Mexican Food Lovers

Discussions of Mexican dishes, ingredients and recipes.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Fish Tacos with Creamy Chipotle Sauce

My significant other and I were recently traveling through Maine and found a Mexican restaurant for lunch. The special of the day was fish tacos and they were GREAT!

While relishing these amazingly good tacos, realized that I have never published my recipe for fish tacos so here it is.

For the fish, I use cod or haddock since I live on the east coast of Canada and it's what is most available for me. Talapia or any other white fish would do just as well.

Fish Tacos with Creamy Chipotle Sauce

4 Small Flour Tortillas
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
1 pound fresh or thawed fish fillets
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
Juice of 1/2 a lime
2 cups chopped lettuce (any variety)

For the Creamy Chipotle Sauce:
2 canned chipotle chiles in adobo (seeded)
1 cup sour cream

Place the chipotle chiles and sour cream in a blender or use a hand blender and process until sauce is somewhat smooth. Mix in more or less of the adobo depending on how spicy you want the sauce. Set sauce aside.

In a skillet set at medium heat, add the vegetable oil, cumin, cinnamon, garlic and cilantro. Saute those ingredients for 2-3 minutes being careful not to burn the garlic (if it turns dark brown, discard and start again).

Scoop the spices, to the side of the pan and add the fish fillets to the pan. Spread the spices over the fillets. Cover and cook for 3 minutes or until fish is mostly cooked. Then add in lime juice and let cook for 1 more minute or until the fish flakes easily.

Heat the tortillas (either in foil in the oven or in damp paper towel in the microwave for 30 seconds). Lay each of the warmed tortillas on a cutting board and place one-quarter of both the field greens and fish on the center of each tortilla. Then top each the Creamy Chipotle Sauce.

Fold the tortillas over to form tacos and serve immediately.

These go great with 5 Minute Mexican Rice or our Refried Black Beans.

Visit Cook Mexican for more great Mexican recipes.

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Sunday, November 23, 2008

Christmas - Mexican Style

The Christmas season in Mexico is a time of religious holidays, celebrated in a blend of native and Catholic traditions, particularly in traditional homes and rural areas of Mexico.

The Christmas celebrations begin with Pasadas which are enactments of Mary and Joseph, looking for shelter on their way to Bethlehem. Starting on December 16th and ending December 24th, each family in a neighborhood will schedule a Posada (party) to be held in their home. Each home has a nativity scene and the hosts of the party will play the part of "innkeepers" with party guests playing the part of the pilgrims Mary and Joseph.

The pilgrims (party guests) will all carry small lit candles and carry small statues of Mary and Joesph. The head of the procession of pilgrims will have a lit candle inside a paper shade which is called "Farloito" or little lantern.

The pilgrims will go to three houses requesting lodging. The third house will be the house holding the party and only at this house will they gain entrance. When the guests enter the house, they will kneel and pray the Catholic Rosary and sing traditional songs.

After the prayer is done, there is then a piñata filled with goodies like peanuts, oranges, sugar cane and sometimes wrapped hard candy, that the children will take turns trying to break. The children will be blindfolded and each will take three swings with a stick at the piñata while they recite a chant.

For the adults, there is a hot beverage called "Ponche con Piquette" made of seasonal fruits and cinnamon sticks with a shot of alcoholic spirits.

On Noche Buena, December 24th everyone goes to midnight mass. After mass, families go home and place the baby Jesus in the nativity scene and then they sit down for a meal together.

Traditionally, presents are not exchanged on Christmas Day but in more recent times, and due to influences from outside Mexico, this is changing and gifts are exchanged on this day of the evening before.

Rooster's Mass (Misa de Gallo) is held at midnight on New Years Eve. This is a time for giving thanks for all your blessings.

On January 6th, the Day of the Three Kings, the children receive presents - as it was that the three kings came, bearing gifts, to the baby Jesus. The children place their shoes by a window and they will receive a present in (or next to) their shoes.

In the early evening, a light meal is held consisting of hot chocolate and the Rosca de Reyes (Ring of Kings). Baked into the Rosca de Reyes is a small doll representing the baby Jesus. The person who is served the doll in their rosca will be the Godparent of the baby Jesus and will host the Candelaria party on February 2nd.

On February 2, the Día de la Candelaria, the person who was served the baby Jesus in the Rosca de Reyes will host a party on this day, serving atole and tamales.

Sadly, the holidays are changing in Mexico. The traditional ways of celebrating the Christmas season is disappearing and becoming more and more like the celebrations held in the United States with Santa Claus and presents.

No matter where you live, there's no reason that you can't enjoy a little bit of Mexican old world tradition this Holiday Season. These recipes should help you get into the spirit of a good old fashioned Mexican Christmas.

Ponch con Piquette (Sting Punch)

12 quarts water
10 tejocotes (substitute dried apricots or plums)
6 oz walnuts
5 oranges cut in half and juiced (put both juice and oranges in the punch)
8 guavas
4 sugar canes
10 oz prunes
3 sticks cinnamon
2 lb. sugar
1 quart brandy (optional)

Wash fruit. Cut the sugar cane into strips. Cut guava. Boil everything together, except the sugar.
When cooked add the sugar and the brandy.

Atole (hot drink thickened with corn meal)

1/2 cup Masa Harina
5 cups milk
4 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon or 1 stick cinnamon, finely slivered
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Put the Masa Harina in a bowl and whisk in the milk, little by little. Pour the milk mixture into a pot and add the brown sugar and cinnamon. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring constantly, to keep it from becoming lumpy. Stir in the vanilla extract.

