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Step-by-step guide to the best Holiday Tamales!

Step-by-step guide to the best Holiday Tamales!

The word tamal comes from the Nahuatl tamalli which means wrapped. This delicious dish is of indigenous origin, prepared with cooked corn dough and wrapped in leaves of different plants (banana, corn, maguey, among others). Stuffed with vegetables, chili, sauce, meat, chicken or fruit, sweet or savory, for all tastes! Tamales are the most popular among Mexicans.

They say there are between 500 and 5,000 different tamales across the country. Can you imagine all those flavors?

It is a delicious part of the Mexican traditional dishes, In Mexico we eat them on many important occasions, like the Day of the dead, when life and death are celebrated, tamales are put on altars as offerings to the dead and enjoyed in the company of our loved ones. We also celebrate Candlemas day; On February 2, the person who receives the Baby Jesus figurine in their Rosca de Reyes needs to invite everyone for tamales.

These are some of the tamal varieties from all over Mexico, the possibilities are really endless, they estimate that per year the production and sale of tamales around the country is in the hundreds of millions!

Holiday Tamales Recipe

Ingredients:

  • Tamal leaf
  • Tamal Flour Maseca 1kg
  • Isadora Beans
  • Rajas Jalapeño
  • If you chose the filling rajas con queso: 200 gr of white cheese (we recommend queijo flamengo, gouda or mozzarella)
  • 4-5 cups of chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 cups of shortening veg or pork lard, you can also sub with a cup of oil
  • 1 tablespoon of baking powder
  • 2 liters of water
  • Fine Salt 

Equipment Needed

Below is the list of tools needed to make the recipe,

  • 1 large tall stockpot (for steaming the tamales)
  • Steamer basket
  • 2 large bowls
  • Electric Mixer (optional for whipping the shortening/lard)
  • 1 small pot (for making broth)
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Cutting board
  • Knife

Prep for Tamales:

Step 1: Soak the corn husks tamal leaf

Rinse the corn husks to remove any debris, then place into a large bowl and cover them with cold water. Let them soak for at least one hour.

Step 3: Prep your broth

If you’re making fresh broth, please prepare before hand, if you’re making broth from bouillon cubes make sure its cool to touch by the time of the workshop.

Step 2: Whip your shortening or pork lard

Make sure the vegetable shortening or pork lard is at room temperature for easy handling, the traditional way to whip the shortening/lard to achieve fluffy tamales is to do it by hand which takes 10-15 minutes, but to simplify this step use an electric mixer on medium to high speed for around 2-3 minutes. If you don’t have an electric mixer, you can whip the shortening/lard by hand, the technique is to melt it with the warmth of your hands, by squishing it and tossing it back on the bowl, repeat this for 10-15 minutes. The shortening/lard should look white, light and creamy, adding volume to the shortening/lard will yield a lighter masa for tamales.

Make the Tamales!

STEP 1: MAKE THE DOUGH

Measure out two to three cups of broth, set the whipped shortening, pork lard, or oil on your workspace and in a large bowl, put 3 cups of the tamal flour, with your hands gradually alternate between adding the shortening and the broth. Mix until the masa is uniform and light, the texture should be that of a thick cake batter.

Pro tip: For a foolproof dough, there is a float test! Take a small chunk of your dough and drop it into a cold cup of water, the dough should float, if it doesn’t you have to keep working it!

STEP 2: PREP YOUR FILLING

Today you had two options for filling, Rajas con Queso and Beans with chipotle.

For the rajas con queso, we have provided you a can of rajas which already comes cut in strips, please drain and properly shake out the water, we don’t want soggy tamales.

For the beans and chipotle, open the packet of beans and put the beans in a small bowl. Open the can of chipotle, take out the chilies in the chipotle can and cut them into manageable strips to add to your tamales.

STEP 3: ASSEMBLE THE TAMALES

Drain the tamal leaves that have been soaking for the last hour, and pat them dry, then we will fill them assembly line-style:

  • On the wide end of the husk, with a spoon spread 3 tablespoons dough to within 1/2 inch of the edges
  • Top each with 2 rajas and 1 strip of cheese OR 2 tablespoons of beans and 1 strip of chipotle
  • Fold the long sides of the husk over the filling. Make sure they overlap slightly for a secure closure
  • Fold the narrow end of husk over
  • Tie with a strip of husk to secure
  • Repeat until all of the husks are filled and secured 

Pro tip: Treat your spoon like a paint brush and your filling like the paint on the corn husk, put the leaf up to the light and if there are noticeable gaps on the leaf not covered by the dough then you need to cover those. In my family we don’t like to make fat tamales, so a thin even layer of dough on the leaf is optimal.

STEP 4: STEAM

Place a large steamer basket in a your stockpot over 1 in. of water. Place the tamales upright in the steamer and cover with remaining tamal leaves. Bring the water to a boil. Let them steam, covered, for 45 minutes to an hour.

Pro tip: This is a long steam, and water level will drop as the water boils off. Be sure to check on the water frequently, add more water as needed. You don’t want the pot to boil dry; this can damage the pot and makes for sad tamales. Mexican grandmas sometimes put a coin at the bottom of the pot so that it rattles when the water is getting low!

To see if they are cooked take one tamal out let it cool for 5-10 minutes and if the dough peels away cleanly from the leaf its ready, if the dough is still soft steam for another 15-20 minutes.

