Sikil Pak -or Sikil P’ak- is one of the dips I made for a Mexican dinner I hosted in February 2020. That night I deployed some heavy stile artillery: Pork Shoulder Carnitas, fried Pig’s Head, Pibil Chicken, Huitlacoche and Chilorio Quesadillas, Doritos Locos and Totopos with sauces and dips, and Peanut & Chocolate ice cream. That dinner was a kind of prequel of Cantina Canalla, and advance of what was to come.
About Sikil Pak
Originally from Yucatan, you use with roasted pumpkin seeds, tomatoes and Habanero chillies to make Sikil -tomato- Pak -pumpkin seed-. This is -let’s call it like this- a primitive Sikil Pak, the primary stuff Mayas of Yucatan used to eat prior the arrival of the Spaniards. Ha’ Sikil P’ak, is the name, with Ha’ standing for “water”, as it was used to lose the dip.
However, this is not the Sikil Pak you would enjoy if you ever visit that part of Mexico. The actual Sikil Pak is made with the ingredients mentioned above plus some classics in the Mexican cuisine: orange and lime juices, and coriander. But, as you know, there always are multiple versions of a dish; and some people add onion, garlic and olive oil to this dip for extra taste.
For this recipe, we are making the more modern version. It is an absolute winner as you will see.
How to make Sikil Pak
- 170 gr peeled raw pumpkin seed
- 2 plum tomatoes
- ½ medium white onion
- 1 garlic clove
- ½ habanero or scotch bonnet chilli
- ½ cup freshly squeezed orange juice
- ½ lime squeezed
- Extra Virgin Olive Oil, to taste
- Salt & black pepper to taste
- Chopped coriander, to garnish
- Dry roast the pumpkin seeds in a frying pan on medium-high temperature until they get some nice brown colour. Be careful to not burn them. Leave them to cool down and transfer them to a food processor or blender.
- Char the tomatoes, onion, chilli and garlic on a dry frying pan, but not too much. Add them to the pumpkin seeds.
- Add the orange and lime juices, the olive oil and blend or process everything until you get a smooth paste, scraping the sides with a spatula. Add some more juice, oil or a splash of water, to your taste, if the Sikil Pak is too thick.
- Add salt and pepper to taste and transfer to a bowl. Garnish with some chopped coriander and crumble feta or fresh cheese. Serve with totopos or tortilla chips.
- You can keep it in the fridge for 5 days.