Tag Archives: Cooking

Horchata!

17 Nov

I was feeling very creative this week and decided to make horchata. Warning: this project can be extremely messy.

Horchata is a mainstay of Mexican cuisine, it’s a refreshing drink that is a great compliment to spicy food. It is not exactly a Mexican drink since it originated in Spain. Horchata is prepared many different ways. It is generally a rice based drink with cinnamon and milk (but you can make it without milk). “Everyone has a different recipe. Some people use one type of milk, some people use three different kinds of milk,” Juan Diaz, owner of Taquiera La Raza, said.

I chose to experiment and blend a few different recipes together until I got the best tasting combination:

Coarsely blend 1 cup of rice with 4 cups of water and 2 sticks Mexican cinnamon, or 2 tsp of regular cinnamon.

Close up shot of Mexican cinnamon

Let the rice, water and cinnamon mixture sit for at least 3 hours. I let mine soak for about 8 hours.

Blend all of the ingredients until smooth. Then, strain the mixture. I did it several times, you don’t want little grains of rice in your drink.

After that, blend the mixture with 1/2 cup of sweetened condensed milk, 2 tsp of vanilla (you can add more cinnamon if you want)

Finally pour into a pitcher and serve over ice.

The final product was not the milky white I am used to drinking at restaurants, but it was delicious. In the future I’ll leave it to the professionals and grab a cup at La Esperanza or Hammonton’s Taco Truck which I will be writing about in the near future.

 

Mexican Food in Your Kitchen

10 Nov

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I usually focus on restaurants, but cooking at home can be just as entertaining. Rather than go out last week, I decided to be adventurous and make something. I made vegetarian tacos. It was simple and  rewarding to enjoy the fruits of my labors.
I made “refried” beans by sauteing olive oil, fresh diced peppers from Stella Farms, onions and three cloves of finely chopped garlic. Once the garlic, peppers and onions were browned, I opened a can of kidney beans and cooked them until they were dry. Then, I added a little bit of water and smashed them, skins and all, with a wooden spatula. Finally, add adobo seasoning, cumin, salt and pepper to taste. It’s that easy.

Also pictured above are fresh tomatoes from Stella Farms, radishes from Savoie Organic Farm, guacamole (two avocados, lime juice, cilantro, kosher salt and black pepper) and sliced ajicito peppers from the Collingswood Farmer’s Market

It took 30 minutes to prepare the meal from start to finish. Cooking at home gives you greater control over what you put into your food and you can save money. The meal pictured above cost $10 and fed three people.

Mexican Food at Home

29 Sep

If you love Mexican cuisine, going out to dinner or lunch or breakfast can become awfully expensive. Preparing meals at home is fun and affordable. Here are some great resources:

Muy Bueno Cookbook features a variety of recipes compiled by two sisters and their mother. The blog was one of Saveur Magazine‘s finalists for best regional cuisine in its 2012 Best Food Blog Awards.

Mexico in My Kitchen has a an extensive listing of recipes and tutorials.

Mexconnect pairs recipes and commentary along with some history behind key ingredients.

Oh you’re a vegetarian? Or vegan? Fear not! Vegan Mexican Food has entrées, drinks, and desserts for you.

There are also plenty of gluten-free recipes for Mexican and Southwestern food.

Fire up the stove-top, or grill. Preparing your own meals is great outlet for creativity and easy on the wallet.