Tamales of the variety that we’ve just made can be served with salsa on top or sour cream, you can also enjoy these for breakfast with a fried egg on top!

To reheat them, place them in a plate still wrapped in their corn husk in and microwave for 2-3 minutes or take them out of their corn husk and lightly fry them on a pan, they will develop a crunchy exterior!

 

Pro tip: Uncooked tamales can be frozen for later, just be sure to pack them tightly in freezer bags before freezing. To serve, thaw in the refrigerator overnight, and then steam for for 45 minutes to an hour.

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The History of Cajeta + Recipes

The History of Cajeta + Recipes

Since viceregal times, in New Spain milk sweets based on the Iberian tradition have been made. This was thanks to the easy adaptation and proliferation of goats and the difficult coupling of cattle.

At first, it was in the "Bajío" region, as well as in the old "Villa de Nuestra Señora de la Asunción de Celaya" that the use of goat's milk was substituted in the original recipes that were based on cow's milk. This resulted in a recipe and a different sweet that acquired the name "cajeta" due to the wooden boxes in which it was originally stored.

"Mexico is the only place in the world where there is cajeta made with goat's milk."

In September 2010, cajeta was declared: "The dessert of the Mexican Bicentennial"

Why it's better with goats milk?

The biggest difference between the cajeta and the dulce de leche is in the use of goat's milk instead of cow's milk. Is it better?

In fact, goat's milk has benefits such as:

-Natural anti-inflammatory

-Less fat

-Rich in calcium

-More bio-compatibility

All these characteristics make goat's milk stand out as perfect for making a sweet like cajeta, instead of making only dulce de leche like cow's milk. We could also add the most important difference derived from this, the unique flavor.

The history of the cajeta is a story of a new identity of the Mexican people expressed in the differentiation of a traditional Spanish sweet, to give rise to one with a more exquisite and unique flavor using goat's milk.

Recipes with Cajeta

Coyotas de Cajeta (Cajeta Coyotes)

Have you heard of coyotas? Well, we will tell you a little about them: they are one of the typical desserts of Sonora in the North of Mexico and they are filled with cajeta or piloncillo. The name "coyotas" comes from the ancient custom of calling children "coyotitos" in the northwest of the country. Join us this time to prepare some delicious Coyotas de Cajeta.

For the Dough,

1 Kg of flour

2 tablespoons Royal

½ Kg of vegetable shortening

2 piloncillos

¼ liter of water

Filling

1 cup of Cajeta Real del Potosí

4 tablespoons of flour

2 piloncillos

Directions

First, grate 2 piloncillos and separate. Grating them well is important so that they blend perfectly with the other ingredients.

Then, mix 1 kg of flour, 1/4 liter of water, 1/2 kilo of vegetable shortening, 2 tablespoons of royal and the 2 grated piloncillos in a bowl.

Then, knead the mixture until it is compacted and can be handled.

Now knead with a rolling pin to unify the mixture, it should be as homogeneous as possible.

Later, cut circles of the same size (either with a cookie cutter or some other utensil).

Now, to prepare the filling in a bowl, mix 1 cup of cajeta, 2 grated piloncillos and 4 tablespoons of flour until the mixture is homogeneous.

Add the filling mixture to one of the dough circles.

Then close with another circle of dough, and press the edges with a fork to prevent the filling from dripping when baking.

Varnish with a little egg.

Bake at 200ºC for about 20 minutes. or until they look golden.

Enjoy!

Atole de Cajeta

How about a delicious atole to accompany your breakfast? Well, we have a better suggestion: a delicious cajeta atole! Follow our recipe and we assure you that you will have a delicious atole to enhance any morning or night.

Ingredients

Makes about 4 cups

1 liter of milk, can be oat, almond or any nut milk as well

1 cup of Maza Real flour

1 cup of Cajeta Real del Potosí

Directions

First, place 1 liter of milk in a pot and heat it.

Once its temperature has risen a little and it is no longer cold, add 1 cup of cajeta. Dissolve the cajeta, moving the mixture with a small spatula while it is heating.

Then, when the cajeta is dissolved in the milk, add 1 cup of the Maza Real flour and stir again until everything is mixed well.

Now, to serve the atole in a jar or container, place a strainer over the container and serve the atole. This is so that no lumps of flour remain in the atole.

Enjoy!

Recipes and Cajeta History Courtesy of Cajeta Real del Potosí

*All products available for purchase are tagged in the recipes.

#CajetaMexicana #NavidadesMexicanas #ChristmasSpirit

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Pollo en Salsa Verde

Pollo en Salsa Verde

Since you are crazy for Salsa Verde and tomatillo, I thought we should share an easy favorite of chicken in green sauce recipe. Tomatillo the base of Salsa Verde is such an intoxicating flavor that we completely understand the obsession and why it's selling out as quickly as we can restock it!

Ingredients

Makes 4 to 6 servings

¼ cup / 60ml safflower oil, plus more if needed

1 garlic clove

1 whole chicken, cut into 6 pieces

3 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled or not, cut into large (1- to 2-inch / 2.5 to 5cm) chunks

½ white onion, finely diced

2 cups / 480ml Salsa Verde

1 cup / 20g cilantro leaves, finely chopped

Corn Tortillas, warmed

Avocado, for serving

Directions

Warm the oil in a 4 qt / 3.8L Dutch oven or heavy-bottom stockpot over medium-high heat. Skewer the garlic clove on the tines of a fork and swivel it through the hot oil. The oil should be hot enough that the garlic sizzles and turns golden. Once this happens, remove the garlic and set it aside (don’t throw it away).

