Holiday Dinners in Puerto Vallarta
We’ve recently been involved in conversations about scarcity and abundance of familiar foods during the holidays in Puerto Vallarta. We’ve talked about this before but there are always new and old ideas to share with newbies and also with faithful oldies.
This year, once again, turkeys seem to be the subject of discussion at cocktail hour; who’s having them, where to find them and how to cook them. Once was a time we couldn’t find a turkey in Puerto Vallarta but now they’re in every big box store. You’ll also find imported hams, cheeses and delights such as cranberry sauce. It’s not longer a matter of trying to duplicate what one would have prepared “back home.” Costco even has fresh bags of cranberries so you can still make your own, and ingredients such as walnuts and oranges are not scarce. On the other hand, you could try making other sauces that will delight your gourmands. Why not use papaya, mango, pomegranates, passion fruit, and make a compote that will go well with all meats.
Add some variety to your New Year’s Eve dinner. Consider tamales for your menu. They’re traditional and can be found everywhere. We actually buy ours from street vendors, have done so for a couple decades, and never had a problem. The work that goes into tamales can be left to someone else and leave you more time in the hammock.
Potatoes are always a problem. Those found in Puerto Vallarta are very high in sugar content. When mashed they end up soggy and pasty. The solution is to peel and cut them in half the previous day. Soak them overnight completely covered with water and about half cup of salt. Drain the water the next day, rinse well and cook as usual. You will feel like you are home for the holidays, if you so wish.
Vegetables are abundant here in Puerto Vallarta, fresh and basically organic. They aren’t as pretty as you will find in your fancy supermarkets in the north but they’re tasty and healthy. Carrots have robust flavor and are as pure as to leave orange stains on the cutting board. Brussels sprouts are smaller but bursting with tastiness and go well with
local cauliflower and broccoli. Chayote is a Mexican vegetable that can be treated and cooked like squash and is delicious with a bit of butter and desired amount of salt and pepper. Buen provecho!
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