Hi! Welcome! I am so glad you have stopped by! Are you ready to cook some delicious Mexican food? Then you have come to the right place.
My name is Catrina and I love to cook, eat, and share recipes from my adopted country…Mexico!
On this site, you will find traditional Mexican classics (like enchiladas and chilaquiles) as well as updated modern Mexican recipes (like goat cheese quesadillas), all designed to be cooked and enjoyed from the comfort of your home. My goal is to show you the techniques and ingredients that you need to make delicious Mexican recipes from home! Not only will you find tried and true recipes, but you will also find insights into the history of the food and why certain dishes are important or culturally significant.
So, you may be wondering how I learned to cook Mexican food in the first place. Here’s my story…
In 2004, I came to Cuernavaca, Morelos Mexico for the first time. Most people don’t know where that is, so you can see where Cuernavaca is on the map below. Just a bit south of Mexico City in what is considered central Mexico.
I was participating in an exchange program through my university and had committed to spending 1 semester in Mexico. The goal was to hone my Spanish skills and complete coursework that would help with an international business certificate. It only took me 1 week in Mexico to decide to extend my stay for a whole year.
The school in Mexico set me up with a host family to help me transition into Mexican life. My host mother, Rocio, was not only an amazing hostess (there were 5 extra girls living with her that first semester, including me), but she was (and continues to be) an amazing cook. That was my first introduction to central Mexican food, straight from the source.
Rocio’s cooking was varied and always delicious. She had such an arsenal of menu ideas that we didn’t repeat main meals in 30 days. Imagine going a whole month without repeating a single main meal! During the comida (afternoon meal), there was always the FULL Mexican menu of food… aguas frescas, soup or salad, then the main meal. And oftentimes there was dessert to finish everything off. Everything that she cooked was so delicious, it was no surprise that I gained a few pounds that first semester!
I have fond memories of cooking with Rocio in her small kitchen. When the tomatillos were in season (and on sale), she would go to the market and buy crate-fulls of them, along with onions, serrano peppers, and garlic. We would sit around her small kitchen table, peeling off the sticky tomatillo husks, gossiping late into the evening under the single ceiling light. We carefully washed the ingredients, boiled them, then blended and canned the salsa to use throughout the year.
She was the first one to show me how to make tamales. I would accompany her on the bus to the molino for the large bags of masa needed for the hundreds of tamales she planned to make. We would cook the filling and salsa, smoke the banana leaves, prepare the masa, and then fill the banana leaves and corn husks with her delicious creations. We would eat some fresh, some would be sold to friends, and any leftovers would be frozen and eaten later.
During my study abroad year, I also met my future husband. His mom is an amazing cook. And after we were married and living in Arizona, I often would call her up to ask her to share her recipes for my husband’s favorite foods, like Mexican meatballs or cauliflower fritters.
Of course, growing up in Arizona, I was no stranger to Mexican food. We lived only 1 hour from the Mexican border, so Sonoran-style food was available all throughout my hometown. During high school and college, I worked at the neighborhood Mexican restaurant, El Parador, which had a diverse menu of Sonoran Mexican classics as well as food inspired by other Mexican regions. Although I didn’t work in the kitchen, I learned a lot about Mexican food from that experience, like why you salt beans after they are cooked and how to make the most delicious mango salsa.
In August 2018, our family moved from Arizona back to Cuernavaca. It was a chance for us to be closer to my husband’s family and give our boys a new cultural experience.
Since we moved back, I have learned countless new recipes, from friends and family here in central Mexico. With access to fresh Mexican ingredients and people willing to show me their family recipes, I feel truly blessed.
That’s not to say that I haven’t had my share of failures along the way, like the time I forgot to salt the tamal dough and had to throw away the whole batch of tamales. Or the first time that I tried my hand at enchiladas suizas and ended up with a saucy, mushy tortilla mess.
That’s part of the reason that I am passionate about documenting, testing, cooking, and sharing these recipes so that others can enjoy these homestyle dishes without making the same mistakes that I have.
So, as you can see, I haven’t gone to any fancy culinary school. I am just an obsessive, curious student with lots of experience cooking in my own Mexican kitchen and learning techniques and tips from Mexican home cooks.
Mexican food roots run deep. Like hundreds of years deep. From prehispanic traditions and native ingredients, Mexican food has evolved and fused with the influence of immigrants to make Mexican food what it is today. And that food culture continues to evolve, which makes cooking, eating, and living in Mexico so delicious ?
Therefore, my mission is this:
- to document and preserve traditional Mexican recipes from Mexican home cooks,
- create inspired new favorites that fuse traditional Mexican techniques and ingredients for a modern take on Mexican classics, and
- share these recipes with you so that you can make them in your own home!
So, I hope I have inspired you to try your hand at making Mexican food in your own kitchen! Are you ready to get cooking?
Looking for more challenging recipes? Try these: