Since moving to New York we’ve been mourning for good Mexican food. There’s a place close by, Chavella’s which is good, but lacks some of the stress-free ambiance I love about most about laid-back Mexican cuisine (the space is very crowded and the drink menu is far from extensive—but I just read they’re moving to a new, bigger spot and applying for full liquor license. In the event these dreams come to pass, Chavella’s will be 40 seats with a full bar, which would be amazing and fulfill even my wildest Mexican restaurant dreams).
In the meantime, while I await a margarita on the rocks with no salt and not having to move my chair so someone can get to the bathroom; I make Mexican on my own. This usually works out well, since I had the world’s BEST teacher in LA (Moses’ mom!) and find myself pretty capable of pulling together some pretty good Mexican digs.
My perhaps favorite aspect of Mexican food is how surprisingly easy it is to make the food totally vegan (very few of the sauces have anything more than chicken stalk, which can easily be replaced with veggie stalk and some extra salt or Bragg’s). The chips are fried in oil (veggie or olive, which is what I use because I have it) and the sauces can be thickened with anything from crackers to coconut milk.
This weekend I made a Roasted Corn and Black Bean Kale Salad with Mole (using a few bars of dark chocolate, so not vegan completely this time) over Chiliquilles.
1 Pascilla Chili
1 Ancho Chili
1 Serrano Chili
2 Cloves Garlic
1 Small can tomato paste
2 Table Spoons Coconut Milk
1/2 Full-sized bar of good quality dark chocolate
Roast all the peppers, garlic and tomato half in a non-oiled skillet until the skin gets black and crusty in places. Cut off the stems of the chilis with scissors and dump out as many of the seeds as you can, then cut into strips (garlic can be left intact or cut in halfs) and put into a medium-sized bowl with boiling water on top (about a cup).
Let seep for 10 minutes, then put in food processor with tomato paste (and the chili infused water) until smooth-ish.
Poor pureed materials in a pan and over medium heat add coconut milk and chocolate. Add more coconut milk if it’s too heaty, and a little agave makes it extra good.
And, since I didn’t post yesterday, here’s a double whammy. I’ve been trying to do something with my hair. It’s been an ordeal, because I’m growing out my bangs and they’re driving me NUTS, so I usually braid it back or braid it around…but it feels like I ought to try something loose, too…so here’s my take on bringing back the 80s…Inspired by Anne Hathaway’s totally rad curls in Sex and Other Drugs:
Mine aren’t nearly so…well-formed…but, that’s life verses Hollywood.
Two quick points: First, I included this second shot only because I never knew I COULD raise my eyebrow like that and had no idea I was doing it, which was pretty fun—so fun, in fact, it made me overcome my camera shy-ness to show it off.
And two: It was INCREDIBLY difficult to find UN-Naked photos of Anne Hathaway from Sex and Other Drugs, because she’s naked in over 75% of the movie. Moses usually just calls her “the girl that shows her boobs.” Remembering back to the Princess Diaries, who would have ever thought that would be a potential nickname for her? What would Julie Andrews think!?