Whether you’re celebrating a party or a get together to watch your favorite game on TV, we bring you a new concept of creating the Ultimate Mexican Candy and Snacks Buffet for your guests.
A buffet as it’s defined, is “a system of serving meals in which food is placed in a public area where the diners generally serve themselves. It is a popular method for feeding a large number of people with minimal staff.” Okay, so that’s what it means, but can you WOW! your guests? That’s what I’m positive you’re looking for. Traditionally, we think of buffets for a complete meal or for desserts, but what about the goodies, fruits and snacks with a Mexican flair. Your guests will love this! Check out the video on how we have our setup:
As you will notice, we have chosen a variety of mexican candy, fruits, snacks and chips (most of which you can find on our store if you need them delivered right to your home). Below is a list of the items, but you’re always welcome to choose whatever you like. Make them sweet, make them sour, make them crunch or spicy hot, make them healthy concious, make them colorful, make them simple. It’s real Mexican, real simple and really good.
Rosca de Reyes, a Mexican tradition and religious holiday En Español
The Rosca de Reyes, or ring-shaped Rosca de Reyes is a sweet round, cake or oval shape Mexican bread, decorated with slices of crystallized or candied fruit colors. The King cake is also called: biscuit, cake or sweet bread to celebrate the three kings.
Rosca de Reyes by El Molino
The celebration of Epiphany to enjoy the Rosca de Reyes is a Mexican tradition that takes place, 12 days after Christmas, each year in social reunions with family, friends or colleagues in offices or homes. This meeting is usually done a few days before or after January 6 at the offices or places outside the home, however for the family reunions they are normally held in homes on the sixth day of January in the evening, Epiphany Day or the appearance of the Wise Men or Magi Kings: Balthazar, Melchior and Caspar.
This tradition of eating together and sharing a rosca de reyes bread with a hot chocolate to remember the Holy Kings, is made as a snack or pre-dinner at an early hour in the late evening, so that children are present and can participate in the tradition of getting together to enjoy and share a slice of rosca de reyes
Rosca de Reyes with plastic doll
and it is important when you cut a slice, that on both sides of the rosca, does not appear the figure of the infant Jesus (plastic doll symbolizing Jesus newborn). It is worth to mention that also a small showing inside may bearly appear in the sweet bread. Now in days another figure of a Wise Men of plastic may be hidden inside the bread, so that two people who are to split the party cost. It is said that the person who finds the baby Jesus, should put the house for a party on Candlemas Day on February 2. On this day your guest are expecting to eat tamales and Mexican appetizers, so it is important to re-join the same group that was present when the rosca was cut. Incidentally, the person who finds the plastic wise man or Magi King in his or hers slice, normally must pay the costs of the party, in reality the expenses of the party is shared by both persons. It is considered to have good luck and that you are fortunate if you find the baby Jesus and/or the Wise Man.
The tradition of holding the reunion to celebrate the Day of the Epiphany comes from the middle ages in Europe, mainly from Spain and France. This tradition came to Mexico at the time of the early years of the viceroys.
El Molino Bakery bakes the best Rosca de Reyes which is sold in Mexico since 1928, MexGrocer.com buys the Roscas de Reyes from El Molino bakery in Tijuana where they freeze the freshly baked roscas and we keep them like that, until we send them to our customers throughout the United States so you can get home fresh and ready to eat when they are delivered to your door.
The Christmas holiday is a wonderful time of celebration, fun, family, and food. Though no one needs an excuse to eat, Christmas is not the same without (several) feasts. For many Mexican families, Christmas dinner is eaten on Christmas Eve, or Noche Buena. With a rich cornucopia of holiday dishes to choose from, there’s many opportunities to create a feast filled with dishes which delight the tastebuds. Here are a few recipes for inspiration:
Tamales are particularly popular at Christmas time and will often be served as part of dinner on Christmas eve.
