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Found 462 results

  1. Decent Mexican food does not exist in France. Passing through Toronto and wondering where I can go for dinner to taste some really lovely Mexican food. Thanks
  2. I'm working on a book on funeral foods in various cultures. Recently, I interviewed a husband and wife team of restaurateurs in Dallas. She's from Colombia and he's from Mexico City. Both recall "emotion cookies" from their childhoods. As they explained it to me, you get a plate of almond-flavored shortbread cookies. Each cookie has a different flavored topping. The toppings are vivid flavors -- he named lavender, orange peel, cinnamon, a whole list of different things. You sit down with a cup of hot chocolate and then you choose a cookie with a topping flavor that reminds you of a moment with the person you've lost. As you eat the cookie, you reexperience the emotion that the smell or taste invokes. It's a way of communing with the person. He described as being almost like a seance, intended to evoke the person's spirit through an emotion that reminds you of them. I've done quite a lot of research into Dias de Las Muertos rituals, but I've never seen anything like that. I'd love to know more, if anyone has experienced this or has come across any reference to it. I'd appreciate any suggestons for source material. And certainly recipes!
  3. In Wal-Mart I just bought this rice. It's grown in Morelos and Guerrero apparently. It claims to have the thickest grain in the world. I can't vouch for that but it certainly is thick. It makes a great risotto-type dish. Has anyone else tried it? I am enthused. This company's web site is www.covadonga.com.mx They also offer arborio, whole, jasmine and sushi rice though I have not tried those. to understand the name, google covadonga for catholic iconology. But do try the rice. Apparently the US is importing it to create crosses and hybrids, Rachel
  4. Has anyone heard of this place in Northeast Philadelphia? It is "Mexican/French haute cuisine." Apparently it got a 29 from Zagat for food, so friends of mine who are in town this weekend want to try it. I figured I should turn to trusty Egulleteers for opinions before we went. Thanks! Diann
  5. So where is the really good stuff? I've only been living here for just under a year, and I don't know where to go to get my taco fix. Who has suggestions?
  6. Thinking about putting a chorizo burger on the menu. It would most likely be a 50/50 blend of chorizo and ground chuck. I'm thinking this means I can't do a mid rare burger? Anyone have any experience with this?
  7. Salsa Para Enchiladas 3 ancho chiles 2 New Mexico chiles 2 chipotle chiles 1 clove garlic, sliced 2 TB flour 2 TB vegetable oil 1 tsp vinegar ¾ tsp salt ¼ tsp dried oregano 2 cups broth, stock, or (filtered) chili soaking liquid Rinse, stem and seed chiles. Place in saucepan and cover with water. Bring to boil. Cover and remove from heat and let soften and cool. While the chiles are cooling, gently sauté garlic slices in oil until they are soft and golden brown. Remove the garlic from the oil, with a slotted spoon and reserve. Make a light roux by adding the flour to the oil and sautéing briefly. Drain the chilies and puree them with the garlic slices and half of the liquid. Strain the puree back into the saucepan. Pour the remainder of the liquid through the sieve to loosen any remaining chili pulp. Add the roux to the saucepan and whisk to blend. Add the rest of the ingredients to the pan, bring to a boil then and simmer 15-20 minutes. Taste and add additional salt and vinegar if necessary.
  8. Fate keeps on happening. I had some leftover Bayo beans and decided to use them to make Diana Kennedy's Sopa Tarasca, halving the recipe as I only had one cup or so. I made the soup and it was delicious and then I vaguely remember some discussions on the list re Sopa Tarasca and several different methods. Kennedy only calls for "pink or pinto" beans but from reading the threads here, more common is the Bayo. What luck that I had some! The Bayo we grew looks very clearly to be a cranberry family bean. It looks like a pinto but is pinker and when cooked, I'd say it's a little more dense, less creamy but more velvety. Does this sound right? What confuses me is I was told several times that the name is a bastardization of bayou. I guess what I'm asking is if you can tell me a little something about this bean. The soup was beyond swell, by the by.
