Mexican Recipe – Mexicali Blues Cafe http://mexicalibluescafe.com/ Fri, 17 Sep 2021 22:14:57 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.8 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/06/icon-2-150x150.png Mexican Recipe – Mexicali Blues Cafe http://mexicalibluescafe.com/ 32 32 Family-friendly Mexican-American restaurant – and Beacon Hill’s only gay bar – back http://mexicalibluescafe.com/family-friendly-mexican-american-restaurant-and-beacon-hills-only-gay-bar-back/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/family-friendly-mexican-american-restaurant-and-beacon-hills-only-gay-bar-back/#respond Fri, 17 Sep 2021 20:00:00 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/family-friendly-mexican-american-restaurant-and-beacon-hills-only-gay-bar-back/ by Mark Van Streefkerk The Baja Bistro is back. For nearly 25 years, it was North Beacon Hill’s oldest neighborhood Mexican restaurant – and eventually became its one and only gay bar. But Baja was forced to shut down last summer during the pandemic. Now they have secured a new location: the ground floor of […]]]>

by Mark Van Streefkerk


The Baja Bistro is back. For nearly 25 years, it was North Beacon Hill’s oldest neighborhood Mexican restaurant – and eventually became its one and only gay bar. But Baja was forced to shut down last summer during the pandemic. Now they have secured a new location: the ground floor of the new Colina apartments. “The ball is rolling,” said owner Oscar Castro.

He hopes the restaurant will officially reopen in December. “We are delighted to be back,” said Castro. “It’s been a difficult year and a half for everyone. We can’t wait to get back to the new normal. We look forward to reuniting with our friends and clients and starting this new adventure together.

The new location, at Colina West to be exact, is just south of the Beacon Hill light rail station. It is also even closer to the cafe and community center of Castro’s brother, Luis Rodriguez, The Station cafe. Baja will share the ground floor with CheBogz – the first brick and mortar of the Filipino food truck of the same name, operated by Trixia and Paula, sisters of the Paraiso family. The Paraiso also owned Kusina Filipina, another cornerstone of the Beacon Hill community who was relocated in 2017.

The new space is easily twice the size of the original approximately 1,000 square foot Baja site. The new bar will overlook the corner of South McClellan Street and Beacon Avenue South, across from Hilltop Red Apple Market and the cat corner of Perihelion Brewery. Not only will the new restaurant be bigger, but the menu is also expanding.

“We’re going to have more seafood… We’re going to have grilled fish, we’re going to have shrimp… maybe add mussels and clams,” Castro said, but claimed the restaurant would keep the regional focus on the cuisine of Baja California. and recipes he learned from his mother and grandmother.

Brothers Oscar and Luis founded Baja Bistro in 1994, then Java Love, Beacon’s first specialty cafe that also served popular Mexican dishes. Ten years after starting the business, the adjoining space became available and Baja expanded, expanding its kitchen and adding a small bar. In the morning Baja served Stumptown coffee and breakfast favorites like huevos rancheros, chilaquiles, and pancakes. In the afternoon and evening, fish tacos, enchiladas, and tortas were the main attractions, along with their specialty margaritas. Local drag queen Atasha Manilla has put on a drag show every Wednesday night for the past few years.

In 2010, Luis and his wife, Leona Moore-Rodriguez, opened The Station, a community and social justice-focused cafe, and Castro focused on the restaurant. Baja was an unpretentious and inclusive space with reasonably priced food. Luis, Leona, their children and other family and friends often gathered with Oscar in Baja to share meals. Many of their relatives have worked at either location, Baja Bistro or The Station (or both), over the years.

When the pandemic forced Baja to close its doors last summer, many neighbors and concerned customers contacted Castro. “People who were sad that we closed and were curious about what was going on,” he recalls.

The truth is, Castro had been considering moving the restaurant for a few years, but the pandemic had a way to speed up the process. The small space could only accommodate two or three people while maintaining safe social distancing, but “We weren’t really prepared for that,” Castro said, and Baja had to shut down.

Tim Abell, director of Pacific Housing Northwest, was a regular customer in Baja and had previously discussed with Castro the possibility of moving into Colina Apartments once the project was approved. Angela Castañeda, director of the Beacon Business Alliance, also helped connect Baja and CheBogz with significant resources and support. “She’s our friend,” Castro said of Castañeda. “She’s the one who got me through it all. She was the one who put me in touch with the right people.

The new space is always a “shell”. Baja is to build a kitchen, bar, dining room and restroom. Construction plans have been approved by the Ministry of Health, but still need to be approved by the Building and Construction Bureau before construction can begin. Castro hopes to start construction in the next few weeks.

Loyal customers are already enthusiastic about the return of Baja, the preservation of a neighborhood institution. It also underscores the valuable anti-displacement work carried out by community organizations, like-minded developers, and family-run restaurants who are struggling to stay and cling to the dream of coming back if they have to relocate.

“Most people don’t know it, but Beacon Hill doesn’t have Starbucks or McDonald’s at all,” Castro said. “His [just] mom-and-pop small businesses, and that’s something to be proud of and hopefully we’ll continue to do so. “


Mark Van Streefkerk is a South Seattle-based freelance journalist and writer living in the Beacon Hill neighborhood. He often writes on specialty coffee, LGBTQ + topics, and more. Visit his website and follow him on Instagram at @markthewriter.

?? Featured Image: Oscar Castro, owner of Baja Bistro, in front of his future restaurant location at Colina West on Beacon Hill. (Photo: Mark Van Streefkerk)

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Pat Patz from Mexico serves the flavors of a Middle Eastern diaspora http://mexicalibluescafe.com/pat-patz-from-mexico-serves-the-flavors-of-a-middle-eastern-diaspora/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/pat-patz-from-mexico-serves-the-flavors-of-a-middle-eastern-diaspora/#respond Thu, 16 Sep 2021 21:42:54 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/pat-patz-from-mexico-serves-the-flavors-of-a-middle-eastern-diaspora/ It all started with a man’s singular obsession with a plate of chicken. “I moved to Astoria, Queens, and right outside the subway station on 31st Avenue was this food cart. As soon as you got off the train you could smell it, the chicken, and I was crazy about it. I probably ate there […]]]>

It all started with a man’s singular obsession with a plate of chicken.

