Enchiladas Verdes

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Delicious Enchiladas Verdes
Story and Photos by Madison Perales 

Delicious aromas and the familiar clang of pots and pans brings back comforting kitchen memories for most Hispanic households with food being an important component to the Hispanic culture.

Ricardo “Ricky” Garcia, a senior Psychology major, is no stranger to the sights, smells and sounds of growing up in a Hispanic household.  The San Antonio native currently lives with five other housemates; to their delight he has a 24/7 pass to a kitchen.

When not cooking, he participates in on campus groups such as the Marianist Leadership Program, TRIO and Rattler Awakening.  After graduating, he plans to complete a year of service before enrolling in medical school with the hopes of becoming a pediatric surgeon.

In four years, “St. Mary’s gives [you] the opportunity to be who God calls you to be, with the ones you love”, Garcia says.

As heavily involved as Garcia is on campus, he is still able to adhere to the expectations of the Westminster Lay Community which include: morning/evening prayer, community service and home cooked Sunday dinners.  It was agreed that Garcia prepares a variety of meals for the house at least four times a week.

Garcia admits to loving Mexican and Italian food the most and it was no surprise when he decided to cook Enchiladas Verdes.  His grandmother, mother and aunt inspired him to cook.

“I feel connected to my roots when I cook with all the aromas, music in the background and laughs in the kitchen, I was never taught to cook where as I was always by the side of my grandmother, mother and aunt watching them, picked it up and conquered it through trial and error”, he says.

Garcia cooks with his housemates and make memories, such as the ones he made when he was a boy.  “Growing up we’d always have home cooked meals made by my grandmother, mother, and aunt, they were always high quality meals”, Garcia says.

He admits that cooking can be tedious at times but the end product is almost always worth it.  His favorite part of cooking is realizing how influenced his techniques are by his three favorite women.  His go-to meal, and a personal favorite of his is Spanish rice.

Much like his three influences, Garcia continues the tradition of cooking high quality, home cooked meals for the people he loves and making memories that will last a lifetime.

Ingredients 

  • 3 cups Chicken (shredded)
  • ½ cup shredded cheese
  • 1/3 cup chopped onion
  • 1/3 cup cilantro
  • 2 ¼ cups chicken broth
  • 1 ½ cup sour cream
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon salt (varies)
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper (varies)
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 3 jalapeños (varies)
  • 1 pound tomatillos
  • Cooking spray
  • Large bowl
  • Cooking pan
  • Comal

Makes 8-10 servings

Directions 

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Finely chop all vegetables and shred the chicken, After, combine all chicken, cheese, onion, cilantro, chicken broth (1/3 cup), sour cream (1/3 cup), lime juice, salt and pepper (to taste) in large bowl.  Next, lightly coat pan with cooking spray and spread a light layer of salsa verde to coat bottom of pan and warm tortillas on the comal.  When done, fill center of tortilla with chicken mix and roll up, place seam down in the pan.  Pour remaining salsa verde on top of enchiladas.  Cover and bake at 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-15 minutes.  Serve with side of Spanish rice, sour cream, guacamole and chopped jalapeños is desired.

Canoas

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Canoas
Story and Photos by Mei-Ling Camacho

When living away, there is nothing better than the food that reminds you of home.

Brother José Matos Auffant, S.M., Minister of Spiritual Development at University Ministry, brings a taste of Puerto Rican culture through the “canoas.”

Canoas is the Spanish word for canoe—which is the shape of this dish.

“The Puerto Rican native tribe, Los Taínos, were the ones who taught me how to make the canoas,” Matos says.

Taínos were the people on the island known to use the canoas.

“My grandma, Eugenia Vasquez, who was the chef on my mother’s side, was the one who taught me how to make the canoas,” he explains.

Matos also says he likes cooking at Casa María, where he currently resides. For those who are learning how to cook, he recommends a recipe book called How to Boil Water. For him, cooking is not only a way to relax, but also a reminder of his home—Puerto Rico.

In Puerto Rico, many dishes are made with plantains and this is one of his favorite dishes with it as an ingredient. “They are easy and quick to make,” he says.

As a Marianist brother, Matos has travelled to many countries like México and Venezuela, and lived in different cities like Dayton, Ohio and San Antonio.

However, for him, there really is nothing like home—its people, and especially, the food.

Matos brings us a little bit of tropical flavor, a history lesson and a piece of his home with the canoas.