  9. It's been so long since I've lived in Fort Worth that I forgot what a mad-house Joe T. Garcia's is on a Saturday night. The line snaked from well outside the building through to the inner patio, into a raucous sea of customers. A word to the hostess that we were there for Lanny's, and we were led past the noise, mob, and Tex-Mex, ending up in a cozy room near the back of the patio where chef Lanny Lancarte II does his work. There we met fellow e-Gulleteers who had also converged in Cowtown with high hopes for the seven-course Nouvelle Mexican degustation menu Lanny had planned for us. On to the food... First Course: The evening's opener was an elegantly presented lobster and crab "napoleon." The bottom layer consisted of lobster ceviche with lime, mint, and coconut milk. Above it lay a thin layer of guacamole. The top layer was a tangle of peeky-toe crab, dressed with caviar. All of this rested on thinly sliced rings of cucumber, garnished with a zucchini blossom. Some of these crustacean layer cakes were triangular (as above), while others were pear shaped: Regardless of shape, this was a delicious course. The dominant sweetness of the meats (and coconut milk) was accented nicely by the acid lime and refreshing mint. Second Course: Next up was a huitlacoche crepe plated with a smooth tomatillo sauce and roasted corn. The crepe, tied shut with a scallion, was stuffed with huitlacoche, along with a touch of epazote and some meltable cheese (Oaxaca maybe?). The tomatillo's tanginess was softened by a touch of cream, making for a mellower contrast to the crepe's earthiness. A solid preparation of a Mexican fine dining classic. Third Course: The third course--probably my favorite of the night--consisted of skate wing sauteed in a chipotle beurre noisette, topped with fried capers, served over a cassoulet of cannellini beans. Lanny knocked this one out of the park, maintaining a perfect balance between the flavor elements in the dish. Fourth Course: This was a shiitake and nopalito risotto, served with roasted duck breast, garnished with a parmesan tuile. Though it was probably the least Mexican-influenced course of the evening, the sweet duck morsels and able risotto made this very popular at the table. Fifth Course: The concluding entree was prime beef tenderloin carne asada with a mild guajillo demi and chanterelles, served with a banana-leaf-wrapped tamal, and baby haricot vert. The beef was very good, but I loved the tamal (filled with queso fresco and roasted poblano rajas) both alone and with the sauce. Another winner. Sixth Course: Dessert was a warm chocolate cake, garnished with a pineapple gooseberry, whipped cream, and a tuile, plated with a thin Kahlua anglaise and raspberry sauce. A simple- sounding course, but it was so well executed that even the lone chocophobe at the table (who will remain nameless) fell for it. Seventh Course/Mignardises: Earlier in the evening, some of us had been reminiscing about El Moro, Mexico City's legendary churreria. This course couldn't have come at a better time. The churritos, warm, fluffy, and lightly cinnamon-sugared, were as perfect an example of that dessert as I've ever seen. The thin, but delicious, goat's milk cajeta had an unexpected dimension that we puzzled over for several minutes before Lanny came to the table to help us out. (It was brandy.) The cajeta was so enjoyable that, when some still remained after dipping the churros, I had to throw back the leftovers as a shot. Good stuff. Service was polite and attentive throughout the evening. There were no unreasonable delays as we moved through the menu. And Lanny emerged from the kitchen shortly after the arrival of each course to explain and field questions. Lanny Lancarte is the real deal. And, if this meal is indicative of what he's doing every night, Lanny's Alta Cocina Mexicana should be regarded as a destination restaurant. I will go back for more. Scott
  10. Well friends, Wal-Mart, it turns out, is about to open a new store in the shadow of the pyramids of Teotihuacan, just north of Mexico City. It's one of the great places of Mexico. Which prompted me to reflect on why Mexicans might flock to Wal-Mart (and Carrefour, its French equivalent fighting it out here in Mexico)and Costco and Sam's. I live in a wonderful town, Guanajuato, poised between the mountains and the plains at about 7,000 feet. It's a UNESCO heritage site with baroque churches, alleyways climbing hills, a decent university, excellent symphony, three theatres and the best arts festival in Latin America. And I can eat wonderfully--with some effort. But I still hear the siren song of Leon, unlovely boom town that makes Hush puppies (shoes, not food for us food-obsessed