“I moved to Astoria, Queens, and right outside the subway station on 31st Avenue was this food cart. As soon as you got off the train you could smell it, the chicken, and I was crazy about it. I probably ate there three times a week during the 10 years I lived in New York, ”says Mijael Seidel, owner and chef of Pat Patz restaurant in the Roma neighborhood.

The cart was the Palestinian king of Falafel and Shawarma. Promising that he would return to Mexico and not be a competitor, Seidel offered to pay the owner, a man named Freddy, for this chicken recipe.

“He came back and said, ‘I can sell you the chicken recipe – for $ 7,000.’ Seidel’s infectious laughter takes over the both of us. “And I only had 1,000 saved, so …”

His personal quest, as he landed in his native Mexico, was to uncover the secret of this chicken.

Chef and owner Mijael Seidel has traveled to countries like Greece and Turkey to find inspiration for Restaurant Pat Patz’s unique Middle Eastern cuisine.

He watched interviews with Freddy, who rose to fame in 2010 after winning the Vendy Street Vendor Award in New York City. He added and subtracted spices. He searched cookbooks and found a lot of guinea pigs.

“My mom had this rule: if you’re inviting friends, don’t cook anything you’ve never cooked before… and I just did the opposite every week.

It all happened in the town of Colima, where Seidel founded a graphic design company with his then wife. They lived in his hometown to be closer to the beach and nature, but instead Seidel ended up behind his computer. His mind returned to the foods he loved in New York City as he reworked the recipes in his head.

“[I needed] to check that what I was doing made sense in any way, ”he says. “Is it close to the original?” Is it far from the original? Because I knew my flavor was from New York, and New York is already an adaptation. I remember when I was living in New York and trying to find Mexican food, how nothing, even if it was cooked by Mexicans, tasted like it was meant to be. Sometimes the products don’t have the same punch. You had to add elements to complete the flavor profile that the ingredients should have, but you don’t.

He cooked weekly meals at a friend’s kung fu dojo, sold falafels in an old hot dog cart, made ghormeh sabzi (Iranian stew) and shawarma at a local brewery, all while researching the flavors of his memories.

“When I was eight years old, this Israeli woman who lived in Colima did [hummus] and I brought it home, and I was like, ‘This is great. They’re chickpeas, but they’re lemony, salty, and tangy. This is actually the hummus I’m trying to breed now.

Pat Patz Restaurant
The restaurant’s decor ranges from casual dining to trendy neon. It also has a terrace popular with guests.

The obsession had gone far beyond chicken by this point. For a decade, Seidel dissected falafel and experimented with the perfect harissa. He discovered sumac and measured and remeasured the right proportions for skewers of lamb and beef.

Meanwhile, all of his money was stolen from a catering event. He tore a muscle in his shoulder so much he couldn’t cook, fought and broke up with his wife, fought and broke up with his business partner, lost the hot cart dog and his equipment, walked away from a takeout store and eventually knocked outside on his own.

Now Seidel is seated under Pat Patz’s terrace, which was crowded this Sunday afternoon with diners. His smile is that of an exhausted but happy man – perhaps not surprisingly: it opened in March 2020, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the year also earned him a price of Food and wine fr Spanish, when in October they named him one of the best new chefs of the year.

“It’s a lot of work,” he said, immediately embarking on his plans for chickpea shakes and Persian rice plates, as well as his dreams of an open grill and making kebabs from all over the Middle. -East.

Lately, he accepts the nuances that make his food unique. A few years after starting his project, Seidel traveled to Turkey and Greece to find the more traditional versions of his dishes.

“I kept thinking: mine is an adaptation. How does it taste in its original form? So I was like, where are the hottest, trendiest kebabs making in Turkey right now? And I found places that I liked – and I tasted the food, and it tasted like Pat Patz because the people behind the counter were North Africans living in Istanbul, sharing with the Turks and combining ideas. And people loved him and stood in line.

Baklava Pat Patz
Some classics are too good to play with much: Pat Patz’s baklava.

“And sure enough, I tasted the more traditional stuff, and I was like, ‘It’s good, but lacks the punch I’m used to. “The same in Greece: [I found] a place that was a mix. It was run by Israelis, Palestinians and Greeks, and it was a different variation but the same flavor highlights.

The food at these places was good because it was an adaptation of an adaptation. So Seidel went with his gut, literally. Pat Patz today combines the flavors of Middle Eastern immigrants spanning the globe with the pizzazz and punch he loves in Mexican cuisine.

“No one can come to my restaurant and say my kebab is too hot or why it has chili peppers because I’ve found that… they can have anything I put in it,” he says.

“It’s just like we used to do at home,” a friend says of Pat Patz’s Israeli salad – a burst of tomato, cucumber, sumac vinaigrette and parsley. An Armenian who grew up in Boston fed by her Russian Jewish grandmother, she knows a lot about adaptations.

“This Moroccan girl once told me that she could finally move to Mexico because she found something that reminded her of home,” says Seidel. “That sort of thing confirmed to me that I wasn’t so lost in what I was up to.”

Lydia Carey regularly contributes to Mexico Daily News.