Chicken Tamales Recipe from Maseca Collection
Ingredients: 6 cups Maseca Corn Masa Mix for Tamales
6 cups Chicken broth
1 cup corn oil
2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 large rotisserie chicken
2 cans salsa verde or tomatillo sauce
1 bag corn husks
Mexican Recipe Instructions: Soak the corn husks in warm water until soft. Blend with an electric mixer Maseca corn masa mix for tamales, corn oil, salt, baking powder and the chicken broth to obtain a consistent mixture. Shred the chicken and marinate in the green salsa or tomatillo sauce. Spread masa evenly over corn husks, and spread a spoonful of marinated chicken on top of the masa. Fold the sides of the corn husk to center over the masa so that they overlap to make along package. Fold the empty part of the husk under so that it rest against the side of the tamale with a seam. Place the tamales in a steamer and cook tamales for 35-40 minutes. Check every 20 minutes.The tamales are cooked when they separate easily from the corn husk.
At the posadas parties in the lead up to Christmas Mexicans will serve a drink called ponche con piquete. It is a hot punch based on pulped seasonal fruits mixed with spices such as cinnamon, with an added shot of something alcoholic such as rum, brandy or tequila.
Ponche con piquete
2 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, cored, and cut in 1/8ths
3/4 cup raisins
1 pound guava, quartered 3 (3 to 4-inch) pieces sugarcane, each cut in strips
1/2 cup prunes
1/2 pound crabapples, peeled and cored
2 cups (1-inch) diced pineapple
1 cup sugar
4 (2-inch) pieces Mexican cinnamon
8 cups water Tequila
Directions: In a large pot, place the fruit, sugar, cinnamon, and 8 cups of water. Bring to a boil and lower heat and simmer for 1 hour. Serve hot in a mug that has a shot of tequila in it.
Tres Leches Cake: Pastel de Tres Leches or Three Milk Cake is a butter cake flavored with vanilla. It is soaked in a mixture of three different milk products, hence the name Tres Leches. The three milks, when combined, create just the right sweetness, density and mouth feel for a rich cake, making it moist but not mushy.
Pastel de Tres Leches Recipe
For the Batter: 3/4 cup butter
1 3/4 cups sugar
8 egg yolks
2 1/2 cups flour, sifted
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup milk
6 egg whites
For the Milks:
2 cups evaporated milk Carnation (Leche Clavel)
1 1/2 cups sweetened condensed milk
3 1/2 cups table cream
6 egg yolks
For the Meringue:
6 egg whites
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups light corn syrup or honey
2 limes, juice
Recipe Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 12 by 8 inch cake pan. Prepare the batter: Cream butter. Gradually mix in sugar, and continue beating until mixture is light and creamy. Add egg yolks. Slowly mix in flour, baking powder, and salt. Add vanilla extract, and slowly mix in milk until batter is thick. In another bowl, beat egg whites until stiff. Fold into batter. Pour batter into cake pan. Bake for 40 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Remove from oven and cool on rack. Prepare the Milks: Blend evaporated and condensed milks and table cream with egg yolks in a blender or food processor. Bring half this mixture to a boil in a saucepan, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in remaining mixture. Pour over cake. Prepare the Meringue: In a double boiler, mix egg whites and sugar. Beat until stiff. Slowly add corn syrup or honey, and continue beating until stiff peaks form. Add lime juice and continue beating until shiny. Remove from heat. Invert cake on a deep dish or platter.Spread meringue over cake and decorate with strawberries. Serve at room temperature. (Biscocho de Tres Leches) (Three Milks cake)
October is finally here and it’s time to make sugar skulls! You can learn how to make them right at home and decorate them yourself, or you can buy them pre-made. This fun and festive Mexican folk art is a Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) tradition. The decorated sugar skulls are used to adorn the altars of loved ones along with marigolds, papel picado and candles. It is not a somber holiday but one of remembrance and joy. For more information about Dia de los Muertos and more about Mexican Cooking, visit Mexican Food at About.com
Are you tired of the classic recipe for apples covered with chocolate? Maybe not, but now with the Zumba Pica Forritos (5 pieces per box) you can take your favorite Granny Smith Apple and cover it with natural tamarind candy and chili or chamoy powder. They make an ideal treat for a candy and snacks buffet, your favorite teacher (it’s ok to be the teacher’s pet!) or yummy Halloween treats for the exceptionally well behaved kids.