Rosca de Reyes (Ring of Kings)

1 packet dry yeast
1/4 cup lukewarm milk
3-1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cups granulated sugar
7 eggs
1/3 cup melted butter
1/4 teaspoon of salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon aniseed
1/2 cup raisins
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup mixed candied fruit (oranges, figs, cherries)
1 egg, beaten
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 small baby figurine

Dissolve yeast in the lukewarm milk and let sit five minutes. Add the flour, sugar, eggs, melted butter, salt, cinnamon, aniseed, raisins and vanilla. Combine and knead into a ball.

Grease dough with some butter and set aside to rise in a warm place until the dough doubles in
size, about 2-1/2 hours. Grease a baking sheet.

Punch down the dough and knead until soft and pliable. Now form dough into a ring or "rosca". Insert the baby figurine. Place the dough ring on the baking sheet.

Decorate the top with the candied fruit. Let the dough rise again until doubled.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Brush with the beaten egg and sprinkle with granulated sugar.
Bake 45 minutes or until done.

Enjoy! Don't forget to visit us at for more traditional Mexican Recipes.

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Friday, July 04, 2008

Fourth of July Feast - Mexican Style

Well here it is. The Fourth of July - a time for fun, games, celebrations and FOOD!

What would a really great holiday be with great food? Well...not much of a holiday if you ask me. I've searched through my recipes and brought out a few that make great picnic food for the 4th of July or any sunny summer day.

Mexican Restaurant Style Queso

1 lb white American cheese (from the deli is best), shredded
1 cup milk
Pickled jalapeños, to taste, chopped
2 tbsp liquid from the jalapeños jar

In a double boiler heat milk. Add shredded cheese to the milk a
little a time, stirring constantly.

When milk and cheese are mixed well add the jalapeños along with the liquid from the jalapeños jar.

Stir to mix well. Serve with tortilla chips (or veggies for less calories and more nutrition).

Fresh Fruit Sangria

2 fresh peaches, peeled and sliced, or 2 cups frozen unsweetened peach slices, thawed
1 cup sliced strawberries or frozen unsweetened whole strawberries, thawed
1 orange, halved and thinly sliced
1 lime, sliced
4 cups bottle carbonated water (club soda), chilled
2 cups dry white wine, chilled
1/2 cup orange juice, chilled
1/2 cup cranberry juice, chilled


Place peach slices, strawberries, orange slices, and lemon or lime slices in a 3-quart pitcher.

Pour carbonated water over fruit; add wine, orange juice, and cranberry juice. Stir gently to combine.

To serve, ladle some of the fruit into glasses; ladle wine mixture over fruit.

Makes 14 (6-ounce) servings.

Caliente Fiesta Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves
salt to taste
4 (7-8 inch) flour tortillas
1 1/3 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1 can (4 oz.) diced green chilies, drained
1 tbsp minced green onion
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 cup roasted sweet red peppers (from a jar is fine)
2 tbsp taco sauce (also from a jar)
1 fresh avocado, cubed
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
4 lemon wedges (optional)

Place chicken between two pieces of plastic wrap and gently pound to 1/4-inch thickness.

Arrange tortillas on large baking sheet. In medium bowl, mix together cheese, chilies and onion.

Divide mixture and spread on tortillas. Bake in 350° F. oven about 10 minutes or until bubbly and light brown around edges.

In a large non-stick skillet, place oil and heat to medium high temperature. Add chicken; season with salt and cook about 3 minutes per side until cooked through.

In the meantime, puree bottled red peppers with taco sauce in a blender to make Caliente Fiesta sauce. Heat in a skillet or sauce pan until hot.

To assemble, place 1 piece of chicken on each tortilla. Spoon 1/4 of sauce over center of each chicken breast and sprinkle with fresh cilantro. Place cubed avocado in center of tortilla over the sauce.

Serve with lemon wedges (optional).

Serves 4

Enjoy! More authentic mexican recipes.

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Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Hot weather and cool Mexican drinks!

Wow! The weather is really heating up and I just finished mowing my lawn. I need something cold and refreshing! So, I'm sitting here with a glass of tap water trying to decide which drink I want to make to quench my thirst.

I could whip up a pitcher of sangria. But I'm home alone right now and the odds are good that I'd drink most of it myself and be too inebriated to make dinner later.

Or, I could make a Cranberry Margarita. That would be nice and refreshing and if I make just one I'll still get some more work done before the day is gone. Yep - I think that's what I'll do.

Gotta go - there's a cranberry margarita calling my name. are the recipes:


8 oz apple juice
8 oz orange nectar
2 oz Triple Sec or other orange liqueur
24 oz red wine
Fruit (lemon, orange, strawberries, cherries – as desired)
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of 1 orange

Mix all ingredients together in a large pitcher and serve over ice in a tall glass.

Cranberry Margarita

2 lemon slices
granulated sugar
1 1/2 oz tequila
1 oz orange liqueur
1/2 oz fresh lemon juice
2 oz cranberry juice

Lay the sugar out on flat saucer or plate.

Rub the outside rim of a margarita glass with 1 lemon slice and roll the outside of the glass rim in the sugar.

Combine the tequila, orange liqueur, lemon and cranberry juice with ice and shake in a cocktail shaker. Strain drink into margarita glass.

Garnish with lemon slice.

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Thursday, June 21, 2007

Chocolate, Glorious Chocolate!

I'm having an attack of "chocolate lust" lately. I have been thinking of chocolate for the last few days and I can't seem to get it off my mind so I'm just going to give in and make something chocolately and decadent to get this chocolate craving out of my system!

When I make these Mexican Chocolate Chip Cookies, I usually like to melt some extra chocolate and dip the finished (cooked) cookies in the melted chocolate to cover about 1/3 of the cookie in more chocolate. Let them cool on waxed paper or plastic wrap until chocolate sets.

