Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Chicken and Cheese Tamales (Red Salsa and Green Salsa)

To watch this Video-Recipe please click HERE!!!

Hi Everyone! I want to take this opportunity to wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! I hope you all have a wonderful time!

Today's recipe is Mexican Tamales, this is one of the things/dishes we usually have for Christmas and/or New Year's Eve. So today I'm sharing my grandma's recipe with you all, I really hope you like it! My grandma was a very well known "tamalera" meaning, she made tamales to sell, and she had a lot of happy customers! So it's needles to say that in my family we have been making tamales for as long as I remember, we used to help my grandma to make tamales, and then we will also delivered them to her customers, I have a lot of good memories making tamales, and hopefully by sharing this recipe, I will also encourage you to make tamales with your family, and have a wonderful time, while making them.  They are very time consuming, but every minute is worth it, and if you have friends or family helping  you, I assure you, you will have a wonderful time and you will be making memories to last you a lifetime!  So call your friends, sister, mother, or daughter, and invite them over to make some tamales! Have fun making them and then enjoy!

Makes 30-40 tamales
Ingredients:
  • 1½ kilos Fresh Corn Masa (3.306 lbs.) (or Maseca Instant corn masa)
  • 750 grams Lard (Fresh Lard) (you need ½ kilo of lard for every 1 kilo of Masa)
  • Corn Husks
  • Salt to taste
  • Chicken Broth (if needed)

Red Salsa:

  • 20 Guajillo Chili or Mirasol Chili
  • 1 lb. Tomatillos (green tomatoes)
  • 1 Garlic clove
  • Salt to taste
  • Whole Black Pepper to taste
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cumin
  • ½ Tablespoon Lard
Green Salsa:
  • 1 lb. Tomatillos (green tomatoes)
  • 6+ Jalapeño Peppers (more or less to taste)
  • 1 Garlic clove
  • Salt to Taste
  • Whole Black Pepper to taste
  • ½ Tablespoon Lard

Chicken Filling: 
  • 1 Whole chicken
  • Whole pepper to taste
  • 1 Garlic
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • ½ small Onion
  • Salt to taste

Cheese Filling: (optional)
  • Havarti Cheese cut into strips about ½ inch thick (1 strip per tamal)
  • 1 Can Pickled Jalapenos (3-4 pieces per tamal)

Soak the corn husks in warm water for at least 1 hour.  Remove them from the water just before you start using them.

Cook the chicken in boiling water with the onion, bay leaves, garlic, salt and black pepper to taste. Cook for 1 hour or until well cooked. Let it cool, then shred it. Set it aside until you are ready to use it.

To make the Red Salsa:  Peel off the tomatillos and remove the stems from the red chili, place them in a sauce pan, cover with enough water and cook them on medium-high heat for about 10-15 minutes or until soft.  Drain them, place them in the blender, with ½ cup water, 1 garlic clove, 1 teaspoon of cumin, salt and black pepper to taste. Blend on high for about 3-5 minute or until you get a smooth sauce.  (If you think the Sauce is too thick, add more water but do NOT make it to watery!)
Now in a sauce pan, add ½ tablespoon of lard, and strain in the salsa, cook on medium heat fora bout 10-15 minutes or until it comes to a boil. Once it's boiling, taste the flavor and add more salt if needed. Once the salsa is done, set it aside until you are ready to use it.

To make the  Green Salsa: Peel off the tomatillo, remove the stems from the jalapenos, place them in a sauce pan, rinse with warm water, then cover them with enough water, and cook on medium-high heat for about 10-15 minutes or until soft.  Once they are done, place them in a blender, add in the garlic, black pepper to taste and ½ cup of water, blend on high until the Sauce is smooth.  In a sauce pan add in ½ tablespoon of lard, and cook the green Sauce on medium heat until it comes to a boil, once it's boiling, taste the flavor and add more salt if needed. Then set it aside until you are ready to use it.

To prepare the Masa/Dough:  Warm up the lard in the microwave for 1 minute. Place the masa/dough in a large bowl, and add in half the lard, remember, from every "Kilo of masa" (2.204 lbs) you will need  "½ kilo of lard (1.102 lbs.)  Then season the masa/dough with plenty of salt, and mix together, you  have to mix (knead) everything with your hands, the masa/dough might have a lot of big lumps so it's easier to dissolve them if you are using your hands.  Add in the rest of the lard, mix well, then taste the flavor and add more salt if necessary. You want the dough to be soft and smooth, so it will be easier to spread it on the husks, if you already added all the lard, and your dough is still feeling too dry, feel free to add chicken broth to get the right texture. 

Once the dough has the right texture and flavor, you can start making the tamales.

Grab a corn husk, spread the masa over the husk on an even layer, about ¼-½ inch thick,  avoid spreading the masa/dough over the end (tale) of the husk, the place some shredded chicken right in the center. Spoon some of the Red or Green Sauce over the chicken.  Then bring in the sides of the husk to cover the filling,  Then Fold in the end of the husk towards the center, and just keep on repeating theses steps until you are done.  (Follow the same steps for both the green tamales and the red tamales.)

