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  1. Actually, a little bit before 33rd, if you're coming from downtown on Powell. After the Safari yuckyness and before the Cash Store yuckyness. It's in the parking lot of a newly painted dark green automotive place. We hopped off the bus after work and asked for one each of the al pastor and lengua. Sadly, he had no lengua and we settled for tripa. He also had pollo and asada. Cabeza was on the menu but also unavailable. The tacos were $1 each. They're traditiional in the sense that you get two little white corn tortillas (not handmade) but they were cooked a little crisper then I like. The al pastor was very good, much better then the truck up on Division in the same hood. I'm not sure where the tripa is supposed to hit texture-wise because I only have eaten it in menudo or in Chinese dishes where it's soft. Here it was a little two chewy for me, but tasty and crispy. There were two salsas and an avacado tomato pico de gallo type thing. The green one was a very nice roasted tomatillo one, the red was the kind from dried chillies and had a little vinegar. I liked them both. I was a little surprised to be asked if I wanted sour cream on the tacos, and turned it down, but went with the onions and cilantro and a hunk of lime (which is more what I'm used to). After we relished our snack we started chatting and asking about hours. He's there all weekday, and Saturday this weekend, but maybe not Sunday. Business wasn't that good last Sunday. He asked what we thought of the menu, because he's still working on it. Turns out he had lengua last week and all the gringos got grossed out and he couldn't sell it. That makes me sad because it's my favorite filling for tacos. He said a couple of guys were asking for it, and now us, so he'll try to have it next time. He's trying to make this go in an unusual location, with a clientel more used the McDs and Wendy's near by, so I understand about all the burritos on the menu and asking about sour cream on tacos, but it made me cringe. This was a very solid place, and we'd really like to see him stick around, so if you're in the SE and hungry, go check it out! regards, trillium
  2. I had completely forgotten about our dinner there in December. Anyone who is a serious eater here on eGullet needs to come here soon. Highly recommended. @MetsFan5 - here is one place you might love over Gary Danko. You too @rancho_gordo. I'll let the pix speak for themselves... Horchata - Koshihikari rice, almonds, black cardamom, cinnamon. Scallop chicharrón, scallop ceviche, crème fraîche. Jicama empanada, shiso, pumpkin, salmon roe. Smoked mushroom taco with pickled wild mushrooms. Dungeness crab tostada, sour orange segments, sour orange-habanero salsa, Castelfranco radicchio, tarragon. Pineapple guava sorbet Fuyu persimmon, habanero honey, tarragon Tasmanian trout ceviche, dashi, Granny Smith apple Aguachile, parsnip, red bell pepper Black bean tamales steamed in banana leaves, with salsa on the side Smoked squab broth, pomegranate seeds, cilantro flowers Tres frijoles with sturgeon caviar, shallots and edible gold leaf Black cod, salsa verde, green grapes Wagyu beef, pickled onion Smoked squab breast served with spiced cranberry sauce, quince simmered in cranberry juice, pickled Japanese turnips and charred scallion, and sourdough flour tortillas Yes, it's the same squab from which the broth was made. And now the desserts: Foie gras churro, with foie gras mousse, cinnamon sugar, served with hot milk chocolate infused with cinnamon, Lustau sherry and coffee. By the time I remembered to take a pic, I'd eaten half of the churro. Dunk the churro into the chocolate. Dulce de leche spooned atop pear sorbet with chunks of Asian pear, macadamia nut butter Pecan ice cream, candied pecans, shortbread cookie, apples, clarified butter The cookie was on top of the apples. Break the cookie and spoon everything over. Cherry extract digestif, vermouth, sweet Mexican lime We'll definitely return. I'm an instant fan. Prepaid tix were $230 per person, plus there were additional charges due to wine pairings. It's worth every cent you'll spend. Californios 3115 22nd Street (South Van Ness) Mission District
  3. I'm wondering if anyone has any experience with a manual tortilla machine / maker. I am not talking about a tortilla press. This machine basically takes a batch of masa dough that is placed on top, through a roller with a cutter, using a hand crank. The machine will flatten and cut uniform size tortillas. I've been looking at the Monarca brand. The reviews seem to be below average. I'm trying to find ways to shave some labor dollars without sacrificing quality. Our restaurant goes through an average of 300 to 500 tortillas a day depending on business. Thanks for your help!
