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Everything posted by shelora

  1. MSG you simply have to stay and eat in Victoria. How long are you staying in Victoria? there is a ton of stuff to do, food-wise here. It's in NONE of the guide books. Shelora
  2. Hello there, What do you mean, funky? Stinky? Since I only get the bigger varieties where I live, I need to know if I have been getting funky ones and not knowing it. I guess the smaller ones would work, two together, but you would have to stick the two together with toothpicks before dipping in batter? The store unfortunately didn't get any cactus this week, I'm hoping next week. Has anyone out there made the recipe or any other recipe for stuffed nopales? Please report. Shelora
  3. Yes, yes, I've always loved them fire roasted. What I do after I have de-spined them, is keep the base intact while making slices from the base to the top, kind of like a hand with fingers now. After I roast them I cut into cubes and toss with white onion, organic cherry tomatoes and cilantro, seasalt and a squeeze of lime juice. A wonderful cold salad on a hot summer day scooped into hot tortillas or tostadas. I will run out and the get the Saveur magazine. I've only heard about the stuffed nopales. One thing is certain, make sure the cactus paddles you buy for stuffing are thick enough to stuff. I hope I can find some today. Shelora
  4. Okay now I'm curious, what is Atapakua, Esperanza? S
  5. Well, this is very exciting. Now I can possibly return to P.V. - always flight deals to be had - and explore some food options. Thanks a million for the suggestions on where to eat. I'm filled with hope. And thanks Esperanza for the spelling corrections on Uruapan. s
  6. Freshly made potato chips in Puebla - oh yeah, I remember them well. Puerto Vallarta - the best food I had there were the camarones on a skewer cooked over coals and sold on the beach. The market in Zihuatanejo - the most amazing tortitas de papa. And the sea salt from that area is outstanding! And the salsas made in the well worn molcajetes. I miss it so much. Yeah, I think this type of food guide - with video camera or still images - would be well received. By me, anyway! But really, if the real food tours currently on television are any indication, this type of program could fly. It could begin like something similar to the airline food website, where people take a photo of their meal, with airline flight, time, first class or economy and menu with their comments. I don't know if it still around, but it was curious. I've gotta tell you this, on a recent return flight from Mexico, a woman was telling another passenger, that her Mother was so afraid of getting sick, she wouldn't even drink the coffee!! At first, I was stunned and then it struck me as the funniest thing I'd ever heard. Isn't that too much?! Looks like we are going back to Mexico around Christmas, unless a wonderful seat sale comes our way before then. In dire need of a break. Over and out. Shelora
  7. I'm in! I agree Mexican culinary guides are so personal, and it has to be written with fearlessness in mind. So many travellers are afraid to eat in the markets and on the street. I realize there are some precautions to take - take a little look around the premises, the crowd or lack thereof, etc. But to eat like the people, you gotta eat with the people. I just remember a place in Puebla, near the university downtown, a woman makes the most amazing tamales only in the morning. A breakfast tamale, very sweet, a pinkish colour. A woman stands beside her and squeezes fresh orange and grapefruit juice. Who needs to eat in a hotel?! I've just been so excited about Mexican food this last week. Last night, i made those stuffed jalapenos I was talking about and my hands won't stop burning. I've washed them with soap and water, washed them with a sliced tomatoe and then soap and water. Any other cures, you know about? S
  8. Girlfriend, the best time to discuss all that would be when we are making tamales! I will say that what she has going on there is so special and those "celebrity chefs' want a piece of the action, but she certainly doesn't need to be so nasty. Okay, just one thing. Have you ever seen the cookbook, Mexico for Dummies? Awful name, but written by the Two Hot Tamales. There are lovely photographs of Abigail and her mom in the book, sweating and smiling over a metate. Are they credited? Are they identified? Think about it. Here is a woman that can run circling around those two hot ones, and they don't even have the decency to name her in the book!!!! See what I mean? That is just one incident. There are many. As luck would have it, I have never had a great meal at La Soledad. I think it is the hype that goes along with things, that finds me always disappointed. And I remember she was written up in an issue of Saveur with a recipe for stuffed jalapenos with cheese and mint. It is now one of my standby recipes when cooking for people. I went to her restaurant and requested it and they looked at me like I was from out of space. My Spanish is not that bad. I think! Anyhow, I love Oaxaca, regardless. You must go again soon there are some incredible new restaurants. But I must also say how absolutely incredible Michoacan is. We escaped one year from the Christmas beach rush and bused it to the city Uruhuapan. The market there is the best of my experience so far. Maze-like, part indoors, part out. Since Michoacan is such an agricultural state, everything you can think of was being offered. I bought the best chilies there and the outdoor stalls selling corundas was a revelation. Corundas - that speciality tamale that is wrapped in the leaf of the corn plant, a three-cornered number. So delicious. Tamales made from blue corn, red corn. Freshly made salsas using the chile manzano - the only chile with black seeds. The zapote negro was in season. A black pudding-like black fruit which we ate on the street. And every evening, a tamale stand run by a group of women was set up and ten different kinds of tamales were served and atole. This is where I had atole negro for the first time, made with the toasted skins of the cacao. Or that is how I understood it. The cascaras de cacao. Noone I have spoke to here or in Mexico, had run into it before. And the extra bonus of Uruhuapan, is that there were so few tourists and the coffee is amazing! Freshly roasted. Hope to be in Oaxaca again this Christmas. Or quite frankly anywhere in Mexico. I would love to go back to Veracruz and explore the Vanilla groves of Papantla. S
