Spicy Mexican Tamarind-Lime Margarita

spicy margarita - trust in kim

This tasty drink is another one of the recipes I got from chef Eric Fischer at Altamar Restaurant in Tulum, Mexico. It packs a flavour punch! I finally got around to making it for friends last night, and it was a big hit (right guys?)

You can alter the spiciness to your liking by toning down (or up) the jalapeño pepper.

If you don’t have margarita glasses, no worries – a wine glass does the job!

What you need for one serving:

  • 1/2 measure tamarind concentrate (I used Deliciosa brand)
  • 1 measure tequila plus a dash more
  • 1/2 measure Grand Marnier
  • 1/4 measure simple syrup
  • 1/2 measure Cointreau
  • 2 teaspoons finely chopped ginger
  • 1/2 banana pepper
  • jalapeño pepper, to your liking – start with 1/4 teaspoon
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • plenty of ice

What you do:

  1. Combine all the ingredients in a blender, and blend on high until all the ingredients are well combined and the ice becomes slushy.
  2. Dip the rim of the glass in lime juice, then salt (or skip this step and just drink it). Garnish with a wedge of lime.
  3. Enjoy!
tequila sampling - trust in kim
Part of our cooking class at Altamar Restaurant involved tequila tasting – best class ever!
lime margaritas eric fisher - trust in kim
Chef Eric Fisher serving up lime margaritas. Thanks for all the amazing recipes!

X’nipek / Yucatan Red Onion Salsa

x'nipek - trust in kim

Here is another of the recipes I learned in Tulum, Mexico at a cooking class I took at Altamar Restaurant. I love to put a few strips of this on top of a taco.  Yes, it is quite hot because of the Habanero chili, but you could use a piece of banana pepper instead if you’re afraid of the heat, or just leave it out altogether.  It is a really simple recipe, and it only needs to sit for about half hour before consuming, but I prefer it after it has sat overnight or even a few days.

What you need:

  • 100 grams red onion
  • 100 ml sour orange juice (or lemon juice with a little orange juice mixed in)
  • 10 grams Habanero chili

What you do:

  1. Roast the Habanero on a gas stove or barbecue until it has blackened slightly all over.  Chop it very finely.  Only use a little piece of it if you want this to be milder.
  2. Slice the red onion as thinly as you can and put it into a bowl or jar.  Add the Habanero to the onions, then pour the orange/lemon juice over the top.  Give it a little stir, then cover and refrigerate for half an hour or overnight.
  3. Serve on tacos, empanadas, or another favourite Mexican dish.  A little sour cream or plain yogurt will help cut the heat.
x'nipek on tacos - trust in kim
X’nipek on tacos

Guajillo Chile Salsa Grilled Prawns

guajillo chile salsa prawns - trust in kim

I got this guajillo chile salsa recipe from chef Eric Fischer at Altamar restaurant.  I decided to alter the recipe a little by using orange juice in place of white wine, and then I brushed these beautiful fresh prawns with it and grilled them.  Freshness is so important with seafood, as is grilling only enough to cook it.  Previously frozen prawns have a tougher texture, and overcooking also makes them tough.  That said, even at the fish counter the prawns may just be thawed after being previously frozen, so buy what you can.

This recipe makes enough salsa to keep in the fridge for a few weeks and use for other purposes, like grilling meats, or topping tacos or empanadas.  It’s not very spicy hot, but full of flavour, so if you like it really hot you’ll want to add a bit of hot sauce.

What you need:

  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons finely minced garlic
  • salt and pepper
  • 1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 dried guajillo chili peppers, cut into strips
  • 1/4 cup parsley finely chopped
  • fresh prawns, shells removed but tails remaining

What you do:

  1. Chop the garlic rather than using a garlic press; the press just makes it mushy.
  2. Heat the olive oil to medium high in a frying pan, then add the garlic.  Stir the garlic around so it doesn’t burn, and add a big pinch each of salt and pepper.  When it starts to just get brown around the edges, add the orange juice.  Add the chili strips along with their seeds. Let this simmer for a few minutes.
  3. Remove the frying pan from the heat and put the salsa into a blender with the parsley, or use an immersion blender, as I did. Taste and see if you think it needs more salt.
  4. Heat the grill to medium.
  5. Skewer the prawns.  I like to skewer each one through two parts, as you can see in the picture, so they don’t move around when I flip them.
  6. Brush some salsa on each prawn.  Make sure the rest of your meal is ready to go before you grill these, because they will be done quickly, and you want to eat them right away.
  7. Grill the prawns briefly on each side.  You will know they are done when they change colour from grey to salmon-coloured (depending on the type of prawns you are using). Remove from the grill immediately after they change colour, and serve.

