Splurge Night – Mexican Fiesta Theme

I am super excited to get this post up.  I’ve been busy collecting recipes and trying them out for the past couple of weeks to prepare for last night.  It was a fun night and I am looking forward to our monthly get-togethers.  I decided I wanted to do a Mexican theme as I figured it would give me a great starting point to pick complementing recipes.  Here they are:

Drinks:

Mexican Strawberry Water (Agua de Fresa)

You can find the recipe here.

I only made a half recipe as I had several drinks available.  Here are a couple of pictures:

 

 

 

 

Bahama Mama

I traveled to Mexico 2 years ago and while I was there I fell in love with Bahama Mamas.  I’ve tried having them made here a couple of times, but they never taste the same, so I searched for a recipe online (what did people do before google?).  And after some searching I stumbled upon this recipe.  And let me tell you with just a slight modification, this tastes just like the ones I remember drinking in Mexico.

  • 1/2 fluid ounce rum
  • 1/2 fluid ounce coconut-flavored rum
  • 1 fluid ounce grenadine syrup (I increased it by 1/2 ounce when compared to the original recipe)
  • 1 fluid ounce orange juice
  • 1 fluid ounce pineapple juice
  • 1 cup crushed ice

Directions:

  • Crush ice
  • Combine the remaining ingredients in the blender and blend until it is nice and slushy
  • Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture, but the picture on the link is a pretty good representation of what it looks like.  And I’m sure I’ll make them again so if I remember to take a picture at some point I will post it up here.

I picked up some imitation rum and coconut extracts in hopes that I will be able to make a virgin version of this drink to enjoy on a regular basis.

Appetizers

Pico de Gallo and Guacamole

 

 

 

 

I used a combination of a couple of recipes to make up my Pico de Gallo and Guacamole.  The main recipe I followed can be found here.

For the Pico de Gallo

I followed the recipe, with the exception of adding cilantro as I don’t care for it.  And I also added/modified the amounts of some ingredients, so my recipe was as follows:

  • 5 whole plum (roma) tomatoes – I removed the seeds
  • 1/2 whole large onion
  • 1 jalapeno pepper (seeds removed)
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • Lime juice
  • Salt (to taste)

Guacamole

  • 3 whole avocados
  • Pico de Gallo
  • Lime juice
  • Salt (to taste)

Preparation Instructions

Pico de Gallo

Finely dice tomatoes, jalapeno, onion, and garlic.  Mix together in a bowl.  Squeeze the juice of half of one lime into the bowl.  Add salt to taste and stir again and you’re done.  It is best to prepare Pico de Gallo right before serving, but if you want to prepare it in advance just wait to add the salt until right before you are ready to serve.

Guacamole

Halve the avocados lengthwise and remove the pits.  Scrape out the flesh with a spoon onto a large plate.  Then with the bottom of a clean cup, mash the avocado (leaving it relatively chunky).  Add some salt to taste and a generous helping of Pico de Gallo.  Stir all ingredients together, and squeeze the juice from half a lime into the mixture, give it a final stir and it’s ready to serve.  If you are making it in advance, cover it with plastic wrap (pressing the plastic wrap directly onto the surface) as this will prevent it from browning.

Serve with some tortilla chips (my favorites are Tostitos multigrain scoops) Enjoy!

Chorizo Rolls

 

The Chorizo rolls are on the right.

 

 

 

I found this recipe and just knew I needed to make it.  Unfortunately I was unable to find guava paste so I didn’t make the guachup to accompany the rolls.  And I was also unable to find chorizo sausage, so I searched the internet for some a recipe and found this one (since I think the link will take you to the page of recipes, the one I used was the Fast and Easy Chorizo recipe).

Here is the entire recipe for making the chorizo rolls including making your own chorizo:

Chorizo – I cut the original recipe in half to make the exact amount I needed for the rolls, so it is as follows:

  • 1 clove garlic, mashed
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp chili powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 lb pork

Instructions

  • Mash the garlic and salt together.  Add all remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly.  The flavor is much better if you have time to let the pork and spices sit combined in the refrigerator for a while.

