Being Puerto Rican, I have learned to appreciate our love affair with food. I can remember our kitchen and seeing my abuelita (grandma) going at it like some mad scientist. The smell of spices and herbs filled the lab as it slowly cooked for the base of her yellow fluffy rice. Her hands filled with spices and the sound of clinking pots, let me know that something magical was happening.
My favorite time was when we would go to the whole foods market. She always weighed the veggies and fruit with her hands and then smelled, squeezed, and stared at the texture for a long time. I honestly thought she was crazy and that we would never get out of the market, but then I noticed everyone was doing the same thing…then I thought, "that must be what makes the food so good.” As I got older, I realized that was the best way to pick them.
Oh, and don’t get me started on the herbs and spices! If the food didn’t have the fresh cilantro or spice, well...olvidate! (forget it!) I explain to grandma that I live in the city not in the country and I can’t grow my own herbs and spices. “Then buy this brand”, she would say to me. As long as I found the brand she recommended, I knew in my heart my meals would taste fantastic. I’ve always admired her sense of taste and love for freshness.
If you ever find yourself staring into an empty pan remember you can never go wrong if it’s fresh and from the heart. I’ve learned that the kitchen is a magical place where with the right ingredients, tools and a dash of love you just might surprise yourself.
Are you ready for some Good COOKING?
You can purchase Coqui the Chef's pilón on his online store visit http://coquithechef.com/merchandise.html