Mexican Chocolate Chip Cookies

2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup soft butter
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup lightly packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 egg
2 cups finely chopped Mexican chocolate, such as Ibarra

In a mixing bowl, sift or together the dry ingredients (except chocolate) and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, with an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugars together on medium-high speed until color lightens and mixture is fluffy (about 2 minutes).

On low mixer speed, add the milk and vanilla until combined. Add the egg and mix well.
With a mixing spoon, mix in the flour mixture until just dough comes together then fold in the chopped chocolate.

Shape it into a log (approximately 12 inches long and 1 1/2 inches in diameter) and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerator at least 1 hour or until firm.

When dough has become firm, removed from plastic wrap and slice into 1/4 inch slices. Bake at 350 degrees on a nonstick or lightly greased baking sheet until lightly browned - about 10 minutes.

MMMMMM....can't wait to get started on these!

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Monday, June 18, 2007

Mexican Fried Banana Dessert

A few days ago I was looking threw some of my Mexican dessert recipes and was reminded of Mexican fried bananas. These are so sweet and delicious!

If you've never tried them, you are in for a real treat when you give them a go.

Here's my Mexican Fried Bananas recipe:

4 ripe bananas (with brown spots just starting to appear), sliced
4 tbsp butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup orange juice
1 tsp ground cinnamon (or very finely grated cinnamon stick is even better)

Melt butter in a large skillet and add brown sugar, lemon and orange juice and cinnamon. Stir and cook until sugar is completely dissolved.

Add sliced bananas to the skillet and cook about 4 or 5 minutes, stirring often, until bananas are soft and sugar mixture has caramelized. Serve hot (over vanilla or chocolate ice cream is awesome!)


Cook Mexican Food

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Recipe Exchange Chain with Sugar Blog

In response to an idea posted on the blog Sugar to begin a recipe exchange, here are a few of my favorite Mexican recipes.

If you have a blog and want to participate in this recipe chain, post a comment telling us where you've posted the recipes so we can keep this chain moving!

Creamy Seafood Enchiladas

1 pound imitation or real crab meat, chopped or shredded
1 pound cooked shrimp, coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups shredded Monterey Jack cheese
8 10" soft flour tortillas (soften wrapped in foil in the oven if necessary)
1 small onion, thinly sliced or diced
2 tbsp butter or margarine
2 cans (10-3/4 ounces each) cream of chicken soup
1/2 cup light cream or milk
4 ounces cream cheese, cut up
8 flour tortillas

Combine crab, chopped shrimp and 1 cup of the cheese in large bowl. In a saucepan, melt butter and add onion. Cook onion until softened but not browned. Stir in 1 can of the undiluted soup.

Add some of the light cream (about half of it, maybe a bit more). Stir to mix well. Add cream cheese. Simmer on very low heat, stirring to melt cheese. Stir cream cheese sauce into the bowl of seafood. Divide seafood mixture equally among the tortillas.

Roll the tortillas and place, seam-side down, large, deep skillet. Stir together the remaining can of soup and the rest of the cream; heat in a saucepan, stirring to break up soup and blend in cream.

When mixture is hot, cover enchiladas with the sauce. Top with remaining cheese; cover pan and simmer on very low for 10 to 15 minutes until cheese starts to melt and sauce is bubbly.

Remove lid and cook an additional 5 to 10 minutes or until sauce thickens slightly. Makes 8 Enchiladas

Easy Chicken Mole

Makes 4 to 6 servings

4 cups water
2 pounds bone-in chicken pieces
1 small white onion, chopped
4 ribs celery, chopped
1/2 a green bell pepper, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons chilli powder
2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt

In a large saucepan, place the water, chicken, onion,celery, bell pepper and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to aboil, then reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 20to 25 minutes or until the chicken is tender. Remove chicken from the broth and let it cool. Reserve the broth and vegetables. Skin, bone and shred the chicken. Set chicken aside.

In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Mix the flour into the oil to form a paste. Stir constantly until it turns a light brown color. Add the chilli powder, peanut butter, garlic, cumin and salt.

Mix in the reserved broth and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the cooked chicken and simmer for 5 more minutes. Serve in a large bowls.


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Cornbread - The Perfect Side Dish for a BBQ Meal

Cornbread is one of my absolute favorite dishes to serve with a big rack of bbq ribs or juicy grilled chicken.

I used to buy those packages of cornbread mix and I thought they were good. But, then when I was looking for really "great" Mexican recipes for the Cook Mexican video, I came across a cornbread recipe so good that it makes every other cornbread I've ever tried seem tasteless by comparison.

Since the long weekend in May is a time when bbq's come out in earnest and the summer season begins (at least here in Canada) I wanted to share this cornbread recipe with you. It makes a lot so be sure to invite friends over to share or be prepared to freeze some - it freezes great.

I know you're going to love it as much as we do!

Long Weekend Cornbread

1 cup butter or margarine melted (you can reduce this to 1/2 cup if you wish)
1 cup white sugar
4 eggs
1 15 ounce can cream style corn
4 oz. can of chopped green chili peppers
½ cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup yellow corn meal
4 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt

Preheat oven to 300 degrees and grease a 9 x 13 baking pan.

In a large bowl beat together butter and sugar. Beat in eggs. Blend in cream style corn, chilies, and both cheeses.

In separate bowl mix together flour, corn meal, baking powder and salt. Add flour mixture to corn mixture and stir until mixed. Pour into prepared pan and bake 1 hour.

Serving this corn bread warm is heavenly. Allow it to cool at least 15 to 20 minutes before cutting into squares and removing from the pan.

Have a great weekend!

More Mexican Cooking Recipes at Cook Mexican Food

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Friday, May 11, 2007

Take Along Chicken Empanadas

Since I've just agreed to take on a short term special project from my old employer, the next few weeks are going to be pretty busy. I'll start working on that project next week, so I still have this weekend free. I'm going to make up a batch of Chicken Empanadas for quick snacks and lunches.