Now to make the rolls:

  • chorizo you just made
  • 2 slices white bread, crusts removed
  • 1 package of puff pastry sheets, defrosted
  • 2 large eggs plus 1 Tbsp water for egg wash
  • all purpose flour, for dusting

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Set oven racks at upper-middle and lower-middle positions.  Line 2 baking pans with parchment paper and set aside.

Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat for 1 minute.  Add chorizo and cook, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until it is completely cooked through (about 6 minutes).  Transfer to a paper-towel lined plate to drain and cool slightly.  Once cooled, cut into small pieces and transfer to a mixing bowl.  Crumble the white bread into the chorizo and mix well to combine.

Dust work surface with flour and roll out puff pastry into a rectangular shape.  Then cut into 4 long strips.  Cut each of these strips into 3 squares (I used a pizza cutter).  Then place a heaping tablespoon of chorizo mixture into the center of each square.  Brush the edge closest to you with egg wash, and starting at the opposite edge, roll the pastry over itself, turning it onto the egg-brushed edge to seal.

Place the chorizo rolls, seam side down, on the parchment paper lined baking pan.  Flatten rolls slightly with the palm of your hand.  Cut three slits in the top of each roll with a knife.  Egg wash tops and bake until the pasty is puffed and golden, about 20 to 25 minutes.

The next two recipes both called for chicken, but I didn’t want to just use plain chicken so I found a slow cooker recipe for crock pot chicken taco meat.  I used that recipe for the chicken needed in the following two dishes:

Baked Mexican Pinwheels

 

This is what they look like when they are cut from the rolls, before they are baked.

 

 

The recipe can be found here.  I followed this recipe with the exception of the addition of the cilantro.

Exploding Chicken Taquitos

 

The chicken taquitos are on the top.  Sorry about the terrible picture quality.  Guess I was getting tired.

 

 

These were probably one of my favorites.  They are easy to make and delicious.  And they stay warm for a long time so they are great for serving at a party.  You can find the recipe here.  Because I wanted to use fresh (not canned chicken) I used 10 oz of chopped chicken. I also used flour tortillas (as that’s what I had bought), which did get slightly soggy on the bottom during baking, but not too bad.

Finally, the desserts.

Margarita Cupcakes with Key Lime Icing

 

 

 

 

I am slightly ashamed to say I used a box cake mix to make these cupcakes, but I tried another similar recipe with cupcakes made from scratch and found them to be heavier and not as flavorful.  So I chose to go with the box mix cupcakes.  Here is the recipe.

I did have to make a slight modification as I couldn’t find frozen margarita mix.  So I ended up using bottled margarita mix and I think they still turned out great!  I also made mini cupcakes as well.  To make these, I baked them at 25 degrees less than the instructions on the box for the temperature to make regular sized cupcakes, and I also cut the baking time in half.

Key Lime Margarita Pie

This was another fun (and easy) recipe that I slightly modified when it came to the way I served it.  I decided after reading reviews about how the crust was prone to crumbling to cut the pie up into little mini pies (using a 2 inch round cookie cutter).  Then I placed each of these into little plastic wine glasses and put a dollop of Cool Whip onto the top of each one.  Had I thought making these into mini pies earlier than I did I would have made the recipe in a square cake pan instead of a pie plate as it would have made them easier to cut.

And I think I’ve saved the best for last:

Dulce de Leche Cheesecake

Here is the recipe.  This is a delicious, delicious cheesecake.

 

*As as added note, when carmelizing the condensed milk in the oven, make sure to COVER WITH FOIL!  I learned this the hard way.  I know it says it in the directions but it didn’t stand out to me.

 

 

Here is a picture of the condensed milk in the water bath all ready to go into the oven (just in case you were having trouble picturing it)

 

I really wish all my dishes turned out picture perfect like they do in the cookbooks or even the pictures found on each of the recipe links, but they were delicious and that is the most important part to me!  I served some fruit skewers as well but forgot to get a picture of them.  They were made by rotating putting strawberries, mangoes, and pineapple onto the skewer.

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One Response to Splurge Night – Mexican Fiesta Theme

  1. Jana D says:

    Wow! Everything looks delicious! The only place I’ve been able to find frozen margarita mix (I do love my margaritas – lol) is Superstore! It is Bacardi brand, and it makes THE BEST margaritas! Yum!

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