Add 2 or 3 chicken pieces, skin-side down, to the hot oil. Don’t overcrowd the pan. You are not cooking the chicken through, just searing it, allowing the skin to brown slightly, which brings out the flavor when it stews. The chicken skin will stick at first, but will release fairly easily once it’s done searing. Using tongs or a slotted spoon, flip each piece of chicken to sear the other side. Then remove the seared chicken and set aside on a plate while you continue to sear the rest of the pieces on each side. Set it all aside while you cook the potatoes.

Using the hot oil in the bottom of the pan (add a bit more, if needed), brown the potato chunks just as you did the chicken, adding them in a single layer and allowing them to turn golden on each side before flipping them. You are not cooking the potatoes through, just searing them; this also helps bring out their flavor and keeps them from falling apart in the stew. Once they’re a light golden color, remove them and set them on a plate.

Now take that clove of garlic that you used to swivel in the oil before you cooked your chicken and slice it fairly thinly. Add the sliced garlic to the oil in the pan, along with the onion, and sauté until soft and lightly browned. Strictly speaking, you could skip this step, since the salsa has plenty of flavor, but I really like the texture of the minced onion.

Add the salsa to the pot, along with the chicken pieces and potatoes. Bring it to a boil, cover, decrease the heat, and simmer for about 30 minutes. Cut into a thick piece of chicken and chunk of potato to confirm they’re cooked through. Shred the chicken for best results.

Sprinkle the cilantro over the stew. To serve, scoop the chicken over some tortillas, top with some fresh avocado and cilantro.

The tinga can be stored in a sealed container in the refrigerator for 3 to 5 days.

Recipes Tips:

You can also serve this plate with warm refried beans on the side, its a heartwarming meal that will always bring you comfort.

Recipe Courtesy of My Mexico City Kitchen

*All products available for purchase are tagged in the recipe.

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Five Mexican dishes to enjoy for Holy Week!

Five Mexican dishes to enjoy for Holy Week!

As is the Catholic tradition, holy week requires us to cleanse our body & soul by abstaining from red meats, we Mexicans then follow a mostly pescatarian or vegetarian diet for the season, here are some ideas to inspire you for on this holy season.

1. Baja Fish or Shrimp Tacos

These beer-battered fish tacos are served just how we remember them from childhood, with the tangy crema, vinegary jalapeños and amazing tortillas it will immediately transport you to the magical beaches of my dearest Baja. For the recipe you can use any type of white flaky fish, cod stands up well to frying but halibut is our favorite. You can also try it with shrimp! For vegetarians you can also replace this with banana blossom or jackfruit which are known to be the best options for replacing fish in this occasion. Find the recipe on by clicking on this link.

 

2. Vegetarian Green Pozole

A vegetarian pozole, the base is a generous pile of mushrooms (any kind works) that are cooked until their juices release and they start to brown. A green seasoning sauce made from tomatillos, poblanos, and an optional serrano is added and cooked to thicken, then the hominy and broth get mixed in. Finally, like all pozoles, it is garnished to taste—I like pungent radishes, fragrant oregano, crunchy onion, tender leaves of cilantro, and a healthy squeeze of lime juice. Chased with bites of crunchy corn tostadas and it’s a pozole that even a rojo devotee can love. Find the recipe on by clicking on this link.

3. The Easy Mole

 Mole sauce, the epitome of Mexican food, is made from chilli peppers, cocoa and corn, and was already used before the colonial period as a filling for tortillas served at important meals. The name mole is derived from chilmolli in nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs, the word chil meaning chilli pepper and molli sauce or ragout. Make this easy mole sauce and enjoy it chicken or with vegetables, it goes well with potatoes, plantains and nopales. Find the recipe on by clicking on this link.

4. Esquites for snacking!

When you buy Mexican street corn from a cart in the park or the public plaza you have two options: on the cob called elotes or in a cup called esquites. The cart will always be loaded with toppings for your corn; lime juice, mayonnaise, grated cheese, chili powder, butter, and hot sauce so that you can personalize your cup. In this recipe we’re making esquites, the street corn off the cob in a cup. Be ready to add it to your favorite dishes because you will love it! Find the recipe on by clicking on this link

5. For the sweet tooth: Tamales Dulces

Because we know you can't get enough of our sweetness, here we have one of our favorite savory sweet tamales with quince paste and in ode to our host country of Portugal, we will use a very traditional sheep's cheese called queijo de azeitaõ, this can be subbed by any soft white cheese you find in your country. Find the recipe on by clicking on this link.

*All products available for purchase are tagged in the recipes.

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Buñuelos with Lavender Piloncillo Syrup

Buñuelos with Lavender Piloncillo Syrup

Have you ever heard of a crunchy, sweet, buttery dessert called Buñuelos? Well you are in luck because at Casa Mexico we are in the Christmas spirit and that means rolling out the dough and making buñuelos!

