Red Chili Brisket Tamales

Brisket Tamales on Tray

Masa Ball

Prepare the massa to approximately the consistency of cookie dough. If it is too sticky add a little more masa.

Shredded Meat

Here is the prepared brisket that was finished the night before.

Masa on Husk

Spread the masa thinly over the smoother side of the corn husk to about one-half inch of the side.

Masa on Husk w Meat

Place a quantity of the meat onto the masa.

Fold Tamale

Roll up the husk and fold over the small end.

Tamales in Steamer

Place the prepared tamales into the container which will be used as a steamer.

Tamales on Platter

Enjoy the finished tamales!

Red Chili Brisket Tamales

Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 10
Makes great tamales.
  • 3 pound beef brisket
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 6 cups water, divided
  • 4 tablespoons oil
  • 2 cups enchilada sauce *use your favorite recipe or a store bought
  • 24 tamale husks
  • 2 cups masa harina (which is a fine corn flour)
  • 3 to 4 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons melted butter
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, or to taste
  • * If possible buy the Hatch Brand, Fire-Roasted Tomato, Enchilada Sauce. This can be purchased at the store or online. It is wonderful for the tamales.
  1. In a medium pot, simmer beef in salt and 3 cups water for 1 hour or until meat can be shredded with a fork. Shred beef and let it cool completely.
  2. In a medium saute pan, add oil, and fry meat for 3 to 5 minutes or until crispy. Add enchilada sauce and simmer for 15 minutes.
  3. Soak husks in water for 30 minutes.
  4. Mix masa, water, butter and salt into a thick paste.
  5. Apply 5 tablespoons of the masa mix into the center of the corn husk. Push mix to 1-inch of the side of the husk. Add 2 tablespoons of the meat to center, fold 1 edge of the husk to the center, and then fold the other side to cover entire tamale. Fold ends over by 2-inches.
  6. Place a colander in large pot of boiling water, but do not let the colander touch the water. Place the tamales in the colander, cover and allow steam to rise to the top. Steam the tamales for 30 to 40 minutes.


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Carrot Cake

Carrot Cake

This is a wonderful carrot cake recipe !!  My family has made this for many years.  Everyone loves it.

Carrot Cake Ingredients

When grating the carrots, I use the smallest hole to grate the carrots very fine.  They will almost ‘melt’ into the batter.

Flour Pan

This was the pan I used, thinking it was an 8-inch pan, when it was closer to a 9-inch pan.  Therefore, I only made 2 layers instead of the 3 layers I normally make when using my 8-inch pans.  In this recipe, I have taken Crisco and greased my pan all around.

Flour Pan 2

This is the pan I floured after greasing the pan.  Shake out the excess flour.

Carrot Cake Batter in Pan

This is the uncooked batter that I’ve poured in the greased and floured pan.

One Layer of Carrot Cake

This is the baked cake.  Mix the frosting ingredients and put half of the frosting on top of the first layer and spread just to the edge, then place the 2nd layer on top of the frosting and spread the rest of the frosting on top around to the edge.  If you make 3 layers, just repeat the process again.

Finished Carrot Cake

This is the finished cake.  Can’t wait to try it.  The edge of the cake tastes like candy, very good.

Carrot Cake

Cook time:
Total time:
This makes a wonderful soft and delicious cake !!
  • Cake:
  • 3 cups grated carrots
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 4 eggs, well beaten
  • 1-1/2 cups vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • Frosting:
  • 1 (16-ounce) package powdered sugar
  • 1 ( 8-ounce) package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine, softened
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  1. Combine first 7 ingredients; stir in eggs, oil, and vanilla, mixing well. Spoon batter into 3 greased and floured 7-1/2-inch cake pans.
  2. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 minutes or until cake tests done.
  1. Cream together the powdered sugar, cream cheese, butter, vanilla until well
  2. blended; stir in pecans.
  3. Spread Cream Cheese Frosting between layers and on top of cake while still
  4. warm.


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The Features of Southwestern Cooking In A Modern World

Green ChiliThe features of Southwestern cooking include; Tamales and the endless ways of cooking with them. It is possible to do so much with the dough alone. Tamales are eaten as a savory or sweet dish. They blends delightfully as a vegetarian option or with meat and seafood. Examples of this dish include; Caramelized Onion, Tomato, Sweet Pumpkin and Nutmeg Tamales. There are many things that are made with Tamales.

All the dishes of Southwestern America are flavorful, colorful and creative. Perhaps, more so than any other part of America. It is excellent to explore Southwestern cooking because it is varied and tasty. People who enjoy different spices will love the Mexican and European approach to cooking.

