La Cocina De Martha: Food like abuela’s

Martha Flores, 57, says she began her food business seven years ago selling snacks out of a small room in Central El Paso from 5 to 10 at night. “It was corn in a cup, chilindrinas, papa locas, just the good stuff,” says Flores who two years ago expanded the business into a full-fledged restaurant on Montana Avenue named La Cocina de Martha. “I had a dream–my dream was to have my own place, my own restaurant,” said Flores, who was born in Chihuahua, Mexico and moved to the United states with her family when she was a child. She graduated from Bel Air High School in 1978 and graduated with her bachelors degree in history from UTEP in 2000. She then accepted a full time day job as a property manager for a local business and ran her mom-and-pop food business at night.

Vendors shop health foods to El Pasoans browsing farmers market

Farmer’s market vendors said they set up booths in El Paso in response to efforts trying to stem preventable diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease – the leading causes of death in the county. “We cater to a lot of people that have diabetes, cancer, and high blood pressure,” said Ulises Cordova, owner of The Green Ingredient, a business that sells health food at a local gym. “We teach them how to eat right and give them different alternatives.”

Heart disease and cancer are the leading causes of death in El Paso County, according to the 2013 El Paso Community Health Assessment. Cordova and his wife started The Green Ingredient after several family members contracted cancer. They have been vendors at the Saturday El Paso Downtown Art and Farmers Market for the past 5 years.

Nueva era, nueva idea en Craft Café

El entusiasmo por productos y comidas orgánicas y mas saludables ha tomado raiz en esta zona fronteriza con una variedades de cafes y restaurantes que sirven selecciones vegetarianas o veganas. Recientemente dos emprendedores locales se han incorporado al movimiento orgánico con una idea inovadora, una carretilla de café instalada en one:one, unas oficinas ultra modernas en el centro de la cuidad. Rosa Tenorio, egresada de mercadotecnia, y Abel Baca, estudiante de administración de empresas, ambos en la Universidad de Texas en el Paso, fundaron en Septiembre su nuevo negocio, Craft Café, o “carrito de café” que sirve café, tés, y postres, todos hechos con ingredientes orgánicos. “El Paso por el momento no tiene ningún restaurante cien por ciento vegano pero tiene bastante opciones veganas”, dijo Tenorio. Actualmente, existen varios restaurantes que ofrecen alguna comida vegana o vegetariana en El Paso tales como Ripe, ubicado en Redd Road, Nour Mediterranean e India Place, ambos ubicados en Mesa Street.

Meatless merchant offers ‘pay it forward’ plan

What began as a food truck in the fall of 2016, One Grub Community provides access to healthy, plant-based foods through the vegan meals and grocery items it sells at the Downtown Art and Farmers Market every Saturday. By providing access to healthy and tasty foods, “El Paso’s first pay-it-forward meatless merchant” is joining some other local vegan eateries in winning over El Pasoans’ hearts – one vegan delicacy at a time. “I think the community knows that some authentic, good stuff is happening,” owner Roman Wilcox, 36, says. “We get really positive feedback on all our stuff; we’re really blessed.”

According to Wilcox, the company’s most highly-requested menu items are its “Natcho Queso”, a cashew-based chile con “queso”, and seitan jerky, protein made of wheat gluten and red lentils. One Grub also offers prepared meals, including breakfast tofu scrambles and seitan-stuffed peppers.

Latino entrepreneurs make their mark through microbrewing

El Paso, TX – Carlos Guzmán opened his first bar while he was stationed in Iraq. Well, it was sort of a bar. And it sort of just happened. Guzmán was having a hard time buying liquor in Iraq, so he asked his friends and family to stash some little bottles in their care packages. “Little did I know that within a month we’d have over 50 bottles,” said Guzmán who was in the U.S. Army.