These tasty pies are delicious little pastries of pure pleasure. They are amazing when you serve them hot from the oven with a little sour cream for dipping. Save any leftover empanadas (or make extra) for tasty bagged lunches. Kids love them and adults too!

Chicken Empanadas

1 1/2 pounds boneless chicken thighs*, cut into small bitesize pieces
2 1/2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
2/3 cup chopped green onion, tops included
2 teaspoons chopped cilantro
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 tomatoes, peeled, chopped
1/2 cup chopped black olives
1/2 cup seedless raisins
1 potato, cooked, peeled, chopped
Prepared pie crust dough (enough for about 4 pie crusts)
1 egg, beaten

Roll pie crust dough and make into 4" round shapes. You will need about 15 of these. Set them aside and cover with a very slightly damp cloth or plastic wrap to keep them from drying out.
Rub the chicken with ginger and garlic. In large nonstick frypan, place oil and heat to medium temperature.

Add chicken, onion and cilantro. Cook until chicken starts to brown then stir and allow to brown the other side of the chicken.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add tomatoes and olives. Simmer, uncovered, until the liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes.

Stir in the potato and raisins. Remove from heat and set aside for a few minutes to cool slightly.
Working with one pie crust round at a time, brush a tiny bit of water around the edge of the pastry with a pastry brush - just enough to moisten the edges (this will help them to stay sealed).

Place 1/4 cup of the chicken mixture onto one half of a pie crust round and turn over to make a half moon shape. Seal the edge by crimping with fork.

Brush tops with beaten egg and place on ungreased baking sheet.

Bake in 375 degree oven about 20 minutes until brown.

Makes 15 small empanades.

*Note: You can use chicken breasts for this recipe but the white meat just does not have the full flavor or texture of thighs)

Visit Cook Mexican Food Recipes Website for tons more Mexican recipes.



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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

Substitute for Bitter Oranges and Seville Oranges in Mexican Cooking

What to do when you find a recipe that you want to try but you can't find the ingredients? Like the Seville Oranges called for in this recipe. They are often difficult to find outside Mexico.

Seville Oranges, also called Bitter Oranges, add a tangy citrus flavour that a regular orange just won't duplicate. By combining various citrus fruits, in the right proportions, you can come pretty close to the flavour of a tart Seville Orange.

This combination makes an excellent substitute for Seville Orange Juice. You get a little sweetness from the orange, a bit of tartness from the lemon and lime, and a little bitterness from the grapefruit.

Juice of 1 Orange
Juice of 1 Grapefruit
Juice of 1 Lemon
Juice of 1 Lime

Seville Pork Chops

6 thin lean pork chops
1/2 cup onion chopped
1/2 cup Seville orange juice
1 envelope or tsp. instant chicken broth
1 tsp. leaf marjoram, crumbled
1/4 tsp. lemon pepper
Salt to taste

Trim fat from chops. Heat a heavy skillet over medium-high heat and brown chops on each side.

Remove chops from skillet and set aside. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon pan drippings.

Saute onion until soft in same skillet; add Seville orange juice, instant chicken broth, marjoram, lemon pepper and salt to taste. Stir the sauce until smooth. Return chops to skillet and cover with a lid or aluminum foil.

Simmer for 30 minutes or until chops are tender.


More Mexican Recipes at Cook Mexican Food Website

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Thursday, May 03, 2007

Mexican Cinnamon Crunch Desserts

One of the things I love about Mexican food is the crispy textures. I love tortilla chips; fried tortillas on top of tortilla soup; crispy tacos and the crunchy edges of a quesadilla.

I also love fresh fruit and whipped cream. So what could be better than a dessert recipe that combines that great crunch with fresh sweet fruit and cream? I'm thinking - not much!

I recently came across this recipe that combines crunch with sweet fruit - and here it is:

Mexican Cinnamon Crunch Desserts

2 Large Flour Tortillas
1 Tablespoon Water
1/2 tsp. Vanilla Extract
1/4 cup Sugar1 tsp. Cinnamon ground
2 cups Whipped Cream
1 cup fresh strawberries
3 fresh or canned Apricots sliced
1 Kiwi peeled, quartered and sliced

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Combine water and vanilla. Combine sugar and cinnamon.

Cut each tortilla into 8 triangles. Lightly coat both sides of tortilla with cooking spray. Lightly brush each side with water mixture and sprinkle each side with the cinnamon-sugar mixture.

Place on a wire rack and set rack onto a sheet pan. Bake at 400 degrees F for 8-10 minutes or until lightly browned. Just before serving, top each with a dollop of whipped cream and arrange the strawberries, apricots and kiwi.


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Friday, April 27, 2007

Coconut - Glorious Coconut

I love coconut. I love it fresh, dried in trail mix, drenched in chocolate, and in chewy macaroons. I just made this custard again a few days ago and I wanted to share it and a few other Mexican coconut recipes.

Before we get to the recipes here's a tip for removing coconut from the shell if you want to use your own shredded coconut in any recipes.

Bake the coconut in a 400 degree oven for ten to fifteen minutes. Wrap the baked coconut in a towel, and tap it with a hammer all over. This loosens the meat from the shell. Use a vegetable peeler to scrape off the brown skin before grating the meat.

Cocada (Coconut Custard)

2 cup sugar
2 cup water
3 inches stick cinnamon, broken up
1/2 cup flaked coconut
3 cups milk
4 eggs
1/4 tsp vanilla
2 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp toasted sliced almonds

In uncovered 2-quart saucepan simmer sugar, water, and cinnamon for 10 minutes. Remove and discard cinnamon pieces.