Dishes like black bean, three onion casserole and even ginger jam are all native to Southwest America. Texas dishes are enjoyed by many people who travel to the Gulf Coast and beyond. They can expect to taste delightful recipes including; Anchoite lamb chops, wild mushrooms and heaven and hell cake. Basically anything goes as long as it is tasty, spicy and delicious.

While Southwestern dishes are spicy they are also eclectic and advanced. There is a lot of depth to Southwestern dishes. Many people in Southwestern America enjoy yellow pepper soup, barbecued duck pancakes. pecan souffle and bourbon butter. Talk about mouth-watering dishes to get the taste buds going.

The people of southwestern America know how to cook tasty dishes. Salsa dishes, ketchup and tortillas are all popular in the Southwest. Margarita is an extremely popular beverage of the Southwest. The food served was developed by Native tribes, cowboys and more modern influences.

Many dishes include chili in some shape or form. Looking at a menu for Southwestern food, anyone’s mouth would start watering. Pineapple roast pork is another popular dish as is, roasted tomato salsa. Spicy meatballs would go down well in Southwestern America. Southwestern Americans like their food to taste flavorful and colorful.


From Wikipedia


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The Features of Brazilian Cooking

Brazilian Food

There’s a lot to be excited about when we talk about the features of Brazilian cooking! Combining the best of many world’s: namely Europe, Latin America and Africa and making good use of native Brazilian ingredients, we can see why this adventurous cuisine is exploding in popularity.

Here’s a quick look at some what makes Brazilian culinary so special!

First, a willingness to focus on the “primitive”. Brazilian cooking makes grand use of stews and soups, staples like black beans and rice and cuts of meat often discarded in other culinary traditions. There’s something liberating about being able to make a fantastic meal with everything smoked or sometimes even thrown in one pot and cooked to perfection. Even better when you’re using exotic pieces of meat! A great example of this is Feijoda Complete, Brazil’s most beloved dish. Consisting of pork (including pig ears and feet), jerk beef, smoked sausage and black beans, rice and hot chilies all dusted with powdered cassava root (also known as manioc meal). Try a plate Feijoda Complete and see how advanced “primitive” can taste, Brazilian style.

Next, the Brazilian mastery of sea food is stunning. With communities so often near the sea, or near rivers (Amazon anyone?) Brazilian have mastered the art of cooking sea food, spinning it with their own local ingredients. Take for example a great shrimp and fish meal to die for, Vatapa de Camarao & Peixe. This consists of both fresh and dry shrimp and white fish cooked palm oil and served in a coconut cream sauce. How’s that sound? Or our own favorite Brazilian dish Moqueca. Moqueca is a fish stew with tomatoes, peppers, garlic, onions and, of course, more coconut milk!

As Brazilian chefs continue to make a name for themselves here in America, expect to become more exposed to the features of Brazilian cooking that the insiders have learned to know and love. It’s a culinary adventure not to be missed