  4. I will be traveling to Mexico City at the beginning of September to judge a coffee competition and was thinking about staying on a few more days to see if I can join a cooking class in the city. I have some basic experience making simple Mexican fare such as guacamole, tacos, quesadillas, mole almendrado, but I would like to take a class that gets deeper into the cuisine and was hoping someone here might have some recommendations. Ideally, the class would run between 1 to 3 days and be taught in English (my Spanish comprehension is decent but by no means fluent). Group or individual instruction is fine. Thanks!
  5. I was in my local Fiesta Mart this weekend and decided I ought to pick up some Maseca as I've seen it called for as an ingredient in some things, even if it wasn't to make dough for tortillas. So, looking at the shelves, I spied a small bag. It said "Amarilla" on it, along with a proclamation that it was "NEW!" Not knowing exactly what that meant, I compared that bag to the larger bag of Masaca. I couldn't tell the difference. Since I have limited storage space at home, I decided to just pickup that smaller bag. Now, I am not totally sure what I have. Here is what I got. http://aztecamilling.com/OurBrands.aspx?ID=139 How exactly is this different than the other stuff? If it's a little different, can I use it as a direct substitution for any recipe that simply calls for Maseca (or instant masa harina)
  6. My grandaughter has tapped me to help her with her 6th grade class project while studying the Maya. She's volunteered to prepare a mole and found a recipe on Epicurius. Alas, I know nothing about Mexican cuisine (beyond a single empanada recipe I often make), but I'm sceptical that that recipe is historically authentic. Are there easily accessible sources (in English) for both the history of Mayan cuisine and for an authentic recipe? Unfortunately there's only a little more than a week til we produce the mole.
  7. If you could only read and use one cookbook on mexican cooking, which author would you choose and why? How would you characterize the difference between these two cookbook authors?
  8. Just wondering if anyone knows of a store that has a good stock of Mexican ingredients? I find it so frustrating having no clue whatsoever, especially seeing as Mexican is one of my favourite cuisines and I'd really like to make use of my Mex cookbook! There must be one somewhere because I do recall watching the Mexican episode of Food Safari and aha! there they were in a Mexican food store. Here's hoping the prices aren't sky high.
  9. Anyone else thoroughly addicted to the smoked chile of Oaxaca like I am? They are so delicious for chile rellenos, in salsas and with a summer twist - first hydrated in orange juice and tequila, then stuffed with a mixture of ricotta and fresh ripe peaches. The hydrating liquid is then reduced to a sticky syrup and poured over. Oh my goddess, it's so good. Would love to hear your recipes and uses for this distinct chile. I've got a glut of them right now and they need to be used up. Shelora
  10. Has anyone used duck fat to make tamales? Can it be done? s
  11. OK, I probably shouldn't be worrying about potatoes in Mexico. But I like to eat them from time to time. But if I buy regular size potatoes (the little red ones are fine) they are full of problems. When you cut them open, the texture, instead of being smooth, is ridged and lumpy. When you smell them, they have a strong smell that I would call earthy if that weren't an insult to earth. And when you cook them they go sweetish. I have the sense this means that if not frosted, they have been stored at too low a temperature. Does anyone else have the same experience? Or an explanation? Or a solution? Rachel
  12. so I've had this countless times, but have never made it myself...is this how you do it?: soak unshucked corn 10 minutes grill over medium heat for 15 peel back husks and coat cob with mayo/chile blend sprinkle with queso anejo or cotija re'wrap' cobs and grill for another 5-8 minutes. I want to make this for dinner tonight, so if anyone is an expert, I'd love to know soon!
