Celebrating Mexico @ Mexique!

December 22nd, 2010

Lately I’m not one for restaurants with modern decor and fancy food, I just want good ole comfort food with good friends, wine and conversation… my evening at Mexique was modern and fancy with some good food and new friends… it was lovely!  I was invited by the Mexican Tourism Board to celebrate the addition of Mexican Cuisine to the UNESCO list.  The chef, Carlos Gaytan, used traditional Mexican ingredients in his beautiful, artistic and modern dishes.  A quick review of our menu…

Ceviche: Ahi Tuna, Avocado Mousse, Chipotle Aioli, Mango Habanero Galette-  The first course was actually my least favorite.  It was good.  I love avocado and tuna but I was underwhelmed.

Mole y Maiz: Jamaica Braised Pork Belly, Mole Teloloapan, Fresh Corn Tamal, Butternut Squash Foam-  This course was great.  The mole sauce worked perfectly with the pork belly.  As always, I thought the foam was unnecessary… does anyone like foam?

Carne Asada: Grilled Flank Steak, Fingerling Potato Salad, Spinach, Asparagus, Roasted Red Pepper Chipotle and Goat Cheese Fondue- The courses just kept getting better.  The sauce was excellent.  I loved that Chef Carlos was very open about how he made his dishes.  I jotted down his recipe and can’t wait to try it.

Tequila: Chef Carlos served tequila as a digestive before dessert.  I unfortunately did not catch the name but it was good.

Chocolate Tamal: Warm Rare Chocolate Tamal, Pistachios, Papantla Vanilla Ice Cream- The grand finale was this amazingly fudgy chocolate cake dessert.  The chocolate was very intense but the vanilla ice cream helped balance it.

Overall, I really liked the meal.  I met some new foodies and saw some old friends.  At times, I would have preferred less promotion so I could really focus on the meal but it was a lot of fun.  Plus they sent us home with an amazing Mexican cookbook… Can’t wait to explore!

Disclaimer: This dinner was sponsored by the Mexican Tourism board and I was invited free of charge.

Soup #2: Pumpkin Soup with Smoked Paprika

November 5th, 2010

As part of my soup making craze, I wanted to make something with my new smoked hot paprika.  I settled on Pumpkin Soup with Smoked Paprika.  The only problem was that the HOT paprika was really, really, really HOT!  To calm it down a bit, I made some rice with my new rice maker, sprinkled it with some cheddar and added some avocado.  Um! Yum!  It was delicious!

P.S. Enter my Chocolate giveaway!

Introducing… Tasty (Kitchen) Tennis…

June 6th, 2010

Let us meet the contestants…

First, we have Aaron, master of bread baking and pizza throwing. He has a soft spot for bagels and breadsticks.  Then, we have Ginny, queen of chopping and carving.  She fights back with determination and creativity.

Before we get to the first match, let us review to the rules for those of you new to the game.  One contestant
picks a ingredient and the other a meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner or dessert).  The contestants must make the meal and, you, the crowd, decide the winner of the round, plus if you want to join in (see the details at the end).

For this first round, Ginny said Strawberries and Aaron countered with lunch.  Ginny’s first serve, a strawberry-avocado-balsamic sandwich, came up short- hitting the net.  Ouch!

Next, Aaron had a perfect serve with Salmon Burger with Balsamic Strawberries and Onions. The balsamic strawberries were a ridiculously good addition to the sandwich— super sweet and tangy on top of the salmon.

Ginny volleyed it back with Strawberry-Tomato Gazpacho with Manchego Cheese Grilled Cheese. The strawberries lent a nice sweetness to the traditional tomato cold soup and went perfect with the grilled cheese.

So now, who you do you think won?  Please leave your answer below…

Don’t miss the second round in two weeks! These master (kitchen) tennis players will be back to bring you:  TOFU for DESSERT!

Please stay tuned!

Also, if you would like to participate in the next round, email ginnygetsfloury [at] gmail [dot] com by June 19, 2010, the name of your blog, its URL, the recipe and a photograph.  If you don’t have a blog, feel free to participate- just email me the recipe with a picture.  I’ll hope you join us for another round of Tasty (Kitchen) Tennis!