people) , Florsheim and most of the other shoes that are bought in the US. In Guanajuato, I can shop at a Mexican supermarket, Comercial Mexicana. It's crowded, dirty, smells and I have to push my cart up a ramp to parking on the roof. I can go to Mercado Hidalgo, a stunning building designed in the late nineteenth century. Sad to say the wiring is a health hazard. The meat comes from a slaughterhouse that I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy and ultimately from a natural but distinctly bad for beef diet of acacia thorn bushes, nopal cactus, and whatever else the runty cattle can scrounge. Tellingly it is sold for three prices; highest solid meat, middle meat with gristle and sinews, lowest you don't want to know. The vegetables are old and faded except for the wonderful standbys of nopal, chile, coriander, hand made tortillas, etc. Or I can go to local small shops that charge an arm and a leg for canned tomato sauce, canned pickles and canned dulce de leche. So like the rest of the middle class in Guanajuato I risk my life on the highway (one lane Mercedes at 100 mph, one lane mule carts and brick trucks at 10 mph) to Leon. And here's the list: Carrefour: Really good Mexican meat from the big ranches in the north (including things like oxtail and kidneys), olive oil, vinegars, olives, dark chocolate, utensils, cutlery and glasses. Delicatessans: wine, jamon Serrano, decent coffee, cheese. Costco: Mexican asparagus, artichokes, blackberries, rambutan, lychees, tomatoes, etc of export quality, and lettuce that does not have to be disinfected (hoorah). Wal-mart: Crema, Schweppes tonic water, capers, frozen New Zealand lamb (love lamb), New Zealand butter (Mexican has margarine added), totopos and sopes (tortilla based dishes), Chinese cabbage, and (for my American husband who yearns for the foods of childhood) American cake mixes, "black tea" (that is Camellia siniensis, tea meaning herbal tea in Mexico) and basic groceries at decent prices. So to sum up this long shaggy dog story: As Carrefour and Wal-mart enter the Mexican market, they are sweeping away the local competition. This consists of three supermarket chains, my much-loathed Commercial (actually there are branches that are pretty nice), Gigante and Soriana. It's not clear that this is the overwhelming power of the internationals. They have not had such success in Brazil for example where the local chains were apparently better. The big Mexican three have combined and persuaded the government to overrule monopoly legislation so that they can try to compete. We'll see. Meanwhile other Mexican food companies are thriving. Bimbo, founded by a refugee Basque family after WWII is now (I believe) the world's second largest bakery. It controls most of Latin America and has made large inroads in the US. I say this not because I like their bread (I wouldn't buy it if you paid me) but to say that US/French might does not necessarily rule in Mexico. Should Wal-Mart be near the pyramids? Well, I'll leave that for another day, Rachel
  11. Well, there I was pushing my cart around the Mega Commercial in León and what should I spot but a bottle with Ferran Adria's photo on the label hanging round its neck. Or a series of bottles of flavored olive oil produced by the firm Borges. So seven bucks later, I am the proud owner of 200ml of chile and cardamom flavored oil. The web page suggests I try it over spinach. All in the interests of culinary research! I'll be curious to see how they sell, Rachel
  12. Just wanted to see if I could find out about how people use their pozole. I have been using Goya white hominy for our pozole soup for a while, but decided to try to use reconstituted dried pozole. It looked like an utterly different thing. Then I went to Racho Gordo and their pozole looks like yet another utterly different thing. So... anyone smarter than me care to share? Thanks! Edited to add: Specifically, if people can talk about how they reconstitute dried pozole, and how it compares to the canned stuff, I'd appreciate it.
  13. http://www.beverageworld.com/beverageworld...t_id=1000632881
  14. I'm wondering what tools others think are essential for Mexican cooking. I wouldn't live without my handheld lime squeezer, my blender, my big round wooden spoons from Guadaljara + the tight weave seive (although I often think a chinois might be more handy), my bean masher (for guacamole mostly) and a comal. I've heard that a copper pot is essential for making carnitas. Has anyone had experience in this? Do you have great sources in the US? I saw some in a market in Mexico but they were so cheap I was suspect that they might be plated rather than solid. I use a Cruset pot now but I love a new toy.
