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About Me

Maribel_BlogAzucarAndSpiceI’m not a chef, I’m a culinary explorer. Let’s go on a journey together!

I’m pretty sure my mother ate serrano peppers straight up on a daily basis when she was pregnant with me, although she would never admit that. Whatever the reason, I’ve grown up to be that weird person who keeps a bottle of hot sauce on her desk at work. But “hot” fiery-type spices aren’t the only ones I love. I’m also addicted to herbs and sweeter spices like cinnamon and nutmeg. You see, I was born into a family of spice-O-holics. From my grandmothers, to my aunts and to my mother, everything they cooked was enhanced by a fragrant herb or spice. At my house, you could smell dinner from the driveway!

So you can imagine my disappointment when we moved to the U.S.A. and couldn’t find tortillas let alone serranos at the local grocery store, back then they were not so common in Columbus, Ohio. I still remember how distraught I was when I found out I couldn’t even put Valentina hot sauce on my potato chips, like we do in Mexico!

Things did get better after the first year. Mexican grocery stores started to pop up around Columbus, which luckily imported peppers, limes and all the hot sauce I could possibly eat in a year. After that, our family meals began to taste like home again.

I was also inspired to write this blog because of my family, whose meals are about sharing, story-telling, and enjoying each other’s company. Our BIG Thursday night meals were an excuse to eat, gossip, sing and sometimes argue! But always something to look forward to. The scent of my grandma Elvira’s Fideo Soup or grandma MariChuy’s Sweet Empanadas, brings back precious memories.

I’m a food lover and a culinary explorer. But more than anything – I love the way you can turn an old recipe into a new one, just by adding a few spices or herbs. Campbell’s had a winning recipe in their tomato soup, but then someone decided to throw in some fresh basil and this changed the game of soup FOREVER. Just like that, some clove in your sangria or cinnamon in your vegetable soup can take you one step closer to taste bud heaven!

Every week I will share with you my culinary adventures through some new, old and classic recipes. ALWAYS with a twist of spice! I hope you take comfort in the fact that I do my best to perfect each recipe before posting it. But I’m also not afraid to admit that I’m still a “rookie” when it comes to the kitchen so I hope you’ll enjoy taking this journey of discovery together. Many of the recipes you’ll find here will have a Mexican influence, since I’m originally from there, but the purpose of this blog is to share all types of recipes that use spices and herbs from a wide variety of cuisines. Just as my family is diverse, so is my palate. 🙂

¡Buen provecho!


4 responses »

  1. Wow! Love your writing style. Can’t wait until you post some recipes—I’ll definitely be trying them. You’re so right about how spices can totally change I meal. I found a new fave recently–cilantro!

  2. I’m just learning how to cook too and LOVE Mexican dishes. I can’t wait to see some beginner’s recipes for exciting, flavorful Mexican cuisine (maybe chilaquiles will be an earlier post…)


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