Month: August 2014

Spicy Habanero Blistered Tomato Dip #TabascoTasteMakers

Spicy Habanero Blistered Tomato Dip #TabascoTasteMakers

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by the wonderful Tabasco family. It is my pleasure to be a Tabasco Tastemaker. The recipe and opinions are my own.

Spicy Habanero Blistered Tomato Dip #TabascoTasteMakers

Oh yeah, the summer is still lingering. Even though my mind is completely consumed with “back to school” my kitchen is still telling me it’s “hot in here.” I guess I’m hanging on to the last couple of weeks of longer days, eating on the patio, and entertaining guests all in a very simple easy style.  I want to enjoy these last moments of the summer of 2014 with easy to make snacks, refreshing drinks and a gaggle of family and friends.

Since the clock is ticking, carpe diem…. I started with this spicy yet cool dip. I imagine myself outside in the patio with a slight breeze blowing through, good music from the 70’s creating a heartfelt ambiance, a tall drink on ice, my nearest and dearest hanging out in comfy clothes, and a big bowl of spicy habanero blistered tomato dip with chips to bring it all together.

I used sour cream as my base, spiked it with a nice helping of Tabasco Habanero Sauce, and added a tribe of blistered tomatoes. Mixed it all together, served it with corn chips, and sat down to enjoy my afternoon. The dip has a amazing contrast of flavors going on, from very cool and creamy to spicy with a slight hint of sweet. It is very addicting and could be eaten by the spoonful or poured over rice, but I should warn you now it is fiery hot with a vibrant intensity and delicious tangy taste! Enjoy the rest of your summer!

ingredients for spicy habanero blistered tomato dip

Ingredients for spicy habanero blistered tomato dip:

  • 2 – tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 1/2 – cups cherry tomatoes (cut in half)
  • 1 – teaspoon Tabasco Spicy Salt
  • 2 – cups sour cream
  • 4 – green onion stalks (chopped)
  • 1 – tablespoon Tabasco Habanero Sauce

Directions:

  1. In a large frying pan over a medium high flame add in olive oil and allow to get hot.
  2. Add in tomato halves and sprinkle with tabasco spicy salt. Blistered tomatoes sprinkled with Tabasco Spicy Salt
  3. Cook on each side for about 7 to 8 minutes. Remove pan from flame. Set to the side and allow to cool. blistered tomatoes
  4. In a bowl combine sour cream, green onion, and Tabasco Habanero Sauce. Sour cream green onion and Tabasco habanero sauce make the base of this dip
  5. Add blistered tomatoes to sour cream mixture. Mix to combine and serve with chips.
  6. Enjoy!

 

Sopes De Hongos: Mushroom Sopes #MasecaNosGusta

Sopes De Hongos: Mushroom Sopes #MasecaNosGusta

sopes de hongos

Every so often my body craves meat-free meals. I can’t necessarily say it’s because I’m a closet vegetarian or anything like that, I think I just enjoying eating meat-free sometimes. It usually happen after a few days of heavy carnivore scarfing. Plus I like making dishes that my Momma (she’s vegetarian) can enjoy too. It’s all about my Momma, really. Anyhow, I was having one of those days yesterday and really craving a sope. Mmmmm sopes!

I looked in my pantry and not only did I find a bag of Maseca front and center, I also saw a plump little onion sitting there waiting to be had. Fast forward thirty minutes later and my bag of Maseca was now a batch of sopes. I had a pan of refried beans on the stove, and a mushroom caramelized onion mixture was underway. I called my Mom up on the phone and said “Get over here!” It was nice, we had an afternoon lunch in a matter of minutes. She was happy, and I was happy too. I have to remind myself more often that it’s good to eat vegetarian, and not to get so caught up in the “meat” race. Simple, and yet so delicious.

This meal could be made as a light lunch served with a little side salad, or as a main dish for dinner served with a side of rice. I would even consider making them in a much smaller version as an appetizer for a party. Doesn’t matter how you make them, once you do you’ll realize how easy they are to make and never look back. You could even make all the ingredients and have a little sope bar. Build your own.

ingredients for sopes

Ingredients for sopes de hongos:

  • 4 – cups Maseca
  • 1/2- teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 – cups warm water
  • vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 – tablespoons butter
  • 1 – onion (sliced)
  • 1 – basket of mushrooms (sliced)
  • refried beans
  • crumbled queso fresco
  • salsa
  • sour cream or crema

