Flavor Trends, Strategies and Solutions for Menu Development
Roasted peanuts, tomato, habanero chiles, green onion, cilantro

By Flavor & The Menu
April 19, 2019

Iliana de la Vega

Iliana de la Vega, Chef/Co-Owner of El Naranjo, an authentic Mexican restaurant, decided to tweak an ancient recipe from the Yucatan and was thrilled with the result. In collaboration with the National Peanut Board, she created a Peanut Sikil P’ak, a hearty dip typically made with pumpkin seeds, tomato, chiles and onion. Her version sees roasted peanuts, tomato, habanero chiles, green onion and cilantro.

“The richness of the peanuts pairs extremely well with the acidity of the tomato and the fruity and spicy taste of the habanero chile, the freshness of the cilantro and the pungency of a little onion,” says de la Vega. “It is the perfect combination of ingredients that makes it almost addictive, and you just want to keep eating this spread.”

Rich, thick and satisfying, this earthy, nutty spread is poised to find a place on American menus, alongside dukkah, hummus and other on-trend global spreads and dips. “This Peanut Sikil P’ak can be very smooth or more coarse,” she says. “It can be served as an appetizer with tortilla chips or crudités, but can also be served as a side for grilled fish or seafood.”

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