To make the cheese tamales: Spread the dough over the corn husk on an even layer, (avoid the end of the husk) place a cheese strip right in the center, top the cheese with pickled jalapenos, bring the sides of the husk in to cover the filling, fold in the end of the husk towards the center, and keep on repeating this steps until you are done.

Add plenty of water to your steamer, and place the tamales inside the steamer, separate each layer, red, green and cheese, with a bunch of shredded corn husks in between each layer. Cook for 90 minutes or until cooked.

To serve, spoon some of the left over salsa over the tamales and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Gingerbread Cookies

To watch this Video-recipe, please click HERE!!!

Hi everyone! I hope you are all doing great! Today's recipe is perfect for this Holiday Season, "Gingerbread Cookies", they are so easy and so inexpensive to make.  They make the perfect treat, or the perfect home-made present for your friends and family!  You will also have a great time decorating these beautiful cookies, after you are done, you will for sure have a smile on your face when you realize what a beautiful master piece you have created!! If you have any children at home, invite them to cook with you, they will have  lots of fun, and this is a great opportunity to have fun in the kitchen and create some unique and fun memories with your love ones, children or adults, this is a fun recipe for everyone to make! Seize the moment and enjoy every single day and minute we have left before the end of the year! I hope you all have a wonderful Holiday Season, Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year, and if you have time, please do try these cookies! They are delicious!

Serves 2-3 dozens
Ingredients:
  • 3 cups plus a ¼ cup of  All purpose Flour
  • 2 sticks unsalted Butter, softened
  • 1 Large Egg
  • ¼ cup Brown Sugar
  • ½ cup unsulphured Molasses
  • 2 Teaspoons Ground Ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon Ground Cloves
  • ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
  • ¼ teaspoon Salt

For the Icing:

  • 2/3 cups powdered sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons of milk
  • Food coloring (optional)
  • Colored sprinkles (optional
In a large bowl,  combine the flour with ground ginger, ground cinnamon, ground cloves, salt and baking soda, mix well and set aside.

In an electric mixer on medium speed,  cream the butter and the brown sugar, scrape down the sides of the bowl if you need too. Reduce the speed and add the egg, and also add in the molasses, blend on medium speed until well combined. Reduce the speed to low, and add the flour a cup at a time...and continue to combine on low speed until it all comes together. Do not over mix.!!!

Separate the dough into two equal sections. Flatten each section to make a disc. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour, or until the dough is firm.

Preheat the oven to 325ºF.

Roll out the dough to a ¼-½ inch thickness and cut out the cookies using your Favorite Xmas cookie cutters. Repeat this step until you have cut out all the cookies. 

Place them on a  baking sheet, and bake them at 325ºF for 10-12 minutes. (Do NOT brown them too much!!!)  Let them cool completely before decorating them.

To make the icing, whisk 2/3 cups of powdered sugar with 2 tablespoons of milk, whisk until smooth.  Place icing inside a plastic bag, cut a small opening on the tip of the bag, and decorate your cookies anyway you want!  Sprinkle with color sprinkles.  (You can also add some food coloring to the icing!). Be creative and have fun decorating your cookies!

Enjoy!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Lemon-Butter Broiled Chicken

To watch this Video-Recipe please click HERE!!

Serve 4-6
Ingredients:
  • 1 whole Chicken (5-6 lbs.)
  • 2-3 minced Garlic cloves
  • 2 whole Garlic cloves
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 lime
  • 4 Tablespoons White Wine
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 1 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2  Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary
  • 2 Bay Leaves
  • ½ Tablespoons Chicken Flavor Bouillon Seasoning
  • Black Pepper to taste
  • Salt to taste

In a small bowl, combine the juice of half a lime, and half a lemon, season with  the minced garlic cloves, 1 tablespoon of fresh rosemary, ½ tablespoon Chicken flavor bouillon seasoning, black pepper and salt to taste. Add in  1 tablespoon of Extra virgin Olive oil, and 2 tablespoons of butter, place in t he microwave for 1 minute or until the butter is melted. Add in the white wine, and mix well to combine, set aside for a minute.

Rinse the chicken with cold water. Pat it dry with paper towels. Loosen the skin from the chicken, without removing it completely.  Try to avoid tearing the skin. Now with a small knife, poke the chicken flesh (avoiding the skin) a couple times.

Spoon some of the butter mixture over the chicken skin, on all sides, and massage it really well on all sides of the chicken.

Spoon some of the butter mixture, on the chicken flesh, under the skin, and massage it really well. Also don't forget to season the chicken cavity.

Stuff the chicken cavity with the other half of the lemon, the other half of the lime, the whole garlic cloves, bay leaves and the fresh rosemary. Tie the chicken legs together.
And season the chicken one more time with plenty of Black pepper and salt to taste on all sides. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours, (Overnight will be perfect!!)

