root puree and fried crispy leeks.

Lutèce chicken

Paul asked if anyone who had moved to Miami from New York had the recipe for a chicken dish made with white wine and cream and served over noodles at the fabled Lutèce, which ruled the Manhattan restaurant scene for more than 40 years before closing in 2004. It was a favorite of his wife, and he wanted to make it for their 50th wedding anniversary.

Sue Cvejanovich of the Miami-Dade Public Library let us know that The Lutèce Cookbook by chef-proprietor André Soltner is in the collection at the Main Library. It includes a recipe for Fricassee de Volaille aux Echalotes (chicken fricassee with shallots) and another for Alsatian noodles. The recipes are designed for experienced cooks, but those interested in the authentic experience should check out the cookbook.

An alternative came from Irene K., who found the recipe here in the spiral-bound Benson & Hedges 100s Presents 100 Recipes from 100 of the Greatest Restaurants. It was published by the Phillip Morris Co. in 1978, part of a series of premiums the tobacco company issued with input of luminaries such as James Beard and Craig Claiborne.

Bon Appétit!

PBS just released a DVD, Julia Child’s Dinner Party Favorites (PBS Distributing, $19.99), with six episodes from the her groundbreaking TV series, The French Chef. In three hours you get to re-experience the warm, approachable and exuberant woman who has been credited with changing the way Americans eat and cook.

The late Child was known for explaining everything it took to create her dishes, complete with endearing on-camera goofs, and it is preserved here in black and white. The six episodes cover soupe au pistou, asparagus, cassoulet, duck a l’orange, sponge cake with orange cream and tarts aux fruites.

Cupcake cones

Looking for new ideas for party cakes? Summer cake ideas at the Betty Crocker website include easy ways with cake mix to create cakes that look like ice cream cones, watermelons, flip-flops and butterflies. Besides recipes there are templates, how-to graphics and videos at

One note about the recipe here: I’ve always simply baked the cake in the upright cone, set on a cookie sheet, filling about 2/3 full. The tricky part, of course, is getting the cones into the oven without having any fall over. This method takes care of that, but I did have a couple of cones go a little crooked while baking. Frankly I think the old method is more reliable as long as you are careful.

Send questions and responses to or Food, The Miami Herald, 3511 NW 91st Ave., Doral, FL 33172. Replies cannot be guaranteed.

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