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Long to come: Virgin Voyages ship arrives in US: Travel Weekly http://mexicalibluescafe.com/long-to-come-virgin-voyages-ship-arrives-in-us-travel-weekly/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/long-to-come-virgin-voyages-ship-arrives-in-us-travel-weekly/#respond Tue, 14 Sep 2021 22:52:18 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/long-to-come-virgin-voyages-ship-arrives-in-us-travel-weekly/ NEW YORK – It was a long time coming, but Virgin Voyages’ first ship, the Scarlet Lady, has arrived in New York City, where it will host members of the press, travel advisers and a music festival this week with headlining DJ Lazer. Virgin founder Richard Branson was aboard the ship on Tuesday, walking the […]]]>

NEW YORK – It was a long time coming, but Virgin Voyages’ first ship, the Scarlet Lady, has arrived in New York City, where it will host members of the press, travel advisers and a music festival this week with headlining DJ Lazer.

Virgin founder Richard Branson was aboard the ship on Tuesday, walking the decks with Virgin Voyages CEO Tom McAlpin. The Scarlet Lady had operated in the UK this summer on domestic cruises open only to UK residents and is now heading to Miami on its first cruise from Florida on October 6.

Tom McAlpin, CEO of Virgin Voyages, and Richard Branson, Founder of Virgin Group, at Razzle Dazzle restaurant. Photo credit: Johanna Jainchill

The Scarlet Lady was originally supposed to make this trip in March 2020, but the unfortunate timing of the Covid-19 pandemic meant the new ship had no passengers in its first 15 months of existence.

The Virgin Cruise product is unique – the ship has no cruise director, no buffet, and no main dining room. Among its signature spaces are a tattoo parlor and record store.

T0920VIRGINSCARLETLADY8_JJ [Credit: Johanna Jainchill]

The entrance to the Test Kitchen, where the menu lists the ingredients, but not how the dish is prepared. Photo credit: Johanna Jainchill

Maybe because Virgin was so much else before it was a cruise line – a record company, an airline, a hotel brand – it takes its nautical positioning very seriously.

Chris Stubbs, head of Virgin’s Sailor and Crew Experience (Virgin calls passengers “sailors”) said that in almost every space there is a view of the sea. His favorite restaurant is Dock House, which he called a “boat space” with a Mediterranean flair that matches the flavors of the food he serves.

The Loose Cannon Social Club is inspired by the seaside bars of the English town of Brighton and serves fun dishes like hot dogs and “indulgent kid’s treats,” Stubbs said. There are table games like foosball and an arcade room with retro video games that, on an adults-only ship, won’t be crowded with children.

When passengers board the ship in the roundabout, the roundabout is deliberately designed so that they can see the sea through the ship.

The line’s signature beer, served at Draft Haus, is called Stray the Course. Razzle Dazzle, his vegetarian restaurant, is named after the ship camouflage used during WWI and WWII to confuse the enemy as to which direction a ship was heading.

There are very few open spaces on the Scarlet Lady, an intentional design feature such that with 2,700 passengers on board, the midsize ship offers a sense of privacy in its premises. Stubbs said the bars and restaurants are more like what you would visit in a city rather than “massive dining rooms” on many cruise ships.

T0920VIRGINSCARLETLADY7_JJ [Credit: Johanna Jainchill]

Razzle Dazzle is a vegetarian restaurant. Photo credit: Johanna Jainchill

Many of the restaurants, all included in the price of the cruise, are unique. The Test Kitchen menu will tell you what the ingredients of the dish are, but now how it is prepared. Razzle Dazzle’s color scheme and design is “a sensory delight,” Stubbs said. While the menu is vegetarian, if passengers know who to ask, a secret menu might just contain a steak.

Gunbae may be the first Korean barbecue restaurant on a cruise ship, and Virgin said it’s the only one where passengers do their own table cooking. His Mexican restaurant, Pink Agave, has a mezcal library.

Virgin had given up on buffets long before Covid warned them. Instead, for a quick, casual meal, the Scarlet Lady offers the Galle, which is inspired by a dining hall and has stations serving burgers, tacos, and noodles. The Diner and Dash serves breakfast throughout the day. Every place in Galle cooks to order, Stubbs said.

“We don’t like wasted food,” he said. “And we love good food.”

T0920VIRGINSCARLETLADY3_JJ [Credit: Johanna Jainchill]

Owen, manager of the Voyage Vinyl record store on the Scarlet Lady. Photo credit: Johanna Jainchill

Record store a great success

A record store on a cruise ship might seem like a gimmick, but on the Scarlet Lady it makes sense, one that’s evident in the most prominent album, The Sex Pistols “https: //www.travelweekly. com / Cruise-Travel / “Never Mind the Bollocks, Here’s the Sex Pistols.” This is the English punk rock band’s only studio album and the record Richard Branson credits to Virgin Records, store manager Owen said. discs.

“Without this album, there wouldn’t be a Virgin cruise ship,” he said.

Record sales in the Voyage Vinyl store have exceeded ship’s expectations, and Owen said record players are sold out in the UK and the store needs to restock its vinyl collection, which ran out during its sales. summer crossings.

T0920VIRGINSCARLETLADY5_JJ [Credit: Johanna Jainchill]

Diner & Dash serves breakfast throughout the day. Photo credit: Johanna Jainchill

Vinyl lovers might want to jump on the limited edition album Never Mind the Bollocks on display – there are only 1,000 copies, and the Scarlet Lady is the only place on earth to buy one, for $ 77. .

In the other highly publicized space on board, the Squid Ink tattoo parlor, this summer’s passengers mostly opted for personalized designs. Unsurprisingly, many have been inspired by the sea and nautical themes.

Many passengers left the Scarlet Lady with a permanent memory of their cruise: an anchor, mermaid or compass tattoo.


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How to make tamales and make your own masa at home http://mexicalibluescafe.com/how-to-make-tamales-and-make-your-own-masa-at-home/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/how-to-make-tamales-and-make-your-own-masa-at-home/#respond Fri, 10 Sep 2021 20:50:27 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/how-to-make-tamales-and-make-your-own-masa-at-home/ How to prepare masa Tamales are filled with masa, a paste made from nixtamalized corn, water and calcium hydroxide. Castrejón likes the simplest way, with masa harina, an already ground corn treated with calcium hydroxide. Zack Wangeman, chef and owner of Brooklyn’s Sobre Masa, thinks nixtamalizing with your own corn makes all the difference, and […]]]>

How to prepare masa

Tamales are filled with masa, a paste made from nixtamalized corn, water and calcium hydroxide. Castrejón likes the simplest way, with masa harina, an already ground corn treated with calcium hydroxide.