  13. An eon ago in the midst of a discussion about chile chilcoztli, I promised Shelora the recipe for a very old, very traditional recipe for a yellow mole made with chilcoztlis and chicken, and served with an hoja santa puree. Guess what I just found? Recipe follows. I hope that this can become a general discussion, Q&A, repository of tales all about moles ... the good, the bad, the mythic, and yes, the ugly. I have made this and I find it both strange and exquisite. It is from Alicia Gironella d'Angeli, and it is, on occasion, served at her DF restaurant El Tajin. Mole amarillo de San Pedro Ixcatlan, Oaxaca: 2 free range chickens, disjointed, breast halved or quartered, placed in pot with cold water to cover by 2.5 to 3 inches. Add salt to the water, and bring it to a boil; drop to a simmer and cook 30 or so minutes, or until the chicken is cooked. (if using only breasts, poach them in chicken broth or stock as they cook quickly and, even with poaching, loose flavor when overcooked) When the chicken is cooked, add 1 ounce of ground achiote seed (plain achiote, not achiote condimentado for a recado rojo), and two hoja santa leaves. Simmer 5 more minutes. At this point, let the chicken cool in the broth. Skin and shred the chicken, and place on a plate or in a bowl. Strain and defat the broth. Don't drive yourself crazy defatting it ... you just don't want a huge oil slick on the surface. Place the broth back in a cooking pan. Toast, seed, and grind 20 chiles chilcoztlis ( if you cannot find them, you can use guajillos, but with a bit of a different outcome ... still good). Put some of the chicken broth into a small pot and add 18 hoja santa leaves; cook for 10-15 minutes, strain the leaves out of the broth and discard it, and puree the leaves. Place puree in a small dish. Add the ground chiles chilcoztlis to the broth where the chicken was cooked. Dilute 9 ounces of masa, preferably fresh ( if using Maseca, make the masa accordfing to package directions and weigh out 9 ounces of the reconstituted masa) in a small amount of water and strain it into the broth with the chilcoztlis. Bring it to a simmer, add the shredded chicken, and allow it to cook until the broth/masa has thickened and the masa has lost its raw taste. Think chicken in cream sauce. It will be very yellow and have a velvety texture. Serve in dinner plates with a deep depression ... or shallow soup bowls. Garnish with the hoja santa puree. It is saffrony-yellow, velvety, aromatic, and the green hoja santa puree makes a sharp color contrast. Though the only mention of salt is for the water in which the chicken simmers, you should adjust the salt to taste before serving. There is a note containing a warning from the original recipe: " This is ritual food. It must be prepeared by one person only, because of its importance it demands sexual abstinence for four days prior to (and including day of) preparation." Enjoy, Theabroma
  14. Burrito Bros. Taco Co. 2209 West 1st Avenue 604-736-8222 Burrito Bros. Kitsilano I’d been aquiver recently, thinking that a quality taco emporium might be moving into the neighbourhood. Gord Martin hasn’t delivered on the fish tacos promise at Go Fish!, and frequent trips to Mexico remind me just how much I miss them. In Manzanillo, the taqueria stand at the end of our dusty road turns out handsome breakfast tortillas of pulled pork and hot sauce, served with a pint of fresh grapefruit juice, for one American dollar. Key to quality burritos and tacos is the quality of the tortilla itself. In Mexico, one person feeds hot-off-the-press tortillas to the person stuffing them—with pork, fish, beef or chicken. They are thin and pliant without being spongy. Unfortunately, the tortillas at Burrito Bros. are a letdown—their taste and texture being identical to the supermarket versions churned out by large-scale manufacturers and bereft of that fresh, slightly toasty corn taste that's a hallmark of Mexican cuisine. We ordered an early afternoon ‘Taco Trio’ ($6.99), with sides of sour cream (again, supermarket quality only, and heavily over-salted guacamole--$.99 each). With a Coke, the tab, including taxes, was $12.60. The Taco Trio (soft version) arrived 14 minutes after we placed our order—too long in my opinion. They comprised ‘Mexi Beef’ (spiced ground beef), ‘Fajita Steak’ (chopped sirloin with vegetables) and ‘Baja Fish’ (small pieces of breaded cod with salsa crema). The fish and steak versions were passable, slightly elevated with the routine hot sauces provided—Tabasco, Frank’s Red Hot and Tapatío picante. Missed opportunity there—why not provide some more interesting smoked chipotle versions—or housemade condiments? The ground beef version—a mush of angrily-spiced but characterless meat, was a write-off. The menu also features burritos, burrito bowls (an oxymoron waiting to happen), and ‘Quesa-Dealios’—jack cheese, jalapenos, salsa and sour cream. There’s a short Mexican beer list that numbers the usual victims and glasses of 1516 are available for $4.70; margaritas are $4.91, or $6.40 for a double. Breakfast burritos are $6.99, but beware the bait-and-switch pricing; sides such as the aforementioned guac and sour cream are additional. The salsa verde was average, and, although fresh tasting, a trifle mild for our taste. Burrito Bros. occupies a popular corner (adjacent to Adesso) near 1st and Yew in beautiful downtown Kitsilano, where walk-in traffic is a necessity because parking is tricky, especially at this time of the year. Complimentary sombreros are available to sun-challenged patio patrons. There are about 30 seats inside and half a dozen tables on the patio. The restaurant appears to have been decorated—from menu boards to faux-Mexican movie posters—entirely by Chalkstar.com. And perhaps that summarizes my disappointment with this restaurant —the closer you get the less autentico it gets--it’s as trite as a lime in a bottle of breakfast beer and equally as false. It has every appearance of a small-footprint concept-restaurant chain in waiting but doesn't achieve the ‘do one thing very well’ that other practitioners execute upon; it certainly didn’t revive my latent love for quality Mexican cooking, or even its Tex-Mex equivalent. How to improve? 1. Make regulation 6.5” tortillas by hand, in-house with fresh maze flour. Tortilla presses cost next to nothing. Make the tortilla station an eye-contact point and brand it. 2. Drill down on the fillings. Brown the ground beef before spicing. 3. Up the ante on the fillings—they seemed frugally portion-controlled to the extreme; Mexican taquerias are famously ‘free-pour’. 4. Add some interesting condiments, such as Dan-T’s smoky chipotle hot sauces, or create some interesting housemade condiments. Get some quality sour cream such as Avalon or Blackwell Dairies. 5. Ask the chef to taste his own cooking—the guacamole, otherwise well-made, could melt snow. 6. Get some spoons to convey the sides to the tacos—Burrito Bros. only offered knives and forks. 7. Hasten the food delivery time by at least 5 minutes. When we were there the restaurant was busy but hardly slammed and there was an abundance of service staff dawdling near the pass. 8. Add a quality, cabbagey cole slaw to the menu. 9. Serve soft drinks in a glass, with ice and lime. 10. Hang some garlands of smoked dried peppers over the pass; use them in the cooking.
  15. Anyone have a good Mexican recipe for wild mushrooms? Yesterday in the market at Amecameca, I bought a bunch gathered from the woods up the volcanoe -- blue mushrooms (hongos azules) which are seriously strong tasting, almost bitter. Bright orange ones called "enchiladas," Juan Diegitos, which look like portobellos on the top, but are white underneath. And xocoyotlis, that look like clavitos, but are redish-coffee color. Any ideas would be appreiciated -- I just want to cook them before they start to slime up. Thanks, Will.
  16. When we lived in Mexico City we could drive to Toluca, 40kms to the west and buy bright green sausage at just about every market stall and from homes along the way. When I say green I mean emerald. About the size of BBQ sausage here in houston and fresh not smoked or dried. I've made Diane Kennedy's green sausage and it's nothing like what I'm looking for. Anybody got a source in Texas?