I served mine with a lightly dressed salad.


Guacamolata – Avocado Sauce

guacamolata avocado sauce - trust in kim

When I was in the Yucatan earlier this year I found a lot of places serving this runny avocado sauce with their tacos and some other dishes like eggs and fish. It is creamy, yet without any dairy.  When I took a cooking class at Altamar Restaurant in Tulum, the chef told me the ingredients for the sauce, which he called guacamolata.  Last night I was making several salsas to serve to company, so I gave this one a try.  It’s a nice light tasting sauce that doesn’t overpower the rest of the food you are drizzling it on, and a pretty colour too! People who aren’t into spicy foods will appreciate this option.  I served it with a spoon in it so that people could drizzle it on the chip they had dipped into the spicier salsa, to take a bit of the power out of the spice.

What you need:

1 ripe avocado (you know it’s ripe when you can press the little stem in easily – it should still be somewhat firm)

2-3 tablespoons chopped onion (I also used some grilled onion)

2-3 tablespoons chopped cilantro

juice of 1/2 lime

water to make it runny

salt to taste

What you do:

1. Put the avocado, onion, cilantro, lime juice and some salt into a bowl.  Add a little water and use an immersion blender to blend it together (or put it all in a blender).  Add more water until it is a very smooth and somewhat runny sauce.  Taste and add more of whichever ingredient you think it requires.  For serving with fish you can add more cilantro.

The sauce retains its green colour even if you don’t use it right away, so you can store it in the fridge for a few days.

Here is a picture of my breakfast at la Bruja on Isla Mujeres, Mexico, with some of this avocado sauce.
Here is a picture of my breakfast at la Bruja on Isla Mujeres, Mexico, with some of this avocado sauce. 





Tomatillo Salsa

tomatillo salsa - trust in kim

Here’s another recipe I got from the awesome cooking class I took in Tulum Mexico with Eric Fischer at Altamar Restaurant.  It’s not too spicy, and you can alter that by adding more or less pepper.  I served it with Mexican Barbecued Chicken, and it is also great on tacos.  The key to the flavour here is roasting the tomatillo, onion and chili peppers over a flame; I did this on my gas stove, but a barbecue works great too.  You can keep this in the fridge for a few days.

What you need:

500 grams tomatillo

1 small sweet white onion

20 grams cilantro

1 jalapeno and 1 banana pepper

20 grams garlic

2 grams salt

2 grams black pepper

olive oil

What you do:

1. Roast the onions over a flame, turning often, until the outside is blackened and the inside is soft, about half and hour.

2. Roast the peppers until blackened then put them in an airtight container for about 15 minutes.  Remove most of the skin along with the stem.

3. Roast the tomatillos until they are lightly blackened.

4. Put everything into a blender and mix well.

5. Preheat a pot then add some olive oil and cook the sauce for 7-10 minutes.

6. Allow the sauce to cool, then store it in the fridge.

Eggs with Veggies and Guajillo Chili Salsa

eggs with veg and guajillo chili - trust in kim

For breakfast this morning I took a little inventory of the fridge contents and made up this meal.  It’s just some fried veg mixed with guajillo chili salsa, and added to some scrambled eggs.  Feel free to substitute for another kind of salsa, and substitute mushrooms or tomatoes if you have them. It is, after all, a clean-out-the-fridge recipe. Use what you’ve got!

The amounts really depend on how many people you are serving, and how much you like the various ingredients.  The amounts suggested in brackets are for two people.

This recipe draws on the omelette-making I learned about in Spain, and the Mexican cooking I learned about with Eric Fischer at Altamar Restaurant in Tulum, Mexico.

What you need:

eggs, lightly beaten with a fork (4)

sweet onion, chopped (1/4 cup)

red bell pepper, chopped (1/2 a pepper)

garlic, finely minced (2 cloves)

avocado, chopped (1/2 an avocado)

olive oil (2-4 teaspoons)

salt and pepper to taste

guajillo chili salsa (or another salsa or some hot sauce) (2 teaspoons)

What you do:

1. Heat a little olive oil in a frying pan on medium heat. Add the onions and cook for about 2 minutes, then add the peppers and cook for a few more minutes.  If the pan is getting a little dry you can add some water to let the peppers soften up a little.  Add the garlic and cook for about another minute. Add some salsa and mix it in.

2. In another fying pan, heat some olive oil to medium-high heat.  Add the egg and let it bubble a little.  Rather than stirring the eggs around, push them away from the edge of the pan and let the uncooked egg move to the edges of the pan.  When the egg is just cooked, serve it alongside the veggies.  Serve immediately with some avocado on top!cooking eggs - trust in kim