Zack Wangeman, chef and owner of Brooklyn’s Sobre Masa, thinks nixtamalizing with your own corn makes all the difference, and it’s something home cooks shouldn’t find intimidating. “I think the great thing about tamales is that masa doesn’t have to be tasty,” Wangeman says. “It’s a coarse masa, so you don’t have to worry about it being soft like a tortilla.”

Wangeman says you can easily get your hands on calcium hydroxide at any Mexican grocery store and at an Amazon crank grinder. “An easy recipe would be, say, one pound of corn, three liters of water and 30 grams of calcium hydroxide,” he says. You will need to dissolve the calcium hydroxide in the water, add your corn and cook it until al dente. After letting it sit overnight, rinse it the next morning, then throw it into the hand crank mill.

But whichever route you choose, you’ll want to end with a spreadable masa. “My mom always says that once the mix looks like Play-Doh, then you know it’s done,” Castrejón says. And it gets better over time, as the masa benefits from oxygenation, so letting it hydrate for an hour will ultimately help your tamale texture.

Many tamale recipes call for lard, but both Castrejón and Wangeman go for oil. “A lot of times I use grapeseed oil and think of fun ways to flavor it,” Wangeman explains. “I’m going to put some chard, onions, garlic and a bunch of dried shiitake mushrooms and leave them candied in the oven for about two hours.”


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20 Popular Hispanic Foods Everyone Should Try http://mexicalibluescafe.com/20-popular-hispanic-foods-everyone-should-try/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/20-popular-hispanic-foods-everyone-should-try/#respond Tue, 07 Sep 2021 20:32:29 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/20-popular-hispanic-foods-everyone-should-try/ Mike Garten From taco recipes stuffed with every toppings imaginable to food trucks parked on city streets selling arepas, Hispanic cuisine is an integral part of the culture in the United States. Hispanic cuisine refers to dishes from Mexico, Spain, Puerto Rico, and the Spanish-speaking countries of South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. It […]]]>

Mike Garten

From taco recipes stuffed with every toppings imaginable to food trucks parked on city streets selling arepas, Hispanic cuisine is an integral part of the culture in the United States.

Hispanic cuisine refers to dishes from Mexico, Spain, Puerto Rico, and the Spanish-speaking countries of South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. It encompasses unique regional recipes as well as popular foods loved around the world (crispy cinnamon churros, we’re watching!). It doesn’t always include your favorite Cinco de Mayo recipes, which take inspiration from Mexican cuisine but tend to be more Americanized.

While there are far too many Hispanic dishes to sum up in one article, we’ve rounded up some of our favorites, including tangy Argentinian chimichurri, tasty Mexican mole, and Spanish paella that will be sure to please everyone. So whether you’re looking to celebrate National Hispanic Heritage Month (it starts Wednesday, September 15 of this year – mark your calendars!) Get started.

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1

Agua Fresca

Refresh yourself with an invigorating agua fresca, the thirst-quenching Mexican drink made from a blend of fruits (you can use almost any type) mixed with lime juice, sweetener and water and served over ice.

Get the Agua Fresca recipe »

2

Enchiladas Verdes

Originating in Mexican cuisine, enchiladas can be filled with just about anything from meats and cheeses to beans and vegetables. Try this version with chicken and salsa verde.

Get the recipe for Enchiladas Verdes »

5

Shrimp ceviche

The shrimp ceviche usually calls for raw shrimp marinated in lime juice, but we used cooked shrimp instead for convenience on weeknights (or weekends!).

Get the Shrimp Ceviche Recipe »

6

Chicken Molet

The traditional Mexican mole sauce, made with many ingredients and simmered for hours, is a delicious culinary feat. Our version takes a few shortcuts to a tasty dinner that you can cook in an hour.

Get the Chicken Mole Recipe »

9

Easy seafood paella

Paella is a Spanish rice dish made with vegetables, meat, or seafood (or a combo!) That dates back to the early 1800s. This version uses only seafood and vegetables, but don’t hesitate. no need to add extra meat or vegetables to your liking!

Get the Easy Seafood Paella Recipe »

ten

Classic fresh lime margarita

11

Arepas

Arepas are Venezuelan fried corn cakes stuffed with savory toppings, like this creamy and tangy chicken and avocado salad.

Get the Arepas recipe »

14

Grilled Tequila Steak Tacos

17

Ropa Vieja (Grated Beef)

18

Pupusas with Curtido

These Salvadoran corn cakes are stuffed with roasted squash, pickled jalapeños and mozzarella cheese and topped with a tangy coleslaw. Yum!

Get the recipe from A Cozy Kitchen »

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Chef Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman creates modern Mexican magic in Dallas – Texas Monthly http://mexicalibluescafe.com/chef-anastacia-quinones-pittman-creates-modern-mexican-magic-in-dallas-texas-monthly/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/chef-anastacia-quinones-pittman-creates-modern-mexican-magic-in-dallas-texas-monthly/#respond Fri, 03 Sep 2021 19:40:47 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/chef-anastacia-quinones-pittman-creates-modern-mexican-magic-in-dallas-texas-monthly/ The crudely hewn white and brown brick freestanding building looks as comfortable along Dallas’s Lovers Lane, on the edge of the affluent Bluffview enclave, as it would in the Tony neighborhood of a Mexican town. The restaurant, José, a modern Mexican restaurant locally called José on Lovers, is rustic but chic. The interior is elegantly […]]]>

