Peperoncini Panzanella

Special shout out to Mezzetta for sponsoring this post and helping keep this site/me moving/shaking/twisting.

As the summer dwindles down and fall foods start to creep in (I had an out of body experience the other day while my hand just involuntarily reached for a pumpkin spice almond creamer). I figured there needs to be some sort of summer send-off produce bucket list, a salute to all the good things we can’t have for another year:

– sweet juicy tomatoes
– perfect peaches etc.
– cute ripe strawberries
– cheap basil everywhere

When Mezzetta reached out and asked if I wanted to work on something I figuured it was the ideal time to cross perfect tomatoes off the list and give myself something to make all summer long.

Next year.

¯\_(ツ)_/¯

The recipe really does lend itself to whatever vegetables you have on hand though, and would do really well as a fall salad with some roasted squash or chickpeas, I think it’ll appear as something fresh a few times this fall.

I will take any and all reasons to eat bread and call it a salad 🙂

Overall this is an incredibly dish to throw together. The dressing is just two ingredients (olive oil and brine from the Mezzetta peperoncinis) and brightens all the ingredients effortlessly. The bite you get from the peperoncinis is the boost of flavor every salad should have. And the cherry on top is that it lends itself to being made ahead of time, that extra 30 minutes for the bread cubes to soak up their olive oil peperoncini bath dressing is exactly what the salad calls for.

Whether you’re using the salad as a salute to summer or a hello to fall, it’s the perfect thing to serve to celebrate.

Continue Reading

Mango and Raspberry Sour Cream Sherbet

Special shout out to the National Mango Board for sponsoring this post and helping keep this site/me moving/shaking/twisting.

It’s officially ice cream season (even though for me, ice cream has no season and is consumed year-round). It’s so hot outside right now that I want to eat something cold/refreshing for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and ice cream usually fits that bill.

Today, we’re talking about the more refreshing area of frozen treats in the form of sherbet. A little bit of dairy to add some richness but not too much that it overpowers your chosen fruit. It’s my favorite form of frozen fruit desserts and a great way to showcase the fruit’s flavor profile. I love mangos for this recipe because mangos are especially rich in vitamin C, with a ¾ cup serving packing in half of what you need for that day!  

Technically, sherbet is supposed to use a certain milk fat percentage etc etc buuut this definitely isn’t ice cream and any sorbet that adds dairy is just lying to itself. The great thing about this recipe is that it doesn’t require churning and the sour cream really helps boost the fat content to keep the texture smooth.

And for an added fun twist, we’re also tie-dying the sherbet so we get nice swirls of the mango with the raspberry.

If you wanted to do a mango-only sherbet, you could certainly double the mango ingredients but still make it in two batches to help the machine not overheat. Whatever you do, make it in preparation for any upcoming heatwave.

Continue Reading

Strawberry Hibiscus Cake

Strawberry Hibiscus Cake

It’s heeeeeere! My other half, Esteban, has finally released his book child Chicano Eats into the world. It’s been a long couple years of him shooting and testing and stressing and I couldn’t be more proud with what he put together.

The book has everything: it’s beautiful, fun, informative, delicious, etc. and I love it. Not as much as I love him, but there’s a close-ish capacity.

It was really hard going over everything and figuring out what I wanted to post on the blog and shoot but I landed on something a little more celebratory with cake.

Not just any cake, it’s a strawberry hibiscus cake. Hibiscus tea in the buttercream gives it an insane vibrant color while layers of strawberry filling give it a fruity slap across the face.

His recipe does not look like this in the book, it’s a classic layer cake, buuut the wrecking balls of hands that I was gifted with do not compute making a cute cake. I went with the milk bar naked cake method because it’s nearly foolproof for a good looking cake if you’re into dessert nudity and added some strawberry cake crumbs that are totally optional but not really.

If you’ve ever wanted a fun cookbook, it’s this right here. It’s got all you need to make Mexican food in your kitchen with Crossover recipes to make something familiar you’ve never had before.

Continue Reading

Mango Lime Shortcakes

Special shout out to the National Mango Board for sponsoring this post and helping keep this site/me moving/shaking/twisting.

Summer’s finally starting to heat up here in the central valley which means more fruity, refreshing desserts. As much as I love a good strawberry shortcake, it’s nice to switch it up from time to time.

Enter the Mango shortcake.

We’re transforming this recipe by adding in sweet mangos (Hello, it’s National Mango Month!) and pairing them with buttery biscuits and whipped cream. Mangos are always in season, and they are especially rich in vitamin C – a ¾ cup serving packs in half of what you need for the day. The juicy mangos are complemented by lime juice and sandwiched between biscuits and cream of coconut whipped cream.

Continue Reading

The Mango Mule

Special shout out to the National Mango Board for sponsoring this post and helping keep this site/me moving/shaking/twisting.

We’re getting closer to Cinco de Mayo, and I don’t know about you, but I’ve been craving a refreshing beverage to celebrate. I enjoyed incorporating mangos into this festive twist on a classic Moscow Mule.

One of the keys to this recipe is making sure you have a ripe mango for the puree. Focus on feel, not color – every variety is a different color when ripe. When you give a ripe mango a gentle squeeze, it will give slightly, indicating soft flesh inside. To ripen at home, store at room temperature (like an avocado), or speed up the process by storing in a brown paper bag at room temperature for two days.

Now let’s get into the fun part – the recipe!

Continue Reading

Passion Fruit Paloma

Special shout out to Sprouts Farmers Market for sponsoring this post and helping keep this site/me moving/shaking/twisting.

It’s starting to heat up here in Fresno, what was a 65º Tuesday is now an 85º Tuesday with the sun blasting turned up to high. Whenever the weather heats up I always find myself reaching for the most refreshing of drink flavors. Drinks that take lots of ice, that make me feel like I’m sitting on a beach somewhere.

That’s where this paloma comes into play. The classic paloma is a mix of grapefruit soda, tequila, and lime. I love a good paloma, they’re easy to throw together and I usually have all the ingredients on hand. The twist with this one is the passion fruit juice. This ceres brand can be hard to find at most grocery stores but Sprouts always has it and the flavor is everything you love about passionfruit, minus the high price tag it usually takes to get this much juice.

The classic paloma usually also uses a cheaper variety of grapefruit soda, but whenever I’m going to make it I make sure to grab an Italian grapefruit soda. The flavor usually aligns more with a fresh grapefruit and makes it that much more refreshing. The Sprouts Organic brand is a great option to keep in your pantry.

And last but not least: the Garnish. Sprouts has great looking produce (these grapefruits!) and it’s always in stock. Grabbing a grapefruit with a bag of key limes is a great way to finish off the drinks.

Continue Reading