Setting for making granny apples covered with tamarind and chili
First, get your kitchen setting placement right. Use one bowl for your pre-washed apples. Another bowl for roughly a pint of water, give or take a few drops (just kidding), it’s just to clean your hands as they become sticky and nothing more. A damp or dry towel, your choice, and a plate or tray to rest your finished tamarind covered apples.
Second, and this is the important part, make sure you clean your apples first. Apples should always be washed before eating. To wash, you can give to apples a good rub under running water and then dry them up with a clean paper towel. Make sure they are dry before adding the Forritos tamarind cover.
Third, take one piece of Zumba Pica Forritos and remove the plastic covering. Place your Granny Apple stem facing down and then add the tamarind cover on top. Firmly, with your hands and fingers start spreading or molding the paste all around the apple. Think of this as Zumba Pica giving your apple a great big hug.
Fourth, sprinkle your favorite fruit and snack seasoning (like Tajin) or chamoy candy powder. This will remove the stickiness of the tamarind paste, providing an additional layer of spicy and hot flavor for the ideal sweet and sour taste.
Enjoy your Sweet and Sour Hot Apples!
Finally, take a Candy Apple STICKS about 7×1/4″ wooden sharpened and twist it in. Take your finished granny apple tamarind covered treat and place it in a small clear sheet or cellophane bag. Add a nice little tie knot on the ribbon of your choice, and give it to someone you’ll make very happy.
In Spanish, this is also called “Manzana cubierta de tamarindo con chile en polvo”, and according to the experts at UC Davis, “Archelogival data shows that humans were eating apples as early as 6500 B.C.”. Well now you know how to make an apple better (for some) or keep eating it natural just like it was brought to us by nature. Both, are great ways to enjoy the perfect apple.
This magnificent dish of Stuffed Poblano Chiles in Walnut Sauce, was created in the city of Puebla by the nuns of the Santa Monica Convent in honour of the triumphant arrival of General Agustin de Iturbide, when independence from Spain was finally attained in 1821 after some not so easy negotiations with General Vicente Guerrero who was then at the head of the Insurgentes army.
Agustín de Iturbide
Agustin de Iturbide (1782-1824), a criollo (born in Mexico of Spanish parents), having been fighting for a few years against the rebels of Insurgentes, first against José Maria Morelos y Pavon (another hero of the independence) who was captured and executed at the end of a ferocious battle, and then against General Guerrero.
Several years had passed before Iturbide realized that the royalists would never win this war and as a result, decided to present General Guerrero with a plan (Plan of Iguala) through which an independent Mexico with himself as Emperor, could be established. General Guerrero agreed to meet with him in Acatempan (The Embrace of Acatempan), in order to discuss the plan drawn out by General Iturbide.
The Plan of Iguala (March 1821) became very popular mainly due to the fact that it satisfied both parties, the Insurgentes by implementing Independence from Spain and the Peninsulares (Spaniards living in Mexico) for avoiding attacks on them and their properties.
On September 17, 1821 (Iturbide’s birthday), he marched triumphantly into Mexico City with his Ejército Trigarante (Army of the Three Guarantees). The following day Mexico was declared an independent empire and General Iturbide was crowned on July 21, 1822. He ruled as Agustin I (1822-1823), over a large territory which was bordered by Panama in the south, and by the Oregon territory in the north, including the present countries of Central America and the U.S. states of California, Texas, Arizona, Utah, Nevada, Colorado and New Mexico. Less than a year later, Agustin de Iturbide was forced to abdicate his reign by a General Santa Ana who announced the birth of a Republic.
During his reign as Emperor of Mexico, he lived in what used to be known as the Palacio de Iturbide now Museo Palacio Cultural Banamex, a true jewel of Baroque architecture with marked Italian influence. This magnificent building was built by the Count of San Mateo Valparaiso as a wedding present for his daughter whose fiancé was of Italian descent. The building is currently a museum that holds the vast Mexican art collection of Banamex (the National Bank of Mexico) and is located in downtown Mexico City, or the Centro Histórico, just a few blocks from the Zócalo and the Cathedral where General Iturbide is buried.
