Sunday, August 28, 2011


I love key lime pie however is very hard to find real key limes so sometimes i just make it with regular limes. I wondered how this recipe would turn out if i changed it a little bit and boy is it good.  My recipe involves a mixture of limes and lemon and is absolutely delicious PUCKER UP! ENJOY!


Graham Cracker crust!
1 1/2 cups of graham cracker crumbs ( 10 crackers)
1/4 cup of sugar
6 Tablespoons ( 3/4th stick) of unsalted butter, melted

Note: if you want to make it easier on yourself feel free to buy an already packaged graham cracker crust at the store makes sure is a 9 inch large crust, is already baked for you.

For the filling:

6 extra large egg yolks, they must be at room temperature
1 1/2-2  cans ( 14ounce) sweetened condensed milk ( use light condensed milk or fat free depends how sweet you want it. Remember you can always add but never take out.
1 tablespoon of lime zest
1 tablespoon lemon zest
3/4 Cup freshly squeezed lime-lemon juice ( about 3 limes-2 lemons) feel free to use just limes if you prefer or  just lemons. I happen to like the combination.

For the decoration:

1 cup (1/2 pint) cold heavy cream
1/4 cup of sugar
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
thin line and lemon wedges for decoration!

if you are making the crust then Preheat the oven 350 degrees F

For the crust, combine the graham crackers crumbs, sugar and butter in bowl. Press into 9 inch pyrex pie pan, making sure the sides and the bottom are an even thickness. Bake for 10 minutes until firm and golden. Allow to cool completely.

For the filling, combine the egg yolks with 1/2 cup of the juice and place in a double boiler. Whisk constantly over medium heat until mixture reaches 140 degrees take off heat then add the condensed milk slowly and the zest and rest of the lime-lemon juice taste for sweetness.

Decoration, beat heavy cream oh high speed in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the whisk or use an electric whisk until soft peaks form. Add the vanilla and sugar and beat until firm. Spoon or pipe decoratively onto the pie and decorate with the lime-lemon wedges. Freeze for several hours or overnight.


Monday, August 22, 2011

PAN DE JAMON ( Ham Bread)

This bread is for all Venezuelans who are not able to go home during the Christmas Holidays. This bread is very popular around the festivities and is commonly accompanied with HALLACAS. I will not post recipe for hallacas even though is one of my favorite Christmas dishes due to the fact that is a complicated dish to prepare and  in some cases it can take up to 3 days to make but Pan de Jamon can be prepared at any time.


  • 1 (.25 ounce) package active dry yeast
  • 1 cup warm water (110 degrees F)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 tablespoon white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 lb sliced ham ( i like honey ham)
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/2 lb of bacon ( cook bacon for 3 minutes in microwave needs to be half cooked to release some of fat, not all of it)
  • 1/2 cup of capers ( optional)
  • 1/2 cup black or green olives, drained and chopped


  1. In a small mixing bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water. Let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, combine the yeast mixture with the flour, egg, butter, sugar and salt; mix well. When the dough has pulled together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface, and knead until smooth, about 8 minutes.
  3. Lightly oil a large mixing, place the dough in the bowl, and turn to coat with oil. Cover with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place until doubled in volume, about 1 hour.
  4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). 
  5. Deflate the dough, and turn it out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll or pat the dough into a 10x14 inch rectangle. Make parallel cuts 3/4 inch wide and 2 inches long on the two long edges of the rectangle. Evenly place the sliced ham, bacon and rest of ingredients over the center of the rectangle. Fold the short ends of the rectangle over the filling. Starting from one of these ends, alternately stretch strips from the two sides across the filling so that the strips overlap diagonally. Transfer the loaf to a lightly greased baking sheet, cover with a damp cloth, and let rise until doubled in volume, about 40 minutes. For a nice golden color brush with some egg wash.
  6. Bake at 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) for 20 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011


I came into this recipe about 3 years ago. The original recipe was made popular by the legendary Julia Child. It's made in France with a very young ROOSTER however we all know how complicated it is to find it in some places in the U.S. I came across this new one done by Ina Garten of the Food Channel but once again i thought get a whole chicken cut him up i just wanted to make it easier on myself and so I did. The end result was just as delicious and less complicated. In my recipe i use MERLOT instead of Burgundy.