Ingredients:
Canoas:

  • Baked plantains
  • Ripe plantains
  • Butter or pam
  • Mozzarella cheese (sprinkle)

Beef:

  • 1 lbs. ground beef
  • ¼ of tomato sauce
  • ¼ of table red wine
  • Adobo (sprinkle)
  • ½ of Sazón
  • 1 onion, minced

Directions

Pre-heat the oven to 400. Put the buttered plantains in the oven for 25 minutes with the peel on. Cook the ground beef by mixing the onions, the adobo, the Sazón, the tomato sauce & the red wine. Sprinkle the Adobo on the meat. Take the plantains out of the oven and cut them by the middle, like a canoe. Remove the peel. Also, remove a little bit of the plantain inside to make space for filling. Add the cooked beef inside the canoe, filling it. On the top of the meat, you add the cheese and put it back in the oven for 10 minutes. After the 10 minutes of the canoas being in the oven, let them cool off for about 5 minutes. Servings vary on the plantain count. Use 2 ounces of meat per canoa.

Sriracha Chicken Alfredo

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Sriracha Chicken Alfredo
Story and Photos by: Marissa Colunga

Surrounded by cooking her whole life, Miriam Robles, sophomore economics and international relations major, decided to make a meal she has never tried before: Sriracha Chicken Alfredo.

This dish combines both savory and creamy flavors into a delicious Italian cuisine.

Although this was her first time cooking this dish, it certainly didn’t show as she effortlessly chopped, mixed and diced like a well-seasoned chef.

“While I don’t cook in the residence halls, I tend to cook at home a lot more,” Robles says.

When Robles isn’t in the kitchen, she’s busy studying.

Her varied interests led her to a double major.

Her dream is to go to law school and eventually work for the ACLU as a civil rights attorney.

Her parents, who are avid chefs, helped blossom her love for cooking.

Showing her Hispanic roots, Robles loves to cook Mexican food.

Her favorite dishes are Chilaquiles and Albondigas soup.

“The reason I cooked this dish is because I’ve always loved Italian food and wanted to make a meal that is both easy to eat and quick to make,” Robles says.

“Because this dish is quick to make, you need to have all the ingredients on hand or run the risk of overcooking the meal. To make the meal even tastier, experiment with the amounts of servings. For example, you could add more Sriracha sauce if you are a fan of spices,” she advises.

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz fettuccine
  • 1 lb chicken breast, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 4 Tbsp Sriracha
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup shredded Parmesan
  • 1 Tbsp dried parsley
  • Fresh parsley as garnish

Makes 2 servings

Directions:

Cook pasta according to package directions, drain and set aside. In a medium bowl, combine chicken, Sriracha and a pinch of salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add minced garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add chicken and cook for 5 minutes. Pour in cream and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to simmer, and let the chicken cook for 3–4 minutes. Stir in shredded Parmesan and dried parsley. Add the cooked pasta and toss to coat. Serve with fresh parsley as garnish.

 

Cheesy Pizza Roll Up

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Cheesy Pizza Roll Up
Story and Photos by Daniela Gonzalez

A lazy Saturday night, a Pinterest account, and a fully stocked refrigerator was all Travis Guerra, freshman computer science major, needed to create one of his all-time favorite dishes: A Cheesy Pizza Roll-Up.

“I really did not have anything else to do that Saturday. I was bored and too lazy to go out to actually buy food, so I decided to login to my secret Pinterest account and make something with the ingredients I had in my fridge,” Guerra says.

Guerra has a special love for Italian cuisine. He loves everything that the Italian culture has to offer, including its food delights. His favorite food to eat is homemade Lasagna. He also enjoys eating Chinese and Japanese food.

“Whenever friends from school come over, I make this dish for them. It is one of their favorites,” Guerra says. “Also, when I visit them at the residence halls, they ask me to make a pizza roll-up for them.”

Besides seeing this dish as a delicious and tasty meal, Guerra thinks the roll-up is fairly easy to do. Guerra says a person can fill the roll with almost anything they want. It does not have to be exactly like the instructions say to do it like.

“I keep on telling my friends that as long as they have an oven and a craving for Italian, this should be easy to do,” he says. “You can easily make the roll-ups in the dorm lounge, go back to your dorm, and have a relaxing evening with a great, delicious meal.”

Guerra believes this recipe is perfect for any occasion. Whether it is a quick meal to share with friends or a snack to munch on when watching a movie, making a pizza roll up should do the trick.

