October 2021 Better Homes & Gardens Recipes
As sweater weather creeps in (too slowly, in my opinion), it's time to start making warm beverages and fall-flavored baked goods and dreaming of cuisines from warmer climates like the regional flavors found across Mexico. The recipes from our October 2021 issue of Better Homes & Gardens® deliver on these seasonal bests with an assist from cookbook author and blogger Mely Martínez, who shares her flavorful Mexican recipes.
Pumpkin Spice Latte Bundt Cake
Old Fashioned Mini Bundt Cakes
Plenty of pound cakes have been called old-fashioned, but in the case of these mini bundts the name comes from the classic cocktail that inspired them. Bourbon and bitters form the backdrop, but orange juice and maraschino cherries keep these little nightcaps sweet.
Hot Chocolate Marshmallow Bundt Cake
Melted chocolate and chocolate chips give this cake intense flavor and color. Dusting the Bundt pan with cocoa instead of flour maintains the cake's rich silhouette while ensuring a clean release for fluted details.
Breakfast Fried Rice
Caldo de Camarón (Shrimp Soup)
"This is one of my city's favorite hangover cures," says cookbook author Mely Martínez of this dish of shrimp in a garlicky, tomato-flavor broth. "If you go to a cantina, they will always bring you food with your beer—the first thing being a very small cup of this soup." Easy access to incredible seafood in the Mexican states that border the Gulf of Mexico makes this a popular dish.
"These are Yucatán's version of tostadas," Martínez says. "Fried tortillas get topped with turkey, veggies, and quick-pickled onion." Over the centuries, native Mayan staples have fused with flavors introduced by traders and immigrants from Europe and the Middle East coming to the Yucatán Peninsula.The region is perhaps best known for pibil—meat that's marinated, wrapped in banana leaves, and barbecued—but these open-face salbutes (sahl-BOO-tehs), are a bit more weeknight-friendly.
Mely's Baja Fish Tacos
In the northwest region of Mexico, which includes Baja California, chefs take advantage of the stellar produce and seafood. At high-end restaurants and taco stands alike, locals line up for the region's famous crispy fish tacos. "My husband frequently traveled to Baja California for work," Martínez says. "He told me, 'You have to come with me next time to taste these tacos.' By 11 a.m. there was already a line down the block. Some people add egg to their batter, but I like to keep it simple: just flour, beer, and some spices. And I always top the whitefish with something crunchy and a creamy sauce."
"In Oaxaca, tetelas are sold by sidewalk vendors, at food stands, and even in restaurants," Martínez says of these triangle-shape treats, which are made from corn masa and stuffed with a black bean mash. She says they remind her of "healthier pizza pockets."
The ocean-adjacent region of the Pacific is, of course, known for fantastic seafood. But the state of Jalisco, near the middle of the west coast, is famous for two other delicacies: tequila and birria. The latter, a super-savory meat stew, has recently become trendy in the States. "The most traditional version of this stew is made from goat," Martínez says. "These days, beef is more common since it's more accessible."
Mely's Enchiladas Suizas
"Mexico City and the areas around it are the oldest parts of the country and where many of the dishes eaten all over Mexico have their origins," Martínez says. "Walk into a diner anywhere in the country and you will find chilaquiles, huevos rancheros, and enchiladas suizas—all of those dishes are from central Mexico." Everyone at your dinner table will devour these chicken-stuffed tortillas in a creamy tomatillo sauce topped with cheese.
Asado de Puerco (Pork Stew)
The northeast region of Mexico is known for its ranches. It's only natural, then, that the food here is meat-heavy. "Cookouts are a way of life," according to Martínez. "And asado de puerco, right, is often served on farms for big celebrations—weddings, baptisms, and birthdays." Most braised pork dishes cook for hours. This one is done in a fraction of the time—but you'd never guess it once you taste the rich, dried-chile sauce.
Apple Fritter Bread
This swirled quick bread has all the makings of an apple-cinnamon pastry with a fraction of the work. Chopped apples—we suggest a tart varietal, such as Granny Smith—stud the tender crumb, and a drizzle of sour cream icing finishes the craggy top. (We'll be impressed if you can wait for it to cool before digging in.)
Honeyed Hot Cider Sauvignon
Bet you've never tried Sauvignon Blanc (or other dry white wine) as a hot slow cooker drink flavored for fall. But I also bet you will, now that you have this recipe combining white wine and apple cider in your arsenal.