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72 hours of Chino-Latino Bliss

Posted on June 2, 2011 in the Local Happenings, Updates category by Dennis Chan.

I love Latin food.  The flavors and ingredients are similar to the Asian food that I grew up on, but with different preparation methods.  Naturally, the two pair well because of those similarities.  Over the years, we’ve dabbled with Chino-Latino flavors.  Both on our menu and in our cooking classes.

During the last three days, I took a quick trip to San Juan, Puerto Rico.  While there, I experienced Chino-Latino cooking at its finest.  My grandfather was the master of Chinese proverbs, and he once shared this one with me: reading about something for 20 years could never measure up to experiencing a culture for one day.  This trip proved his proverb to be true.

Here’s what I learned, from masters of Chino-Latin cooking…  Soft plantains, or amarillos, make a perfect slightly sweet stuffing for dumplings when paired with pork.  A short-cut way of making Mofongo, or mashed root veggies, can be had by using a food processor.  Mojitos, can be enhanced with Asian or tropical fruits, such as pineapples, guavas, and lychees.  Tembleque, a coconut pudding, is made just like a Chinese mango pudding, but topped with cinnamon.  Pegaito is a Puerto Rican dish made the same way that my grandmother used to make a crispy rice snack.

Look for this new knowledge to work its way into our offerings at Blue Bamboo soon!


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