Add coconut and cook, uncovered, about 5 minutes or till syrup is nearly absorbed, stirring frequently.

Stir in 2 1/2 cups of the milk; cook till mixture is hot.

In bowl beat eggs with remaining 1/2 cup milk. Slowly stir about 1 cup of the hot mixture into egg mixture and stir together quickly. Stir egg mixture into coconut mixture in saucepan.

Cook and stir till mixture thickens slightly but does not boil. Stir in vanilla. Pour into a 1 1/2 quart bowl or individual serving dishes; chill.

Before serving, whip cream and add a dollop to each serving of pudding. Garnish with almonds, if desired.

Serves 8 - 10

Limes filled with Cocada

This one is a bit more complicated but worth the effort!
It's a unique way to serve cocada and will impress even the most accomplished chef.

16 Mexican limes (limónes) or Key Limes
1 tbsp baking soda
3 cups granulated sugar
3 cups water
Coconut Filling (Cocada) (see above recipe)

In a medium saucepan, cover limes with water and simmer, covered, until slightly softened—about 20 minutes.

Pour the contents of the saucepan into a clay pot. Sprinkle with the baking soda, cover, and let stand overnight at room temperature.

The next day, drain the limes. Cut a small slice from the top of each and carefully hollow them out. Discard the pulp and return the limes to the clay pot with enough hot water to cover. Cover with a dishtowel and a tight-fitting lid. Let stand overnight again.

The next day, drain the water and replace it with fresh hot water. Let stand, covered, as above.

Repeat this process for 3 or 4 days, until the limes are no longer bitter.

Combine the sugar and water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil and add the limes, simmering until the syrup is quite thick. This takes about 45 minutes to an hour.

Let cool overnight. To serve, remove the limes from the syrup and fill with Cocada.



You can find all of these recipes and tons more Mexican Food Recipes at my Cook Mexican Food Website.

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Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Make Mexican Rice in 5 Minutes

Mexican rice can be a quick and easy side dish that can go on the table in just a few minutes when you use 5 minute rice instead of rice that takes for ever to cook.

This is how I make it at home when time is short and I need a tasty side dish.

5 Minute Mexican Rice

1 16 oz can of crushed tomatoes
2 cups chicken stock
2 tsp ground cumin
1 chipotle pepper from a can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1 tbsp adobo sauce
2 cups 5 minute rice (like Minute Rice)

Place chipotle pepper, adobo sauce and 1/4 cup of chicken stock in a blender and puree until thoroughly blended.

In a medium size pot, heat crushed tomatoes, remaining chicken stock, chipotle pepper mixture and cumin to boiling.

Stir in 2 cups of 5 minute rice. Remove from heat and let rice sit for 5 minutes.
Fluff rice and serve.

Adjust heat of the rice by adjusting the quantity of chipotle and adobo sauce used.


Get more free Mexican Recipes at our Cook Mexican Food Website.

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Sunday, April 22, 2007

Choose Jicama for Low Calorie Snacks and Salads

Jicama (pronounced HEE-ca-ma) and also known as Mexican Potato or Mexican Turnip is a delicious white fleshed vegetable used in many mexican salads.

Jicama is a crispy, sweet turnip-shaped root vegetable with a light brown skin and is dieter's delight. Two cups of jicama has only 45 calories, no fat and tons of vitamin C.

When shopping for jicama look for smaller specimens. As a jicama grows, the natural sugars turn to starch which can make the vegetable taste more like a potato and less like a sweet, crispy fruit.

Larger jicama are great to use in stews and soups but the smaller ones are wonderful in salads and eaten raw as a snack.

I love the white jicama flesh against the backdrop of bright red beets and orange carrots in this salad:

Jicama Salad

1 lb (2 small) jicama, peeled
2 large beets, trimmed and peeled
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into 3-inch lengths
1 can mandarin orange segments
zest from 1 lime
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice (about 2 limes)
2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup unsalted peanuts, coarsely chopped

Using a mandolin or very sharp knife, julienne the jicama, beets, and carrots and combine in a large bowl.

Drain the mandarin oranges, reserving liquid, and add orange segments to bowl with jicama.
Whisk the lime zest and juice into 1/4 cup of the mandarin orange liquid. While whisking, drizzle in the oil to make smooth vinaigrette.

Pour the vinaigrette over jicama mixture, toss to coat, and season with salt and pepper.
Transfer the jicama salad to a platter and sprinkle with the peanuts.

If you find the vinaigrette a bit tart for your tast, add a drop or two of honey to make it sweeter to your taste.


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Friday, April 20, 2007

Mexican Corn Lasagne Makes a Great Weekend Meal

If you love lasagne like I do, you'll love this Mexican corn lasagne recipe.

It is quicker to make than an Italian lasagne because there are no noodles to pre-cook. You use tortillas direct from the package and which saves lots of time.

Make this Mexican meal ahead to serve on a busy weeknight or serve it as a great weekend meal.

Mexican Corn Lasagne

1 lb ground beef
1 small onion, chopped
1 18 oz can whole kernel corn
1 15 oz can tomato sauce
1 cup piquant sauce
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon cumin
16 oz cottage cheese (low fat or regular)
2 slightly beaten eggs
1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
12 corn tortillas
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese
1 tsp saltpepper to taste

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Brown meat with the onion, salt and pepper. Drain the meat and then add corn, tomato sauce, piquant sauce, chili powder and cumin. Simmer, stirring frequently until everything is heated through. Set aside.

Combine cottage cheese, eggs, parmesan cheese, oregano and garlic powder. Mix well.
Arrange 6 tortillas on bottom and up the sides of lightly greased 13x9 inch baking dish, overlapping as necessary.