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl add maseca, salt and water. Mix with hands until no longer sticky.
  2. Divide the dough into 18 to 20 balls, then flatten it between both hands. Make sure the dough is a little on the thick side, and about the size of the palm of your hand.
  3. On a hot comal heat each disk for a minute on each side. Remove from comal and place on a clean working surface.
  4. Pinch the sides of the sope to form a little edge. Make sure to do this step right when the sope comes off the comal. Careful not to burn your fingers.
  5. In a frying pan over a medium high flame add vegetable oil (enough to cover entire sope). Allow to get hot.
  6. Drop each sope into the hot oil and fry till lightly golden about a minute.
  7. Remove from oil and place on a paper lined plate to drain off oil drippings.
  8. In a large frying oil over a medium flame add in butter.
  9. Add in onion and sauté for 10 minutes.
  10. Add in mushrooms and sauté for 7 minutes.
  11. Remove onion mushroom mixture from stove and place in a dish.
  12. Fill sopes with a huge dollop of refried beans and smooth to fill center.
  13. Top beans with onion mushroom mixture. mushroom onion mixture on top of a sope
  14. Then top with queso fresco, sour cream and salsa.
  15. Enjoy!
Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Maseca. However, the recipe and opinions are my own.

 

Our Back To School Morning Routine With A Breakfast Sandwich

Our Back To School Morning Routine With A Breakfast Sandwich

 

IMG_3180

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I feel like I have been preparing for a marathon. Practicing small little jaunts, that are priming me for the big day. My son is going into kindergarten, and even though he has been in preschool for a while now, it just feels different. I have this overwhelming excitement building up in me for various reasons, but one of the main ones is our morning routine. I keep going over the basics of what needs to be done, in order to get out of the house on time and get him there ready to take on his day. This routine I’ve been planning has to be consistent and easy to attain.

  1. Lay out the uniform the night before. This will take the guess work out of what he will be wearing and allow him to just focus on putting his clothes on fast.
  2. Make him a healthy breakfast. I plan on making a decent batch of bacon or sausage that could last for a few days in the fridge. That way in the morning all I have to do is make an egg and put it between two pieces of toast along with a slice of cheese and the bacon for a breakfast sandwich. He is going to have to be at school all day long, and I want to make sure I send him off well balanced and prepared to take on his scholastic learnings. Plus I don’t know if he will eat at lunch time, and at least I know for sure he’ll be eating a big breakfast.
  3.  Make sure he takes his daily vitamin. People have warned me when your kid goes to school he/she is sure to bring home a cluster of different illnesses (cough, cold, flu…. you name it). I am going to take an extra preventative step and make sure he is loaded up on his daily vitamin. I know it won’t keep everything at bay but I’ll take any extra assistance a gummi vitamin wants to help provide. daily vitamin
  4. I’ve been teaching him how to wipe down his table/desk with clorox wipes when ever he eats, or does busy work at his desk. I like the idea of keeping the space where he will spend most of his time germ free. A healthy child means “no” missing school, and a better education for him since he’ll be present. This will be part of our morning routine, having him get his backpack ready with a folder, school supplies, lunchbox and his clorox wipes, so he could wipe away while at school too. wiping down the desk with clorox wipes
  5. Laying down the rules. I figure I will start each morning with a little pep talk, and a schedule of what he can expect from his day. I will write down the list on a big note pad, and go over the details with him. Then I’ll give him a burst of love and send him off to school with positive energy by his side.

The best part of this routine is I’ll be able to get the uniform pants, ingredients for breakfast, daily vitamins, clorox wipes, and big note pads all from Walmart, which will make it so easy to attain my morning routine throughout the year.

Ingredients for breakfast sandwich:

  • wheat english muffin
  • 1- slice colby jack cheese
  • bacon (cooked)
  • 1/2 – teaspoon butter
  • 1 – egg

Directions:

  1. Toast english muffin in toaster or toaster oven until crisp.
  2. Once toast is done place cheese slice on one of the toast slices.
  3. Place bacon on top of cheese.
  4. In a small frying pan over a medium flame add butter and allow it to melt. Coat the pan with butter.
  5. In a bowl whisk the egg until scrambled.
  6. Then pour egg into the small frying pan and cook on one side for 3 minutes, then flip and cook the other side for 2 minutes.
  7.  Remove egg from pan and place on top of bacon. Top with remaining toast.
  8. Enjoy!

Walmart-Moms-Disclaimer.2013

 

The Hundred Foot Journey Movie Review And A Curry Chicken Salad

The Hundred Foot Journey Movie Review And A Curry Chicken Salad

curry chicken champagne grape salad

You know that feeling you get after you just walked out of a film that was so satisfying on every level? The story line was great. The acting was superb. The cinematography was excellent, the art design was dazzling, and you were completely sucked in from start to finish. That was me with The Hundred Foot Journey. I loved everything about it. I roared with laughter, I cried, I had so much food envy throughout the movie… I just loved it! Here…let me give you a briefing on what the movie is about.

