Category Archives: Latin American

Mango Coconut Popsicles

I was visiting my sister and my beautiful nieces (2 and 5 years old) and they wanted to make popsicles so I pulled out the overripe mangoes and we made this together. I used whatever we had on hand, which truthfully wasn’t much and to my surprise, it tasted beyond amazing! The girls gulped them down and these things were bigger than them! As you can see from the pictures, there were no complaints from the crowd and this earned me 15 minutes of precious silence!
Older Baby Younger Baby
Ingredients
2 fresh, ripe mangoes (or 1 lb frozen diced mangoes) You can substitute any fruit for mangoes such as peaches, blueberries, raspberries, cherries, nectarines or anything else.
3/4 cup coconut milk (I use heavy cream as well)
1/4 cup sugar, honey, agave or equivalence of stevia

Directions
Peel the skin off of the mangoes, cut the flesh off of the large center seed and place directly into the blender.

Taste the mango to see the sweetness and add sugar as necessary. When they are over-ripen, they really don’t need any sugar added. Add the remaining ingredients into the mixer and set to high until it is fluffy and has expanded in size.

Distribute the puree equally among the Popsicle mold and freeze overnight.

Perfectly Crispy Pork Belly

I adore bacon but I can’t stand to buy bacon from the store. Have you ever read the labels? There are preservatives and sugars (dextrose being one) that are not good for human consumption. I prefer to make my own which is actually cheaper. I go to the local butcher shop and buy Pork Belly which is bacon. The butcher is kind enough to slice it to my preferences (thick-cut all the way baby!) In Uncooked Pork BellyChicago, I found organic bacon for $4.99 which is the same price as pre-sliced treated bacon that isn’t even organic. So, this is a better deal and so much healthier!
Ingredients
1 pound pork belly (aka bacon)
black pepper
salt

Directions
Place the oven rack right in the center.

Line a baking sheet with foil and leave excess foil so it hangs over the pan, this will keep the bacon grease from dripping onto the pan.

You can use a cooling rack on top of the foil to get the crispiest bacon. If you would like to do this, spray the cooling rack and place it on the foil.

Place the cut pork belly on the foil or on the cooling rack. Place the pork belly in a single layer and do not allow it to overlap. I like to add pepper to my bacon at this point to give it added flavor.Perfectly Crispy Pork Belly

Turn the oven on 400 degrees F, it is very important that you do not preheat the oven. You will be placing the bacon in a cold oven.

Cook the bacon for 12-17 minutes. The cooking time will depend on how thick you back was cut. I prefer to have thick cut bacon, you should start looking in on your bacon at the 10 minute mark. Do not open the oven, just turn on the oven light. Once the bacon looks golden brown, remove it from the oven. Remember that it will continue to cook even outside of the oven so if you let it get brown it will only brown further, which you don’t want.

Place the bacon on a paper towel to absorb the grease and cool off, you can also place it on a clean cooling rack if you desire. I like to salt the pork belly at this point.

Save the bacon grease for cooking eggs or meat. It should not be wasted.

TIPS
The oven should not be preheated, you will be placing the bacon into a cold oven.

To freeze the bacon: undercook the bacon a bit, freeze it after cooling off. When it is time to cook the bacon, place it in the microwave for 30 seconds on high and you will have perfectly cooked bacon.

Remove the bacon immediately after cooking. The bacon will continue to cook from the residual heat that it holds within but you don’t want it to continue cooking from the heat that comes off of the baking sheet.

For the non-low-carbers, you can sprinkle some brown sugar or dip the bacon in maple syrup before baking. This makes a great variation.

Drunken Cilantro Shrimp Stew

Drunken Cilantro Shrimp StewI love shrimp recipes that are full of flavor
Ingredients
2 pounds of whole shrimp, peel on and everything
3 chipotle peppers in adobe sauce, minced
Juice of 3 limes
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
4 tablespoons lard, bacon grease or butter
1 small white onion, chopped
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 red bell pepper, sliced ( I use green and red depending on what I have in the kitchen)
1 jalapeno, minced
2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
1/4 cup  Mexican beer (feel free to use any light beer of your choice) (For my low-carbers, use chicken or seafood broth)
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce of your choice
1/4 cup of cilantro

Directions
Marinate the fresh shrimp in a large bowl with the chipotle in adobo, lime juice, cumin, salt, pepper and cilantro for a minimum of 30 minutes to overnight.

Sautee the onions in the lard (or butter) until translucent and then add the garlic, jalapeno and bell peppers. Then after then have become a bit soft, add the tomatoes to cook for an additional minute.

Add the chicken broth, Mexican beer and the hot sauce.

Bring the mixture to a boil, add the marinated shrimp with the entire marinade.

Cook for 5-8 minutes covered, then uncover and allow the mixture to simmer.

Before serving, add the cilantro to the dish.

Serve over rice, mashed potatoes, mashed cauliflower, beans or just devour.