Queso Cotija

Tortilla, a Spanish Word with Two Meanings

 

My Mexican friends and those from Spain may both speak Spanish, but they don’t mean the same when they say “Tortilla.” 🙂 In Spain ‘tortilla’ is a mix of beaten eggs and anyone of the following: Veggies, cold cuts, beef, chicken or even fish. You may think ‘omelet’ but Spain is very particular about Tortillas and they would rather have you not mistake them for omelets. They are delicious, by the way! On the other hand, corn and flour tortillas are at the heart of Mexican cuisine.

Here is my take on two recipes which may help explain (or so I hope.)

Spanish Tortilla (from Spain)

  • Ingredients:

1 egg per person, cooked potatoes cut in cubes, diced white onion (about 1/4), 1 diced tomato, 2 slices of ham, cubed. Salt to taste.

  • Directions

Start by adding 1 tsp of butter to a pan. Add the onions. When the onions are starting to turn clear, add the diced tomato. Cook for a minute and then add the potatoes, and the ham. Mix well and let it saute for about 3 minutes. Add the eggs. I like to experiment, so I add 1 whole egg and then I beat the other eggs before mixing them all in. 🙂

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In the end of this step, it should look like this:

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Turn when you see the eggs starting to cook completely

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Turn once again and serve! 🙂

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Spanish Tortilla or Tortilla de Patatas

My Mexican corn tortilla recipe is extremely easy to make and it is wonderful for breakfast, snack, light lunch or even dinner, accompanying a main dish. It can even be a dessert if you sprinkle the ending folded tortilla with brown sugar and cinnamon.

  • Ingredients

3 corn tortillas per person (they’ll want more…), cheese (you may use mozzarella, queso fresco, queso cotija or queso panela.) 2-4 TBSP canola oil. Salt.

  • Directions

Start by heating up the oil in a pan. Add the corn tortillas and let them stand against each other as shown in this image below. You will see them softening and at that point, you may add the cheese in the center.

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Fold them and let them continue frying.

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Turn them to make sure they’re golden brown on each side. Serve and enjoy! 🙂

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Mexican Quesadillas Fritas (made with corn tortillas)

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Hot Dog Toppings at Home

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Hot dog toppings, our creative secret to ‘never-boring’ hot dogs at home. In general, we find them healthier than street vendor hot dog toppings. Hot dog toppings have been a popular tradition in many cities of Colombia. New York city street vendors also offer these with multiple topping options.

The base: Ketchup, mustard. The toppings: Sweet, salty or spicy combinations.

Salty combination: Crumbled Queso Fresco or Queso Cotija (crumbled feta or gorgonzola cheese work as well), diced onions, diced pickles and crushed potato chips.

Sweet combination (not featured in these pictures, but also delicious): The popular Hawaiian, which means pineapple chunks, ham and bacon bits, crumbled cheese and crushed potato chips.

Spicy combination: Anyone of the above with diced jalapeno. 🙂

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IMG_5155Hot dog toppings are perfect for kids and adults. This is a budget friendly way to entertain indoor or outdoor. They are easy to make, full of texture and bold flavors!