Chilaquiles anyone

Chilaquiles are a simple yet unmistakably Mexican dish, made with corn tortillas, salsa (green or red) and topped with sour cream and fresh cheese.

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Other traditional versions include shredded chicken or a fried egg.

As you can imagine, the best chilaquiles are the ones of my grandmother. I remember when I lived in Mexico any random Sunday or Saturday my grandmother arrived early morning at my home with a huge pot of chilaquiles, it was heaven breakfast, and if the night before I was partying her appearance was just divine! (In Mexico we say that the best remedy for a hangover is a really hot plate of chilaquiles for breakfast).

But why my grandmother randomly prepared chilaquiles? Well it wasn’t really randomly, she prepared chilaquiles when she had enough old tortillas.

Let me explain better, as you may know in Mexico we eat a lot of corn tortillas, and we like them fresh, so in my family all the old tortillas were cut and put in trays either near the window or on the garden table so the sun dry them. Then when there was enough dry tortillas we fry them to make chilaquiles.

Since I moved to Europe you can imagine there is no leftover tortillas, so to be honest I haven’t prepared chilaquiles here; but last week I meet my good friend Paz and she told me that she has fresh tomatillos grown in UK and great quality tortillas, so I couldn’t resist and yesterday I prepared a delicious Enchiladas Verdes for lunch and remember my grandmother tradition and today we had chilaquiles for breakfast!

This is the perfect time when you can find the best fresh ingredients (clik here) to prepare a delicious salsa verde for your Enchiladas or Chilaquiles, you can find here all the recipes, and prepare them either in our traditiona molcajete or use modern tecnhology with Thermomix.

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Antojitos

Mexican cuisine is the result of many years of culture and tradition expressed in food, which gives a unique personality. One example of this personality and originality are “antojitos” that can be translated as Snacks; but the true is that antojitos are much more than a Snack.

Since there is not an equivalent it is difficult to explain what antojitos are. Literally, antojito means craving and we can have cravings at any moment, so antojitos are eaten at anytime, accompanied or by itself; as antipasti or principal dish or simply in the middle of breakfast and lunch or between lunch and dinner.

They have their origins as street food but you can find them in the menus of the finest Mexican restaurants. Normally they can be eaten with your hands and are served warm.

Between them we can find sopes, quesadillas, tacos de pollo, huaraches.

One of my favorites antojitos are “sopes” Sopes have a base of corn tortilla, covered with refried beans, salsa and cheese and you have Sopes de frijoles, if you add some shredded chicken you have a sopes de pollo (chicken sopes), and so on you can have avocado sopes, beef sopes, potato sopes, chorizo sopes, etc.

You can make your own sopes, why not to try a delicious sopes de pollo.

Crispy and delightful tacos de pollo

If you like the sensation of crunchy food you will love this dish!

My Grandmother used to prepare tacos de pollo the day after we had eaten pollo rostizado (roast chicken), so she could use the remaining chicken in a different way. So I really enjoyed eating roast chicken more for the day after than for the roast chicken itself.

Now, I do not need to eat roast chicken for having one of my favorite dishes, I just prepare Tacos de Pollo.

You can also stuff crispy tacos with beef or potato.

If you make them with a bigger corn tortilla, then you can call them flautas.

Tacos de Pollo is an excellent option for people that do not like hot, but if you like it, you can pour some hot sauce and cream.

Provecho!

Chocolate Caliente (Hot chocolate)

If you like chocolate, you will fall in love with this drink. This is a Classic drink in Mexico and many Latin American countries. Made with Mexican chocolate, it is a nice drink to make during the holidays or for a special treat.

If you think about chocolate, instantly Swiss or Belgians pralines come into your mind, but why not to try chocolate as Aztec or Mayas did: in a liquid form. Chocolate is originally from México and its name comes from the nahuatl language “xocolatl”. And this drink was consumed only by royalty, fortunately today everyone can enjoy “the drink of gods”.

Nowadays drinking chocolate is a pleasure not only in Mexico, but in many other countries. A cup of hot chocolate in Switzerland always warms you up, or having a delightful churros and hot chocolate in Spain for breakfast or dinner is certainly satisfying. Certainly both are delicious but completely different from Mexican hot chocolate style. Maybe Mexican hot chocolate is so unique because their ingredients (mixture of cacao, cinnamon, almonds and sugar) or because the way it is made, in any case it is so delicious that was called drink of gods.

Even though, some recipes says you can make Mexican hot chocolate using dark or bitter chocolate and then add cinnamon, almonds and sugar, the truth is that the result is not the authentic flavor; to obtain the real and authentic flavor it is necessary to brown and peel the cocoa beans and then grind them with the almonds, cinnamon and sugar. But do not worry, you do not need to do all this process, you can buy the chocolate ready to use. As you can imagine, the best one is the one you can buy in Oaxaca, made by the native women, but the ones commercially produced make a pretty good job, and you can get them abroad Mexico (see our finding ingredients section)

So why not to try a delicious authentic hot chocolate with water, yes you read well in water! Almost all the people are surprised about it, but when they tray it they love it; but if you are a milk lover you can also make hot chocolate with milk.

Provecho!

Calabaza en Tacha

Halloween pumpkins make my mouth water. During this season every time I see a Halloween pumpkin on the street I only can think in the delicious sweet flavor of “calabaza en tacha” or tacha pumpkin.

I have always wanted to make my own Halloween pumpkin, but I had never been capable to resist the temptation and I cook it.

When I was child I had thought the name was because of my great-great-grandmother, whose name was Anastacia and she was warmly called Tacha, when I grew up I discover that the name of my favorite dessert wasn’t in her honor, but because the name of the special pot used to cook the pumpkin: tacho. Regardless of the origin of the name “calabaza en tacha” is still one of my preferred desserts, and for me the best way to eat it is with milk.

You can try this delicious dessert, which is really easy to prepare. So made your own Calabza en Tacha

But be careful it is addicting!

Provecho!

Day of the Death (Día de Muertos)

One of my favorite celebrations is the Death’s Day. My grandmother used to bring together her grandchildren to prepare the death’s altar every year. It was really nice, I and my cousins went to the market to buy sugar skulls, “catrinas” (which is the death wearing an elegant black dress and hat), death’s bread, flowers, etc. to decorate the altar. The best part was to prepare the favorites dishes of my Great-grandfather and of course it could not miss a cup of “ponche de granada” (a sweet alcoholic beverage made with pomegranate and Tequila) made by my uncle.

Fortunately, even outside México we can find some traditional day of the death offers in some Mexican houses and in the Embassies.

Whereas in some cultures the death is feared and the idea of encounter a ghost in this world is creepy, for us Mexican is a happy day. We are not afraid of the Death; even we make jokes about her, or write some poems called “calaveritas” in which we describe our encounter with the “catrina” or Death. In this day we are so happy because our beloved ones who passed the way come to visit us.

The belief is that the night of November 1st the spirits of the deceased has the permission to visit their loved ones. As good hosts, we prepare a welcome party to them; we offer them their favorite drinks and dishes and decorate their altar with cempasúchil flowers and sugar skulls. They can eat by smelling the food we offer them.

For us it is a day of happiness and delight; it is a gift to have the opportunity to meet our beloved deceased once a year. In some places in México, people not only make them an altar, but also they went to the cemetery to have dinner with them; all the family gathered eat, talk and laugh in the beloved’s tombs.

Although every family offers different dishes in their altar, according with the taste of the deceased, there is some typical food for the day, as death’s bread or calabaza en tacha.

México is full of bakeries that sell delicious bread, and amazing death’s bread, so I used just to go into one of them and had my death’s bread. Unfortunately, this year is not so easy just to buy one, but I was not willing to give up, so I made my own death’s bread!

You can also try yours.

Delicious Enfrijoladas

If you are afraid of hot chilies or simply you do not like hot dishes, this is the ideal Mexican dish for you!

Enfrijoladas are satisfying, delicious, nutritious and easy to prepare. They are similar to enchiladas.

In México Enfrijoladas are not only one of the favorites dishes of kids but also the favorite of many adults.

If you are a hot sauce lover, you can add some chipotle chili and enjoy them.

If you are vegan, you can enjoy them as well; just fill them with cheese instead of chicken, or don’t fill them at all.

Why not try Enfrijoladas for lunch or dinner?

Provecho!