The crudely hewn white and brown brick freestanding building looks as comfortable along Dallas’s Lovers Lane, on the edge of the affluent Bluffview enclave, as it would in the Tony neighborhood of a Mexican town. The restaurant, José, a modern Mexican restaurant locally called José on Lovers, is rustic but chic. The interior is elegantly appointed with leather seats, semi-circular yellow cabins, dark wood, and ceramic tile walls. They are painted in swift, rough lines with representative Mexican street and restaurant scenes. The mural extends to the outdoor seating area at the front of the restaurant. In the center of this patio stands a fountain in the heart of agave. Much of the decor comes from the Guadalajara workshop of master ceramist José Noé Suro. (The restaurant’s name honors the artist.) It’s a peaceful space with an extraordinary list of agave spirits and a staff with a penchant for anticipating diners’ needs. Heading the kitchen is Executive Chef Anastacia Quiñones-Pittman (known as AQ), a native of Texas and a leading figure in contemporary Mexican cuisine in the state.

It’s a job she fought for during her career as a professional cook. Ten years ago, she was one of the first high-end chefs in Dallas to nixtamize corn in-house, at the short-lived Alma restaurant on Henderson Avenue. Local diners weren’t ready and the restaurant closed after eight months. More recently, when she helped open Cedars Social as an executive chef, diners seemed ready for modern Mexican. But Quiñones-Pittman left this restaurant after a disagreement with his partners over the direction of the menu. At José’s, she found a welcoming space where her talent and her vision are fully realized.

Quiñones-Pittman claims its place at the top thanks in part to its chef’s specialty, Tacos de Tacha. (Tacha is her childhood nickname.) The dish changes every few days and is often inspired by available ingredients or the chef’s introspection. The thought led to the creation of a recent Taco de Tacha, a slice of sweet lobster tail draped in aromatic, herbaceous mole verde. The thick mole, aged for nearly a thousand days, with a surprising but not unpleasant hint of spice, is sprinkled with nuggets (pumpkin seeds) and sesame seeds. The taco is presented on a tortilla made from old pink bolita belatove corn. Its rough texture and color, which changes from mottled pink to uniform brown, evoke a wet sandy beach. But it’s more than a beach dream on a plate.

The chef tells me the taco formed as she thought about how the mole continues to be confined to family recipes and inherited history. “It’s always your grandmother’s mole or your mother’s mole. It doesn’t have to be, ”she says. Chicken in chocolate brown poblano mole does not need to be the default. The lobster taco is a repudiation of the one in honor of his daughter. “A big part of my cooking is showing it’s okay to honor your mom while showing your daughters it’s okay to be different.” Tradition can be folded without being broken and swept aside.

Lobster tacos at José sur Lovers
Lobster tacos at José sur Lovers. Photograph by José R. Ralat

Examples of the refreshing versatility of Quiñones-Pittman’s food can be found in other Tacos de Tacha, among which the tempura-fried maitake mushrooms topped with burrata and marinated peppers on a red bell tortilla; seared pork belly with blackberry mole and peaches on a blue corn tortilla; and fried squash flowers stuffed with quesillo with arugula on a chili de árbol tortilla. Two of my favorite early Tacha Tacos are the taco de flautitas, chopped fried flautas nestled in a blue corn tortilla, and the s’mores taco. The latter begins with an Abuelita brand chocolate infused corn tortilla topped with a homemade caramelized Mexican vanilla marshmallow. Most corn tortillas are infused with other elements, such as bell pepper, chocolate, or hot peppers.

Tacos aren’t the only dishes in Quiñones-Pittman’s culinary arsenal. Another of his specialties is aguachiles. The seafood dish in a chili infused liquid is essentially a raw citrus and fruit seafood playground. The aguachiles turn at the discretion of the chef, just like the ceviches. Recently, however, the offering was coconut ceviche, Texas rockfish, avocado cubes and mango mixed with pepitas, bantam discs of serrano peppers, cilantro and lime juice. served in an open coconut surrounded by tostadas.

The carnitas de olla, a delicate and sweet preparation of pork immersed in a tomatillo salsa, are also very popular. Then there are the tetelas, thick masa folded into a triangle and stuffed with a fillet of quesillo and mushrooms. The dish is a celebration of the rainy season, when the bounty of Mexican mushrooms is used in a myriad of preparations, including José’s beautiful tetelas. They are plated next to an aged taupe pool with an island of cream in the center. When combined, it means chewy masa bites; salty and milky cheese; mushrooms evoking the forest; and alternating the sweet, spicy and tangy flavors of the mixed sauces.

In a way, Quiñones-Pittman was supposed to find a home with José, a home that would give him carte blanche to share his vision of Mexican cuisine. Owner Brady Wood offered her the job before the restaurant opened on Cinco de Mayo in 2017. She immediately declined the offer because she didn’t think she was the right fit for the job. Wood continued to approach him to join the team, even though it was as a consultant. Quiñones-Pittman repeatedly refused, until his departure was dramatically played out at Cedars Social. She decided to take a break from professional kitchens to focus on taco pop-ups. When Wood approached her again in late 2018, Quiñones-Pittman agreed, as long as she had carte blanche. “It turned out to be magical,” says Wood. “She is one of the most special people I have ever met.”

The result is magical, but the beginning was difficult. One day, when Quiñones-Pittman had been at work for less than two weeks, most of the kitchen staff came out in protest. “They didn’t like taking a woman’s period,” she says. Her husband, Chef Daniel Pittman, has left his busy restaurant to do the dishes at José’s. This disastrous service, after which Quiñones-Pittman had to hire a roster of new kitchen workers, resulted in staff committed to the community at all levels. La tortillera declares that she is happy because she loves what she does. Quiñones-Pittman encourages its cooks and chefs to experiment in the kitchen, learn new skills and work in different cooking positions. They might even have the opportunity to create a Taco de Tacha using Masienda’s homemade nixtamized corn masa.

