View Full Version : Quick! Torta de Huevo help...School project!

02-24-2009, 02:39 PM
So, DD has to make a dish from Costa Rica, and without my input, she and DH chose Torta de Huevos. She submitted the recipe below to her teacher.

Questions: what are the red chile pods, and can I find them at a regular grocery store? And what would be a good substitute if I can't?

And she is supposed to make this dish herself, which means she's making it tonight, then warming it up before I drive her to school. Any thoughts about how this will keep???

TIA! I guess now I know how my mom felt when I would spring science projects on her the night before! :D

Torta De Huevo Ingredients

15 To 18 Red chile pods 2 cl Garlic, crushed
3 c Water Salt
2 tb Flour 3 Eggs
2 tb Cooking oil 1 tb Cracker crumbs

Instructions for Torta De Huevo

Remove the stems and seeds from the chile pods, wash and dry . Place the chile on a cooking sheet and bake at 350 F until pods are soft. Puree pods and water into a paste in the blender. Mix flour and oil and brown. Add Chile puree, bring to a boil and simmer to the consistancy of gravy. Add crushed garlicand salt to taste. Simmer an additional 30 minutes. Seperate eggs. Beat egg yolks and add cracker crumbs. Beat egg whites until stiff, and fold in egg yolks. Drop by tb into hot oil and brown on both sides. Drain on a paper towel, and then add them to the red chile. This dish was popular because the red chile was always available, dried in ristras from the previous years crop and the chickens were laying eggs in plentiful numbers in the spring. Eggs were used in place of meat during Lent because on certain days the church prohibited eating meat. Torta De Huevo is excellent served with beans and tortillas.

02-24-2009, 04:20 PM
It sounds to me as if it's calling for fresh chiles. Don't know where you are but even here in Texas fresh reds are hard to find. You could sub dried chiles. You'd have to soak the pods in hot water till they're pliable so you can remove the membranes.

I'd make the sauce tonight and then the eggs in the morning.

Reading further into the recipe it mentions ristras so it's actually calling for dried, I guess.:confused:I've never baked a dried chile to get it soft though.

Check out this site:


02-24-2009, 04:39 PM
Chili pods are any kind of whole dried chiles, you can find them in clear cellophane bags in the mexican aisle.

Interesting about baking the pods, I had to search on that since I have ever boiled them.

Sounds like you are making a dried chili paste, just a little different than this powder recipie.

How to Make Chili Powder

1 bag of dried red chili pods (about 12 to 15 pods)

Preheat oven to 250 degrees fahrenheit

For each chili pepper, cut off both ends to remove the stem, and cut in half. Reach in, take out and discard all the seeds that you can find. Place chili pepper pieces on a cookie sheet and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, after which they will begin to smell roasted.

Put these roasted pieces in a blender or food processor (a blender seems to work best for me) and simply grind to a powder. Store in a covered container away from light and heat.

02-24-2009, 04:45 PM
I've fried or baked dried chiles to toast them, sort of like toasting spices, but that's not going to make them soft. Sounds like they left a step out. They need to be soaked in water and then pureed with the water. Like the link in the link Sneezles posted.

I think they'll keep okay, although I'd be inclined to serve them cold or room temp rather than rewarming them (if making the egg part in the morning isn't an option). That's just a guess, though, I think I'd try one tonight and judge based on the texture and what they're like.

If they have them at the regular store, they'd probably be in the ethnic aisle, or occasionally I see them in the produce area on like an end cap by the fresh chiles. In this case I don't think there is anything you can substitute.

02-24-2009, 07:04 PM
Argh, I had a better post, hit submit, and then was redirected to the login page!!?

Thanks for the advice, everyone. As Sneezles predicted, we couldn't find fresh red chiles, and opted for our only other choice (well, besides two cans of red enchilada sauce!) of dried pasilla chiles. We reconstituted them in warm water, removed the membranes and seeds, then pureed them in the water, and cooked them for about 20 minutes with some sauteed onion and garlic. I skipped the toasting step entirely and just figured that it applied to the fresh chiles.

We added some other spice, to try to liven it up, and then added some lime juice. I don't think it has the right flavor (it is certainly not authentic), but it isn't horrible. Hopefully her teacher has never had them before!

We'll make the eggs tomorrow morning as you all recommended, and then I won't worry too much about them being hot.

On another note, Sneezles, are ristras hard to find? I have one that my mom brought me from her trip to Texas, but I like it for decoration. I would make a true posole if I thought I could replace the ristra easily.

Thanks for the help, everyone. I volunteer tomorrow, so I'll post some pictures.

02-25-2009, 08:19 AM
There's just nothing more fun than school projects, eh? :rolleyes: I thought that recipe for chile sauce was off and should have given you the recipe that I use:

Red Chile Sauce
Adapted from mexgrocer.com

8 large dried red chile pods (calls for ancho or pasilla but I use guajillo)
2 cloves garlic (I used 4-smashed)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tbs masa de harina (I used to use a-p but found this much more flavorful to the sauce)
2 cups water
1 tsp Mexican oregano
1/4 tsp Ground cumin (used more like a tsp but I love the stuff!)
Salt to taste (used about 1/4 tsp)

Wash chiles, remove stems and seeds (leave seeds if you prefer a hotter sauce...guajillos are not that spicy and I left in the seeds that didn't fall out when I stemmed the chiles). Place chiles, garlic and onion in a 3 qt heavy pot and add enough water to cover. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, reduce and simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain water. Place chiles, garlic, onion and flour into blender; puree till smooth. Pour back into pot, add 2 cups water or stock and seasonings. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, until sauce is thick and bubbly. Adjust seasonings as needed.

As for the ristras, they are available in larger areas and in Mexican markets or specialty shops. Can always track one down for you.

Now, about your problem with the logging in...change your bookmark!!! You should be using https://community.cookinglight.com
Do not enter from the CL home page but if you do add the s to the url and hit enter...a very convoluted way to get to the right place so just add the correct bookmark to you list!!!;)

02-26-2009, 08:11 AM
Thanks, Sneezles!

Yesterday was crazy! There were so many kids and so many people that I never even took a single photograph. But it was great to see so many really complicated, homemade dishes...I was pleasantly surprised to see how much care and obvious preparation had gone into some of the dishes. It wasn't what I expected at all.

Not very many touched our dish though! I don't think the brown sauce was at all appetizing to middle schoolers :D, but there were also a ton of desserts, so we brought most of it home.

We've got a few Mexican grocery stores around here, so I wll check for ristras. We want to make this for a weekend breakfast, and I think a red sauce will go over better.

Thanks for ALL of your help!