Pumpkin Empanadas

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Why is there this misconception that pumpkin is only a fall time favorite?  It is always time for pumpkin.  And pumpkin empanadas, or turnovers, of course.  Oh they are sooo good.  Buttery, flaky and soft on the inside.  I especially love how fragrant they are.  Be ready to have a kitchen filled with aroma of pure deliciousness. Continue reading

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Café de Olla

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Coffee is coffee.  Wrong!  This old school method is very different from that of the tried and true coffee maker.  When drinking coffee is meant to be relished this is the way to do it.  This is definitely not an I’m-late-and-running-out-the door kind of coffee.  It is an I-have-nothing-but-time-on-my-hands-let-me-sieze-the-opportunity-to-slowly-enjoy-my-coffee coffee.  The rich, sweet, spiced aroma leaps out of the mug and entices you to sit down.  It grabs you by the hand and gently reminds you to savor the moment.  Enjoy it.  Continue reading

Vegan Toasted Almond Horchata

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Several Latin American countries consume horchata, a rice and milk beverage often infused with cinnamon.  It is rich, creamy and sweet.  What more can you ask for?  Served chilled, horchata offers a great way to refresh oneself on a warm sunny day (or when it is freezing cold outside and you want to convince your brain you are not witnessing rain outside but instead you’re on the beach in Cabo.  Eh, either/or). Continue reading

Vegan Condensed Milk

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A popular ingredient in many dessert recipes, condensed milk offers a luxuriously creamy, sweet addition to any dish.  I created a simple substitute for this dairy classic.  Simply by swapping almond or soy milk for cow’s milk you get a vegan alternative to condensed milk that works perfectly in any recipe that calls for condensed milk. Continue reading

Insanely Good Arroz con Leche (Rice Pudding) with Strawberries

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Almost every country and culture has a variation on rice pudding.  Personally I think it is because the stuff is sooooo delicious (Hey, you figure so many people can’t be wrong).  Something about creamy, starchy, sugary sweet yuminess just cannot be beat.  In Latin American countries arroz con leche is usually creamier and runnier, think more oatmeal less tapioca , than the American version.  It usually incorporates cinnamon and condensed milk making it spicier and more on the sweeter side.  This recipe counteracts the sticky sweetness of the condensed milk with the tartness of the strawberries.  It makes for a perfect coupling.  My preference is to eat this cold but some people cannot resist and must eat it the second it is finished.  Can I blame them?  Not really. Continue reading

Tia Cuca’s Incredibly Easy Postre de Mango

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You see, when one has a genuine passion for cooking it comes through in the food.  There is no amount of salt, or spices or finishing oils that can complete a dish the way passion can.  And Tia Cuca has a passion for cooking.  Her dishes are known and envied throughout inner circles.  Her talent is on par with any chef out there. Continue reading

Atol-atte (Dark Chocolate and Coffee Atole) & Buñuelos

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Traditional Latin American Christmas favorites vary from country to country.   However, almost all Latin American countries have some sort of sweet, hot beverage and crispy, crunchy, sugary desserts perched on the stovetop ready to go during the month of December.  Atole reigns throughout Mexico and Central American countries.  Continue reading