Ingredients

  • 1 roll of Pillsbury pizza dough
  • 2 cups of pepperoni
  • 1 block of mozzarella cheese
  • 1 cup of sliced ham
  • 1 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese
  • 1 stick of butter
  • 1 tbsp. pepper
  • 1 tbsp. salt
  • ¼ cup of pizza sauce

Directions

First, preheat the oven to 400 oF for 10 minutes. Next, expand the pizza dough on a metallic pan In a wooden cut board, cut the mozzarella cheese block and ham into small cheese slices. Place columns of pepperoni, ham, and mozzarella slices throughout the whole pizza dough mix. Spread the shredded mozzarella cheese on top of the pepperoni, ham, and mozzarella slices. Roll the pizza dough into a cylinder. Shut both ends of the cylinder so the filling won’t leak through. In a separate bowl, melt a stick of butter. Once melted, mix the butter with the tbsp. of pepper and tbsp. of salt. Spread the mix on top of the rolled dough. Put the rolled dough in the oven to bake for 20 minutes. Once ready, let the roll chill for 5 minutes. Finally, in a separate bowl put some pizza sauce, cut the roll, serve, and enjoy!

Makes 2-3 servings.

Flan De Queso

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Flan de Queso
Story and photos by Holly Basaldu

Johanna Magee, a child of both Mexico and New York, shares with us her favorite dishes, some imprinted cooking experiences and an insight into why cooking is a part of her identity. A sophomore international relations and political science double-major at St. Mary’s University, Magee embraces cooking as a way to feel at home.

Studying far from home, Magee explains her aunt’s friend, an alumnus of St. Mary’s, recommended her to the university’s English program to assist her in bridging the gap between English and Spanish.

She also loves the home environment that St. Mary’s provides. Geography plays into another big part being close to Mexico—she’s never too far from her Mother.

“My mom’s food led me into the kitchen…I wouldn’t like the way she cooked something so I would end up going into the kitchen to see if I could redo it my own way,” she says.

My mother “is my inspiration. She is why I started into the kitchen in the first place,” Magee explains.

Influenced by the Italian family environment, Magee’s favorite type of dishes are pasta-dependent, which include lasagna and Penne de Vodka—a penne pasta with a tomato vodka sauce that has a creamy, rich taste.

Cooking helps her distress and results in having a delicious treat in the end. Enjoying time in the kitchen, she shows how to make Flan.

“This is the dish my mom taught me when I was young, and this is my favorite dessert,” she says.

 

Tools

Aluminum Foil

Baking Pan 9″x9″

Blender

Can Opener

Knife

Measuring Cups (½ cup)

Oven Mitten

Wisk

Ingredients

Condensed Milk- 1 Can (14oz)

Cream Cheese- 1 Bar (4oz)

Eggs- 4 (large)

Evaporated Milk- 1 Can (12oz)

Extra Virgin Olive Oil- 2tsp or Non-stick cooking spray

Milk- ½ Cup

Sugar- ½ Cup

Instructions
Pre-heat oven to 350°F .Drizzle EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil) or spray with non-stick cooking spray and Sugar on the bottom of the Baking Pan. Heat the pan over the stove top on medium (this makes a sugary glaze on top) or put into oven for 3-5 minutes (till golden brown). Combine the rest of the ingredients into the blender and blend on high till you get a thick consistency. Pour the mixture into the pan over the sugary glaze. Cover the pan with Aluminum Foil. Bake at 350°F for 35m-45m, till golden brown (it will puff up and rise during the baking). Let cool at room temperature for 35m. Carefully in a knife along the edges, then flip the Pan onto a serving plate.

Quickie Chili

 

 

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Quickie Chili
Story and Photos by Troy Grohman

With quick company coming over for dinner and not much time for preparation, Tabitha Grohman, former biology major at St. Mary’s, knows exactly what to make: a nice bowl of quickie chili—a family recipe that has been passed down for generations.

“This dish was passed down from my grandma to my mom, to me, so I guess you could say this dish has been a family recipe for generations,” Grohman says.

Grohman’s taste in food reveals where she was raised.

“I’m a big fan of Italian food but I would say that my favorite type of food would be Tex-Mex simply because I grew up with it. I love pairing a good Tex-Mex dish with an ice cold sweet tea,” she says.

As a teacher at Savannah Heights in Somerset, Texas, Grohman’s schedule is usually hectic so it is nice to be able to make something so easy to make and yet so hearty and filling.