Ingredients

Makes about 18 buñuelos
10 fresh lavender flowers (optional)
1 7.5 ounce cone Piloncillo
1 cup water

Peel of 1 orange

1 2/3 cups all purpose flour plus 4 tablespoons for dusting

½ cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar

1 tablespoon baking powder

½ teaspoon salt

1 large egg

1 tablespoon unsalted butter, room temperature

1 teaspoon Mexican vanilla extract

1/3 to ½ cup warm water

Vegetable oil for frying

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions

Place lavender, piloncillo, 1 cup water and orange peal in heavy small sauce pan and bring to boil to dissolve piloncillo. Reduce heat to low and let cook 30 minutes to infuse flavors. Cool slightly and strain.

Place 1 2/3 cup flour in large bowl. Whisk in 1 tablespoon of sugar, baking powder and salt. Make a well in the center and add egg, butter and vanilla. Using fingertips, mix until coarse crumbs form. Add warm water, a couple of tablespoons at a time, until dough comes together but is not too sticky. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and shiny, about 5 minutes. Place a little oil on fingertips and coat all of surface of dough with a little oil. Place in medium bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature (not to cold) for 30 minutes.

Divide into 14 to 15 balls, each about a tablespoon of dough. I use a scale, and each is about 1 ounce, but you can eyeball.

Coat each ball lightly with oil again and cover with plastic wrap. Let stand 10 minutes.

Heat enough vegetable oil in skillet to come ½-inch up of the sides of the pan to 350°F. Working with one at a time, and on floured surface, roll each into paper-thin round using a rolling pin and constantly rotating. Fry each individually until golden brown, turning occasionally. Transfer to paper towels to drain.

Mix 1/3 cup of sugar and cinnamon and place on small baking sheet. Stand buñuelo upright on sugar mixture and carefully pour additional sugar all over buñuelos. Serve with syrup.

Recipe from "Casa Marcela" Cookbook.

#BuñuelosMexicanos #NavidadesMexicanas #ChristmasSpirit #Rolloutthedough #Piloncillo

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How to make corn tortillas 101

How to make corn tortillas 101

Tortillas, the staple in every Mexican table, they breathe life into Mexican dishes, accompany through all our happiness and sorrys. They never disappoint, especially homemade tortillas, when they puff up perfectly in a heated comal. Here is the mother of all recipes, because every Mexican dish starts with a tortilla, so we will call it Masa Madre! Here is the true and tested way to make masa for corn tortillas, sopes, gorditas, empanadas, chochoyotes (don't worry we'll get to those too), and of course a Christmas specialty the tamales, its easy, its versatile and we can't live without it!

Ingredients

Makes about 12 tortillas

2 cups / 260g masa harina

1 to 1¼ cups / 240 to 300ml water

1 tsp pinch of salt

Directions

In a medium bowl, combine the 1 cup / 240ml water with the salt then add the masa harina and mix well. Continue adding water 1 Tbsp at a time until you have formed a smooth and thick dough that has the consistency of stiff cookie dough.

Form 12 golf ball–size balls and lay a moist dish towel over them so they don’t dry out.

* This masa you can also use to make tamales, gorditas, corn empanadas, tlayudas, and other corn goodies!

Warm an ungreased comal or two skillets over medium heat.

Lay a precut sheet of plastic on the bottom of a tortilla press and place a ball of masa on top of the plastic. Place a second sheet of plastic on top of the ball and then squeeze the press firmly so that the dough is sandwiched between the two plates. You want the tortilla to be about ⅛ inch / 3mm thick. Open the press and remove the flattened masa, which will be stuck between the two sheets of plastic. Place it on your left palm (if you’re right-handed) and use your right hand to peel off the top sheet of plastic. Then flip it over and transfer it to your right hand, so that it rests in your right palm. Carefully peel off the other sheet of plastic, freeing the raw tortilla.

Gently deposit the raw tortilla onto the preheated comal or skillet. You should hear a faint sizzle as it hits the metal. Watch for the edge of the tortilla to begin turning opaque, a signal that it is cooking. When this happens (after 30 to 45 seconds), flip it to the other side and let it cook for 30 to 45 seconds, until the whole thing starts to turn opaque. Now flip it back to the first side and let it cook for a final 30 seconds. After the second flip, it should start to puff up a little, a sign that all of the water in the masa has evaporated and the tortilla is done.

Getting your technique down takes some fiddling. If the edges of your tortilla look grainy and dry, add 1 Tbsp water to your dough, massaging it in thoroughly. But don’t add too much water, or the masa will stick to the plastic and to the bottom of your pan. Make sure that your tortillas aren’t too thinly pressed and that the thickness is uniform, which makes it easier to flip them. You may also need to adjust the heat of your stove if you feel they’re cooking too quickly or too slowly. Once you get the moisture and temperature right, each tortilla should take a total of about 2 minutes to cook through.

As each tortilla is finished cooking, set it in a basket or a deep bowl and cover the growing stack with a dish towel to keep them warm as you add to it. Wrapped up well, in a basket or a box with a lid, they should stay warm for about 1 hour.

You can reheat a tortilla on a hot comal or in a skillet, flipping it a few times until it’s completely heated through. It’s okay if your tortilla gets a little charred. The black flecks add flavor. You can also reheat them in a stack. Begin by heating one tortilla. After you flip it, add another on top of the already hot side of the first one. After 30 seconds, flip them both together so that the cold side of the second one is now on the hot surface of the pan, and add a third tortilla to the top of the pile. Keep flipping and adding until you have as many warm tortillas as you need. There’s really no limit. Once they’re stacked, they will all keep each other warm.