Top with half the meat mixture. Spoon all of the cheese mixture over meat. Arrange remaining tortillas over cheese, overlapping as necessary. Top with remaining meat mixture and then cover entire dish with shredded Monterey Jack or mozzarella cheese.

Bake in preheated oven at 375 degrees about 30 minutes or until hot and bubbly. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.


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Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Mexican Cooking Recipes Delivered to Your In-Box

Hey! We forgot to mention in our last post that we've changed the Cook Mexican Newsletter too. Twice a week, we're sending amazing and delicious Mexican recipes directly to our subscribers email inbox.

Every weekend, just before the start of another busy week, subscribers to the Cook Mexican newsletter receive a quick and easy Mexican recipe that will get great tasting and nutritious food on the table FAST!

Then, later in the week, our newsletter goes out again - this time the recipe(s) will be perfect for weekend fiestas and parties and Mexican recipes for when there is a little more time for more complex Mexican meals (complete with leftovers for the week ahead).

Of course, we also post all of the Mexican recipes that we send out in our newsletters to our website for everyone to enjoy!

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Cook Mexican Now Dedicated Solely to Mexican Recipes

We've just finished our website redesign! We've changed the focus of Cook Mexican so that it is now dedicated to serving up the finest Mexican food recipes on the internet.

We're still in the process of adding hundreds of Mexican recipes but we'd like to invite you to pay us a visit and tell us what you think.

Here's a small sample of the recipes you'll find already on the site:

Homemade Baked Tortilla Chips
Canned Tomato Salsa
Mexican Hot Chocolate
Classic Margarita
Frozen Strawberry Margaritas
Chicken Tamales
Ice Cream and Bananas
More Mexican Recipes

Want to see your own favorite Mexican recipes added to our collection? Use our contact form to submit your recipe and we'll be glad to share it with the world.

Don't forget to check out the NEW Cook Mexican store too! We've got all the staples for great Mexican cooking plus lots of fun items.

Cook Mexican Food

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Sunday, December 31, 2006

Try This Special Mexican Dessert

Capriotada makes a wonderful sweet and delicious dessert. It's well worth the effort!


1/2 cup dark brown sugar (packed)
1 1/2 cups water
2 cinnamon sticks
6 whole cloves
8 x 1/2" thick slices of bolillos (or slices of French bread, toasted
2 egg whites
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten

Oil for frying

1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese
1/2 cup slivered almonds

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Place sugar, cinnamon sticks, cloves and water in a saucepan and bring the water to boil. Reduce the heat to simmer and stir constantly until the sugar melts and thickens to a syrup consistency. Remove the cinnamon sticks and cloves and keep the syrup warm.

Beat the egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold in the lightly beaten egg yolks.

Heat enough oil for frying. Dip each piece of bread lightly in the egg batter and fry, turning until golden on all sides. Drain on paper towels.

Butter an 8X8 inch glass baking dish.

Put four bread slices in a single layer in the dish and evenly pour half of the warm sugar syrup over the bread.

Sprinkle with half the raisins and half the cheese. Place the remaining four bread slices on top and pour the rest of the syrup over this. Top with the rest of the raisins and cheese then the almonds.

Cover the dish with foil and bake until the syrup is bubbling, about 25 minutes. Cool slightly then spoon onto plates and serve.

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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Will that be a burrito, a chimichanga or a quesadilla?

Take a tortilla, fill it with some delicious fillings and what do you have?

Is it a burrito? Or a chimichanga? Or maybe it's a Quesadilla? But what if it's a Sincronizada?

It could be any one of them or none of them. So let's take a look at what each one really is.

A burrito is a single tortilla with a filling, rolled into a tube shape. They can be stuffed with eggs, for a breakfast burrito or meat, beans or cheese for a lunch burrito. The burrito can be picked up and eaten like a sandwich and is a very popular lunch food for workers in Mexico.

Chimichangas are made by taking a tortilla and putting a filling in the center of it. Instead of rolling the tortilla, fold it like you would wrap a sandwich with plastic wrap. Fold in the top, then the bottom and then the sides. Fry the chimichanga in oil, folded side down until it's golden brown, then fry the top and there you have it. Fill it with cheese, green chilies and sour cream for a quick, easy and tasty lunch! The chimichanga, or chivichanga, as it's sometimes called, originated in Northern Mexico as a deep fried tortilla with filling and quickly made it's way across the American border into Tex-Mex restaurants everywhere.

So what's a quesadilla then? Take that same tortilla, put filling on 1/2 of it and flip the rest of the tortilla over the filling and fry it on each side. So that's kind of like a soft taco except that it's fried. Fill it with cheese, chicken, onions and tomatoes.

Now we get to the Sincronizada. Put a tortilla on a grill, put some topping on it and cover it with a second tortilla. Fry it on each side and cut it into wedges. You'll find that sincronizadas are often called guesadillas in many restaurants - just to make life even more confusing.

So what's the moral of the story? A tortilla, stuffed with something yummy, is delicious any way you slice it; or fold it; or cover it!

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Monday, November 06, 2006

Mexican White Rice and Vegetables

I love simple and healthy food. Here's a typical recipe that would be served in Mexico for the mid-day meal, called Comida. It would traditionally be a part of a five course meal, this being one of the courses. It's also great as a side dish for a typical American style meal.

Arroz Blanco con Verduras (White Rice and Vegetables)

1 1/2 cups milk, divided
2 ounces cream cheese
1 cup rice, soaked in warm water, rinsed thoroughly and allowed to dry in a sieve
2 tablespoons vegetable oil, preferably corn oil
2 cloves garlic, peeled and finely chopped
4 green onions or scallions, including green part, chopped
1 cup chopped fresh mushrooms
1-2 serrano chiles
1 cup chicken broth or stock
1 cup cooked or thawed frozen vegetables (corn, peas or mixed vegetables)
salt to taste

In a blender, puree 1/2 cup milk with the cream cheese and set aside. In a medium-size heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the oil and saute the rice, stirring, until it forms clumps. Add the garlic, onion, mushrooms and chile and continue to saute, stirring, until the rice separates into individual grains.