  9. Abigail Mendoza has never and will never teach cooking classes. I think the only person who has ever been able to glean a recipe out of her is Diana Kennedy. Even then, I heard that Diana was given the wrong ingredients! The classes I was speaking about are through Abigail's sister-in-law and one of Abigail's cousins. You can learn how to make segasa, work with chepil, make those wonderfu tamales with the leaf of the corn plant, how to grind chintestle, etc. Reyna stayed with us in December last year to learn English and we gave a series of private set course dinners. Reyna wowed everyone with her moles, chocolate, tamales and making chintestle table side was an encore performance. She can really translate Zapotec cooking to the novice. God, do I sound like an infomercial, or what? I don't think I've ever seen chepil seed for sale, come to think of it. I've seen frozen chepil leaves up here every now and then, but I found it very bitter in taste. I'll keep my eyes peeled, so to speak, for seeds next trip. Shelora
  10. Great posts. There are so many knowledgable people on this forum. I just love it. I travelled throughout Mexico with the Zazlavsky book, A cook's Tour and was ready to toss it out many times. I didn't find one market stall or restaurant she wrote about. And I looked very hard. I've also found her recipes sketchy at best. Just my opinion. Like Diana Kennedy says, to understand Mexican cuisine would take a lifetime. For me that is what intrigues me so much. Everytime I return, I learn something else or something I thought I knew and understood is contradicted. I love the cuisine of Oaxaca, those moles have me hooked. I recommend anyone that goes there to buy the ingredients and start making them at home. Or take cooking lessons when you are down there. Susanna Trilling does great day long classes that start out shopping for ingredients at Abastos market - that gal knows her way around - then back to her cooking school to cook a four course meal. Lots of fun. I also recommend Tlamanalli for comida in Teotitlan and you can also take classes in Teotitlan at Casa Cerro Sagrado on the hill overlooking the village. There, my two centavos. Shelora
  11. Many thanks for you both. I have some serious research on my hands. Well that is interesting about the oscuro/mulato chilies. And the amarillo/chilcotzli. I'm off to see Casleton's website. Hasta pronto, Shelora
  12. yes, yes, and, and........
  13. Going through my stash of chilies, I have noticed some discrepancies and I'm hoping someone can help. Okay, I've got two different bags of chile puya. One is dark red, smooth surfaced and the other is light red to orange with more of a bumpy texture to the skin. it almost looks like a chile costeno. The first one is prepackaged from El Guapo, the second from a market in Mexico. Are they both chile puya or if not, will the real chile puya please stand up. This brings me to the other problem. I have chile costeno and chile costeno rojo. Then there is chile amarillo. Now, I know for a fact that the chile amarillo is hotter than the costenos. All three are of the same size and texture, except of course, the amarillo is light orange. I know that I must keep better record keeping when I buy chiles but I find chile identification very confusing. For example, I thought chile ancho was available only in three grades; primera (big and fat), segunda (mama bear) and terceira (whatever is left over). But oh no, chile ancho is available in negro and oscuro. Then to confuse matters even more, chile ancho is also known as chile tenir in other parts of Mexico. Is it just me? Say it ain't so! S
  14. yessireee! No chilcostle or chilhuacle. Gadzooks, I need to take another holiday. Food stuffs are my souvenirs when I travel. I am currently ripping right through my seasalt supply and becoming increasingly nervous about losing it. Really, I encourage all who read this to start buying Mexican sea salt - it puts everything overpriced coming out of Europe to shame. Shame I tell you! Anyway, anytime you are ready to do the trade, Ms. Theobroma, let me know. Then again, can you find out how to contact me through egullet? I don't know how that works. Also, I have small and smaller. I could do a sample of both. I do recommend them the larger of the two for a UNBELIEVABLE chile relleno. All the best. Shelora
  15. Well, how wonderful. A new recipe to try. I love making moles. I think I may still have some chilcostles left. I'll have to check the supply. If you have any, I'd trade you some smoked chile pasilla de Oaxaca. Deal? s
  16. Many thanks. We shall see what happens this summer. Some of the leaves I am snipping off because the brown is spreading across the leaf. It reminds me of flesh eating disease. Terribly groteque. I can't bear it. I have made D.K.'s mole verde recipe many times. I had great success bringing leaves back from Mexico in between wax paper, lodged in between the pages of her cookbooks! Now, I must grow my own, since we have had great success with epazote. It's the only reasonable thing to do. shelora
  17. hello, Many thanks for your replies. I live in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada. We started our plant indoors and never got water on the leaves and it started developing brown on the leaf tips then. Now that we have shifted the plant to outside, we will remember NOT to put water on the leaves and keep the beautiful thing very wet and see what happens. You both did not say if your plant ever had this brown tip problem. We do get an awful lot of wind where we are and rain of course, but this summer promises (fingers crossed) to be very hot and dry. At present, we have it in a place that gets more morning light, as opposed to full on afternoon baking heat. I do want my little hoja santa to take over. I love your recipe uses for the leaf. I have only made a mole and a segasa (Zapotec dish made with toasted and cracked corn). I want to attempt tamales in the summer, I hear that they are spectacular made with the hoja santa leaf. Cheerio, Shelora
  18. Hello there, I have started an hoja santa plant and everything is looking good except most of the leaves have developed a brown-ish tint to the edges. Has anyone had any experience with growing this plant. It is a wonderful herb, very anise in flavour used in many regional recipes in Mexico. Shelora
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