Recipe Courtesy of Gabriela Camara's “My Mexico City Kitchen" Cookbook.

#MasaMexicana #TortillasMexicanas #Maseca #MaketheMasa #MasaMadre #FreshTortillas #TortillasfortheSoul

Tortillas FoodInspiration RecetasAutenticas RecetasMexicanas Tamales Masa Madre  Maseca

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Pollo Pibil Rápidito

Pollo Pibil Rápidito

Pibil is such a mouth watering word for us Mexicans, we immediately transport ourselves to the beautiful Yucatán Peninsula, where this dish originated, also one of Mexico's most important cuisines, known for its assertive, pungent flavors. Pibil traditionally involves centuries-old traditional methods of cooking which include digging underground pits known as pib in the Mayan language, and burying a full pig wrapped in layers and layers of banana leaves, spices and achiote paste goodness.

Unfortunately we don't all have the privilege of being in the beaches of the Yucatan enjoying a traditionally made pibil, but we do have most everything we need for this Pibil Rapidín recipe below, it can be made with any regular chicken as well as with turkey leftovers from Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Ingredients

Serves 4 to 5 people

8 oz ripe tomatoes

1/4 red onion

3 garlic cloves, unpeeled

1/3 tsp kosher or sea salt

2 cups chicken broth

2 tablespoons canola or sunflower oil

1/4 cup grapefruit juice

1/4 cup orange juice

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup cane sugar vinegar

1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/8 teaspoon ground cumin

Freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons achiote paste

6 cups cooked shredded chicken, leftover turkey or rotisserie chicken

Picked Purple Onions with cane sugar vinegar (for serving)

Shredded Cabbage (for serving)

Warmed Komali Tortillas (for serving)

Directions

  1. Preheat the broiler. Line small baking sheet or roasting pan with foil and place the tomatoes, onion and garlic cloves on the foil, set the broiler, 3 to 4 inches from the heat, broil for 4-5 minutes, until charred on one side. Flip over and broil for another 4-5 minutes, until the skin is blistered and completely charred; the tomatoes should be very soft with the juices beginning to seep out. Remove from the heat.

  2. Once everything is cool to handle, quarter the tomatoes and place in a blender, with the juices in the pan. Peel the garlic cloves and add to blender, add the onion, salt and 1 cup of the broth, puree until smooth.

  3. In a casserole or soup pot, heat oil over medium heat. Pour in the puree, stir occasionally for 7-8 min, until it thickens and darkens considerably.

  4. Meanwhile, combine grapefruit, orange and lime juice with vinegar, oregano, allspice, cumin, pepper to taste, achiote paste, and remaining 1 cup of broth in the blender and puree until smooth.

  5. Stir the juice mixture into the tomato sauce, bring to a simmer for 5 min

  6. Add the chicken, stir together and cook uncover until the meat has absorbed most of the sauce about 5 min, the dish should be very moist but not soupy.

  7. Serve the Pibil with a side of lime, pickled purple onions and cabbage, make into tacos, or serve with rice or for quesadillas with our homemade flour tortillas!

 

Recipe Courtesy of “Mexican Today” Cookbook.

*All products available for purchase are tagged in the recipe.

#PibilRapidito #LeftoverIdeas #Everythingbutthekitchensink #EasyRecipes #RecipeoftheWeek

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Tamales Dulces con ate de membrillo y queijo de azeitaõ

Tamales Dulces con ate de membrillo y queijo de azeitaõ

Because we know you can't get enough of our sweetness, here we have one of our favorite savory sweet tamales with quince paste and in ode to our host country of Portugal, we will use a very traditional sheep's cheese called queijo de azeitaõ.

Ingredients

Makes about 12 tamales

2 cups / 260g masa harina, mixed with 1 to 1¼ cups / 240 to 300ml water (as directed on this page)

5 Tbsp / 70g butter, softened

⅓ cup / 65g granulated sugar

6 oz / 170g queijo de azeitaõ cheese

6 oz / 170g ate de membrillo / quince paste

Greek yogurt for garnish

Directions

Begin by placing your corn husks to soak in a large bowl of warm water to soften while you prepare the ingredients.

Place the fresh masa or mixed masa harina in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or, if you prefer to do this by hand with a whisk, in a large bowl. You want to whip up your masa to get as much air into it as you can, making it fluffy. The more it’s worked, the lighter the tamales will taste. After beating it for 3 to 4 minutes, add the butter 1 Tbsp at a time and continue to whip it until it’s well incorporated. Then add the sugar and mix for an additional 1 to 2 minutes.

Cut your azeitaõ cheese and ate de membrillo into 12 equal logs, approximately 2 x ½ inches / 5cm x 12mm. They should look like half of a string cheese stick. It’s not crucial that they be perfectly tidy and uniform as they will be tucked inside the tamales; you just want them to fit within the masa and for each tamal to have about the same amount of both cheese and quince paste.

Take your softened corn husks out of the water they’ve been soaking in, squeezing out any excess moisture. Open one up and place “about 3 Tbsp / 55g of the masa mixture in the center of the husk. Use the back of a spoon or a spatula to spread it into a rectangle that’s about 3 x 2 inches / 7.5 x 5cm and about ½ inch / 12mm tall. It doesn’t need to be precise, just big enough to hold the fillings with enough corn husk on all sides so that you can wrap it up and no filling will ooze out. Place one log of cheese and one log of quince paste at the center of the masa and then bring the sides of the corn husk together, sealing the filling inside the masa. Now fold up the bottom of the corn husk so that the whole tamal is contained “inside the corn husk, then roll it up from the side.

