Sal Prieta

I only need to look south of the border for inspiration. Last year that inspiration came from chef Fipo Moscoso at the Restaurant Hotel Carlota in Quito, Ecuador. One of his amazing dinners was garnished with a sprinkle of sal prieta, a combination of ground corn, peanuts and spices. I was hooked.

The basic recipe for sal prieta contains equal parts of ground toasted corn and peanuts and spices. I decided to make my sal pieta with ¼ cup dry roasted pistachios, ¼ cup corn nuts, 2 tsp dried cilantro, 1 tsp oregano, 1 tsp achiote verde and salt and pepper to taste.

To make the sal pieta, use a spice grinder to grind the pistachios and corn nuts to a coarse powder, in separate batches. Mix in the herbs and the achiote verde. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Store in a small lidded jar. Serve with oven roasted potatoes or fried plantains or rice.