Quiñones-Pittman, General Manager Victor Enrique Rojas and Beverage Manager Carlos Marquez make most of the dining decisions as a trio. During the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic, they served hot meals to frontline medical workers, set up curbside operations, and adjusted to new variables together. The pandemic has also given the team the opportunity to streamline operations, customer experience and staffing. Since March 2020, the trio have created a team bond by selecting staff members who they believe had the same approach to hospitality and Mexican cuisine. These staff are what Rojas calls “a superior group to work with every day”. I see the high standards every time I dine at José’s place. The bar or the patio are the best places to discover the excellence of the restaurant. Every server is ready to help, the bartenders are as knowledgeable as the waiters and kitchen staff, the agave heart fountain is soothing, and the tacos are always a happy surprise.

Jose

4931 W. Lovers Lane, Dallas
Telephone: 214-891-5673
Hours: Sunday 11 am-9pm, Tuesday 11 am-9pm, Wednesday and Thursday 11 am-10pm, Friday and Saturday 11 am-11pm


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The story of Mexico’s national dish, Chiles en Nogada http://mexicalibluescafe.com/the-story-of-mexicos-national-dish-chiles-en-nogada/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/the-story-of-mexicos-national-dish-chiles-en-nogada/#respond Tue, 31 Aug 2021 21:00:11 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/the-story-of-mexicos-national-dish-chiles-en-nogada/ Time-consuming, sometimes consisting of 45 ingredients, this sweet and savory dish is a flowery delight. If you’ve never eaten chili in nogada, the first time is a revelation, enough to demolish all your prejudices about Mexican cuisine. A poblano pepper stuffed with meats, fruits and spices, covered with a snow-white walnut sauce, sprinkled with bright […]]]>

Time-consuming, sometimes consisting of 45 ingredients, this sweet and savory dish is a flowery delight.

If you’ve never eaten chili in nogada, the first time is a revelation, enough to demolish all your prejudices about Mexican cuisine. A poblano pepper stuffed with meats, fruits and spices, covered with a snow-white walnut sauce, sprinkled with bright red pomegranate seeds, it looks like art on a plate. It tastes like a dessert and a starter in one. It has the colors of the Mexican flag – green, red and white – and that’s no coincidence.

Often referred to as Mexico’s national dish and arguably the most patriotic, it hails from Puebla, a town a two-hour drive southeast of Mexico City. Puebla is famous for its Baroque architecture, Talavera tiles, food, and the birth of Cinco de Mayo, a celebration of Mexico’s victory over France on May 5, 1862, at the Battle of Puebla. The very word poblano means “from Puebla”.

AGCuesta / Shutterstock

History says that chili in nogada was prepared during a feast for General Agustin de Iturbide – who had just signed the treaty granting independence from Mexico to Spain in 1821, the Treaty of Cordoba – by nuns from the Convent of Santa Monica to honor the new flag of Mexico. It depends Mexican cuisine (a 1972 book which was later revised as The essential cuisines of Mexico) by Diana Kennedy, a Mexican regional food authority. But, you’ll hear this origin story everywhere, not just from the British-born winner of Mexico’s highest honor to an outsider, the Order of the Aztec Eagle. Despite popular tradition, it seems that this dish was created before that, as recipes for this dish appear in 18th century Mexican cookbooks.

Continue reading the article after our video

Fodor’s Recommended Video

Time-consuming, sometimes made up of 45 ingredients, this sweet and savory delight is as ornate as local Baroque masterpieces, like the gold and white carvings in the Rosary Chapel of the Church of Santo Domingo, or the cherubs with native faces and local plants carved in the church of Santa Maria Tonantzintla near Cholula. Traditionally, chili is stuffed with fruits found in Puebla, such as panochera apples, criollo peaches and pears in sweet milk, and sometimes candied cacti called acitron. The filling is a picadillo, a hash of minced or minced meat and fruit popular in Latin America, which may, depending on the country or region, contain raisins, olives or almonds. The meat is usually ground beef and pork. White sauce is a puree of nuts with cheese or cream, a rich and tangy cream similar to sour cream.

“The most important ingredient is nuez from castilla [walnut], the main ingredient in the sauce. Normally you add cheese, but it’s important to retain the flavor of the nut, ”says Leobardo Espinsoa, general manager of Meson Sacristia de Compania, a boutique hotel filled with antiques in an 18th-century house in Puebla. Its restaurant serves it, and its cooking school also teaches how to make the dish. Both only occur when the nut is in season, July through September. Nut season opens with a VIP dinner for national leaders at his restaurant, which serves 10 different types of dishes. chili in nogada, one in each restaurant or hotel in Tesoros de Puebla, a network of local “treasures” that reflect Mexico’s distinctive culture and character.

Marcos Castillo / Shutterstock

“Puebla is the Lyon of Mexico, the city that locals invariably refer to when a conversation revolves around their country’s cuisine,” said one New York Times story Remarks. (The industrious nuns of the city even created poblano mole, a rich chocolate Mole sauce originally from Puebla, in another convent, the Convent of Santa Rosa.) Locals recommend different places for wonderful chili in nogada. Espinosa favors Casa de Los Munecos and Entre Tierras. Two favorites of Maria de Mar, a Puebla-born guide to Eat Mexico, are Meson de Santa Teresa, a cozy restaurant in a 17th-century house a five-minute walk from the Convent of Santa Monica, and Augurio, an elegant one-way restaurant. half a block from the Amparo Museum and its superb collection of pre-Columbian and colonial Mexican art.

But it is served throughout Mexico during festivities surrounding Mexico’s Independence Day, September 16. An annual del Chiles En Nogada festival takes place in September at the Tijuana Cultural Center, featuring professional chefs and home cooks from the state of Baja California. Scott Koenig, a San Diego journalist and blogger at A Gringo in Mexico, was a judge for his 2019 cooking contest, the only American chosen that year. “No two in this competition are alike. There is a big debate in Mexico as to whether chili should be breaded and fried with a crust, called capeado, or not. Some sauces are blindingly white, others nutty and darker, ”he says.

In Southern California, it’s the most famous dish at La Casita Mexicana, a restaurant in Bell, a city in Los Angeles County. Hailed as a “riot of flavors” by the 2019 Michelin Guide, it appears on the restaurant’s home page. In New York, it’s quite rare but served at Mesa Coyoacan in Williamsburg. The chef / owner of the Brooklyn restaurant, who went to cooking school in Puebla, adds more vegetables, uses organic meat, and adds rum and tequila to the sauce. In accordance with Mexican custom, both only serve it in the nut season.



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Hurricane Ida follows LIVE – New Orleans orders mandatory evacuations ahead of fears of landfall as tropical storm hits Cuba http://mexicalibluescafe.com/hurricane-ida-follows-live-new-orleans-orders-mandatory-evacuations-ahead-of-fears-of-landfall-as-tropical-storm-hits-cuba/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/hurricane-ida-follows-live-new-orleans-orders-mandatory-evacuations-ahead-of-fears-of-landfall-as-tropical-storm-hits-cuba/#respond Sat, 28 Aug 2021 00:31:00 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/hurricane-ida-follows-live-new-orleans-orders-mandatory-evacuations-ahead-of-fears-of-landfall-as-tropical-storm-hits-cuba/ TROPICAL Storm Ida made landfall in Cuba as a hurricane as New Orleans ordered mandatory evacuations as a precaution. The National Hurricane Center reported that Ida strengthened into a hurricane around 1:15 p.m. ET and landed around Cayo Largo, Cuba. “The forecast trail took him straight to New Orleans. Not good, ”said Jim Kossin of […]]]>

TROPICAL Storm Ida made landfall in Cuba as a hurricane as New Orleans ordered mandatory evacuations as a precaution.

The National Hurricane Center reported that Ida strengthened into a hurricane around 1:15 p.m. ET and landed around Cayo Largo, Cuba.

“The forecast trail took him straight to New Orleans. Not good, ”said Jim Kossin of NOAA, a climate and hurricane specialist.

Tropical Storm Ida poses a relatively low threat to tobacco-rich western Cuba, where forecasters predicted a severe blow on Friday.

The real danger begins over the Gulf, where forecasts were lined up to predict that Ida will strengthen very quickly into a major hurricane before making landfall in the Mississippi Delta area on Sunday night or early Monday, experts said.

“Ida certainly has the potential to be very bad,” said Brian McNoldy, hurricane researcher at the University of Miami.

“It’s going to go fast, so the crossing from the Gulf of Cuba to Louisiana will only take 1.5 days.”

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Nora is also gaining strength and could hit the southwest coast of Mexico early next week.

Read our live blog on Tropical Storm Ida for the latest news and updates …

  • IDA TOUCH AS A CATEGORY 1 HURRICANE

  • POWER FAILURE WARNING

  • MAYOR LATOYA CANTRELL PRESS CONFERENCE ON IDA

  • STORMY SKY IN MISSISSIPPI

  • ‘EERIE COINCIDENCE’

  • #HURRICANEIDA

    The hashtag #HurricanIda is in vogue in the United States after the hurricane landed in Cuba.

  • EARLY CLOSURE OF TEST AND VACCINATION SITES

  • THE MAYOR OF LOUISIANA URGES CITIZENS TO PREPARE

  • POTENTIAL EFFECTS OF IDA

  • NEW ORLEANS SCHOOLS CLOSE ON MONDAYS

  • NOT A LOT OF IMPACT ON CUBA

  • NEW ORLEANS EVACUATIONS

  • “WORST RECIPE”

  • ‘DO NOT UNDERESTATE’

  • THE GOVERNOR OF LOUISIANA REMEMBERS PAST HURRICANE

  • THE MAYOR OF NEW ORLEANS WANTS CITIZENS TO PREPARE FOR THE STORM

  • COMPARED TO THE 2005 HURRICANE

  • READY TO BLOW

  • WORST EXPECTED SUNDAY

  • SIGNIFICANT INTENSIFICATION

  • POTENTIALLY VERY BAD

    “Ida certainly has the potential to be very bad,” said Brian McNoldy, hurricane researcher at the University of Miami.

    “It’s going to go fast, so the crossing from the Gulf of Cuba to Louisiana will only take 1.5 days.”



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The lionfish threatens our community http://mexicalibluescafe.com/the-lionfish-threatens-our-community/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/the-lionfish-threatens-our-community/#respond Wed, 25 Aug 2021 13:03:39 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/the-lionfish-threatens-our-community/

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas – The lionfish are rather small compared to others, but experts say this poisonous creature has a big impact on coral reefs, including here in the coastal curve.

“They are spread across the Indo-Pacific, ranging primarily from the Red Sea to Hawaii,” says Simon Brandl, assistant professor in UT’s Department of Marine Sciences.

A red-orange pattern on the back and thorns along its sides. Brandl says you can see them at the Texas State Aquarium and in our waters.

“Here in our region we will have them. Piers, jigs, piers and everything, ”says Brandl.

Although it is beautiful, Brandl says that the lionfish have a great impact on the marine ecosystem.

“These lionfish are very easy to pray over native fish to the West Atlantic,” says Brandl.

It attacks more than 50 species such as clams, fish and shrimp. These are all familiar menu items on the Coastal Turn.

Chef Ruben Arriaga has worked at Docks Seafood and Steaks for 11 years, he says he knows how to prepare and cook a lionfish, the tricky part is catching one.

“Some people like to hold their breath and go underground and harpoon, but a lot of that is done by spearfishing,” says Arriaga.

Arriaga says the lionfish is considered a threat to other marine species.

So what can we do to help them? The Texas State Aquarium suggests eating them.

It’s a dish that Arriaga says will surprise you.

“It’s a white fish, so any seasoning you want to season it with, whatever flavor profile you want that fish to adopt. It’ll take, he said.

How does Arriaga prepare lionfish? One thing you will need are gloves.

“You would get what we call steel scissors and cut those barbs from the top and also the sides just to be careful not to stab yourself with them because they are poisonous,” says Arriaga.

This fish is difficult to catch but not impossible.

In Port Aransas, Fisherman’s Warf is engaged in various types of fishing, including deep sea fishing.

Charters will not only catch ordinary edible fish, but also exotic fish like lionfish. For more information, click here.


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Chef John Ash shares his favorite ways to cook with corn http://mexicalibluescafe.com/chef-john-ash-shares-his-favorite-ways-to-cook-with-corn/ http://mexicalibluescafe.com/chef-john-ash-shares-his-favorite-ways-to-cook-with-corn/#respond Tue, 24 Aug 2021 23:36:06 +0000 http://mexicalibluescafe.com/chef-john-ash-shares-his-favorite-ways-to-cook-with-corn/ 1 tbsp fresh lime juice or to taste Ancho or guajillo pepper powder to taste Lime wedges, for garnish Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over high heat until it sparkles. Add the corn kernels, season to taste with salt, toss once or twice and cook without moving until charred on […]]]>

1 tbsp fresh lime juice or to taste

Ancho or guajillo pepper powder to taste

Lime wedges, for garnish

Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over high heat until it sparkles. Add the corn kernels, season to taste with salt, toss once or twice and cook without moving until charred on one side, about 2 minutes. Combine corn, stir and repeat until charred on second side, about 2 minutes more. Continue to mix and char until the corn is well charred, about 10 minutes in total. Transfer to a large bowl.

Add mayonnaise, cheese, green onions, cilantro, jalapeño, garlic, lime juice and chili powder and mix. Taste and adjust the seasoning to your liking.

When you cut the corn kernels from the cob, place it in a bowl and cut off the sides of the cob; the bowl encloses the flying grains.

Grilled Poblano Corn Salad with Chipotle Dressing

Makes 3 ½ cups for about 6 people

3 ears of corn, peeled

1 poblano pepper

3 tablespoons olive or canola oil, divided

1 tablespoon of lime juice

1 teaspoon finely chopped canned chipotle pepper

Kosher salt

1 avocado, cut into pieces

¼ cup cilantro leaves

½ cup minced sweet onion, rinsed, patted dry

Heat the grill on high (450 to 550 degrees). Rub the corn and the poblano with 1 tablespoon of oil. Grill both, turning occasionally, until the poblano is almost blackened, 5 to 10 minutes, and some of the corn kernels have browned, 10 to 20 minutes. Let cool.

Working one at a time, place the corn on the cob in a large bowl and cut off the sides; the bowl encloses the flying cores. Peel and seed the poblano, cut it into ½ inch pieces and add it to the corn. In a small bowl, whisk the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil with the lime juice, chipotle pepper and salt to taste.

Stir avocado, cilantro and onion into corn mixture with chipotle dressing.

Fresh corn makes a delicious sauce for any white meat. This is an easy recipe to prepare and ideal when summer sweet corn is available. Any firm white fish you like can be replaced.

Cream of Corn Salmon

For 4 people

3 tablespoons of butter

2 ½ cups of fresh corn kernels (from 2 large ears)

1 cup finely chopped onion

¼ teaspoon chipotle or other pure chili powder, or to taste

1 ½ cup chicken or shrimp broth

⅔ cup heavy cream

1 tablespoon dry sherry, optional

1 tablespoon of vegetable oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper

4 6-ounce salmon fillets, bones removed, skin on

Sprigs of fresh herbs such as basil, tarragon or chervil

2 tablespoons rinsed salmon caviar, optional

Add 2 tablespoons of butter to a large sauté pan and heat over moderately high heat. Add ½ cup of corn and, stirring often, cook until just starting to brown around the edges. Reserve for garnish. Add the onion, the remaining 2 cups of corn and chili to the pan and cook until the onion is soft, about 3 minutes. Add the broth, cream and sherry and continue cooking for a few minutes until the mixture begins to thicken and the vegetables are very tender, about 6 minutes.

Off the heat, put in a blender and mash gently until very smooth. Pass through a fine mesh colander, pressing down on the solids. Discard the solids, return the sauce to the pot and keep warm. Adjust the seasoning to your liking.

Meanwhile, melt remaining butter and oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Generously season the salmon with salt and pepper. Place the skin side down in the pan. Cook until the skin is lightly browned and starting to crisp, about 4 minutes. Turn the fish over and cook flesh side down for a few more minutes or until cooked through.

Place the salmon on hot plates. Pour hot sauce around and garnish with reserved golden grains. Garnish with sprigs of herbs and salmon caviar, if desired.

The Native Americans (the Narragansett) introduced the settlers to this mixture of beans and corn which they called “msickquatash”. Mark Twain ranked succotash (along with opossum, coon, and cobblers) among the foods he craved most at home when traveling!

Summer succotash

For 6 persons

3 cups green and / or yellow beans, cut diagonally into 1-inch pieces

2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons of butter

1 cup chopped red onion

1 medium red pepper

1 medium poblano pepper

2 cups diced zucchini or other summer squash

2 cups of fresh corn kernels

¾ cup of chicken or corn broth

½ cup of sour cream

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

3 tablespoons of chopped fresh basil, parsley, tarragon or any herb you like

Blanch the beans in salted boiling water until crisp. Drain and run under cold water to stop cooking. Heat the oil and butter in a large skillet over moderately high heat. Add onion and peppers and cook for a few minutes or until just starting to soften. Stir in squash and corn and cook for a further minute or 2, stirring constantly. Add the broth and crème fraîche and cook until the vegetables are tender and crunchy and the liquid has reduced to a creamy consistency. Season with salt and pepper to taste and stir in the basil just before serving.


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