The tamal should be “closed” on the bottom and open on top. Use a second corn husk to bind it further. There really isn’t a science to wrapping tamales. What’s important is that the insides stay as tight as possible and that no masa comes out during steaming. Repeat this process with the rest of the masa and filling. If you want, you can cut one of the corn husks into ribbons and use these ribbons to tie up the tamales for extra insurance.

Once you’ve finished, place a steamer basket in a stockpot and add 2 to 3 inches / 5 to 7.5cm of water. Place all of your tamal packages in the pot and bring to a simmer. Cover the pot and let the tamales steam for 20 to 25 minutes, monitoring about halfway through the process to make sure that there is still a good inch or two of water at the bottom of the pan and adding more water if necessary. After 20 minutes, take one out and open it up to test if it’s done. Cut into one with a knife to ensure that the masa has the consistency of firm polenta and doesn’t ooze at all; the halves should cut cleanly and stay intact. Serve with a spoonful of the yogurt.

As with savory tamales, these can be cooked, stored in the refrigerator, and then reheated simply by steaming them again, and they will taste just as good as when they were freshly made.

Recipe Courtesy of Gabriela Camara's “My Mexico City Kitchen" Cookbook.

#TamalesMexicanos #NavidadesMexicanas #ChristmasSpirit #AtedeMembrillo #MaketheMasa

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Why you'll want to make Pozole for your next fiesta!

Why you'll want to make Pozole for your next fiesta!

Pozole is one of Mexico's most famous meals in a bowl, it's a favorite for the holidays, and any kind of parties! And as many party dishes conveniently its even better when prepared a day ahead, allowing you to sit, relax and enjoy your friends and family while the pozole simmers in the stove ready to serve.

 You can make it with chicken or pork or both, as well as white, green or red, the colors of our beautiful flag :) why it's also a dish that is served for our Fiestas Patrias, the 16th of September, contrary to popular belief not on the 5th of May. So now you can make your own pozole for your special celebrations, because pozole means sharing, happiness, laughter and of course lots of compliments after dinner!

Ingredients

Serves 12

 3 29-oz cans of hominy, drained and rinsed

2 3-pound chickens, cut into serving pieces (For Pork Pozole, substitute with 6-pounds pork shoulder/butt)

1 white onion
5 cilantro sprigs

Kosher or coarse sea salt

For the Chile Puree (what makes it red and spicy good),

2 ancho chiles, rinsed, stemmed and seeded

3 guajillo chiles, rinsed, stemme d and seeded

1/4 cup chopped white onion

3 garlic cloves

Pinch of ground cumin

2 whole cloves

1 teaspoon Kosher or coarse sea salt

3 tablespoons vegetable oil

Accompaniments, as desired

5-6 limes
10 radishes, halved and thinly sliced

1 head romaine lettuce, thinly sliced

1/2 cup chopped white onion in small cubes

Dried ground chile, such as piquín

Dried Mexican oregano

Tortilla chips or tostadas

Refried beans

Directions

Place the chickens in a large pot and add water to cover by at least 2 inches. Add the onion, cilantro and 1 tablespoon of salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer, partially covered, until the chicken is cooked through and tender, about 40 minutes. Drain, reserving cooking broth.

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove skin and bones and shred into bite-sized pieces. In the pot, combine the hominy and 2 cups of water with the shredded chicken and its broth. Taste for salt, add more if necessary and cook for 10 minutes or more; the pozole should be soupy.

Mexican cook's trick: Keep in mind that if you decide to substitute for the Pork option, the pork takes twice as long to cook, reserve the broth to add to the pozole.

For Chile Puree,

Place the chiles in a medium saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Simmer for 10 minutes or until soft. Place the chiles, along with 3.4 cups of their cooking liquid, the onion, garlic, cumin, cloves and salt in a blender or food processor and puree until smooth. Pass the puree through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl, pressing on the solids with the back of the wooden spoon to extract as much liquid and essence as possible.

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add the chile puree and bring to a boil, then simmer for 6-8 minutes, partially covered with a lid (because it will be pungently good you may cry), stirring occasionally, until thickened, remove from the heat.

Stir in the chile puree to the while pozole and cook for 20 minutes for the flavors to fully macerate. Taste and adjust the salt.

Serve the pozole in large soup bowls, with the garnishes in bowls on the table so guests can customize their pozole experience.

Hominy, or maíz cacahuacintle, also known as giant white corn or maíz mote pelado, looks like corn kernels gone wild. White and super meaty, these giant kernes are an excellent and healthy choice for any stew our soup. Hominy is rich in Vitamin b, has about 4g of fiber per single cup, almost half the calories than white rice (120 calories vs. 250 calories in rice), naturally gluten-free and virtually zero fat (1 gram per cup).

Recipe Courtesy of "Pati's Mexican Table" Cookbook.

Check out our online shop to stock up on the products needed for this recipe here or follow the links directly on the ingredients section!

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Rompope de Monjas, the Mexican Eggnog

Rompope de Monjas, the Mexican Eggnog

Rompope is a custardy mixture of eggs, milk, sugar and alcohol (usually a sugarcane alcohol or rum), basically the Mexican equivalent of the American eggnog but better!

