Not Your Typical Picnic Fare

Prior to World War II, most families in New Mexico raised their own livestock. This was during a time when few people had refrigerators and relied on ice to preserve food. In early summer, the ritual of slaughtering a baby lamb or cabrito, and the feast that followed, were enjoyed by families in Santa Fe and surrounding areas. Below are recipes that were enjoyed by

our ancianos:

Burriñates (Baked Intestines)

Intestines, or entrails, from one baby goat or lamb

glands ¼ lb.

¼ lb. meat mixture    

¼ lb. lamb fat

½ teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Cut 4-inch strips of meat. Place gland and salt and fat mixture on the meat. Wind and tie the intestines around meat until 4 or 5 inches long, then cut the intestines. Bake for one hour and serve with mustard as a condiment and beans and tortillas as side dishes.

Costillas (Lamb Ribs)

5 lbs. breast of lamb

¼ cup fresh oregano

¼ cup diced fresh garlic

1 tablespoon salt

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Cut the lamb ribs into individual pieces for faster cooking. Sprinkle salt, oregano, and garlic over ribs. Bake for 1-1/2 hours until crispy. Thoroughly drain the excess fat. Serve with beans, tortillas, and calabacitas.

Cabecita de Cordero/Cabrito (Baked Lamb or Goat Head)

1 lamb or goat head

½ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon pepper

1/8 cup cooking oil

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and coat a Dutch oven with the cooking oil. Place the head, with or without the brains, in the pan. Cover and bake for one hour. The eyes, tongue, palate, and cheeks came be eaten as hors d’oeuvres with tortillas and fresh green chile as a side dish. 

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