1. I could smell the charred chilis as I read your post. And I could taste and feel Mexico. Your beautiful dish – those rich, complex flavours. The heat. The sun. The intensity of light. Where did you stay? I’m looking to book right now – today or at least in the next day or two – my annual trip to Mexico.

    • i knew you had gone to Mexico a few times since reading you! How cool. Thanks so much. I don’t know if you’d want to stay where I stayed. I was further from the beach and more in the heart of Tulum. I was in Posada Luna del Sur and thought it was great. I befriended the chef and everynight he told me where to eat, what to do, what parks to walk through to find the good stuff. He sent me with notes to all of his friends places saying to treat me well and make me this. It was actually kind of cool getting to know the real Tulum and Yucatan, but it did leave less time for the beach.

      • Amanda – this is just like the place we stayed in Cozumel last year – in a Mexican neighbourhood. No beach. Lots of restaurants – miles of walking. We rented a car and drove to the back beaches in Cozumel for a couple of the days but there’s only so much flopping about on the beach that I can stand. The swimming though – was fabulous. I was looking at Tulum. Wondering about getting there – did you fly into Cancun and then rent a car?

        • Yes! i wanted to visit Cozumel! I flew to cancun and rented a car (beware i think their default is stick shift, but i grew up on a farm driving stick since i was like 12). It’s about 1.5 hrs to tulum. The road is safe with tons of speed bumps (topes) to slow you down in Tulum proper, but it’s worth it. Beautiful beaches, wildlife and pretty decent eating, but tourism has taken over. Are you going to Tulum?!

  2. Wow, Amanda, this looks amazing. I would love it. I wish I could get my hands on dried chilies on a regular basis, I just finished the last of what my friend brought me from Texas for the New Year’s party (I made a dish called carne con chile colorado, but it didn’t require charring the chilies, which I bet is delicious! It was a great dish though, and quite a success with my friends. Now I have to figure out a way of getting chilis in France; I guess I’ll have to search for a decent Mexican produce website. I love the “boot” recipe too; the description and the looks of it are incredible. I really love everything about this post!

    • Thanks so much, Darya! I love that you cook a little Mexican food with the limited ingredients in France. We have tons of Mexican produce here in New York because we’re so entwined with Mexico. What’s strange to me is when I have friends who come in from Europe they ask me who those people are. They’ve actually never met or seen anyone from Mexico, which is almost baffling considering how we coexist. I just wish I could have made this charring the chilis without choking. Then the sauce would have been deeply black the way it was in Mexico.

    • abrooke65@gmail.com

      Thanks, Conor. I’ve been working on it. So annoying! Hopefully it will be more functional soon! Sorry about that. Thanks for the heads up.

  3. This chili looks rich and delicious.
    Did you change your theme on this site? FYI neither today’s eamil link and the FB link work. I tried to access both and I got not found. I have your site bookmarked and could access it that way.
    also the printed areas show up so light on my computer that it is difficult to read.maybe it is my connection?

    • abrooke65@gmail.com

      Thanks, jovina. Bad timing on my part. Thank you for informing me. I’m changing the site around a little to have more control. In so excited about it but clearly there is a learning curve for me. I will try to get it all in order for my next post for sure. And i will fix the font. Your comments mean so much to me and in touched that you took the extra step to get in touch. So sorry about that.

  4. I can access the blog now, though the link from the email doesn’t work – that’s probably not worth worrying about, as long as the link to your next post works.
    Wow – I’m jealous of your holiday in Mexico, I’ve always wanted to go there. Relleno Negro sounds like the perfect antidote to Christmas dinner. I can imagine how nasty the chilli smoke might be – I once reduced a bottle of red wine vinegar by two thirds and it was most unpleasant! I’ll have a look at the Mexican shop in East London for some charred chillies as I’d like to try cooking this 😉

    • abrooke65@gmail.com

      Oh, MD, this is right up your alley. The next day it’s even better as the turkey marinates a little bit in the sauce. I can imagine how bad that vinegar must have been. Thanks for stopping by again! I love your comments.

      I really should not have released a post on the same day that I changed everything on the back end. I’m still working on it little by little. I think the next post will be fine. Even my dad was like “what happened to your site?!!!” All should be good now.

  5. Oh Amanda your blog gets more beautiful every time I visit. You’ve changed something, haven’t you? It’s lovely, and I love seeing your photos in the new format – I can see the whole photos and it just zings off the page!

    This is such a wonderful looking recipe, but I think I need to find a new family – one that likes chillies. And maybe a room with a hole in the ceiling to let out the smoke 🙂

    • abrooke65@gmail.com

      OMG trixie, thank you so much. I keep trying to make it more functional and get better. It means so much to hear this from you. Not everyone I know loves chilis either, but it’s a great recipe and such a good dish!

  6. Well, this ought to pick up your tastebuds by the scruff of the neck, give them a shake and set them off on the right foot for the new year. Great post. Sounds really really good.


    P.S. Darya, from Tortore, says Hi! (So funny for her to pass on a Hi! from you.) We had lunch at 6 Paul Vert in Paris – she’s lovely, funny and knows more about Akkadian and cuneiform than anyone else in my circle.

    • Amanda

      Thank you, Ken. Oh I’m so jealous! I wish I had been there. I’m definitely coming to Boston asap, but I can’t guarantee that I can hold a candle to Darya’s knowledge. I love how often you travel and to where. I’m so coming next time!

  7. good gosh, I am floored. Martha Stewart nothing on you! What a gorgeous post 🙂 Sounds like a lovely and even contemplative trip. Glad you got away for the holidays. Liking the new look around here. Tres elegante 😀

    • Amanda

      Thanks so much, Liz. I really appreciate your comments. I’m really glad I got away. Last year was such a rough winter here and it just gets so cold. It’s a good reminder to see other parts of the world and remember that the world is so much bigger than just your routine. As for the site, I’m working on it! I’m learning how to design it all myself. It’s fun and frustrating and makes me want to work harder! Maybe you can bring some of your bourbon over and help make it more fun 🙂

  8. Amanda

    Thank you so much, Sue. I’m still building the page so i saw a bunch of comments later. I probably sounds have gotten help. I just wanted me control over the design. As for the mole dish. .. so good. It makes me want to try my hand at a traditional mole. There are so many kinds! Thanks as always for your thoughtful comments. More soon. .. xo

  9. Lan | morestomach

    a few things:
    this looks very interesting. i am notorious for turning my nose up to mexican food, and the foods of that region/area. it’s not something that i grew up with. however, my husband loves it and i did promise to make more of this cuisine; this looks both interesting and challenging.

    we live in a condo in the city and we have poor ventilation too. when i know that we’re going to be cooking especially strong foods, we rig a shower curtain rod, with a heavy curtain, at the entry way of the kitchen and crack the fire escape door. when the cooking is done, we bust open the door and have a fan cranked to get the fumes out. it helps… we freeze, but it helps with the smell…

    • Amanda

      OMG, Lan, that is hilarious! I can’t believe you go through that much trouble to ventilate. Brilliant! I just suffocate. I know what you mean about freezing though. I have to take the smoke and fire detectors off the walls and open the windows to the fire escape. So funny.

      Thanks for the compliments. I think if you experience true Mexican food, not just the beans and rice slathered with cheese that often passes for Mexican, you’ll see that they have an incredible culinary tradition. It’s just not readily available here in the states, oddly. I love your comment! Enjoy your week!

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