“I’m delighted to share the flavours of my kitchen”.
Chocolate is a pre-Hispanic ritual beverage, made with cacao and water, served cold with plenty of foam. The present practice of using milk and served hot is widely accepted.
1 litre milk or water
160g semisweet chocolate, chopped
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon, optional
Heat the milk or water with the chocolate and cinnamon in a saucepan over a medium heat. Bring to the boil and remove the saucepan from the heat.
Using a whisk beat the chocolate mixture vigorously until the chocolate has completely melted and a thick layer of foam has formed over the surface.
Pour the chocolate into individual cups and serve immediately.
Ponche de Navidad
Christmas hot punch
"This is the most popular drink served in Mexico during the Christmas and New Year festivities. It is basically prepared with seasonal fruits cooked in water with cinnamon and raw sugar. Adults drink hot punch with “piquete” which means that it is laced with alcohol."
2½ litres water
10 prunes, stoned
10 organic dry apricots, quartered
3 guavas, quartered
100 g sugarcane stalks, peeled and cut into strips
75 g hibiscus
1 apple, chopped
1½ tablespoons raisins
1 cinnamon stick
75 g sugar or to taste
120 ml dark rum or to taste (optional)
Bring the measured water to the boil in a large saucepan over a high heat. Add the prunes and the apricots, simmer for 10 minutes. Add the guavas, sugarcane, hibiscus, apple, raisins, cinnamon and sugar; simmer over a low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste the punch and add more sugar if needed, stir well.
Remove from the heat and add the rum and stir well. Ladle into individual mugs and serve immediately.
Tostadas de callo de hacha
"A delicate and tasty starter made with fresh scallops placed on a “tostada”, a crunchy corn tortilla. It can be either eaten plain or topped with fresh ingredients which vary according to the region."
200 g uncooked scallops, white flesh only
3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
30 g onion, finely chopped
2 green chillies, seeded and finely chopped
10 cm (4 inch) piece of cucumber, deseeded and cut into cubes
1 teaspoon finely chopped coriander leaves
1 teaspoon finely chopped chives
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 corn tortillas to make the tostadas
Oil for frying
Coriander leaves and lime wedges to garnish
Slice each scallop into 3–4 equal pieces of about 7 millimetres each and place in a glass bowl. Add 2 tablespoons of lime juice, cover and leave to marinate in the refrigerator for 20 minutes. Drain and mix with the remaining tablespoon of lime juice and extra virgin olive oil, add the onion, chillies, coriander and chives. Gently stir and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
To make the tostadas use small corn tortillas. If your tortillas are too large, cut them down using a 10–12 centimetre round pastry cutter. Place the tortillas on a baking tray and bake in a preheated oven (180 C. 350 F.) for 8–10 minutes until crisp. Let them cool before using.
Assemble the tostadas just before serving. Using a slotted spoon, place a quarter of the scallop mixture on top of each tostada. Garnish with the coriander and lime wedges.