Historic Mexican Flags
During his brief Empire, Iturbide was responsible among other things, for the creation of the modern Mexican flag with its three colours, green, white and red. These colors representing the three guarantees and to honour the legacy of the Aztecs, the emblem of the cactus with the perching eagle.
The decoration of the Stuffed Poblano Chiles in Walnut Sauce (Chiles en Nogada) was clearly a political move. If there is something that gives a unique character to Mexican cuisine in my opinion, is most definitely all its sauces and moles with key ingredients such as peanuts, almonds, walnuts, and of course chiles. In fact, poblano chiles are sometimes identified outside of Mexico as the ‘stuffing’ chile, so the uniqueness of this particular dish is clearly due to its attractive decoration and the history behind it.
In Mexico, this wonderful dish is traditionally served in the fall, when the walnuts for the creamy nogada sauce are harvested in northern Mexico. The combination of the pulled pork, the sweetness of the raisins, almonds and candied fruit, with the spicy heat of the chiles, is bound to conquer refined palates anywhere.
Stuffed Poblano Chiles in Walnut Sauce
Chiles en Nogada
For the filling
1 lb (500 g) pork loin
1 to 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 large cloves garlic, chopped
½ cup chopped onion
3 large ripe tomatoes, seeded and chopped
½ cup canned tomato sauce
Dash each of cinnamon, cumin, cloves
½ cup chopped cooked ham
¼ cup chopped almonds
¼ cup raisins, soaked in water
½ cup chopped, candied citron or
¼ cup each, peeled and chopped fresh apple, pear, and peach
Dash each of salt, sugar
Cook the pork loin in boiling salted water for 12 to 15 minutes or until tender. Drain and reserve the broth. When the pork is cool enough to handle, shred it with your fingers and set aside.
In a saucepan, heat the oil over medium heat and sauté the garlic and onion until the onion is transparent. Add the chopped tomatoes and tomato sauce, and continue cooking for a few minutes longer. Stir in the pork, ½ to 1 cup of the reserved broth, the cinnamon, cumin, cloves, ham, almonds, drained raisins, and citron. Bring to a boil and simmer for 5 to 8 minutes, or until the sauce has thickened and the fruit is tender. Set aside to cool.
For the Sauce
1 slice of bread
½ cup milk
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 (4 oz/125 g) package cream cheese or
125 g. Mexican Queso Fresco
Dash each of cinnamon, sugar
1 teaspoon dry sherry
Soak the bread in the milk. In a blender or food processor, half an hour before serving the chiles, blend the walnuts with the cheese, soaked bread, sherry, cinnamon and sugar. The nogada sauce should be thick. Keep at room temperature until ready to serve.
For the chiles
10 small Poblano chiles, roasted, peeled and seeded
1 to 2 pomegranate(s) or
1 (2 oz/60 g) jar red pimientos
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
Fill each chile with a spoonful of the pork mixture and carefully place each stuffed chile on a serving platter. Cover the chiles with the nogada sauce and garnish with pomegranate seeds and parsley.
Serve this festive dish at room temperature with good French bread on the side and celebrate the Mexican Independence.
Note: In later years, cooks wanting a smoother creamy sauce for the nogada, introduced cream cheese, but the original recipe called for queso fresco (fresh cheese), which fortunately, is now available anywhere in English North America where Mexican products are sold.
Here is another colourful dish that can be served as an appetizer with small corn tortillas or as a salad.
ENSALADA DE NOPALES (Cactus Leaves Salad)
Serves 4-6 as an appetizer
4-6 cactus leaves/pads, fresh or
1 (825g) jar Nopalitos or Tender Cactus,*
1 tsp. salt
4-6 tbsp. finely chopped onion
2-4 Serrano chiles, chopped
4 sprigs fresh cilantro, washed and chopped
1/4 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
Salt & pepper
1 large fresh tomato, sliced
1/2 cup Feta cheese, crumbled
Peel cactus leaves and remove thorns, if any. Wash with running water and slice into strips. Transfer cactus strips to a dry saucepan and cook at very low temperature stirring occasionally, for approximately 6 to 8 minutes or until the sap is gone completely and nopalitos are tender. Depending on the altitude, they might need to be cooked in water beforehand. Drain and cool.