An Indian family loses everything they had and owned in India and decides to flee to Europe, the south of France to be exact. Once there, they open a restaurant directly across the street from a very highfalutin 1 Michelin Star restaurant. The culture clash that ensues with the rival restaurateur Madame Mallory (Hellen Mirren) begins and takes us on a visually mouthwatering adventure.

image003

There is a little bit of everything in this film for everybody. It’s the perfect date film, or a girls night out, or Sunday with your Mom. The Hundred Foot Journey is in theaters now! Go see it!

In complete tribute to the foodie film I wanted to create something I could make quickly but be transported back to the film. Here is my Curry Chicken Salad.

Ingredients for curry chicken salad

Ingredients for curry chicken salad:

  • 1 – pound chicken (cooked and chopped into cubes)
  • 1/3 – cup red onion (cubed)
  • 1/3 – cup pistachio
  • 1/3 – cup champagne grapes ( I used Melissa’s Produce) (stems removed)
  • 1/3 – cup mayo
  • 1 – teaspoon curry powder
  • 1/4 – chili powder
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Combine chicken, red onion, pistachios, champagne grapes in a bowl. Mix to combine.
  2. Mix mayo, curry powder, and chili powder in a bowl to completely combine.
  3. Pour curry mayo over chicken mixture.
  4. Mix to combine.
  5. Salt and pepper to liking.
  6. Spoon salad over a slice of lettuce. Or put on a slice of bread.
  7. Enjoy!

image009

Mango Lime Refresher

Mango Lime Refresher

mango lime refresher

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Number of Servings: 10

Let’s elevate the tailgate experience at your place. Nothing like watching college football from home, while enjoying all your favorite treats. In honor of the season I created a lovely drink that has become the number one request in my house. This mango lime refresher brings a tropical freshness to the tailgating experience. Offering a cool balance between bites, and quenching your thirst at the same time. Give it a try, my guess is you will love it as much as my family does. Then hop over to the awesome “Tailgate At Your Place” site , the digital destination that will help you throw the “ultimate” home tailgate party. It is such a wealth of tailgating party info, you’ll be able to find college football trivia, party tips, and other recipes. Throwing parties has never been so easy. Here’s the bonus part, when you interact with the site, you have a chance to win one of hundreds of prizes! Isn’t that cool? Make this drink! Go to the site and be ready to enjoy the football season!

Ingredients:

  • 2 – large ripe mangos (peeled, and all flesh cut from bone)
  • 2 – limes (peeling removed)
  • 1 – 1 inch strip of lime peel (reserved from peelings of lime)
  • 1/2 – cup sugar
  • 9 – cups water
  • 10 – strawberries

Steps:

  1. Add mango pieces, lime, lime peeling, sugar, and 2 cups water to a blender.
  2. Blend until smooth.
  3. Strain mixture through a sieve. Allowing all liquid to pass through. Discard pulp.
  4. Add mango/lime liquid to a pitcher, then add remaining 7 cups of water to pitcher and mix to combine.
  5. Place pitcher in the fridge for a minimum of and hour and a half to chill.
  6. Serve cold and garnish glass with a strawberry.
  7. Enjoy!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Red Baron. The opinions and text are all mine.

My Food Interview With The Cast Of “The Hundred Foot Journey” Movie

My Food Interview With The Cast Of “The Hundred Foot Journey” Movie

Sometimes life throws little surprises on your lap.  A few weeks ago I was asked if I would like to interview the cast of The Hundred Foot Journey and that cast included Dame Helen Mirren.  Being that this movie is based around food, and I am a huge film fanatic, I jumped at the chance!  I had lived vicariously through my Mother as she read the book a few years ago and I was now anxiously awaiting the release of the film when I was asked to do the interview.  I had no idea how gorgeous the food and story were going to translate to the big screen, but it is a sight to behold on all levels.  From food that looks like it was created in the heavens to a stellar cast of great performances to a solid funny, touching story that will be considered a classic food-film for years to come.  It will be in theaters this Friday, I highly suggest you go and see it.  In the meantime here are a few things the cast had to say about their food experience with the movie.

Question: How much food training?  What kind of training did you go through for the film to master the tricks of the trade from an appearance stand point?

Helen Mirren /Madame Mallory:  No I did not. Luckily I didn’t have to cook in the film. I just had to break some eggs at one point.  I don’t break the shells the ‘official’ chef way, but I have seen people break an egg like that with one hand and I had practiced that way prior to filming.  Then of course the chefs on the set said “Oh no, we would never break the eggs that way, we would bang two eggs together.”  I did it for theatrical purposes with one hand.  I did though observe a chef in beverly hills for a few nights to watch the kitchen run and it was like a beautiful ballet.  Like a beautifully oiled machine.  Quiet, absolutely silent. Maybe a little bit of talking, but it was absolutely fascinating.

