Category: Recipes

Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas

Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias #NestleTraditionallyUnitedGingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas made with La Lechera

Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas:

These delicious delights known as Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas have my kitchen resembling a Christmas elf factory. Except it’s just me and my little family playing all elves trying to churn out as many as possible. The way I look at it, I’m continuing to keep family traditions alive this holiday season.  I’ve taken my little boy under my baking wing and am teaching him to make empanadas the way my grandfather taught me. I’m using my trusty caramel recipe made with NESTLÉ® LA LECHERA® Sweetened Condensed Mil​k, and pairing it with my grandfather’s gingerbread empanada recipe giving my caramel pear filling a little twist.  La Lechera (available at Walmart) is my trusted partner to make classic holiday recipes come to life. In my Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas I used La Lechera in both my caramel and to make the royal icing. Pair this holiday treat with a mug of NESTLÉ® ABUELITA® Mexican Hot Chocolate and let the nostalgia sweep over you. <3 Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas made with La Lechera and served with Abuelita

Ingredients for Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas:

For the dough:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 3 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 5 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup salted butter
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable shortening
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 tablespoons dark molasses
  • 2 tablespoons cold water

For the egg wash:

  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon water

For the caramel sauce:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons butter (room temperature)
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons NESTLÉ® LA LECHERA® Sweetened Condensed Mil​k
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt

For the pear filling:

  • 1 1/2 pounds pears (peeled and cored and cut into small cubes)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 3/4 cup caramel sauce

Royal Icing:

  • 3 tablespoons meringue powder
  • 4 cups powdered sugar
  • 5 tablespoons NESTLÉ® LA LECHERA® Sweetened Condensed Mil​k
  • 2 tablespoons warm water
  • sprinkles (optional)


  1. Make the dough: by adding flour, ground cinnamon, baking powder, ground ginger, brown sugar, and salt to a food processor. Pulse to mix completely.
  2. Add butter, eggs, and molasses to flour mixture. Pulse to bring dough completely together.
  3. Remove mixture from food processor and knead with hands to fully incorporate your dough. Divide dough into 4 quarters and flatten into disks. Wrap each disk in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  4. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  5. Make the caramel: In a small sauce pan combine sugar, corn syrup, and water over a medium high flame. Do not stir, but make sure all the sugar is covered by water. Once the sugar mixture becomes a dark golden brown gently swirl to combine evenly. Remove from flame and whisk in butter, La Lechera, and salt into sugar until smooth. Set to the side to cool.
  6. Make the pear filling: by mixing pears, cornstarch and caramel together. Set to the side.
  7. On a clean surface roll out gingerbread dough to a 1/16 inch thickness. Then with a cookie cutter (I used 5 inch cutouts) cut out as many as possible. Divide the shapes in half. You will need two of the same shape  for each empanada.Gingerbread tree cutoutGingerbread star cutout
  8. Place 1/2 of the gingerbread cutouts on a baking mat-lined cookie sheet.
  9. Make the egg wash: by mixing egg and water together.
  10. Now place 1 teaspoon of caramel pear filling in the center of each gingerbread cutout. Then spread it just in the middle. Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas stuffed with pear and La Lechera
  11. With your finger brush the outside rim of gingerbread cutout with egg wash. Then top with the same gingerbread shaped cutout. Press down all along the edges with a fork to enclose the empanada. Then poke the fork on the top of the empanada and brush the entire top of the empanada with the egg wash. Repeat until all empanadas are done.
  12. Bake for 30 minutesBaked Gingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas fresh out of the oven.
  13. Make the royal icing: Mix meringue powder, powered sugar, La Lechera, and water together until smooth. Place in a disposable piping bag with a tip.
  14. Allow to cool completely then decorate top with royal icing and sprinkles.Decorated Gingerbread Caramel Pear EmpanadasGingerbread Caramel Pear Empanadas served with Abuelita


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Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño

Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño

This post is sponsored by Logra Mas Con Tu Cocina. All opinions are my own.

Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño made with Lipton Green Tea

A delicious fruity drink that will surely brighten all your holiday festivities: Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño

December is a big month for us here in the Lopez-Presley household. It’s my husband’s birthday month, Christmas tree trimming time, and gotta tamalada with my family. I can’t forget holiday school activities for my son, light ceremonies, and Posada festivities better known as let’s drink Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño all night long. Of course, it’s also Christmas. I run around like mad trying to get everything just right.

Ponche Navideño made with Lipton Green Tea

Ponche Navideño is something I make throughout the entire month of December. I love the aroma the hot fruity punch gives off as it boils, which essentially means a gathering is about to unfold. The punch’s cinnamon and fruit fusion create an aroma perfect for warming you up during the holidays. Typically I stick to the basics of ponche making with jamaica, tamarindo, prunes, sugar cane, and tejocote. You can basically use any fruit you have on hand, like apples, oranges, raisins, and pears. I don’t always like making the same version so I searched the internet and found an interesting one at which called for Lipton® Green Tea. This smart beverage is just 40 calories. I know, Christmas comes early with that calorie count. 

Mexican Christmas Punch Made With Green Tea

I liked the idea of giving my ponche a little Lipton® Green Tea unsweetened 100% Natural Green Tea twist, which contains about 150 mg flavonoids per serving.  A daily consumption of at least 400 mg flavonoids is suggested and may help maintain a healthy heart.  This recipe uses apples, pears, dried prunes, Lipton® Green Tea, and guava nectar as a base.  I added a few extra ingredients to make it my own and gosh it was perfect.