In a salad bowl, mix nopales with the onion, chile, cilantro, oregano and olive oil. Add salt and pepper to taste. Top salad with the tomato slices and the cheese.
*Cooked nopalitos would still need to be placed on a dry saucepan for a few minutes to remove the sap completely. I recommend La Costeña brand.
I hope you’ve enjoyed a little more on history of Mexico, the history of the Mexican Independence, Chiles en Nogada, and a simple but delicious Nopalitos Salad recipe. Please comment below your thoughts, and what you’d like me to write about if you have any suggestions. I’d love to hear them!
Mexican Culinary Treasures: Recipes From Maria Elena's Kitchen
Maria Elena Cuervo-Lorens is the author of Mexican Culinary Treasures cookbook. She takes you back to her childhood, spent around her grandmother’s table on a shopping expedition with her mother to Mercado La Merced, and for a merienda (snack) of café con leche and bizcochos (Mexican sweet rolls) at a bakery in downtown Mexico City. The authentic Mexican recipes she shares with us include tacos, quesadillas and enchiladas. The nouvelle cuisine of cosmopolitan Mexico City, such as cuitlacoche (huitlacohe) crepes, oysters with chipotle chile.
The new Ethnic Food & Beverage Consumer Trends Report from Technomic Inc., a Chicago-based market research firm, was full of interesting information about consumers’ preferences in ethnic cuisine. The finding that most intrigued me: only about one-fourth of people polled are satisfied with restaurants’ selection of ethnic foods. That included just 23 percent of consumers speaking about limited-service chains and 28 percent about full-service brands.
If those consumers are unhappy with selections of Mexican food specifically I have to admit I’m a bit surprised, considering how significantly Mexican food has evolved since I started covering the industry in 1997—the year el Restaurante Mexicano magazine debuted.
Consumers responding to the Technomic survey said they want more “authenticity” in the ethnic cuisine they’re consuming. And that is exactly what Mexican restaurants today are striving to provide. From taquerias and food trucks to fast food chains and sit-down family restaurants to fine dining chains and single-unit independents alike, chefs are reaching beyond the nachos, ground beef tacos and melted cheese-drenched enchiladas that once prevailed on U.S. Mexican menus.
Examples of the authentic food these establishments are serving:
Taco stand/fast-casual eatery: At Puesto Mexican Street Food, a restaurant in La Jolla, Calif., that is modeled after a Mexico City taco stand, customers enjoy homemade salsas prepared fresh daily and tortillas made on-site from stone ground maize. The menu focuses on guisados (grilled foods) that include fish, shrimp, chicken al pastor, carne asada and gourmet Mexican vegetarian items like zucchini flower, corn truffle and soy chorizo potatoes.
Fast food chain: Rubios, famous for its fish tacos, features a Mango Habanero Pacific Mahi Mahi taco. The fish is seasoned in olive oil and garlic or house blackened, then grilled on an authentic comal and topped with mango pineapple salsa, a smoky red chile sauce made with guajillo, ancho and red jalapeño chiles, crema and serrano cabbage slaw.
Fine dining chain: Rosa Mexicano debuted in New York City in 1984. Back then New York Magazine applauded the restaurant for introducing New Yorkers to a “hitherto unfamiliar, elevated version of Mexican cuisine.” Today, Rosa Mexicano serves “contemporary Mexican cuisine rooted in authentic flavors utilizing socially responsible ingredients combined with stylish spaces and festive atmosphere” at its 15 locations (with one scheduled to open in San Francisco soon). Upscale menu items include ceviches such as Camarones (Rock Shrimp) with sweet mango, pineapple, heirloom tomato, mint, toasted pumpkin seeds and chile pasilla-avocado sauce; Tablones (Tequila Braised Short Ribs) with Mestiza sauce (tomatillo-tomato-chipotle) and rajas (slow-cooked Mexican peppers); and the Cochinita Pibil (Yucatan Baked Pork Shoulder) that has been on the menu since 1984.