2 Tablespoons good olive oil
4 slices of good thick bacon ( i would use pancetta but it can be pricey).
3 lbs of Chicken Thighs with skin and bone ( will add more flavor).
Kosher salt and ground pepper
1/2 lbs of carrots, cut diagonally in 1-inch pieces
1 large spanish Onion sliced ( feel free to use red onions 1 or 2 if you have them instead of the white onion).
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/2 cup of Brandy ( use good Brandy makes a whole lot of difference or Cognac).
1/2 bottle of Merlot or use a good red dry wine.
1 cup of Chicken Stock ( if you can and you like to do that use homemade).
10 fresh Thyme sprigs.
2 tablespoons of unsalted butter at room temperature.
1 1/2 tablespoons of all purpose flour.
1/2 lb small whole onions ( get them frozen save yourself the peeling time but if you cant find them then peel away).
1/2 lb cremini mushrooms( i did it once with shitake and loved it).

The recipe calls for a DUTCH OVEN but if you don't have one use a regular ( deep soup pot) and put on low-medium heat. The last stage will go to simmer.

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.

Heat the olive oil in the dutch oven or ( soup pot). Add the bacon and cook over medium heat for 8-10 minutes, until lightly browned. Remove the bacon to a plate with a slotted spoon.

Meanwhile, lay the chicken out on paper towels and pat dry. liberally sprinkle the chicken on both sides with kosher salt and pepper. When the bacon is removed brown the chicken pieces in batches in single layer( skin side down) for about 5 minutes, turning to brown evenly. Remove the chicken to the plate with the bacon and continue to brown until all the chicken is done. Set aside.

Add the carrots, onions, 2 tablespoons of salt, and 1 teaspoon of pepper to the pan and cook over medium heat for 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the cognac and put the bacon, chicken and any juices that collected on the plate into the pot, add the wine, chicken stock and thyme bring to a simmer. Cover the Dutch oven with the lid and place in the oven for 30-40 minutes, until the chicken is not pink. If you don't have the dutch oven and are using the soup pot just leave it on low to simmer for about 1 hour same rules applies until chicken is not pink.

After 40 minutes or hour depending which method you are using, The Dutch oven needs to be removed from the oven.
Mash 1 tablespoon of butter and the flour together and stir into the stew. Add the frozen ( small) onions. In a medium saute pan, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter and cook the mushrooms over medium low heat for 5-10 minutes, until browned. Add to the stew to a simmer for another 10 minutes. Season to taste. Serve hot.

Suggestion: the dish is perfectly good by itself but i like to serve it on buttered egg noodles. ENJOY!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


I have to say i am addicted to this drink. I prefer it over a basic martini. Is a great summer drink and if you can find real passion fruits i suggest you use the seeds ( frozen if possible) to garnish. ENJOY!

 2 shots of Vodka ( i like Grey Goose) use citrus if possible add another shot if you like it stronger (I do)
1 shot of Passion fruit liqueur or orange liqueur
1 shot of passion fruit juice ( concentrate if possible if it's too strong feel free to add another shot of juice)
1 lime (the juice) Optional
frozen passion fruit seeds for garnish


Place place martini glasses in freezer for about 20-30 minutes they need to be really cold. In a martini shaker combine all ingredients with ice. Serve. Garnish with frozen passion fruit seeds if not then with orange peel.

Saturday, August 6, 2011


I really enjoy these cookies, this recipe was given to me by a friend and I make them around Christmas time. I have come to know they are called Mexican tea cookies, Russian tea cookies and I am sure there are other names for them, all i know they are just delicious and easy to make.

1 Cup butter
1/2 Powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 cups of All Purpose Flour
1/4 cup finely chopped Pecans
1/4 teaspoon salt
Heat Oven to 400 F. Mix thoroughly butter, sugar and vanilla. Work in flour, salt and  nuts until dough holds together. Shape dough into 1 inch balls, Place on ungreased baking sheet. Bake 10 minutes or until set, but not brown. while warm after 10 minutes of cooling time roll on powdered sugar. Cool completely then roll in sugar again. ENJOY.

NOTE: you can give them away as gifts around the holidays.