Oaxaca, one of the most southern coastal Mexican states, is currently experiencing political unrest.
Follow the link below to read more about the current situation:
Our team at The Barrel Room consists of many hard workers that are from Oaxaca, a state rich in culture and strong indigenous roots that are actively preserved today. Our Head Sous Chef Gerardo Martinez is taking actions using his culinary skills to support his coworkers that are feeling the effects of the protests in Oaxaca.
Chef Gerardo came up with the idea of including an item on our new "specials" menu (just ask your server to see one) that is inspired by a Oaxacan dish called Conchito en Chileajo (pork in chileajo sauce). Traditionally, tender pork shoulder is braised then covered in a deliciously complex chileajo sauce, which is similar to "mole", and served with rice and tortillas.
Chef G's creative mind elevates this new special dish we are offering. Instead of shoulder, he braises pork Ribeye from Cook's Farm, a local San Diego pig farm. This particular cut of meat has more fat marbling that serves to better absorb the flavors of the sugar and chili he cures the Ribeye with for a full day. After the curing process is complete, the tenderized meat is then seared in a skillet and topped with our homemade version of chileajo sauce.
Paired with the pork is one of my personal favorite Mexican inventions: "esquites", or corn hash.
Corn on the cob is grilled then cut from the cob, tossed in aioli (mayonnaise with roasted garlic mixed in), butter, lime juice, and cotija cheese, a salty Mexican cheese that tastes like a combination of Parmesan and Feta cheeses.
Ready to pig out on this limited-time special? I know I am.
When you order the Oaxacan Pork Ribeye special, a percentage of the sale goes directly to Slow Food Oaxaca, an organization that is focused on working with small farmers to ensure that their produce does not go to waste among the current political protests.
Here's a link for you to read more about the organization:
This country-wide organization aims to bring healthy and sustainable food to all of Mexico and particularly Oaxaca. Small farmers are being inhibited from distributing their non-GMO, organic, sustainable produce, so Slow Food Mexico and your contribution will both aid in making sure quality food lands on the tables of Oaxacan families.
You can get your charity and grub on in one place, and we hope to see you very soon.
Written by: Sara Cortez