  17. It had been a while, so yesterday I dropped in on my local Chipotle for some tacos with their (in my humble opinion) oh so delicious barbacoa. Given that I received a crock pot over Christmas, I thought I'd try to replicate their recipe. What cut of beef should I use? What is our collective best guess at the other ingredients? Shamelessly, Al
  18. I was hoping that someone here could assist me with deciphiring an ingredient. I was attending a birthday party for the daughter of a dear mexican friend and we were discussing food (imagine that) and she said that the salsa had tomillos(not tomatillos) in it. I don't know what tomillos are, even tho she swears i use them at the restaurant all the time! "Cositas verdes" she said. little green things. She said they are not a spice. Something like that just drives me NUTS Anyway, any help would be appreciated. Barry
  19. A man sold a Mexican restaurant and in the contract to the buyer he said he would not open another Mexican restaurant in the area. When his plans to leave the area fell through he decided he would like to open a Cuban restaurant. Will this be a violation of his contract? What is the difference between Cuban and Mexican food?
  20. Today was food shopping day for Vicky and I, so while she's at work I headed down to Shoprite. Cruising through there I came across a huge stand of dried chiles, being a chile head I grabbed a pack of anchos and a pack of pasillas. Hey at a $1.99 who wouldn't, ANYWAY....... while I'm not that fond of chicken, I was thinking pork in a mole sauce (never made it before) and now I need help with a great recipe. HELP!!!!! Cheers Tom
  21. Hey all: Wandering about in South Philly recently I stumbled across La Jaroncita (I think that's right) at Wolf & Swanson streets, down by the Forman Mills, etc. Great little store that has all manner of inexpensive Mexican groceries and packaged goods. A boatload of hot sauces, canned chiles en adobo sauce in about six or eight types, fresh chiles of several varieties, plantains, fresh avocados, fresh nopales, tomatillos, several fresh Mexican cheeses and small packaged drinkable yogurts in tropical flavors. Full line of Mexican juices and sodas. Great household goods too, including at least six varieties of Fabuloso cleanser (the lavender smells heavenly) and a few others to boot. All is inexplicably inexpensive. And the first time I was there, the guy behind the counter gave me one of his tamales for lunch! They were awesome but I couldn't get him to tell me where they came from. Definitely a find.
  22. I have been wanting to make tamales, but I'm a virgin in this territory. What's your fav recipe? Pork? Xmas tamales? Beef? I'm craving them all! edited to add: Chicken? I wasn't excluding the birds!
  23. On Monday 4th October in the National Museum of Anthropology in Mexico City there will be a function to move ahead the recognition of Mexico's food as an oral and non material patrimony of humanity (forgive the unintentional puns in translation) of UNESCO. The title is ¨People of Maize: Mexican Ancestral Cuisine. Rites, Ceremonies and Practices of Mexican Cuisine." The current president of Conaculta (the Advisory Board on Culture) will start the proceedings, long-term commentator Cristina Barros and Gloria López Morales will present the case, and various others unknown to me will comment. I think all the food establishment of Mexico will be there, Best, Rachel
  24. Since we have some brave souls passionately cooking Mexican dishes, sometimes without having ever seen a particular dish, and I keep running across interesting stuff that might be valuable... I thought why not put links to Cooking & Travelogue videos for the comrades? First up Yessica Perez aka La Receta de la Abuelita (Grandmother's Recipe)... she is a prolific contributor on You Tube. (How Make Stuffed Calabacitas aka Mexican Zucchini aka Courgettes):
  25. As this is my first post on eG, which inspired me to tackle mole....I'd like to thank every one of you whose posts I've been reading for the past couple of months. I've viewed so many of them and on so many subjects, I've thoroughly enjoyed all the insights on cooking, dinners and lunches; and general topics. I decided to tackle a homemade mole. I was raised on Dona Maria and it's OK...having grown up on it. I took the Fonda San Miguel recipe which is based on D. Kennedy. There were 2 things I did change: -- added twice as much of the mexican chocolate, and -- added 2 tablespoons of sugar. Even though I like my mole a little sweet, these amounts were perfect and it came out nowhere as sweet as others which was fine with me. Here are some pics, the final dish will be prepared tomorrow and I'll post a final served dish picture at that time. Thanks again. A working kitchen! The blended roasted spices, seeds and fried tortilla/bread. The Mole.
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