From Wikipedia

Popular dishes

  • Rice and beans are an extremely popular dish, considered basic at table; a tradition Brazil shares with several Caribbean nations. Brazilian rice and beans usually are cooked utilizing either lard or the nowadays more common edible vegetable fats and oils, in a variation of the Mediterranean fried called locally refogado which usually includes garlic or a similar substitute such as onion, welsh onions, parsley, coriander or other herbs are used instead.
  • In variation to rice and beans, Brazilians usually eat pasta (including yakisoba, lamen, and bifum), pasta salad, various dishes using either potato or manioc, and polenta as substitutions for rice, as well as salads, dumplings or soups of green peas, chickpeas, black-eyed peas, broad beans, butter beans, soybeans, lentils, moyashi (which came to Brazil due to the Japanese tradition of eating its sprouts), azuki, and other legumes in substitution for the common beans cultivated in South America since Pre-Columbian times. It is more common to eat substitutions for daily rice and beans in festivities such as Christmas and New Year’s Eve (the tradition is lentils), as follow-up of churrasco (mainly potato/carrot salads, called maionese, due to the widespread use of both industrial and home-made mayonnaise, which can include egg whites, raw onion, green peas, sweetcorn or even chayote squashes, and pronounced almost exactly as in English and French) and in other special occasions.
  • Either way the basis of Brazilian daily cuisine is the starch (most often a cereal), legume, protein and vegetable combination. There is also a differentiation between vegetables of the verduras group, or greens, and the legumes group (no relation to the botanic concept), or non-green vegetables. There are Brazilians which eat both daily or the most often they can, only vegetables of one group, or none at all, which again depends on personal tastes. The comparison between the healthiness of Brazilian and Western foods and tastes is, ironically, debatable.
  • Salgadinhos are small savoury snacks (literally salty snacks). Similar to Spanish tapas, these are mostly sold in corner shops and a staple at working class and lower middle-class familiar celebrations. There are many types of pastries:
    • Pão de queijo (cheese bun, literally “cheese bread”), a typical Brazilian snack, is a small, soft roll made of manioc flour, eggs, milk, and minas cheese. It can be bought ready-made at a corner store or frozen and ready to bake in a supermarket and is gluten-free.
    • Coxinha is a chicken croquette shaped like a chicken thigh.
    • Kibe/Quibe: extremely popular, it corresponds to the Lebanese dish kibbeh and was brought to mainstream Brazilian culture by Syrian and Lebanese immigrants. It can be served baked, fried, or raw.
    • Esfiha: another Middle Eastern dish, despite being a more recent addition to Brazilian cuisine they are nowadays easily found everywhere, specially in Northeastern, Southern and Southeastern regions. They are pies/cakes with fillings like beef, mutton, cheese curd, or seasoned vegetables.
    • Pastéis are pastries with a wide variety of fillings. Similar to Spanish fried empanadillas, but of Japanese origin (and brought to Brazil by the Japanese diaspora). Different shapes are used to tell apart the different flavours, the two most common shapes being half-moon (cheese) and square (meat). Size, flavour, and shape may vary greatly.
    • Empadas are snacks that resemble pot pies in a small scale. Filled with a mix of palm hearts, peas, flour and chicken or shrimp.
  • Cuscuz branco is a dessert consisting of milled tapioca cooked with coconut milk and sugar and is the couscous equivalent of rice pudding.
  • Açaí, cupuaçu, starfruit, and many other tropical fruits are shipped from the Amazon Rainforest and consumed in smoothies or as fresh fruit. Other aspects of Amazonian cuisine are also gaining a following.
  • Cheese: the dairy-producing state of Minas Gerais is known for such cheeses as Queijo Minas, a soft, mild-flavored fresh white cheese usually sold packaged in water; requeijão, a mildly salty, silky-textured, spreadable cheese sold in glass jars and eaten on bread, and Catupiry, a soft processed cheese sold in a distinctive round wooden box.
  • Pinhão is the pine nut of the Araucaria angustifolia, a common tree in the highlands of southern Brazil. The nuts are boiled and eaten as a snack in the winter months. It is typically eaten during the festas juninas.
  • Risoto (risotto) is a rice dish cooked with chicken, shrimp, and seafood in general or other protein staples sometimes served with vegetables, another very popular dish in Southern Brazil.
  • Mortadella sandwich
  • Sugarcane juice, mixed with fruit juices such as pineapple or lemon.
  • Angu is a popular side dish (or a substitution for the rice fulfilling the “starch element” of use common in Southern and Southeastern Brazil). It is similar to the Italian polenta.
  • Arroz com pequi is a traditional dish from the Brazilian Cerrado, and the symbol of Center-Western Brazil‘s cuisine. It is basically made with rice seasoned on pequi, also known as a souari nut, and often chicken.
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What’s Hot Today – The Food Truck

The Fun Quote of the Day

“Food is an important part of a balanced diet.” – Fran Lebowitz


JD’s Quick Tip

Soup or Stew too salty?
Add a teaspoon each of cider vinegar
and sugar or simply add sugar.
Mobile Food Truck Mania
Food Truck 

Food trucks are sweeping across the nation, popping up in major cities and small towns; and why not, everyone is starved for something different. In fact, food trucks have gotten so popular there are lists of food trucks that use Twitter to keep their customers and potential customers in the know about where they will be during the lunch hour and what they’ll be serving.

Seriously, how wonderful is it to have a truck pull up to your employment location with tasty Thai food, Pierogies, BBQ, gourmet hot dogs and dynamic cupcakes with frosting so decadent it makes you beg for more. This street food revolution sounds like the perfect business venture for anyone who wants to take their culinary talents from kitchen to truck.

Hold on culinary road warrior!  Before starting your mobile food business, do your homework. First, find out if food trucks are even allowed in your community; since you can spend upwards of $20,000 for your truck, plus you’ll need to “outfit” it for “your” specific needs; adding vending windows, lined walls, floors, electricity, hot running water (if you have a food prep area), a retail payment system and more. Oh yeah, you’ll need packaging, labels, bags, boxes, you’ll need to meet health and safety requirements, inspections, business permits, fees and every requirement is different depending on where you live in the country; it’s even possible counties within your state may have restrictions that stop you from operating a food truck.

