This chocolate cake is the main cake that my mom would make when I was a kid. Like most kids, I loved licking the batter mixing spoon and scraping every single last bit of the frosting. Just the smell of it in the oven and the first bite bring me back to those good old days. When I was going to elementary school in Ecuador, it was customary that the 6th graders (which used to be the final grade of elementary or escuela primaria) would work throughout the year to raise money, which would be used to go on an end of the year trip. Obviously the more money you raised, the better the quality of the trip. One of the main activities we did to raise funds for our end of the year trip was to sell food and snacks during school recess. Our school hours were from 7:15am to 12:30pm (lunch was eaten at home) with a 30 minute recess. My mom would make this chocolate cake when it was our turn and it always sold out completely. In addition to school events, my mom also made this cake for birthday parties, get togethers with friends, and more. I’ll admit that I was lazy growing up and because my mom made it so frequently, I never really paid attention or learned how to make it. So, of course I thought it would be more complicated to make this chocolate cake than it actually is – it turns out that it’s so easy, you don’t even need a mixer and I’ve already started teaching my 9 year old how to prepare it. [read more]
This salmon and tuna ceviche recipe is inspired by the flavors of poke. Poke is a Hawaiian crudo style salad made with raw tuna, onions, soy sauce, and other condiments/spices. I love tuna poke and discovered it when I moved to the Pacific Northwest. I’ve wanted to make a ceviche style take on poke for a while now. This salmon and tuna poke inspired ceviche is made with fresh sashimi grade wild salmon and tuna marinated with soy sauce, ginger, chili pepper, avocado oil, sesame oil, and chives. It is drizzled with lime juice right before or when served, topped with lime marinated red onions, cilantro leaves, and served on top of traditional patacones/tostones plantain chips or in patacones shaped as small cups.
A few months ago, my friend Pilar, from the blog Confieso que Cocino, was visiting Seattle and we spent the day cooking. We prepared a couple of dishes, including a delicious shrimp and corn chowder locro soup. A trip to the local Asian supermarket Uwajimaya (one of my favorite places in case I haven’t already mentioned that a million times), inspired us to make this salmon and tuna poke style ceviche. We wanted to make a dish that had elements of Seattle, including the Asian influence that you find the local food, and the dish also needed a Latin/Ecuadorian touch. [read more]