So, as you all may have noticed, I fell DEEP into ‘Holiday-Relax’ mode this last year.
For the first time in the whole year, I took some damn personal time to be twenty finally. You know, enjoying complete meals without ever whipping out a camera? Ok, ok…I did sneak in a couple of shots of my moms awesome Duck Tamales, Buñuelos and Ponche but nonetheless enjoyed a couple of meals without exercising my hunger’s last moment discipline…it felt great to just eat.
Duck Mole Tamal, Achiote Spiced Guacamole, Nopal (Cactus) Salad, Refried Great Northern Beans, Radishes: My Christmas & New Year Dinner
Buñuelos (paper-thin flour tortilla fried in Grapeseed Oil & dusted in cinnamon-sugar)
Ponche: Mexican Christmas Cinnamon Tea Filled with Anything and Everything eg. Guavas, Mexican Crab-Apples, Prunes, Sugar Cane etc. (Recipe Posted Below)
My Older Sisters Dessert Spread: Chocolate Chip Cookies, Tea Cookies & Sweet Potatoes in Piloncillo Syrup
Uhhh…it also kind of just hit me that I am turning the big, effin 21 in just two weeks, two freakin weeks. Do you guys know what this means for a restaurant blogger? YES! I am now going to be able to legally drink, no more using the risky technique of “Walk in like you own the place” or hope that my glasses and increased posture will get me through. No more GETTING DENIED entrance to a food event for not being of age, and most importantly…not having to ask a passerby bum or stranger to buy me beer and end up with the wrong kind!
Ok, so not much will be different since it hasn’t really stopped me from drinking before but somewhere between blogging, writing 100 word radio commentaries and getting mentioned in the New Yorker…I tend to forget that I am twenty sometimes. So for the last couple of weeks (ooh-ee New Years Eve, jeez!) and until I turn twenty one, I will live up my last two weeks of illegal drinking driven debauchery…
A Pair of 40 oz. King Cobras at Fourteen: My Introduction to Alcohol in Moderation via the East L.A Punk Scene
A Dear Recipe From My Holiday Break:
Ponche (Mexican Holiday Cinnamon-Fruit Tea: Familia Cabral Style)
1 Gallon of Water (Purified or Tap doesn’t matter, will boil)
4 Medium Sticks of Cinnamon
1 Small Handfull of Dried Hibiscus Blossoms
1/2 lbs of Fresh or Frozen Sugar Cane
1 Large Apple, Deseeded, Quartered (Fuji, Gala or Granny Smith; No Red Delicious please)
1 Large Orange, Peeled and Segmented
1/2 lbs of Tejocotes, whole (Mexican Crabapples; available frozen in Mexican-American Markets)
1/2 lbs of Small Fresh Guavas, whole
*this is a mix that I have habituated, feel free to alternate amounts or even add dried fruits like prunes, apricots, raisins, fresh pomegranates…possibilities are virtually endless.
1) In extra large stock pot, lightly crumble all the cinnamon sticks in the one gallon of water, add the hibiscus blossoms, turn heat highest and boil until color changes and the scent makes people in your household swoon…
2) Once color changes, lower to low heat and carefully drop in the fruits.
3) Simmer under low heat for 1-3 hrs until fruits become tender and soft.
4) Enjoy, while contemplating winter, family and life.
–Con Piquete (A generous shot of Tequila traditionally thrown in it to truly keep one warm) is up to you!
…my mom fancies Sauza brand Blanco though if you do.