The cool thing about a mobile food truck is you do not have to pay traditional rent; but there are some other costs and logistics to consider; for example insurance, product liability insurance, preparation facilities, truck storage, security and parking.

Still not scared off? Determined to start a new food truck business in your community? You can start by contacting the food licensing agency in your city/county or your local health department, whoever regulates commercial food production and see if mobile food sales are allowed. Then, start thinking about the questions below:

Food Truck Interior

What type of mobile food vendor do you want to be?

  • General Pushcart
  • Limited Pushcart
  • Produce Truck
  • Lunch Truck
  • Catering Truck
  • Ice Cream Truck
  • Hot Truck serving food

What do you need to make your mobile food truck a reality?

  • Funding – How will you finance this venture?
  • Permits – Licenses
  • A business plan – Which agency will approve your mobile truck plan?
  • Appropriate truck with special needs that address health department requirements
  • Cooking units approved by the health department or regulatory agency
  • A commissary to prepare food truck products
  • Food selection – all foods are not suitable to be sold by food trucks
  • Food truck location – Where will you sell your products.

One of the best ways to learn about operating a food truck business is to get the inside scoop from food truck vendors in your community.

Unfortunately, there is no guarantee the vendors will want to share their trade secrets with you, but it’s worth a try.
Southern Cake QueenWho knows, one day you could be have a cupcake truck like Emma Merisier, owner of SouthernCakeQueen, a cupcake truck vendor in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Detra “Denay” Davis is the author of How to Start a Home-Based Bakery Business and a former home based baker from Cary, North Carolina, cooking instructor, and caterer, once featured in Bon Appetit. Today Denay is the Executive Director of, and mastermind behind a nationwide membership site providing the most extensive information, knowledge0base available to home-based bakers and home food crafters. For more information about contact Denay at [email protected].


Check It Out!

South Beach Diet

– The Inside Scoop –

Get a Health Boost with Blueberries

BlueberriesBlueberries prove that good things come in small packages. According to the US Department of Agriculture, blueberries are one of the richest sources of antioxidants, thanks to their anthocyanins — the compounds responsible for their blue hue. They are also an excellent source of ellegic acid and soluble fiber. Studies have found that blueberries may help reduce high blood pressure and total LDL cholesterol. You can start enjoying blueberries on Phase 2. Here’s more information about blueberries, plus delicious ways to enjoy them.

Buying and Storing Blueberries

Most fresh supermarket blueberries are the cultivated kind, not the wild picked. You’re more likely to find the wild variety canned or frozen. Blueberries are typically available all summer long, and into September, though you may be able to purchase imported blueberries throughout the year. When buying fresh blueberries, look for those that are deep blue with a chalky white “bloom” that is a sign of freshness. Preferably buy those that have been refrigerated or kept out of the sun, since heat can destroy their antioxidant power. The blueberries should move freely in their container and not be stuck together. Avoid mushy berries or those in stained containers.

Blueberries will last in the refrigerator for 7 to 10 days. Make sure to remove any crushed or moldy berries before storing, and don’t wash your berries until you are ready to eat them. You can also keep blueberries frozen for up to a year.

Delicious Ways to Enjoy Blueberries

Blueberries should be washed just before you plan to eat them. Sort through them to remove any stems or unripened fruit. When on Phase 2, enjoy blueberries on their own or as a topping for fat-free or low-fat yogurt or high-fiber whole-grain cereals. Here are some other fun and healthy ways to enjoy blueberries:

    Blueberry pizza. Simply brush a whole-wheat tortilla with a little extra-virgin olive oil and top with fresh blueberries, thinly sliced scallions, and reduced-fat blue cheese crumbles. Bake at 450ºF for 10 minutes.

    Sweet blueberry sauce. Prepare blueberry syrup using frozen unsweetened blueberries. Bring 2 cups of blueberries to a simmer over medium heat and cook until berries burst and sauce thickens, about 12 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in 2 teaspoons of fresh lime juice and 2 teaspoons of sugar substitute. Add a little ground cinnamon to taste if desired. Serve over breakfast pancakes or yogurt.

    Blueberry lemonade. Puree 3 cups of fresh or frozen blueberries, and 2 cups of fresh lemon juice, in a blender. Add sugar substitute to taste. Pour some lemonade into a glass with ice and add seltzer water if desired. Stir and garnish with lemon slices.

From The South Beach Diet

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