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Posts from the ‘Vegetarian’ Category

Empadinhas de Palmito

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I always loved Palm Sunday when I was little.  There was something about getting those palm fronds that felt important.  For once I had a focus for my fidgeting, and I’d spend the service shaping and reshaping them.  Last Sunday, though I (somewhat guiltily) didn’t attend mass, I fussed with hearts of palm instead. Read more

Holiday Cookbook + Apron Giveaway

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A few weeks ago, I decided to make Cannelle et Vanille‘s Aran Goyaga’s Swiss Chard, Pear and Gruyère Tart from her new cookbook, Small Plates and Sweet Treats.  I’m not sure how to describe this beautifully photographed book except to say that it glows.  It actually glows. Read more

Bollitos de Carita

When I decided to make bollitos de carita – black-eyed pea fritters made from beans soaked for hours then husked and ground to a paste – I couldn’t believe no simmering would be required.  Left overnight, they were supposed to blister and pucker leaving behind perfectly tender, creamy white beans.  I loved that caritas roughly translates to “little faces” and imagined removing the peel would be as simple as slipping off a mask.  Not so.  Some popped right out but more needed coaxing, and no matter how many I did, there were always more. Read more

Gnocchi à l’Alsacienne

I was looking for my monthly (well I try) ñoquis del 29 recipe and found Thomas Keller’s gnocchi à l’Alsacienne from Bouchon.  I’m always drawn to Keller recipes when I’m getting ready for a long run.  For last winter’s NYC half marathon it was ad hoc at home’s farro and black rice with roasted autumn squash and this time it was his gnocchi with butternut squash and mushrooms before next week’s full marathon, though both involve a lot of rotating pans and squash cubing just when I’m supposed to be resting up and tapering down. Read more

Soufflé de Quinoa

Nothing takes the fear out of making a soufflé like making three in a row.  I found a recipe for one combined with amaranth that I couldn’t wait to try.  My training for this year’s New York City marathon is nearing the 20-mile mark so I’ve been cooking up batches of  amaranth to have on hand for cereal topped with honey and fruit.  While adding eggs and cheese may not be the best way to enjoy my vitamin high grain, it sounded wonderful and I’d been so good. Read more

Second Chances

I missed last month’s ñoquis del 29 post due to technical difficulties.  I was in the middle of trying this recipe for bread and spinach gnocchi for the first time when a friend called after months of phone tag.  Thirty minutes later, we’d finally caught up but I had a too soft mass of spinach flecked dough looking despondent in a mixing bowl.  Having mis-measured, I made some adjustments so that they could be shaped but wasn’t hopeful that they’d stand up to boiling water. Read more

Humitas Ecuatorianas


I’m a little late in posting this recipe for humitas.  Though I read about them weeks ago and made my first batch a couple of days ago, a lot of have-tos (and a few want-tos) have gotten in the the way.  Initially, I didn’t recognize them as the tamales I’d grown up with.  They were of course and they weren’t.  Depending on whether you’re in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Mexico, Peru, Venezuela or the Caribbean, they’re known as humitas, humintas, tamales, tamalli, tamalitos verdes, chapanas, bollos, choclotanda, chumales, cachapas, chapanas, chiguiles, envueltos de mazorca, ayacas, hallacas, juanes, pamonhas.  The filling can be sweet or savory, made with fresh or dried corn, plantains or potatoes, wrapped corn husks, banana leaves or parchment paper,  steamed or baked, served as a snack, side dish, casserole or heavy stew. Read more

A Grilling Alternative

I was looking for grilling recipes when I heard about a great non-grilling suggestion from my Tio Raul. After giving me instructions on how to make grilled elotes slathered in crema and covered with cheese, he mentioned this version he’d had at the end of a long Mexican wedding where the reception ended with a second meal. Read more

Tostones on the Fly

Until recently, I rarely fried anything at home.  I hated the smell, the splatter, the guilt.  When I started writing about Latin American food, I knew I couldn’t avoid it much longer and finally bought a deep fryer.  While it produces perfect batches of churros, empanadas and buñuelos, it’s the SUV of fryers requiring such a massive amount of oil that I keep it parked most of the time.  It wasn’t practical for smaller, any-night batches of plantains.  Maduros I can handle.  Overly ripe, they caramelize Read more

Fairest of Them All

I really miss apples when they’re gone.  I try to follow the seasons, stay local, only buy what’s available at the farmer’s markets but have to admit that I cheat all the time when it comes to apples.  Not that I have to these days – the markets are bursting with every variety.  My great grandmother, who grew up on a farm in Asturias where they made their own cider, lived to be a very healthy and graceful 103.  It could have been the apples or the Estée Lauder but its definitely worth a try.  Having found a simple recipe for baked apples, I looked for variations with added butter, custard, almonds, or preserves.  They all looked great, and I’ll Read more

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