Charlotte Le Bon /Marguerite: I did culinary classes with Manish in a restaurant in the area where we were shooting for a couple of hours, then after that I went to a friend’s restaurant in Paris and watched the chef for two nights.  For sure I am not a great cook and I will never be able to make good food.  So I don’t care about learning to cook a ham. It’s more about gestures and being a leader in the kitchen.  That was the most interesting part was the way the chefs I observed moved, and how they would yell at people.

Manish Dayal /Hassan: In pre-production I did a lot of in the kitchen training.  I had to really understand how things were done in a French kitchen vs. an Indian kitchen.  In an Indian kitchen you’re just trying to get the job done, you move wherever you need to move to get the dish cooked the best possible way.  Where as in a French kitchen there is a very very specific hierarchy, there are rules, you have to know where your skills are, by knowing your skills you know where you are in the kitchen physically.  No one crosses each other in a French Kitchen.  There is always a way to stand to be out of the next persons way.  It sort of functions like a puzzle, with very stiff movements.  And an Indian kitchen isn’t like that, everyone is moving around trying to get the job done.

Question: Tell us about the omelet?  Did you actually get to cook that?

Manish Dayal /Hassan:  It’s my Dad’s recipe.  Oh I cooked it!  And they had some French cooking consultants on the set and they were horrified.  They couldn’t believe how I was preparing it, what I was adding to it.  They were in shock.  The way to make that scene important was to make it my omelet.  It couldn’t be a proper french omelet, or it wouldn’t fit the story.  My father’s secret to an omelet is milk.  It takes longer to cook, but makes the eggs flakey.

Question: What is your favorite food memory?

Manish Dayal /Hassan:  My Mom’s cooking.  If there were three things in front of me, I could always tell you which one my Mom cooked, just by the way it tastes.  She makes rice and dal, and my favorite memory is she would put lots of peanuts in it!  I would eat just that as a kid.

Charlotte Le Bon /Marguerite: Yeah, but it’s usually very bad food.  Like kids food.  I don’t know why but kids love to eat tasty food, and tasty food is always bad food.  I think of the hamburgers my father use to make where the meat, when I was still eating meat, was almost raw in the middle.  Or the foods my grandma makes and still does, It’s the odors… odors are the best souvenirs.

Helen Mirren /Madame Mallory:  My mother was not a great great cook, but she was a good cook, and she made several signature dishes.  She made these wonderful ‘piroshki’ cabbage pies.  And actually chocolate, chocolate is an incredibly memorable thing for me, because I didn’t eat chocolate at all because I grew up in England after the second world war, and had never had chocolate until I was about 7 years old.  My first taste of chocolate was pretty amazing and I never quite forgotten it.  More than the taste of it was the smell of it.  I love milk chocolate.

Question: Were you a cook prior to starring in this film?

Manish Dayal /Hassan: You know I wasn’t. I knew basic things like how to make eggs. One thing I did know how to do well is BBQ because my Dad is a big griller.  I would always watch him do that, so I kinda picked it up a little bit.

Charlotte Le Bon /Marguerite: I don’t cook a lot. I’m kinda lazy actually. I’m a vegetarian too. I do cook to impress when I’m having guests over.  I’ll make risotto and fancy pastas.  Lots of parmesan.  They never come out like I want them to.

Helen Mirren /Madame Mallory:  My great cooking secret is my showtime grill.  It’s genius.  I saw it on an infomercial one night and got my credit card out.  The showtime grill arrived and it’s fantastic.  You can not go wrong.  It’s the most wonderful, wonderful thing.  I can’t say enough about the Showtime grill.  Aside from cooking chicken on my grill I love making soup, because it is an endlessly changing thing.

THE HUNDRED-FOOT JOURNEY arrives in theaters everywhere on August 8th!

Cheers To The Best Separation Ever: Chilaquiles Divorciados!

Cheers To The Best Separation Ever: Chilaquiles Divorciados!

Chilaquiles Divorciados
chilaquiles divorciados #masecanosgusta

Some things just stand better on their own. Chilaquiles Divorciados is one of them. I heart everything about them…especially the name. Two completely different chilaquiles that decided to throw in the towel on their union and disconnect whole heartedly. One hot and spicy “Chila” stands in all her red distinction , and the other easy going and smooth “Quiles” swims in his pool of green chile. Two separate dishes plated together but each making a different statement on their own. (more…)