  15. On the menu at Rosa Mexicano, there are two items listed by themselves on the top, clearly intended as grabbers: the pomegranate margarita, and the guacamole. The pomegranate margarita is dispensed soft-serve style out of the wall behind the bar. Almost magically, it seems to keep flowing and flowing, seemingly at the rate of ten gallons per second. Question: where do you think it comes from? Do you think the conscientious Tequila-master is sitting there behind the wall, thoughtfully mixing crystal shot glasses full of Patron Anejo into the swirling machine? Think the pomegranate juice is from the farmers market? At least Fat Tuesday’s has more than one flavor. The guacamole is fabulous, wonderful and a bargain at ten dollars. It’s a cleverly crafted strategy, having this as the signature dish. Are you going to go to Rosa Mexicano, next to the MCI Center with $15 valet parking, and order a guacamole with a glass of ice water? If you do, your food will be a terrific value. If you don’t … Washington DC is the third outlet for this chain restaurant. Atlanta, Georgia is soon to be the fourth. Any guesses for number five? Six? Seven? Get the picture? Let’s call a spade a spade: this factory serves processed-tasting food intended for the masses who naively think they’re getting something more meaningful than they would at Cheesecake Factory. Even the tortilla chips taste like they came from the bulk food section at Shoppers Food Warehouse (as opposed to Rio Grande and Cactus Cantina, two high-volume operations that get the chips right). Rosa Mexicano sucks. It sucks! How much does it suck? It sucks, that’s how much it sucks. It sucks ducks, bucks, monster trucks, hockey pucks, guys named Chuck, migrant workers that shuck, lightning bolts that struck, sewage workers wallowing in muck, rear-wheel drive cars that are stuck, vagrants who are down on their luck, babys who taste spinach for the first time and say yuck, and don’t think for a moment I’ve forgotten about the word fuck. There!
  16. Why aren't we demanding better Mexican food? Why are we happy with a number 6 combination plate with a chile relleno made yesterday, an enchilada that tastes like a taco and a taco that tastes like an enchilada, all smothered in a bland chile sauce? Why is the best thing always the refried beans? There's a thread on the Texas forum about the virtues of Tex-Mex. I haven't eaten enough of it to really form an opinion but it leads me to wonder whether things are so great here. There was Cafe Marimba on Chestnut Street when Reed Hearon was at the helm. It was to me some of the most exciting food I'd eaten in a long time, despite the cantina-like atmosphere and yuppie location. It was exciting. Then it was nothing. I don't even know if it's still in business but I think when Hearon left they realized at that spot they could serve Taco bell and it would still pack them in. There's a restaurant in Sonoma called Maya that was kind of interesting when it first opened but now it's a silly tourist trap. I hear Picante in Berekely is good but haven't been. Primavera, who make such nice butter-laden tamels, is in the Farmers Market in SF on Saturdays and I hear good things there. So other than cooking at home, where do you go? I love my burritos but I think that's a different thread.