The most famous Rompope is made by the nuns or monjas of the Santa Clara Convent in Puebla, because in addition to evangelizing the local population, nuns in convents all over Mexico made the most delicious sweets, mixing European techniques with Mexican ingredients. Convent kitchens were bustling with activity the nuns usually competed with one another for culinary prestige!

Rompope usually contains alcohol but there are versions without, it can also be used instead of milk in a tres leches cake (more on that later;) or simply served on ice.

As we are in the festive spirit, we hope you enjoy your drink with history!

Ingredients

Serves 10 to 12

 

6 cups of milk

3 whole cloves

1 stick of cinnamon

1/2 tsp grated nutmeg

1 tsp Mexican vanilla extract

1 tsp baking soda

1 1/3 cup sugar

12 large egg yolks

3/4 pure sugarcane alcohol like rum, cachaça, brandy or grog to taste

 

Directions

Combine the milk, cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg, vanilla extract and baking soda in a large saucepan, bring to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 15 - 20 min. Remove from heat, add the sugar but don't stir, allow the mixture to cool for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, make an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice or ice water.
Whisk the egg yolks in a large bowl until the thicken and are pale yellow 1-2 min. With a whisk or spatula, stir the sugar into the milk, it will dissolve easily now, slowly whisk in the egg yolks.
Rinse out and dry the egg yolk bowl and place in the ice bath. Set a fine sieve or strainer lined with cheesecloth over the bowl.
Return the saucepan to low heat and cook, stirring with a heat-proof spatula, until thickened and creamy; do not allow the mixture to boil. It is ready when it leaves a channel when you run your fingers down the middle of the spatula. Remove from the heat and whisk in the alcohol. Pour through the strainer into the medium bowl and cool completely in the ice bath, stirring occasionally.
Once cool, transfer to a jar or container and refrigerate, serve chilled.
Recipe from "Mexican Today" Cookbook.
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Vegetarian Pozole Verde

Vegetarian Pozole Verde

When it comes to pozole, many people choose a side—Team Rojo, Team Verde, Team Blanco. But this vegetarian mushroom number is so good, it just might inspire a defection.

 You could have an unforgiving day at work, an unexpected late night, a bad hangover, or a sudden broken heart—no matter what it is that ails you, it can be soothed by a bowl of pozole. That’s one reason the hearty, filling, one-stop-stews are so beloved in Mexico. The other reasons are that they’re fun to eat (a key thrill of pozole is that you garnish and customize them as you please) and they hold beautifully, tasting even better when reheated after a good sit in the refrigerator. Pozoles are so big in Mexico that there are restaurants, fondas, and stands that serve the dish exclusively—they go by the name of pozolerías.

But not everyone holds all pozoles on the same pedestal. People—and even entire regions, cities, and towns—tend to have deep loyalties to only one camp: red (pozole rojo), green (pozole verde), or white (pozole blanco).

From the day I could hold a spoon, I’ve been partial to rojo. Bold, bright, rich and festive, I love it not only because I grew up eating it, but because it speaks to me of celebration. (My mother used to make pozole rojo for every and any event, including my wedding.) So you can imagine how shocked my family was when I let a second type of pozole deep into my heart: the velvety, sleek, and nurturing pozole verde.

Of course, at their core, most pozoles are the same. They start with the earthy, sink-your-teeth-in depth of cooked hominy along with its thickened broth. Known in Mexico as maíz cacahuacintle or maíz pozolero (and sometimes known in the U.S. as simply “pozole”), the hominy is cooked just until the tops merely open, blooming to reveal its signature chewy texture. That base is typically mixed with pork or chicken, vegetables, herbs, and aromatics. If you stop here (and plenty of cooks do), you’ve got pozole blanco—all you have to do is garnish it with the usual suspects of dried oregano, radishes, cilantro, onion, one or another kind of crushed dried chile, and a squeeze of fresh lime. Eat it with a crispy tostada and you’ve got a meal.

 When a blanco pozole goes rojo, it’s thanks to a red seasoning sauce that’s added near the end of the process. This sauce is typically made of dried chiles such as anchos, guajillos, or colorados; some seasonings and spices; and, sometimes, tomatoes. To take a pozole to verde territory, a green seasoning sauce is added. The most famous versions come from the state of Guerrero on the Pacific coast, and include green ingredients such as poblano, jalapeño and/or serrano chiles; fresh lettuce (sometimes); and radish leaves. Instead of using tomatoes, bright green and tart tomatillos are used; sometimes other green ingredients are added, like pumpkin seeds, which add a velvety finish and nutty taste.

 I’ve fallen for pozole verde of all kinds: chicken, pork, even a regional variation made with beans. A vegetarian pozole, the base is a generous pile of mushrooms (any kind works) that are cooked until their juices release and they start to brown. A green seasoning sauce made from tomatillos, poblanos, and an optional serrano is added and cooked to thicken, then the hominy and broth get mixed in. Finally, like all pozoles, it is garnished to taste—I like pungent radishes, fragrant oregano, crunchy onion, tender leaves of cilantro, and a healthy squeeze of lime juice. Chased with bites of crunchy corn tostadas and it’s a pozole that even a rojo devotee can love.

This vegetarian pozole relies on meaty mushrooms and, of course, toothsome hominy to become a filling, soul-nourishing meal-in-a-bowl. As with all pozoles, the garnishes are the thing: Top this one with pungent radishes, fragrant oregano, crunchy onion, and tender leaves of cilantro, and squeeze in as much lime juice as you please.

