By Ivonne Rivero, El Hispanic News Guest Writer
In Portland, and throughout Oregon, there is a growing interest in food — real and slow food — and this trend has not gone unnoticed by audiences hungry for new recipes or by Latino entrepreneurs.
Last Saturday, El Hispanic News attended María García’s first offering of her delicious and closely-guarded recipes in Forest Grove. María, our teacher, is part of the new generation of Latino/Latina entrepreneurs who graduated from a small but effective business-incubator effort led by Adelante Empresas, an arm of Adelante Mujeres in Forest Grove.
On the evening’s menu, María included a lesson on traditional, homemade Mexican cooking. This class is not about typical burritos or taquitos; there’s no salsas and no cheese at all. Instead, she offered a full course of delicious and full-flavored recipes, with more than 20 different ingredients being transformed into this delicious dinner in Forest Grove.
We started with “sopa de verdura” — a crisp vegetable soup in chicken broth, garnished with tiny strips of lightly toasted and faintly sweet Pasilla peppers. Next came “mole de pollo almendrado” (chicken mole almandine), the refined, orange-colored “mole” inherited from pre-Hispanic cultures of Mexico, with its base of ground almonds, all easily made in front of our eyes, resulted in a spirited and creamy sauce that complements a piece of chicken that melts in your mouth and is a delight to the eye and the palate. This was served with “arroz blanco” (white pearl rice with green peas) cooked with traditional oil and spices, and “agua de jamaica,” the red and refreshing drink made with the fleshy Hybiscus blossom. For dessert: A wonderful orange-yogurt cake, made from scratch and baked in less than 30 minutes.
María is the owner of “Cocina Cultura” — a project to bring authentic Mexican cooking to the Pacific Northwest, which aims to share the great variety and wealth of Mexico’s gastronomic culture. The project seeks to support the value of homemade food and to involve people from Mexico’s varied gastronomy regions in sharing their culinary background, knowledge, and culture for everyone’s benefit.
If you are interested getting more information, learning the recipes, or in trying them, get in touch with Adelante Empresas, or contact María García at 503-992-0078 x301.
Este artículo también está disponible en / This post is also available in: Spanish