  17. Is there anyone packaging chiles in the toothpaste-type tubes that e.g. tomato paste is sold in? I haven't seen such a thing in person or on any of the online Mexican grocers. If it doesn't exist, what do you think of the idea? Seems to me that it would be pretty cool. Dried chiles could be toasted, re-hydrated, ground, packaged. I, for one, would probably keep on hand at least a few varieties. michael
  18. Hi, I'd promised to post this recipe for pressure cooker flan. It's the way all Mexican flan has been made since Nestle invented their recipe for Flan Magico as they called it. this was, I think, in the 1960s, though I'd have to check. It is denser than French creme caramel. That is popular in Mexico because it means you can add pureed fruit, nuts, or other flavorings to make a zillion variations. The plain remains the most popular though so far as I can tell. Rachel Flan The signature dessert of Mexico. Condensed milk makes a wonderful flan. For those who worry about using a canned ingredient, it is worth remembering that Mexicans have been boiling down sugar with milk to make cajeta (Mexican dulce de leche) and fudges since at least the eighteenth century. The cans simply offer a handy short cut. In this recipe, the pressure cooker is not used to speed things up but because it makes a smoother flan than one cooked in the oven. 1 cup sugar 4 eggs 1 cup sweetened condensed milk 1 cup fresh milk 1 teaspoon vanilla extract Place the sugar in a metal flan mold or a 9 inch ring mold and heat over a low flame until the sugar turns brown and caramelizes. Stir constantly so that the mixture covers the bottom and sides of the mold. Allow to cool for an hour. Blend the rest of the ingredients, pour into the mold, and cover with flan lid or aluminum foil. Now there is a choice: (A) Use a pressure cooker for the smoothest flan. Place a metal stand or upturned saucer in the bottom of a pressure cooker. Add 2 ½ cups of water. Place the mold in the cooker, making sure the water comes well up the sides. Bring the cooker to full pressure and cook for 25 minutes. Gradually remove the pressure cap, allowing steam to escape. Take off the lid and remove the aluminum foil so that no water condenses on the flan. Allow to cool to room temperature and unmold. (B) An oven is an alternative. Heat to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Place the mold in a large pan of water. Bake in the oven 1 ½ hours or until set. Remove the lid or aluminum foil, allow to cool completely and unmold.
  19. For those who don't know, pulparindo is a Mexican candy made from tamarind, and flavoured with chiles, salt and lime. It's a bit larger (in all dimensions) than the stick of gum you used to get if you bought baseball cards. The first time I tried Pulparindo I thought it was disgusting. A candy with tamarind? And chile? And lime?? (Many of the indigenous candies share these ingredients). But it grew on me, and now I find myself actually craving it once in a while, and seeking it out at some of the Latin places in town. Is there anyone else out there who has succumbed to the charms of Pulparindo? Cheers, Geoff Ruby
  20. Hola! Just devoured another favourite summertime treat that we first encountered on the streets in Oaxaca. Corn tortillas on the comal with torn pieces of squash blossoms and fresh epazote. A bit of cheese (I used Monterey Jack as I can't get quesillo where I live) and sea salt. Presto, change-o, I am instantly transported to Oaxaca. After four years, we know have serious leaves of epazote growing in our garden. For squash blossoms, we phone a local farmer to major amounts and a local tortilla maker supplies us with tortillas. In Oaxaca, you are asked if you want a bit of asiento - that yummy pork fat and bits - don't have that going on. Yet. Truly an exquisite snack. Anyone else have some seasonal favourites they would like to share? Shelora
  21. I am planning a trip to the city soon to stock up on some ingredients I need to make Mexican food. I miss being able to easily find Mexican ingredients in most groceries, as is the case in CA, so I have to go on a hunt. I'm especially interested in finding masa (including masa harina for tortillas), chiles both dried and fresh, crema and cheese, and some herbs and produce. I'd also like to catch a bite to eat while I'm there. Could anyone suggest some good markets for such things? I'm open to places in both Jackson Heights and in Manhattan, although I suspect things would be less expensive and fresher in JH because of the demand there. Thanks in advance!
  22. Rofl!! A puffy taco is a taco that is "puffed". What makes it puffed is the fact that baking soda is added to the harina mix,so when you fry the harina dough in oil, it will puff up and swell.
  23. Just purchased some verdolagas (otherwise known as Purslane) at the Farmers Market this morning. D.K. in her book, The Essential Cuisines of Mexico, has a simple stew recipe for pork and purslane, which I will make tomorrow. Have not found any other references for it in other cookbooks and I don't seem to recall eating it Mexico. Can anyone out there speak about verdolagas and its uses in Mexico? Esperanza? Theobroma?
  24. Would lowfat work, or is the fat contributing to the browning?
  25. I grew up in Houston, and one of my favorite dishes of all time was Tacos al Carbon at Las Alamedas. Somewhere I read that this dish was actually "invented" by the person who founded Ninfa's. Is that true? It seems like such a straightforward dish, I can hardly believe it would have been invented in the 20th century by a Texan. What do you know about Tacos al Carbon?
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