Sunday, July 15, 2007

Cooking with Patricia Quintana

Oh, what a weekend this has been. And one of the highlights was a cooking class with Patricia Quintana. Maestra Quintana was in San Miguel de Allende to donate her time and expertise to help the children of Feed the Hungry. First for a wonderful Banquet and then for some special cooking classes. Ned had taken a cooking class from her while we were still in Houston and so we were delighted when we were able to go to the class. Just in case you are not familiar with Patricia Quintana she has been called the Julia Child of Mexico and Mexico's Culinary Ambassador. She is the author of numerous cookbooks on Mexican Cooking. If you are going to Mexico City, you might just want to try her food for yourself at her restaurant, Izote.

Maestra Quintana demonstrated three recipes from the Yucatan,
Sopa de Lima, Classic Bitter Lime Soup

Filete de Res al Chilmole, Beef Tenderloin with Traditional Yucatecan Black Sauce

Flan de Coco Imperial, Royal Coconut Flan....sorry, but I didn't get a photograph of the Coconut Flan but let me tell you it was delicious.

I'm ready to make all three recipes. Although I'm not sure I can find the bitter limes here or the Sevilla oranges (which are not in her recipe but she added some zest from them) or if I can find the Yucatecan oregano. She explained that Mexico has seven oreganos and that the one from the Yucatan has much larger leaves than all the rest. The other ingredient that I might have to look for is the chilmole paste. Actually it is a small black cake. She did tell us that it was available at La Anita. I looked and it is there but you will need to order a case of 50 cakes. Anyone what to go in with me on a case? And the last item that will require some research is the coconut milk. You can use coconut water but her Coconut Flan was so delicious and she used coconut milk. She showed me the can it came in and it was from Vietnam. But you never know.....Bonanza just might have it. Oh, and of course I will need to find the fresh coconuts which I have seen here at times.

Those were the recipes but as she talked we learned a lot about Mexican Cuisines and tips for building complex flavors in the foods. I loved every minute and every morsel.

8 comments:

LeAnn Roberts said...

Hi Billie,

I've been reading your blog for months and enjoying it so much! We live in Merida..here we can buy coconut milk at Costco, Mega, Comercial and other large supers...if you don't find it anywhere else, look in the liquor dept. with the mixes. I'd love to send you some of our Yucatecan oregano, but don't know if the Mexican PO would have a problem with it going through the mail.

LeAnn Roberts

Billie said...

LeAnn, I'll check the liquor department and maybe I'll find it. I'll keep my fingers crossed.

Hahaha about the Yucatecan oregano. I'm going to check out Bonanza here because they sell a lot of herbs in bulk containers and I haven't really looked to see if they have more than one variety.

The one thing that I'm really worried about finding is the Chilmole paste or cake. La Anita that makes it has been in business since 1913. And they are at

Calle 19 No. 425 Ciudad Industrial C.P. 97288 Mérida, Yucatán, México

Thanks for the help and I'm glad to know that you read my blog.

LeAnn Roberts said...

Billie,

Let me know if you would like me to look for the Chilmole paste for you...don't think I'd have a problem mailing that...I'm sure its easy enough to find in our local mercados.

LeAnn

LeAnn Roberts said...

Billie,

Not sure if my last comment went through...did I fail the "test"?? lol Anyway, if you need help with the chilmole paste, let me know @
mominyucatan@yahoo.com

LeAnn

Anonymous said...

Hi Billie,

What great fun! I don't suppose La Senora Quintana ever makes it to Xalapa?

Is that skinny little thing her - talking to Ned?

John Calypso

Billie said...

Yes, the skinny little thing talking to Ned is Senora Quintana.

I think one of her cookbooks is about the cuisine of the Gulf Coast and she is currently putting together a series of Spanish cookbooks of moles, botanas etc. reflecting the different cuisines of Mexico so I'm sure she has been if not in Xalapa at least near there.

wayne said...

Although not in the Yucatan, I'm right next door in Quintana Roo. If Leann can't find what you need, send me a list. DHL will ship anything within Mexico and right to your door too! With that great market in Merida, I'm sure she can find anything you are looking for though.

Billie said...

Wayne, Many thanks. I'm going to do some looking locally and over in Queretaro. If I don't find the Chilmole, I may have to get a care package. I'll send an SOS if need be.