Pozole Verde Con Hongos

Ingredients

Makes 6 servings

  • 2 340gr cans of tomatillos

  • 2 garlic cloves

  • 3 poblano or green bell pepper chiles, halved, seeds removed, coarsely chopped

  • 1 serrano chile, coarsely chopped (optional)

  • 1 cup salted, roasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)

  • 1 cup chopped cilantro, plus more for serving

  • 1 cup chopped parsley, plus more for serving

  • 3 Tbsp. chopped white onion, plus more for serving

  • 6 cups low-sodium vegetable broth, divided

  • 1½ tsp. kosher salt, divided, plus more

  • 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil

  • 2 lb. mixed mushrooms (such as white button and crimini), thinly sliced

  • ½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

  • 1 860gr can hominy, drained

  • 2–3 radishes, trimmed, halved, thinly sliced crosswise

  • Lime wedges and dried Mexican oregano (for serving)

  • Tostadas (for serving)

Step 1

Combine tomatillos and garlic in a medium saucepan, pour in water to cover, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until tomatillos are mushy and soft but not falling apart, about 10 minutes.

Step 2

Transfer tomatillos, garlic, and 1 cup cooking liquid to a blender. Add poblano chiles, serrano chile (if using), pumpkin seeds, 1 cup cilantro, 1 cup parsley, 3 Tbsp. white onion, 1 cup broth, and 1 tsp. salt. Purée until smooth; set aside. (Work in batches if needed, or blend directly in saucepan with an immersion blender if you have one.)

Step 3

Heat oil in a large pot over high. Once it’s hot, but not smoking, add mushrooms and sprinkle pepper and remaining ½ tsp. salt over; toss to combine. Cook, stirring occasionally, until mushrooms release all of their liquid and it evaporates and edges of mushrooms begin to brown, 8–10 minutes.

Step 4

Pour tomatillo purée into pot, reduce heat to medium, and cook, stirring occasionally, until purée thickens and darkens in color, about 10 minutes.

Step 5

Add hominy and remaining 5 cups broth to pot, stir to combine, and cook until flavors have come together, 12–15 minutes. Taste and season pozole with more salt if needed.

Step 6

Serve pozole verde with radishes, lime wedges, dried oregano, more white onion, cilantro, and parsley alongside so guests can top their bowl as desired.

Step 7

Cook’s Note: To cook dried hominy: Place 1 cup hominy in a small bowl and pour in water to cover. Let soak 2–12 hours. Drain, place in a pot, and cover with a generous amount of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and partially cover. Simmer until top of each hominy blooms and opens up from the top, 2½–3 hours. Season with kosher salt.

From Epicurous - Pati Jinich
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Easiest Mole you will ever make!

Easiest Mole you will ever make!

Mole sauce, the epitome of Mexican food, is made from chilli peppers, cocoa and corn, and was already used before the colonial period as a filling for tortillas served at important meals. The name mole is derived from chilmolli in nahuatl, the language of the Aztecs, the word chil meaning chilli pepper and molli sauce or ragout.

According to the conquistador Bernal Díaz, the emperor Moctezuma used to eat chilmolli from a terracotta dish. Rumour also has it that tribal chiefs greeted Hernán Cortès and his captains like princes when they landed in Mexico and served them this sauce, traditionally offered to the gods.

Although the origin of the most widely known mole, mole poblano, made from chilli peppers and bitter cocoa, is disputed. It is said that a nun at the Santa Rosa convent in Puebla may have invented the recipe in the 17th century, when she heard of the impending visit of the Viceroy of New Spain. To honour her guest, she emptied the larder, mixing indigenous ingredients (chilli peppers, tomatoes, cocoa, etc.) with products introduced by the conquistadors (onions, garlic, almonds, cloves, cinnamon), and voila mole was created!

This is one of the easiest Mole Poblano recipes we have found, as making this dish can sometimes be an elaborate affair, but you absolutely won't regret it, the taste and smells that will be created in your kitchen will be enough to inspire many mole evenings in your house!

Ingredients

Serves 5-6 people

10 ancho peppers

7 pasilla peppers

4 morita chilies

2  guajillo chilies

1/2 onion

2 garlic

3 tomatoes

2 cinnamon sticks

50 grams of almonds

3 cloves

1 pinch of cumin

1 plantain

1 liter of water

100 grams of raisin

100 grams of peanut

1 corn tortilla

1/4 of cup of oil

5 pieces of chicken

5 cups of rice

1 pinch of pepper

100 grams of chocolate Mexicano

Plus more corn tortillas for serving

 

Directions

1. Cook the chicken with garlic and onion water, can be swapped out for roasted veggies. Reserve the broth. Clean the chiles, remove the tails and seeds and roast them in a frying pan without oil, being careful not to burn them.

2. Now repeat the procedure with the other ingredients and grind the chilies with the tomato, onion and garlic adding a little broth.

And separately grind the rest. In a saucepan add both mixtures, add broth as needed.

3. Add the chocolate and don't stop moving. Cook for 45 minutes before adding the chicken, then let it boil for 20 more minutes. Serve and accompany with rice or tortillas.

#CasaMexicoRecipes #CasaMexicoBlog #MolePoblano #MoleMexicano #MoleRecipes

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