As you may know, I was born and raised in Venezuela. Mi bisabuelita was Bogotana and in Caracas we all grew up with the flavors and aromas of the Colombian Caribbean coast, and the seasoning of those wonderful women with dark skin and wide hips who did everything singing.
The best part was those women loved us as if in that transmuted love, they loved the children they had left behind in Riohacha, Santa Marta, Barranquilla, Cartagena and Coveñas, where the daily bread is fried arepas, empanadas, patacones and sancochos, where they drink agua de panela (piloncillo) and tamarind juice and where guayabas, marañones, zapotes, nísperos, guanábanas and anones are picked from patios and solares.
So today, the Independence of Colombia, I could not help thinking about Erica Dinho and her cooking blog My Colombian Recipes, and therefore share one of her recipes: this delicious flank steak in creole sauce.
Today is National Daiquiri Day. This delicious rum-based drink is believed to have been invented on the beaches of Daiquiri and Siboney in Cuba, 113 years ago, during the war against Spanish colonialism. But it was not until the mid Twentieth Century when daiquiris became popular thanks to Ernest Hemingway. They say the author of For Whom the Bell Tolls used to drink at El Floridita bar in Havana, nothing less than 12 daiquiris daily!!! Can you believe it? What about this drink made it somewhat of an addiction for him and how can you enjoy daiquiris as well? Read on...Continue Reading >
My children always love eating rice with sausage. So when they start with the same old story that they don't want to eat vegetables, I trick them with this filling dish that comes packed with everything I have on my fridge. And when I say everything, I mean EVERYTHING. This is my own version of mi abuelita's recipes. Abuelita was not only the best house manager ever. She also had the gift of the perfect seasoning and she knew how to make us eat rice, sausage, onion, garlic, celery, tomatoes, peppers, carrots--you name it--in just one dish.
Today's recipe is made with what I had in the refrigerator too: in this case pork Polish sausage (kielbasa), carrots and zucchinis. Sometimes I put peas, corn, hot dog sausages and I swear my children forget that they do not like this or that and devour one or two dishes in the blink of an eye.
I have to confess that my favorite thing about summer is that cooking becomes so easy, among other reasons because recipes are simpler. Take for example his giant lima bean salad: It's an excellent source of carbohydrates, fiber, energy, and flavor. I love cooking with these legumes because they are nutritional powerhouses that deliver tons of fiber and protein for pennies. Dried or canned, they make filling additions to soups and salads.Continue Reading >
I love a good classic potato salad. There is something so absolutely satisfying about it. It reminds me of my youth and it gives me the feeling of summer no matter what time of year it is.
It doesn't matter how much I love a classic potato salad, I'm always open to trying variations. I've never really met a potato salad I didn't get along with, now that I think of it.Continue Reading >
Today is Venezuela's Independence Day and what follow is my "perico" recipe. In other words my Venezuelan scrambled eggs with sofrito, a feast of colors and flavors. These eggs, very popular in Venezuela and Colombia, where they are known as "huevos pericos", are to be eaten with arepas. If you serve them accompanied with avocado slices, refried black beans and queso fresco, they make the best breakfast or brunch (and even dinner) ever!
Watermelons are at their peak right now. The refreshingly sweet and delicious fruit is also good for you. Watermelons are perfect for sharing because unless you are getting one of those mini-watermelons (which I love), you probably aren't going to be able to finish a whole watermelon on your own. At least not in one sitting.Continue Reading >
Today's recipe is one of my favorite. It's an original creation inspired by a rum and coffee liqueur that is sold in Venezuela. It is a variation of my chocolate mousse, but instead of rum, I add rum and coffee liqueur. Let me just tell you, it's a delight.
In order not to deprive the little ones to a delicious dessert, I make a virgin version that has nothing to envy the alcohol one and that makes them feel "big" because they know coffee is not for kids. In this case I add granulated instant coffee (Nescafe).
We have a saying in my house: if you don't like mac and cheese, it's because you don't love Mami. My kids are big mac and chese fans. This is why I have several recipes, because as mi abuelita used to say: variety is the spice of life.
Today's recipe is my mac and cheese a la mexicana. Among other ingredients, this casserole includes chile poblano, corn, queso fresco and chorizo, and trust me: everybody will LOVE it!
Growing up in sunny Southern California, I am no stranger to the Mexican border, where I have traveled back and forth throughout my life. Each time my family would pack up the car to travel south into Tijuana, Rosarito, Puerto Nuevo, Ensenada, or Mexicali, I would begin to take inventory of the snacks and treats I would ultimately indulge in once my feet hit Mexican soil. At the top of that list: paletas. Always.
There was something about the natural fruit popsicles that made a lasting impression on me. Was it the meaty bite of the paleta de coco (coconut), or the tangy sweetness of the lime paleta, or both?