Fine dining, single-unit independent: Babita Mexicuisine, owned and operated by Chef Roberto Berrelleza, specializes in the kind of gourmet Mexican fare often found in Mexico City. Popular dishes at this San Gabriel, Calif., restaurant include Chiles en Nogada, Lamb Shank Mixiote and the classic Chile Relleno Oaxaqueno along with unique culinary creations such as the award-winning Shrimp “Topolobampo” in a super hot habanero, mustard, tomato and white wine sauce and the Chicken and Shrimp “Elba” sautéed in tequila, banana-chipotle sauce and served over chayote gratin. Chef Roberto prepares every dish, using such unique ingredients as zucchini blossoms, cuitlacoche, prickly pear and guamuchil.
Those are just a few of myriad restaurants answering consumers’ calls for authentic ethnic cuisine. Based on my experience covering the food and beverage industry—and on the fact that the Mexican restaurant segment is experiencing higher growth rates than the industry overall—I am confident chefs will continue to innovate as Mexican cuisine in the U.S. continues to evolve.
I discovered Cherimoya (Chair-ee-moya) one day as I was looking at a list of fruit in season. Recognizing every fruit listed but this one, of course, my interest was sparked to do some research. Finding an article that called this the “Ice Cream Fruit” drew me in further. The fruit looks like a cross-pollination between an artichoke and an avocado… oval, with a smooth or slightly tuberculated skin. The fruit flesh is white and creamy, and has numerous dark brown seeds embedded in it. According to one article, “Some characterize the flavor as a blend of banana, pineapple, papaya, peach, and strawberry. Others describe it as tasting like commercial bubblegum. ” which is probably the reason why Mark Twain called the cherimoya “the most delicious fruit known to men.”
Unfortunately, you won’t find this treasure on the shelf of your local Whole Foods Market. Though grown throughout Central and North America (even making it up to growers in California), the soft skin and short season of this fruit makes it hard to produce commercially. After doing a little search for it myself, I found it online for $15 a fruit! Despite it’s rarity, the cherimoya’s popularity in the U.S. and Mexico is growing. There’s even a Cherimoya Fair held in Irvine, Ca (and a website dedicated to the fruit, too: cherimoya.com).
And it’s no wonder, though the flavor could sell itself, the cherimoya has multiple health benefits too.
“100 g of fresh fruit pulp provide about 75 calories. It contains, however, no saturated fats or cholesterol. It characteristically contains a good amount of dietary fiber (3 g per100 g) that helps prevent absorption of cholesterol in the gut.
Cherimoya contains several poly-phenolic antioxidants. Among them, the most prominent in annona family fruits are Annonaceous acetogenins. Acetogenin compounds such as asimicin, bullatacinare…etc are powerful cytotoxins and have been found to have anti-cancer, anti-malarial, and anti-helminthes properties.
It is very good in vitamin-C.
In addition, cherimoya fruit is a good source of B-complex vitamins, especially vitamin B-6 (pyridoxine). 100 g fresh fruit provides 0.257 mg or 20% of daily-recommended levels. Pyridoxine helps keep-up GABA neuro chemical in the brain. High GABA levels calm down nervous irritability, tension, and headache ailments.Further, it has a well balanced sodium-potassium ratio. A good potassium level in the body helps control heart rate and blood pressure; thus, counters the bad influences of sodium. It also contains more minerals weight per weight than many common fruits like apples, rich in copper, magnesium, iron and manganese.”
I don’t know about you, but I’m impressed. Looks like I’ll be ordering some cherimoya very soon.
En un cacerola derrita la inercia, la amargura y el tedio. Unte bien con mucha risa, especialmente sobre las propias tragedias. En bol aparte, pele y corte en tiras la ansiedad, pique fino el egoísmo. Ponga en remojo el yo hasta que se macere, pero cuide de no derretirlo enteramente.