Add the broth or stock, with salt to taste, and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat and simmer until the water has just been absorbed. Add the cup of milk that was not blended with the cheese, cover again, and continue to cook over low heat until the milk has been absorbed.

Remove from heat, stir in vegetables, pour the cheese mixture over all, cover and let stand for 15 minutes before serving.

Stir and serve.

Serves 6.

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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

What is Authentic Mexican Food

I have recently been involved in a discussion about authentic Mexican food. The problem is how do you define "authentic".

If two people have two different recipes for the same Mexican food, both having been handed down through generations, which one is the "authentic" one? Are they both authentic even though they are different recipes for the same dish.

For the sake of argument, lets assume that they are both authentic. Now let's take one and adapt it for more modern times by using a canned or prepared ingredient, such as a jar of salsa verde. Is it still authentic or did it lose it's authenticity when you add a "prepared" ingredient.

There's some discord over the issue of authenticity out there in the Mexican cooking world and some passionate debate.

If you want to know what I think, here it is. I don't think there is any such thing as a purely authentic recipe in the sense that an antique could be authentic. A recipe is not a thing in itself, it is only a guideline for preparing food. I think any food that has a history of being prepared for more than one generation can be called "authentic" and that it will have many recipe variations because every cook has to make adaptations based on the ingredients available, cost, personal tastes and time constraints to name just a few things.

If you get your hands on a recipe that claims to be "authentic" but it calls for a can of this or a bottle of that and you're more of a purist, then by all means, make your own adjustment to add homemade this or that and then you have created your own authentic recipe version. A version that is no better and no worse than any other recipe for that particular dish in any way except that it suits your personal requirements.

So if you are lucky enough to get your hands on a recipe that makes a food you abolutely love, instead of examining the historical significance of the recipe, perhaps it's better just to share the food with family and friends and give thanks for the abundance and variety that our world has to offer.

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Sunday, October 29, 2006

Mexican Coffee is Good for the Soul

It's a rainy, windy Sunday afternoon here in the north and I was just thinking what a perfect day to curl up with a good book and a cup of Mexican coffee.

Many Mexican coffee recipes I've seen make about 3 quarts of coffee. Unless you have a large family, lots of guest dropping by or a pretty serious coffee habit, that's just too much coffee.

I've pared down my favorite Mexican coffee recipe to make just two mugs full. Two mugs are just enough for me but you could share one if you wanted to or double (or even triple) the recipe.

Oh - and feel free to spike it with a little Kahlua or Irish Cream (which is my favorite).

Here's the recipe and then I'll tell you a few of my tricks.

Mexican Coffee for One (or Two)

1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups water
1 heaping tablespoon instant coffee granules
1 heaping tablespoon cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
pinch of salt

Makes 2 cups

Put everything in a sauce pan and heat over medium-low heat until there's lots of steam but don't let it boil. Remove from heat and pour into mugs. Sweeten to taste.


Since I usually only have skim (non-fat) milk in my fridge, I use 1/2 cup skim milk with 1/2 cup canned evaporated milk for a little more creaminess. You can use non-fat milk, whole milk, evaporated milk or cream in any combination to make 1 cup.

If I have already made a pot of coffee, I'll substitute the perked coffee for the water and add just a bit of instant coffee granules to make it a bit stronger.

Pour some kahlua or irish cream into the bottom of your mug and pour the Mexican coffee on top (mixes it without using a spoon - one less thing to wash and put away).

Top it with whipped cream and sprinkle with cinnamon or cocoa powder if you want to impress somebody.

There - that's how I make Mexican hot chocolate. Now I think there's a chick flick with Johnny Depp calling my name.

* * *
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Thursday, October 26, 2006

Mexican Day of the Dead - Dia de los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos, the Mexican Day of the Dead is celebrated each year on November 2nd.

For those of us used to the celebration of Halloween complete with funny ghosts and ghouls, the Day of the Dead may sound rather macabre. In fact, unlike Halloween when we all set out to scare one another with morbid decorations and scary masks, the Mexican Day of the Dead is a much more spiritual, emotional and festive occasion. Indigenous people believed in the cycle of life/death/rebirth and so view death as a part of the cycle of life.

The Mexican tradition is that, on November 2nd, the Day of the Dead, loved ones lost to death return to their homes and families for a single day. Often, a great feast, the Fiesta de Muertos, is prepared and shared with friends and family.

Families may attend the cemetery and the graves of loves ones past and this is where the fiesta will take place. Sumptuous traditional foods are prepared and festivities are held at the graves sides with the spirits or souls of dead loved ones all around.

Traditionally, the fiesta will consist of spicy meat dishes, sweet desserts and the bread of the dead, "pan de muertos", which is a special egg batter bread.

Here's a simple recipe for a traditional sweet dish for the Fiesta de Muertos.

Calabaza en Tacha - Candied Pumpkin

1 small pumpkin (about 5 lbs)
6 cinnamon sticks
1/2 cup of orange juice
4 cups water
5 cups dark brown sugar

Cut the pumpkin into large chunks (about 2 inches square). No need to peel it but you can if you like.

Remove the seeds and strings from the pumpkin cubes. With a sharp knife make diamond designs over the pulp of the pumpkin to allow the sugar syrup to penetrate.

Put the sugar in a pan with the cinnamon sticks, orange juice, and water. Bring to a boil and stir until the sugar has dissolved.