Set the oven to Broil. (or if you prefer,  preheat oven to 450ºF)

Broil the chicken for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven, baste the chicken with the cooking liquid, and flip the chicken around so it can get brow on the other side, continue to broil for another 30 minutes or until  well cooked. 

If you prefer, bake at 450ºF for 15 minutes. Then reduce the temperature to 350ºF and continue to bake until well cooked.

The Internal temperature of the chicken should be of 170ºF-175ºF.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Chocolate Cheesecake


To watch this Video-Recipe please click HERE!

This Cheesecake is perfect for the Holidays! I hope you like it as much as I did! Enjoy!!

Serves 10-12
Ingredients:
  • 2 cups crushed Chocolate Cream-filled wafers
  • 760 grams Cream Cheese at room temperature
  • 1½  cups granulated Sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Vanilla extract
  • ½ cup unsweetened Cocoa Powder
  • 2 tablespoons of all purpose Flour
  • 1 cup Sour Cream
  • 3 large Eggs
  • ½ cup melted butter

For garnish:
  • 1 cup semi-sweet Chocolate Chips
  • 2 teaspoons Butter

Preheat oven to 350ºF (180ºC)
 
In a bowl, combine the melted butter with the crushed wafers, mix well, and press into the bottom of your baking baking dish , (I'm using a 3-QT rectangular baking dish 12x 9), set aside until you are ready to use it.

In an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and the sugar, until blended, add in the the sour cream and vanilla, blend until well blended. Add in the eggs, one at a time, mixing for 30 seconds, before adding the next one, then  also add in the flour and cocoa powder.  Blend on high for 2-3 minutes.

Pour the cream cheese mixture into your prepared baking dish, and bake for 1 hour at 350ºF.  After an hour, turn off the oven, but leave the cheesecake in it for another 30 minutes or so.

After 30 minutes, remove the cheesecake from the oven, and set it aside for a minute.

In the microwave, melt 1 cup of chocolate chips with 2 teaspoons of butter, mix well. and drizzle the  melted chocolate over the cheesecake. Let it cool, or serve, enjoy!
 
 

Saturday, December 07, 2013

Mexican Torta "Sandwich a la Mexicana!"

To watch this Video-Recipe please click HERE!!!

This is a highly-requested video, on how to make a Mexican Torta, this is a "Torta a la Mexicana, which has re-fried beans with chorizo, breaded cutlets, cheese, avocado, tomatoes onion and jalapenos! This one of the most popular tortas in any "Loncherias", followed by "Torta de Adobada, and Torta de Carne Asada! Hopefully I would be able to share those two with you soon enough! For now I hope you enjoy this delicious torta filled with lots of Mexican Goodness! Enjoy!

Serve 4-6
Ingredients:

  • 4-6 Chicken Cutlets, feel free to use beef or pork if you want.
  • 2 cups pinto beans
  • 4-6 cheese slices
  • 6+ Bacon Slices
  • 8oz Chorizo
  • 1½ cups dry breadcrumbs
  • 1-2 eggs
  • 4-6 Bolillos (Mexican Bread or you can use French Bread instead)
  • 3-4 Tablespoons of Oil (vegetable or extra virgin olive oil)
  • ½ - 1 Tablespoon Butter
  • ½ or 2/3 cups Water

To serve:
  • Sliced Onions
  • Sliced Tomatoes
  • Sliced Jalapenos
  • 1 Avocado

Slice the bread in half, horizontally co cut it open.

Season the Breadcrumbs with salt and pepper to taste, mix well.
Season the eggs with salt and black pepper to taste, beat together.

Soak the chicken  pieces in the egg mixture, then transfer them to the breadcrumbs mixture.Make sure they are well covered with the breadcrumbs and set them aside until you are ready to use them.
In a large skillet, brown the bacon, it will take about 5 minutes. Place the bacon on paper towels and set it aside for a minute.

In the same skillet, on high heat, add in the chorizo, break it down with a spoon, and cook for about 5 minutes or until browned and cooked. (add some oil if you need to.) Then add in the beans, and about 2/3 cups of water, stir together and cook for about 3 minutes, just to warm up the beans. Once the beans are warmed, mash them with a masher, then taste the flavor, and add salt and pepper if needed, add more water if necessary, and continue to cook the beans until they start to boil. Set them aside until ready to use them.

In a large skillet, heat up some oil, and pan-fry the cutlets until golden brown on all sides and well cooked. (about 3 minutes on each side.) Remove from the skillet and drain on paper towels.

Clean the same skillet where you cooked the cutlets with paper towels, then add in 1 tablespoon of butter, and toast the bread for a bout 1 minute on each side. Then you are ready to make the Torta!

Spread some of the bean mixture over one half of the Bolillo, then place the cutlet right over the beans,  top with the cheese, avocado, tomatoes, onions, jalapenos and the bacon.

If you want you can spread more beans on the other half of the Bolillo. Bring both halves together and enjoy!!

Tuesday, December 03, 2013

Ideas Festivas Rapidas y Faciles con Nestle y Mitu



Check out the second video I made in collaboration with Nestle and Mitu Network!!

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