My Mexican Day of the Dead house was inspired by the sugar skulls that typically signify the holiday.
Where to find the ingredients and tools used in the making of the Taste of Tucson Cookbook. Including small appliances, cookware, Sonoran Mexican pantry staples, food photography tips, masa, hot sauces and more.
Roasted corn kernels in a creamy, cheesy sauce seasoned with chile and lime, inspired by Elote en Vaso sold by snack shops & street vendors in clear plastic cups. I made this recipe for my mom's skeptical, octogenarian friends at a dinner party at her house in late August, and they loved it. I used fresh Ohio sweet corn from the farmer's market that my brother cut from cob before sautéing in a hot cast iron skillet.
When life gives me lemons... and shrimp, I make ceviche. Spicy, citrus shrimp ceviche on crunchy tostada shells is a bright and light Sonoran style Mexican treat.
The shrimp cocktail I grew up with in Ohio was reserved for special occasions. It was served in a chilled martini glass filled with crushed ice topped with a dollop of horseradish and lemon juice infused ketchup, the shrimp dangling around the rim. I loved it. Sonoran style shrimp cocktail (cocktail de camaron) is a more casual affair, but just as festive. It's traditionally served layered in the kind of glass used for ice cream sundaes, along with the customary long spoon, and since I make mine with Bloody Mary mix and hot sauce it's ready in about 5 minutes. This recipe is from my cookbook, Taste of Tucson.
This Sonoran version of tortilla soup features crushed tortilla chips and melted cheese anchored in a clear broth that is seasoned with garlic, green chiles and Mexican oregano. I use shredded roasted or rotisserie chicken so that it’s ready in about 30 minutes. If you can’t find RO-TEL in your neck of the woods, you can substitute it with 1 cup diced tomatoes and 1/4 cup canned diced green chiles.
This crispy matzo based breakfast is a cross between molletes and huevos rancheros. I used beans from a can and my homemade chiltepin salsa.
There are Southwestern regional influences that vary from New Mexico to Arizona, Texas, and Southern California. Here in Tucson, our regional cuisine is defined by fresh veggies, grilled meats and all of the delicacies that a mid-sized, sunshine filled desert city/college town, 60 miles from Mexico, has to offer. It's summertime eating all year round.For my Tucson style grilled chicken I used sweet Hungarian smoked paprika mixed with hot New Mexico chili pepper, some ground unsweetened chocolate (inspired by molés), and a good California red wine blend. For me, healthy chicken is based on happy chickens. Look for free range, organic chickens who were raised without added hormones.
This super-refreshing citrus beer cocktail is served in a chile and salt rimmed glass over ice. It's kinda like a beer margarita. I love it because it's a big drink that lasts a long time and it has considerably less sugar and calories than a margarita. Use a Mexican lager or amber beer such as Dos Equis. If you want to make this drink spicier you can garnish the drink with a jalapeno slice or two. Serve in a traditional chelada glass if possible.
I marinated myself a flank steak using my mom's recipe from the 80s, adding in some Mexican oregano and extra citrus to #sonoranize it a bit so now it's an Ohio meets Tucson recipe.
Inspired by Mexican Street Corn, the Elote Dog is a whole beef jumbo hot dog is topped with roasted corn, mayo, lime and spices and served in a top-cut, whole grain bolillo roll.
A cross between a Mexican pizza an an open-faced quesadilla, Southern Arizona restaurants started selling cheese crisps more than 50 years ago and it's become a staple of our local Sonoran style cuisine.I ditched the tortilla and came up with this super-cheesy, updated version of the dish that is grain-free, and thus gluten-free and low-carb as well. Parmesan is a hard cheese that crisps when melted, replacing the flour based tortilla. The cheese crisp is the perfect comfort food, and this one is the cheesiest!Here is my all-cheese version topped with green chiles, cilantro and a chipotle ranch drizzle. Serve the chipotle ranch on the side as a dipping sauce if you don't have a squeeze bottle available. I used a blend of jack, cheddar, and queso quesadilla for the Mexican cheese blend.
A healthy burrito bowl recipe with quinoa, black beans and avocado tossed in a Sonoran style Mexican chipotle lime vinaigrette dressing. The Greek yogurt adds a little creaminess to the vinaigrette, so I recommend arranging it all pretty in bowl, then smooshing and swirling the whole thing together into a big mess before you eat it.
My choice for snack of the day is a crunchy Sonoran style Mexican and Jewish deli mashup. Chopped liver pate smeared onto pork rinds and topped with cornichons!
Yay! It's National Taco Day! Here's a recipe of one of my favorite kinds - Carne Asada, from the book Knack Mexican Cooking by Chelsie Kenyon.
I think it's interesting how similar variations of dishes develop in different parts of the world. I'd never heard of Shakshuka until recently, but it's very popular in the Middle East and Israel and it's somewhat similar to Eggs Diablo. I took my version a step further and added a little cream and cheddar cheese, and placed the whole thing under the broiler, since I wanted my eggs cooked throughout. This dish is traditionally cooked in a cast iron skillet, but but you can use any oven safe skillet. I baked it in a 6.5" Lodge Cast Iron Skillet which was a perfect fit for the sauce and 4 eggs.
Sonoran style spicy potato salad tossed with a chili-lime vinaigrette. Here in Southern Arizona, our famous Sonoran style Mexican food is often garnished with pickled red onions and Mexican limes. I've incorporated those flavors into my recipe for a spicy roasted potato salad tossed with a chili-lime vinaigrette.
Recipe for a hearty, spicy Sonoran style Mexican Rice with Chayote and Black Beans. The Chayote is a somewhat strange looking vegetable that tastes somewhere in between a squash and a potato. This recipe serves 4-6 as a side dish.