Monday, September 28, 2009

a gift from Italy....

This gorgeous hunk of pecorino was given to us by out Italian neighbors who just returned from their latest trip back home to visit their grandson. As I type this Im eating a huge chunk and its amazing! Pecorino has always been my favorite cheese, and Im already thinking of all the ways I can use this. Any suggestions on what to pair it with are welcome ;)

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

chile manzano

Let me introduce you all to the chile manzano. This little guy may be tiny, but he packs a lot of heat. With a rating of about 30,000 on the Scoville heat scale, the manzano chile makes even my boyfriend (lover of all things spicy) break a sweat. He claims it doesnt, but last night when he ate it in a stirfry I made, I saw him wipe his brow when he thought I wasnt looking.

An interesting fact about the chile manzano: it has black seeds. At first, I thought my boyfriend's aunt had given me rotting chiles, but after some research online, I was assured that they are supposed to be black.

Monday, September 21, 2009

French toast sandwiches..a good late night snack

For the past couple of weeks, I have really been craving French toast...but I didnt have any maple syrup to put on top. I kept forgetting and forgetting to get it everytime I went to the store. Then finally last night I jsut couldnt take it anymore and made my boyfriend take me to the store just to get it so i could make my French toast.
He complained a bit about having to go out at 9:30 pm ust to get some maple syrup, but when all was said and done, he didnt regret taking me, and he raved about his banana-cream cheese stuffed French toast "sandwich."

This was really easy. You just make basic French toast in a skillet and then spread the filling between to slices. For the filling I mixed some cream cheese, sugar, vanilla and sliced bananas. Top with maple syrup and powdered sugar.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The best biscuits and gravy I've ever had!

Ok so my gravy I'm sure wasn't the greatest ever, but to me, after about a year of not having biscuits and gravy, it tasted pretty damn amazing.

Here in Mexico we dont have anything like bisquik. I had never found refrigerated biscuits either....until last Monday. Last Monday I actually had time to leisurely browse through all the aisles of the new Walmart here, and in the refrigerated section, hidden behind tubs of margerine, I found a lone tube of buttermilk biscuits. I freaked! The poor people in Walmart probably thought I was crazy, but I was so happy. I told my bf that I had to buy them, even though they were kind of pricey (I mean $4 for a tube of biscuits??? come on...). But I had to have them.

I know what you're thinking. Refrigerated biscuits?? Why when you could just make your own? I know, I know. I dont buy many pre-packaged things for a couple reasons. Homemade just tastes better, and also in Mexico there arent nearly as many pre-packed foods as in America. Well, none that I want to make, anyway.

However, when it comes to biscuits, I'm lazy. I dont know why, but I just dont like to make them. I'd prefer to buy tubes.

Anyways, I love biscuits and gravy, so I knew I would have to use the biscuits for that. Besides, my boyfriend had never had it, and I really wanted him to try it.

I made a quick bacon gravy with some turkey bacon that I needed to use up. The biscuits and gravy tasted wonderful! Exactly what I had been craving, and my boyfriend loved it as well.

And im awful at posting recipes on here because I never really measure anything, but I'll try to give correct measurements.

  • 6 slices of bacon
  • 2-3 tbsp butter
  • 2-3 tbsp flour
  • 1 c milk ( mixed it with half a cube of chicken buillon)
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. cook bacon until crispy. drain on paper towels.
  2. melt 2 or 3 tbsp butter in the same skillet you used for bacon.
  3. whisk in 2 or 3 tbsp flour (depends on how thick you want your gravy. Remember you can always add extra milk if its too thick).
  4. When flour and butter have cooked about 1 minutes, add milk and salt and pepper.
  5. Crumble a few slices of the bacon into the mixture.
  6. Simmer till it reaches desired thickness.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

lime pomegranate bars

My FIL brought home a huge bag of pomegranates yesterday (called granadas here in Mexico) and my MIL gave me a few to take home. Since after about 1 pomegranate I'm sick of them, I browsed Tastespotting for a bread or something to put them in to use them up. I came across NoFearEntertaining's lemon pomegranate bars. In Mexico I have yet to see a yellow lemon, so I had to use key limes, but the bars still turned out amazing!

Monday, September 7, 2009

baked zucchini chips

I started another diet today, and wanted a healthy side for my chicken breast, so I made some baked zucchini chips.

they're totally easy and totally scrumptious.

  • 2-3 zucchinis, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds (or thinner if you want them crispier)
  • 3/4 c bread crumbs (you can use seasoned ones or add your own seasongs. I add salt, pepper, and cheese)
  • 2 egg whites
  1. Preheat oven to 450ºf
  2. Dip zucchini slices in eggwhites and then into bread crumbs.
  3. Put slices on a greased baking sheet.
  4. Bake 15-20 minutes, turning over half way through.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

layers, layers and more layers...

I have these neighbors here in Mexico. The husband is Italian and the wife is Romanian. The man, Giuseppe, is a really good suit maker (I'm sure that has a name), and travels all over the world working in factories that make men's clothes, and abotu 4 years ago, they ended up here in Pachuca. They've lived in Italy, Korea, Portugal and alot more places that I cant recall at the moment, and that makes for a really hard time understanding the man talk. He mixes Portugese, Italian, Spanish and English, and I'm lucky if I understand half of what he says. The wife speaks Spanish pretty well, so I can understand her. Anyways, they are the nicest people and they have us over to dinner alot. The lady, Mariana, is an AMAZING cook! She makes all kinds of delicious Romanian and Italian food for us.
A couple weeks ago, we had a dinner to celebrate Giuseppe's birthday and Mariana made an overwhelming amount of food. She sent us home with huge plates of left overs, and this was what I ate for breakfast the next day:

The first layer is a delicious, flaky, homemade puff pastry. The second, a layer of thick cut bacon.
For the third layer, we have shredded carrots and leek. And right in the middle, we have juicy, mouthwatering pork loin.
Man, was this good. I cant even begin to explain how good. I have yet to get the full recipe from my neighbor, but i have the basic idea of how she makes it. She just basically wraps everything in the puff pastry she makes and then bakes it till the pork loin is done. She also makes something similar with a baguette. She hollows out the baguette, wraps the pork loin in bacon, and then stuffs it into the bread and bakes it until the pork is done.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

calabazas asadas/ grilled zukes and an explanation.

So i've been away awhile.
I was in training for three weeks to get a job as an english teacher at a school here in Pachuca. It was a very rigorous training as they have their own methhodology of teaching, and i barely had enough time to do anything else, especially cook. but after 3 weeks of this training, i began to realize that they were making a lot of false promises, and to make a long story short, I will not be working there. I will stick to teaching the Korean children that ive been teaching for the last 3 years.

anyways, on a brighter note, I was given more zucchinis by MIL and my FIL taught me a great new way to prepare them:

Just drizzle on some olive oil, sprinkle with S&P, throw them on a hot comal till they char, and voila! Delicious grilled zukes!

I think Ive mentioned comals before. They are basically a removable iron plate that come on stoves here in Mexico. They are used to warm tortillas, grill tomatoes for salsa, and to heat various other things.

big zucchini, baby zucchini

zukes on the comal

zukes in all their grilled goodness...