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Stuffed Chayote with Carne Molida | Caribbean Squash with Ground Beef

How do you decide which recipes to make daily or on special occasions? What sparks your interest? A good photo? A mouth-watering description in a cookbook? The smell of a particular food coming from a neighbor’s house? A memory of someone?

For me, it’s usually a little bit of each, but this time tidbits of stories about my abuelita {grandmother} motivated me to hunt down chayote {a Caribbean squash}, stuff it with seasoned carne molida {ground beef} and serve it how she might have from her mountain home of Orocovis, Puerto Rico.

The background story is that my grandmother was an exceptional cook, someone who could whip up a meal with just a few ingredients on hand. I have some memories of her, but never of her cooking. I only remember her while she infrequently visited here in the States. She came with bundles of guava candy, coconut candy, and savory pasteles. I never knew how much people loved her food.

Until recently.

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Good Eats in San Diego

We recently had a wonderful five day trip to one of my favorite places- San Diego, California. My sister in law decided on a destination vacation in the nearby coastal gem town of La Jolla, so…twist my arm. In between preparing for the at-home pre-wedding dinner the evening before and all the wedding-related shopping and errands, we … Read more

Quick Pickled Peppers

I’ve been really enjoying my time in Ohio among all the backyard gardeners in my family and in our neighborhood. Needless to say, I have been overwhelmed with the amount of produce people have gifted us, but found that pickling was the answer to enjoy the sweet and the hot peppers from my aunt’s garden. … Read more

Blueberry Paletas

If you live in Chicago, Los Angeles, anywhere in Mexico or near a large Mexican population you’ve probably heard of paletas. If you haven’t heard, they are some of the most delicious summer treats one can enjoy. Made with fresh, frozen fruits in dairy or water base, these lovely popsicles aren’t just for kids. Recently, … Read more

Hangar Steak with Mango Salsa

A great summer dish to leave you satisfied and refreshed all at once this hangar steak can be grilled indoors or out. Prepare the salsa first so the steak isn’t waiting t0o long to be accompanied by its sweet & savory counterpart, the mango salsa. Mango Salsa Ingredients Serves 4 1 clove garlic, minced 1 mango, … Read more

Black Beans {Without the Lard}

This is just one of the ways I make them. You can start from this recipe and shake things up with your own favorite additions. Let me know what you do with your frijoles negroes, without the lard.

A Chocolate Drink Three Ways

One of the first pages I opened in the book Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Hermé, written by Dorie Greenspan, was a recipe for Hot Chocolate with Coffee. On a cold early morning when you need caffeine, but also realize it’s the ‘season’ for hot chocolate, what couldn’t be better? One look at the recipe and … Read more

Sweet Tomato Preserve

I.  Love.  Tomatoes. Being Sicilian, you sort of have to or you may never eat. Ok, that’s a bit extreme, I realize.  All jokes aside,  I really do love all the creativity this wonderful summer food allows me to have in the kitchen as I explore a multitude of dishes, no matter what type of cuisine I’m in … Read more

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