El rencor (que es furia rancia) aplástelo contra una tabla, troce el reproche y la envidia. Tire a la basura el pellejo, la pereza para pensar, la vanidad de no cometer errores y la cobardía de no admitirlos. Deje largo rato bajo la canilla, hasta que se vayan por el sumidero, el remordimiento por el pasado, la culpabilidad por el presente y el miedo por el futuro. Amase todo con ternura, sin ahorrar algún gramo de locura.
No se preocupe si tarda en ablandarse: la impaciencia no es compatible con la ternura. Sazone con la defensa de algún derecho, propio, y sobre todo ajeno. Cocine al fuego lento de la pasión, pero vigile que no se queme. Para decorar, use armonía con la existencia y distribuya en la fuente combinando imaginación y lucidez. Deje reposar dos horas (o veinte años) y sirvalo con mucho amor.
We all know that the best Mexican food is home-cooked. There’s nothing (and I really mean, nothing!) like fresh tortillas on the press, and the satisfaction that you yourself created a culinary masterpiece. But there are definitely days where I just want to go home and kick up my feet. I certainly don’t feel like pulling out the griddle and cooking.
And from time to time, it’s nice to sample another cook’s take on a classic dish. Living in San Diego, there’s an abundance of options when it comes to Mexican food. Turn a corner and there’s a Del Taco. Amidst the Cotixan’s, Del Tacos, and Taco Bells that spring up everywhere, though, I can’t help but wonder where’s the really good Mexican take-out gone? Enter SanDiegoBestMexicanFood.com. Genius. I first came across this gem when I googled “Mexican Food, San Diego” (I know, not really creative, but I was too hungry to care!) This site is dedicated to a collection of reviews on San Diego’s Mexican food offerings “from food trucks to fancy sit-down dining”. I’ve made it my personal mission to read the website, and try out the reviews myself. Perhaps together, SanDiegoBestMexicanFood.com and I can find the best Mexican take-out in San Diego!
I wanted to share this with you all. When I try out a place, I’ll let you know the review from the site, and give you my own personal review as well.
First up, Tacos El Poblano:
Tacos El Poblano
217 3rd Ave
Chula Vista, CA 91910
“Tacos El Poblano says that it’s an authentic TJ style taco shop. And since they actually run several taco shops in TJ, we can accept that as fact. Of course people will still argue about it, much like people will argue that Guinness tastes better in Ireland, but I suggest just relaxing and not worrying about it. The tacos here are really good.
The menu here is simple. Asada, goat, adobada in either tacos, tortas, or burritos, and not much else. And that’s fine. Because what you’re likely coming here is the tacos and there’s no point making it more complicated than that. My go-to order is 3-4 carne asada tacos without guacamole. They come with plenty of smokey meat, a tangy and spicy salsa, and a slightly crunchy tortilla. Simple and delicious.
I typically leave off the guacamole just because I think it overpowers the meat, not because it isn’t good. In fact it quite good, I’d just rather have more meat flavor. But you’ll have to decide that for yourself.
How does it stack up against the 437 other carne asada tacos in San Diego? In my opinion these are some of the best. The meat is the key, and the meat here is just a touch better. Also, rather than the typical raw onion in fresh cilantro garnish, these come with a very well made pico de gallo salsa. The slightly crunchy tortillas are also a nice touch.
There is usually plenty of metered parking on the street. And they only take cash, although there is an ATM there.” -www.sandiegobestmexicanfood.com
Tacos El Poblano was a little ways off my beaten path, but it was worth the visit. The place is clean–certainly a step up from some of the grease-soaked shops I’ve been to before, and the menu is simple. Inspired by the SDBestMexicanFood.com review, I tried the Carne Asada Taco (you can’t beat $1.75!). I love how the flavor of the meat is really highlighted, and not drowned with other toppings. The smell, too, was enough to make my mouth water.
I stepped off the ramp, enjoying the feel of solid, non-swaying ground under my feet. After living four months on a ship, getting used to a routine of a week at sea, a week in a foreign port–I was going to savor this moment. Especially since this was the last port of call in my [...]
Once you’ve had a bite of this delicious, fried treat dipped in rich chocolate…you’ll never look at churro carts the same way again. Until three years ago, I had never known what a real churro was. Or that it is traditionally dipped in chocolate. My experience with churros had always been the theme-park version– carts [...]
