One of my favorite places to eat in Orange County is Bandera in Corona Del Mar. They offer classic American fare — rotisserie chicken, mashed potatoes, cornbread, ribs, steak– but kicked up a notch. Everything there is good but my favorite is the BBQ Beef Ribs. They are decadent. The ribs come with two sides–garlic mashed potatoes and roasted peanut coleslaw. The potatoes are great, the coleslaw is amazing. I love it (and I don’t even like coleslaw.) I have a recipe for Bandera-esque coleslaw and I thought I would share. Bandera’s cornbread is also a fan and family favorite. I’ve included that recipe, too. Now if I can just figure out how to make their ribs…
ROASTED PEANUT COLESLAW (Like Bandera’s)
2 cups baby spinach, broken up
3/4 head green cabbage, thinly sliced
1/2 jicama, thinly sliced
3 green onions, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh cilantro
Mix all above ingredients, then add the vinaigrette.
FOR THE VINAIGRETTE:
Add the following ingredients to a small food processor and grind it up. It’s best if you let it sit in the refrigerator for at least one hour.
1/2 cup peanut oil
1/4 cup roasted peanuts
Juice of 1/2 lime
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/2 teaspoon fresh minced ginger
1 tablespoon sugar
1 green onion
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 teaspoon salt
You can of course vary any of the above ingredients according to personal preference. It’s the closest I’ve found without actually going to Bandera—but you should go sometime, the ribs are worth it!
CORNBREAD (Like Bandera’s)
1 cup butter, melted*
1 cup granulated sugar*
1 (15 oz) can cream style corn
1/2 (4 oz) can chopped green chili peppers, drained
1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup shredded Cheddar cheese
1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup yellow cornmeal
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C). Lightly grease a 9×13-inch baking dish or better yet a 12-inch cast iron skillet.
In a large bowl, beat together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs one at a time. Blend in cream corn, chiles, Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheese.
In a separate bowl, stir together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, and salt. Add flour mixture to corn mixture; stir until smooth. Pour batter into prepared pan.
Bake in preheated oven for 1 hour, until a toothpick inserted into center of the pan comes out clean. If using the skillet – watch carefully as edges may brown too much and time should be under an hour.
*Some think these quantities make it too rich. Use 1/2 cup butter and less sugar to taste.