Hello, hola; welcome, bienvenidos; thanks and gracias for visiting. My name is Maura Hernandez and I’m the author of the popular Mexican website, The Other Side of The Tortilla.

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A Touch of My Mexican Kitchen

Hello, hola; welcome, bienvenidos; thanks and gracias for visiting! My name is Maura Hernandez and I’m the author of the popular Mexican cooking, culture and travel website, The Other Side of The Tortilla, and I’m new here to the Genius Blog. I’m here to help you navigate adding a little sabor to your kitchen!

I’ve been blogging on The Tortilla since 2009 when I decided to publicly document my journey of writing down my husband’s family recipes and using cookbooks to fill in the gaps where I needed to learn about techniques or specific ingredients. Oftentimes in families, recipes are only passed on orally from generation to generation, so it was my mission to make sure that none of our family recipes fell through the cracks. After all, one day I’ll want to teach my own children to carry on the tradition of making the dishes that are so dear to us. It’s taken a lot of experimenting, but we’ve come a long way.

First, a small confession: my kitchen isn’t Mexican 100 percent of the time, and I know yours isn’t either. So while I’m here to share Mexican recipes and tips to add Latin flair to your cooking, I know that realistically (especially if you have kids who are picky eaters) the best way to start incorporating Mexican cuisine in your home if it’s unfamiliar territory is little by little with small touches that build a comfort level.

That said, I’m going to share with you a very simple but tasty recipe for chipotle mayonnaise. Yes, it comes bottled at the store if you know where to buy it, but I’m big on learning how to make even the simplest things that I could conveniently buy at the store. But if I lived in a city that didn’t have a Mexican grocer, I’d have to learn to make it from scratch anyhow if I wanted it, right? And honestly, I prefer the taste of homemade to store-bought any day of the week. While the modern miracle of appliances are key to not spending too much time in the kitchen and experimenting with new cuisines and flavors, it’s important to still know how to make things from scratch.

So let’s get down to business, shall we? Some people are afraid of all chili peppers, thinking they’re all too hot for their taste buds no matter what; but the truth is that it’s all about balance. Chipotle peppers are simply smoked red jalapeños that have been cured and preserved with vinegar, tomato sauce or paste, ancho chiles and spices.

The beauty of this recipe is that you can easily adjust it to your taste. Want just a touch of chipotle? No problem. Love your mayo super spicy? We can do it that way, too. Having guests over with a varying range of tolerance for spicy foods? You can easily and quickly make a big batch that’s less spicy and then divide it in half and add more chipotle to half of the mayo!

If you can’t find chipotles en abodo in your regular grocery store and don’t have any ethnic markets that carry Hispanic foods, you can always order them online from places such as MexGrocer.

You can put chipotle mayo on anything from a traditional Mexican torta (a sandwich on a special roll called a bolillo or telera) to a regular old BLT (like the one pictured here) to give it a little kick. Be creative!

What you’ll need:

  • Your choice of mayonnaise (I prefer low-fat)
  • A small can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (you can usually find these in the ethnic or canned food sections of your grocery store)
  • 1 fresh lime
  • A little pinch of kosher salt

As a general rule, I start with a quarter cup of mayo, a few squeezes of fresh lime juice, a little pinch of kosher salt and one and a half to two chipotle peppers with a little spoonful of the adobo sauce from the can. If it’s too spicy for you, just add a little more mayo. If it’s not spicy enough, add more chile with a little squeeze of lime juice.

There are three ways you can mix it all together:

  • A food processor
  • A hand blender
  • Chop the chile very finely and mix in by hand

I typically will blend the chipotles, salt and lime juice together first in a food processor or blender, but there’s no wrong way to do it. In the end, you just want to make sure that the mayo is blended smoothly with the chile mixture. There shouldn’t be any chunks of chile in it, and the mayo should be a reddish-orange, speckled hue.

That’s it! Simple, right? If you have any questions, please feel free to leave comments here for me on the Genius Blog or on my site. I look forward to sharing more tips here with you every week!

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