Raúl Correa has Distilled the Essence of his Island’s Food into a Potent Bite

It’s where seasoning starts: mirepoix or the so called trinities—the omitted “holy” subtly reminding us just how important this mixture of chopped veggies really is. Ginger, scallions, garlic: the Chinese trilogy. Onions, carrots, celery: the three musketeers of French cooking. Green bell pepper, onion, celery: the Creole and Cajun triumvirate. The Portuguese call it refogado: onions, garlic, tomatoes.

And in Spain, onions, green peppers, and garlic comprise sofrito (often cooked in pork fat, for good measure). Some variation on Spanish sofrito is the backbone of New World cuisines, so when Chef Raúl Correa of Zest at the San Juan Water Beach Club Hotel in Puerto Rico wanted to create the taste of his native Puerto Rico in just one powerful bite, he looked to Puerto Rican sofrito: yellow onion, garlic, and peppers—Cubanelle and sweet chile (ají)—plus the aromatic cilantro and culantro.  Read full article >>


Originally posted on StarChefs.com