Place the first layer of pumpkin pieces in the pan with the sugar syrup, pulp side down so they absorb as much juice as possible. The second layer should be with the pulp turned upwards.

Cover and simmer until the tops of the pumpkin pieces look somewhat glazed, and the pumpkin is soft and golden brown.

Let cool at least 2 hours.


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Wednesday, October 11, 2006

When is a chili pepper not a pepper

Let's talk about peppers and chilies. Are chili peppers really peppers?
Or are chilies really something different than peppers.

Of course, the black pepper that we have in the shaker on the table is not related to chilies at all. It is native to South India and is totally unrelated to chilies. In this case the name pepper derives from the Sanskrit word "pippali".

But what about bell peppers? Or a chili pepper? Obviously, they aren't peppers as mentioned above, so what are they then? Are they chilies?

Acually - they are all in the same family (Capsicum) and are all "peppers" and at the same time they are all "chilies". In truth, however, it's probably more proper to call them chilies than to refer to them as peppers (even though some - like the bell pepper - are only known by that name).

Originally the word pepper referred to the table pepper we talked about above, not the chili peppers but the word "pepper" began to be used to refer to chilies with some chilies actually being named peppers. That's what has created all the confusion.

The easy way to remember is this rule of thumb. If you grind it from a pepper mill or shake it from a shaker on the table - it's not a chili.

So a bell pepper is really a chili, as is habanero chili pepper.

Many people consider bell peppers to be different than chili peppers (usually defining a chili as a pepper with heat) when in fact they are from the same plant family - they just have different amounts of capsaicin which is the chemical in their flesh that provides the heat.

The relative heat in a chili pepper is usually rated in "Scoville Units" after Wilbur Scoville who originally devised the test to measure the heat level of chilies.

Some Familiar Types Of Chilies:

Bell Peppers (green or red): These are the mildest of the chili family. Used in the dishes of many cultures. Green bell peppers are immature red bell peppers. Scoville units = zero.

Anaheim: Very mild. Six to eight inches in size and deep, shiny green. Often stuffed or added to salsas. Scoville units = 500 - 2,500.

Cayenne: From four to twelve inches in length. Deep green, yellow, orange, or red. Long, skinny, and wrinkled in appearance. Hot in taste. Scoville units = 30,000 - 50,000.

Jalapeno: Range from dark green to red. Use whenever recipe simply calls for hot chile peppers. They can be fresh or canned. Scoville units = 2,500 - 8,000.

Poblano: Dark green, shiny and large in size. Mild to medium on the hotness scale. They can be fresh or canned. Scoville units = 1,000 to 2,000.

Serrano: Fairly high on the hotness scale. Can be found canned, pickled, or packed in oil with vegetables. Often served in Thai or Mexican dishes. Scoville units = 8,000 - 22,000.

Habanero: The hottest pepper on earth. Often used to make scorching hot sauces. Scoville units = 300,000 - 400,000.

All chilies are good for you - with a good supply of vitamins A, C and E along with folic acid and potassium. Some scientific studies have also found that capsaicin can help to beat cancer cells - particularly prostate cancer.

So eat up! Whether it's the mild bell pepper, the nice heat of a jalapeno or the scorching heat of a habanero, your body will thank you.


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Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Salsa by the Dozen

The word "salsa" comes from the Spanish word for sauce. It's also related to the Latin word "sal" which means salad. So which is it? A sauce or a salad?

How about both?

Salsa can be made so that it resembles a sauce, such as the bottled salsa you would buy at your grocery store or those made in a blender with canned tomatoes. Salsa can also be a salad if you use fresh, chopped ingredients like fresh juicy tomatoes or sweet, delicious fruit.

Traditional salsa is made with tomatoes, but today, there's more interest in creating sweet delectable salsa from fruits like mangos, peaches and pineapple.

Essentially salsa, regardless of whether you start with a tomato or a mango, has the same type of ingredients. Something sweet like the tomato or other fruit; something sour like lime or lemon juice; something savory or spicy and finally, something salty.

Let's take a basic tomato salsa recipe. It has sweet tomato (whether canned or fresh) some lime juice for sour, an onion or some other savory/spicy ingredient and some salt. That's it - but that covers the four flavors that makes a perfectly balanced salsa.

So what if you wanted to make a fruit salsa. Let's look at a recipe for peach salsa:

2 cups peeled, diced ripe peaches
1/2 cup diced red onion
1/2 cup diced red bell pepper
1/2 teaspoon minced jalapeno chiles
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/4 cup minced fresh mint
2 teaspoons frest grated ginger
Pinch of salt
(Combine all ingredients, let sit for one hour and serve)

We have peaches and red bell peppers for sweetness.
There's lime juice for sour.
Add some onion, chilies, ginger and mint for spice and depth.
Add a bit of salt and there you have it - a perfectly balanced salsa.

Now that we know the formula, it's easy to take any sweet ingredient and turn it into a salad style salsa. So let's create our own salsa:

Let's start with sweet chunks of pineapple - either fresh or canned (drained)
Add the juice of 1/2 a lime
Some chopped onion (red would be nice and mild - and colorful)
Basil goes great with pineapple so lets add a small handful of chopped basil
For a little heat, lets add a small jalapeno chopped (remove the seed and veins for less heat)
A touch of salt and there you have it.

Experiment with making your own salsa. Remember - something sweet, a little bit of something sour, something savory or spicy and a touch of salt.

Note: I just made and tried the pineapple salsa (above) that was based on our four elements of flavor - it was delicious.

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Monday, October 02, 2006

Welcome Mexican Food Lovers

Welcome to the Mexican Food Lovers blog. It is our intention to share our love of mexican food and mexican recipes. We'll discuss ingredients, recipes and mexican food in general.

Watch for our first post where we'll discuss authentic mexican salsa.

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