Sunday, April 22, 2007

Exotic Fruit-Pepino Melon Sorbet with Mango Strawberry Fruit Salsa

A luscious ambrosial fruit, pepino melons have a golden yellow flesh and the outer peel is golden yellow to apricot-colored when perfectly ripe. Pepinos are native to the South American Andes region, but most pepinos come from New Zealand. The photo below showing the beautiful purple stripes is a good example of a ripe pepino. When buying pepinos, choose those which are fragrant and free of bruises.

Pepino Melon Sorbet

3 pepino melons
1/4 cup bottled pineapple juice ( I used the Looza brand)
1/2 cup sugar

Trim the peeling from the pepino, cut in half and remove seeds with a spoon. Be sure to work over a bowl to catch precious juices which may drip out in the process of chopping the fruit. When roughly chopped, place in a blender or food processor with the pineapple juice and puree for 30 seconds. Strain fruit through a fine sieve. Process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions. Store in freezer. Makes about a pint.

Strawberry Mango Fruit Salsa

1 pint ripe strawberries, stemmed and diced
1 ripe mango, peeled, stoned and diced
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint leaves
Lime Zest for garnish

Serves about four spooned over pepino melon sorbet.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

Yorkie Puppy

Just wanted everyone to know that this little guy has slowed my blogging down to a snail's pace. Meet Razzle Dazzle-my new little buddy-born on Valentine's Day and who in a very short two weeks has worked his way into my family's hearts. He's a writhing mass of energy charging at our feet constantly, his sharp teeth gnawing at our shoes and shaking his toys with head movements that would surely break our necks if we even dare try.

For the past two weeks, the housework has gone to hell, the cooking has slowed down, the photos aren't as frequent on Flickr and I am hoping I will survive the puppy training without having to completely redecorate my house, but I am having a ton of fun with this little guy!

Will post another recipe and photo very soon!!

Saturday, April 7, 2007


Nearly every cuisine has a fried bread either leavened with yeast or baking powder. In the Southwest and Mexico, it is the sopaipilla, reminiscent of the Native America Fry Bread which is a staple among the Navajo Indians and other American Indians of the Southwestern region of the United States.

Sopaipillas are golden fried puffs of bread traditionally served at the dinner table in the Southwest, Mexico and South America, but are equally delicious drizzled with honey or stuffed with meat and beans.

I am a great fan of Jaqueline Higuera McMahon, writer of the "South to North" column in the San Franciso Chronicle and author of six books related to chiles and Southwestern food. An eighth generation Californian, McMahon's first book is a collection of early California recipes and stories of her great great great grandfather, Jose Loreto Higuera and the family's Rancho Lost Tularcitos.

My sopaipilla recipe comes from McMahon's "Red and Green Chile Book, A Cook's Guide with Savory Recipes published in 1987, but no longer in print. McMahan's recipe has step by step instructions for mixing by hand, but I put all the ingredients in my bread machine on the dough cycle.

Sopaipillas are my entry into this months edition ofWaiter, Theres Something in My---Bread hosted by Andrew of Spittoon Extra.


3 3/4 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons of salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3 tablespoons shortening
1 teaspoon dry yeast
3 tablespoons warm water
Pinch of sugar
1 cup evaporated milk, plus 2 tablespoons
2 cups light oil, for frying

Follow your bread machine's instructions for the dough cycle, but skip the rise cycle. Take the dough from the machine,form into a ball, cover and let rest for 30 minutes. Punch dough down and divide in half. Wrap in plastic wrap so it doesn't dry out.

Roll out the dough in a rectangle, about 1/4 inch thickness. Fold in half and roll out again. Trim uneven edges with a sharp knife. Cut into 12 rectangles. Heat oil in a deep saucepan to 360 degrees F. Line a jelly roll pan with several layers of paper towels. Drop in one square of dough which will sink to the bottom. Hold down lightly with tongs until dough puffs up. Alternatively, you can spoon hot oil over the top continously and the sopaipilla will keep puffing. When golden brown on one side, turn the sopaipilla over to brown the other side. Lift it out and place on paper towels. Blot the top. Continue with remaining rectangles. When finished, turn off the oil while you roll remaining half of dough. Turn the oil back on as you are cutting out the rectangles. When finished frying, serve immediately plain or sprinkled with powdered sugar and a scoop of ice cream. Garnish with a strawberry or other fruits.