Related Recipe: Buñuelos De Viento

Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño made with Lipton Green Tea and fruit

For my adult friends and family I like to spike my Mexican Christmas Punch making it a cocktail with a quality tequila or whiskey. I make a big pot for our gathering and place it on the bar next to the boozy options and everyone can pour their spirit of choice into their individual cup. It makes an ideal holiday intoxicant.

Do you have any festive recipe ideas that include Lipton® Green Tea? Please share using #LograMasConTuCocina

Ingredients for Mexican Christmas Punch / Ponche Navideño:

  • 20 whole cloves
  • 2 oranges, sliced thickly
  • 3 quarts of water
  • 1 gala apple,  cut into bite size chunks
  • Green apple (1), cut into bite size chunks
  • 1 pear, cubed
  • 8 oz. peeled sugar cane
  • 10 pitted prunes
  • 4 tamarindo pods, peeled and deveined
  • 6 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 oz mini piloncillo cone
  • 10 Lipton® Green Tea Bags
  • 1 1/2 guava nectar
  • 1/2 cup pomegranate seeds


  1. Stick cloves into skin of orange slices. Put water, orange slices, apple, pear, sugar cane, prunes, tamarindo, and cinnamon sticks in a 8 qt pot and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 15 minutes for fruit to soften and for flavors to develop.
  2. Stir in mini piloncillo cone. Remove from heat and add Lipton® Green Tea Bags; cover and steep 5 minutes.
  3. Remove tea bags and stir in guava nectar and pomegranate seeds.
  4. Ladle punch and fruit into mugs.
  5. Enjoy and Happy Holidays!



Holiday Double Crusted Apple Pie Perfection!

Holiday Double Crusted Apple Pie Perfection!

This double crusted apple pie is perfect for the Holiday season.

I’ve been on a double crusted apple pie tear lately.

Since I was a little girl (me, pictured below in the black and white stripes) I’ve always tinkered with pie-making but making one that fits my standards now was more my aim. We’ve all bought the fresh ready made pie dough from the market, but I was looking to perfecting my own. I’m glad I was inspired to get grooving on my pie making abilities again (before the holidays). I seriously upped my ante and the results couldn’t be more satisfying. (more…)

Rajas and Cheese Tamales

Rajas and Cheese Tamales

This post has been sponsored by MAGGI®. All thoughts and opinions are my own!

Rajas and cheese tamales made with Nestle Maggi vegetable bouillon.

I remember the first time I was introduced to NESTLÉ MAGGI® , I was sitting in a busy kitchen in Mexicali , Mexico, learning to make rajas con crema (green chile strips) for a batch of Rajas and Cheese Tamales with my husband’s grandmother. I watched as she broke up the cube of vegetable bouillon over the strips of green chile and corn.  Later that day, I was fascinated to learn that Maggi would be the key to flavoring the tamal masa as the lesson proceeded. It was a great way to season the masa and give it an extra level of sabor. Grandma said to me in Spanish that Maggi was her favorite bouillon, and she used it for many dishes. I was liking this tutorial and knew I would keep the Maggi step in my own tamal making. (more…)

Cheesy Jalapeno Idaho® Potato Pupusas

Cheesy Jalapeno Idaho® Potato Pupusas

I would like to give a special thank you to the Idaho Potato Commission for sponsoring this post! All opinions and recipe are my own. 
Cheesy Jalapeno Potato Pupusas made with Idaho Potatoes!

My pupusa habit was becoming a bit on the expensive side, especially when ordering for the whole family a couple times a week and everyone wanted more than one. Also let’s face it, the options are limited for vegetarians at most places. This drove me to start making my own pupusas. I was pleasantly surprised at how extremely easy they are to make, and how great they taste filled with Idaho® Potatoes, cheese and jalapeno! Such a simple inexpensive meal that taste like the most decadent flavors have been invited to your table. (more…)

Mushroom Saltado : Idaho Potato Plant Based Lomo Saltado

Mushroom Saltado : Idaho Potato Plant Based Lomo Saltado

I would like to give a special thank you to the Idaho Potato Commission for sponsoring this post! All opinions and recipe are my own. 
Mushroom Saltado plant based version of Lomo Saltado using Idaho Potatoes.

I’m talking all about Mushroom Saltado, the incredible plant-based version of the meaty Peruvian Lomo Saltado. It’s been a while since a single dish has brought me this much excitement. The taste is on another level of delicious with a complex array of flavor, and comparable if not better than it’s carnivorous family member. Mushroom Saltado is made with stir-fried red onion, yellow bell pepper, tomato, portobello mushrooms, and sautéed in a spicy aji-amarillo sauce. The entire dish comes together when the stir fried veggies are mixed with crunchy Idaho® Potato French Fries! Traditionally served with steamed rice (ideal for soaking up every last drop of sauce) and drizzled with fresh lemon juice. You’ll want to lick the bowl clean, I promise.


Vegetarian Breakfast Toast Table

Vegetarian Breakfast Toast Table

This fall indulge in a glorious vegetarian breakfast toast bar ala Presley's Pantry.

Today is officially the first day of Fall, and September is national breakfast month. I’ve been waiting patiently for the cooler weather to grace us and make it’s presence known. There is something about that crisp cool air that guides me to my kitchen and begs me to turn on the oven. Once the oven is roaring there is almost a 99% chance I will be baking one of my homemade breads.