There are reportedly over 60 varieties of chiles, chile peppers or hot peppers, ranging from very mild to fiery hot. Chiles are a key ingredient in most Mexican food dishes. All chiles derive their heat from oils concentrated in their seeds and membranes. The heat of a chile lasts six minutes before it dissipates. Check [...]
This recipe combines some of my favorite ingredients in a tasty twist on chicken salad. Plus, presenting in these awesome, easy-to-make tortilla bowls is the best way to fool your diners into thinking you’re a master chef. Mango-Jalapeño-Chicken Salad in Cumin Tortilla Bowls Time to Make: 50 Minutes Vinaigrette 1/2 cup cubed peeled mango* 2 tablespoons mango [...]
Ever wonder how Mexican cuisine features in a foreign culture such as….say, Japan? During my brief stint in Tokyo, I was craving a taste of my favorite cuisine from home. I looked up local mexican restaurants in my Lonely Planet guide, and out of the two (more than I thought there’d be!) listed, I chose [...]
El 16 de Septiembre de 1810 fue el día en el que se consumó la independencia de México, la cual puso final al dominio Español. A consecuencia de éste acto que desencadenó una gran pasión mexicana se celebra la noche de el 15 de Septiembre el famoso “Grito de Independencia”. Esta celebración por lo general [...]
In Mexico, September 16th is celebrated as the date of Mexico’s Independence from Spain. Late in the eighteenth century, the middle and upper classes in Mexico began to question the structure of their society. Influenced by the revolutions in the United States and France, they too decided they wanted freedom of speech, a representative government, [...]
Molcajete y Tejolote A Molcajete is a stone mortar used mostly to grind chiles for salsa. Originated in the state of Oaxaca. Molcajetes come in different shapes, one very popular in central Mexico is the Pig Molcajete.
Cheese. It’s one of my favorite ingredients to add to recipe because it can add a superb texture and flavor to the recipe that nothing else can. But if you’re like me, an amateur cheese connoisseur, it gets confusing sometimes when it comes to picking out the right cheese. I’m not as familiar with the [...]
El día de los Muertos es una fuerte tradición para la cultura Mexicana. Esta celebración tiene como principal objetivo conmemorar a los difuntos. Su principal orígen es prehispánico y ha sido una importante tradición a lo largo de 2,500-3000 años atrás. Las principales actividades que se realizaban para la conmemoración consistían en conservar los esqueletos [...]
What would you do if someone invited you to a fiesta in a graveyard? Would you go? Or does the mere idea of it give you a major case of the creeps?! Well, you’re not alone, amigo. In the USA we try to deny, cheat and minimize death. Not so in Mexico. In Mexico, the [...]
Maybe some of you out there are like me. When it comes to cooking, I can hold my own, but when it gets down to the really good stuff, I’m pretty lost. That’s why I’ve taken an active interest in learning from the masters. Perhaps, like me, you’ve also never considered taking a cooking class [...]
Beyond being delicious, Avocado (the main ingredient in guacamole, in case you didn’t know) is pretty nutritious. It packs a lot of calories, but eaten in moderation, it can be a healthy, and lip-licking delicious, eat! Check out just a few of the health benefits below: Avocado is a rich source of healthy fat. What [...]
The winter holiday brings a season of festivities, friends, and food. I LOVE this holiday season, who doesn’t? And MexGrocer is here to help your party planning all the way. You know we sell food, but our website also features recipes and sells decor too! Here’s something to get your inspiration kick-started for your next fiesta: [...]
Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe es una de las grandes milagrosas aparaciones de la tan renombrada por la religión Católica Romana “Virgen María”. El 9 de Diciembre de 1531 cuenta la historia que un indio llamado Juan Diego mientras caminaba hacia la Ciudad de México vió en el Monte Tepeyac la visión de una niña de [...]
Few people in English North America are aware that the celebration of CINCO de Mayo commemorates the Battle of Puebla against the French, and not the Mexican Independence from Spain. Although a celebration in its own right, it is definitely not as important for Mexicans as the celebration of Las Fiestas Patrias in September. Some [...]