“I choose to make this quickie chili recipe because it was simple and something that would be easy for many people to cook,” she says

To her surprise this recipe won a cooking contest at Savannah Heights. “I also entered this chili in our schools first annual chili contest or “Souper Bowl” and my chili won the contest for best tasting chili,” Grohman says.

She encourages people to add to the recipe to make it their own, as the dish is very versatile and easy to personalize.

“I’ve added things like potatoes or peppers to it. You can really experiment with it,” Grohman explains.

 

Ingredients

1/2 lb. hamburger meat per 6 servings

2 tbs. of chili powder

1 can of ranch style beans

1 cup of water

1tsp. of salt

1tsp. of pepper

Cheese to taste

Sour cream to taste

 

Directions

1.cook ground beef in pan on high, season with salt and pepper

2. stir until beef is fully brown

3.Turn town pan temp to med-low

4.Drain off any excess grease in the pan

5.Once grease is drained, add 2 tbs. of chili powder to pan

6.Stir chili powder into beef until it turns slightly more orange in color.

7.open can of ranch style beans (save can for later) and add them to the pan

8.Stir until beans are fully mixed

9.Fill empty can of ranch style beans with water and add it to the pan

10.Stir pan for about 5-10 minutes

11. plate the chili in a bowl and add cheese and sour cream to taste.

 

 

 

Bibimbap

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Bibimbap
Story and Photos by Xuanzi Liu

Jisu Lim, an international exchange student from the South Korea, is studying computer at St. Mary’s University for a semester. A rather short stay, however, does not bother him a bit about his passion to add some exotic Asian taste to this American campus.

“Seeing other people enjoying the food I made never fail to content me,” he says.

Lim discovered his interest in cooking during a travel experience. Visiting the U.S. two years ago, he finally got a chance to taste authentic American food. Lim was surprised to find how greatly dishes vary from the American food served in Korea.

“We have American restaurants in Korea, too. But the food they make are modified in Korean style. I knew that before. But still, I did not anticipate the taste to be this different,” he says.

When the opportunity arose, Lim chose to bring San Antonio the most traditional Korean cuisine: Bibimbap.

“It is almost impossible to cook any authentic Korean dish here at St Mary’s because the ingredients are so hard to find in the Walmart nearby. But Bibimbap is an exception,” he says.

According to Lim, there is no fixed recipe for making Bibimbap. Almost anything can be added and mixed altogether as long as the three sauces are included: Bibimbap sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil. Bibimbap sauce determines nearly the entire taste of this dish. Koreans used to make Bibimbap sauce at home, which is a time-consuming process. Today, ready-made sauce can be purchased at the supermarket. Soy sauce is needed to marinate the beef add flavor. Sesame oil makes the Bibimbap tastier with a few drops.

Koreans used to make Bibimbap sauce at home, which is a time-consuming process. Today, ready-made sauce can be purchased at the supermarket. Soy sauce is needed to marinate the beef add flavor. Sesame oil makes the Bibimbap tastier with a few drops.

Lim also reminds those who want to make authentic Bibimbap to never forget adding a fried egg.

“Though the three sauces are the spirit of this dish, you can never call it a Bibimbap without fried eggs,” he says.

 

Ingredients

10.5 ounces beef mince

3 Tbsp soy sauce

3 Tbsp sesame oil

3 tsp sugar

750g (1.8 pounds) mildly seasoned spinach

750g (1.8 pounds) lettuce

300g (10.5 ounces) shiitake mushroom

360g (12.6 ounces) carrots (one small)

3/2 tsp fine sea salt

8 to 12 serving portions of steamed rice

8 to 12 eggs

Some cooking oil to cook the meat, mushroom, carrots and eggs

Bibimbap sauce

 

Directions

For meat, mix the beef mince with the soy sauce. Marinate the meat for about

30 mins. Add some cooking oil into a wok and cook the meat on medium high to high heat.

Rinse, peel and julienne the carrots. Add some cooking oil and 3/4 tsp of fine

sea salt in a wok and cook the carrots on medium high to high heat for 2 to 3 mins.

Clean/rinse the shiitake mushrooms and thinly slice them. Add some cooking oil

and 3/4 tsp of fine sea salt in a wok and cook the mushrooms on medium high to high heat until they are all cooked.

Make fried eggs.

Put the rice into a bowl and add the meat, assorted vegetables, Bibimbap sauce

and the egg on top of the rice.

 

Make 8-12 servings.