Borderland Facebook foodies having fun rating restaurants with Juarez celebrity scale

Garnachas y restaurantes Juárez y El Paso is a Facebook group that has been gaining popularity among border residents. It began as a hobby two years ago and now is an online community with more than 50,000 members. The driving motivation for the group is to stimulate Juarez business and entertainment activity following a half decade of a declining economy and business closings sparked by high crime and violence. Group members rate Juarez restaurants and cafes on a scale of one to 10, using colloquial Juarez personalities such as superstar “divo” Juan Gabriel and the well-known clown Niko Lico, and others. For example, ten “Juangas” means the establishment is super good and one Niko Lico, means it is awful.

These 4 treats are worth tracking down at El Paso’s Mexican snack shacks

When I first moved to El Paso from Arkansas, my definition of Mexican food was tacos, guacamole and quesadillas. After living here for 10 years now, I have expanded my palette and grown to enjoy even more Mexican foods and snacks than I knew existed. I’ve come to enjoy authentic Mexican plates at restaurants like tacos al pastor, tampiquena, and aguachiles. But, I have also grown fond of some more unusual culinary treats available at local snack shacks anchored in parking lots around town. Not the newer trend of gourmet food trucks, which come replete with chefs from California and Las Vegas, but the simple mom-and-pop snack spots closer to El Paso border style.

Cook off settles title of El Paso’s top taco

As El Paso native Monica Maldonado sipped a refreshing aqua de horchato and sampled crispy chicken flautas at the 2015 Mexican Food Cook Off in Union Plaza, she admitted being a little embarrassed that this was only her first time attending the event. “While I was standing at the food truck I was talking to two ladies who came all the way from California to El Paso. It’s their third time coming here and I live in the North East and had never heard of the event up to this year,” Maldonado said. But many El Pasoans did turn out Sept. 18 to enjoy the festival atmosphere and sample the tastes of local restaurants like Desert Rustic Kitchen, Delicious, Molalam and Taquizas.

Latin American restaurants that go beyond Mexican in the Borderland

In the neighboring cities of El Paso and Juarez, a border region where Mexican and U.S. cultures intertwine, divided and connected by the Rio Grande, you can find a great number of authentic cuisines, from the typical U.S. burger and fries to homestyle Mexican tacos and enchiladas. Although this variety is satisfying for Borderlanders, it often leaves me craving “pupusas” and “tamales de hoja de platano,” two dishes common to one-half of my ethnic background which is Mexican and Salvadoran. This means I usually need to wait for the Christmas and New Year’s holidays to satisfy my Salvadoran taste buds, when my Mexican-born mom cooks up traditional Salvadoran dishes she’s mastered since she married my Salvadoran dad 25 years ago. Hopefully, one day someone will open a Salvadoran restaurant on the East side close to home. Related story: Popular Latin American foods show common characteristics, diverse accents

I know I am not alone.

Mas que artesanías, piezas de historia

Barro negro, textiles, árboles de la vida, cuchillería, cestería, platería, orfebrería, barro bruñido, comida típica y antojitos mexicanos forman parte del extensor surtido de historia y cultura Mexicana aparente en sus artes plásticas. “Un viaje por nuestra republica, una travesía por la cultura mexicana” dijo Araceli Gómez. 35, quien es la organizadora de la exposición Arte Mexicana actualmente en recorrido por todo México. Las tradiciones y la cultura Mexicana tienen una larga historia, orgullosa de sus orígenes y lazos ancestrales la exhibición recorre el país cada año exhibiendo su fascinante arte. La exposición de artesanía, tiene como objetivo promover y comercializar productos fabricados por artesanos de toda la republica.

Popular Latin American foods show common characteristics, diverse accents

Food is often called a universal language that brings people together. There is much diversity among Hispanic cultures, but we can find some familiar experiences in the foods that we eat, and how we eat them. Living on the U.S., Mexican border I see the similarities between many popular Mexican dishes and the Puerto Rican staples my mother would prepare. Here is a look at three standard Puerto Rican dishes and their counterparts found in traditional Mexican, Cuban, and Dominican cuisine. 1.

5 pizza combos worth trying in El Paso

EL PASO—My love for pizza is undeniable. I find it fascinating that you could eat pizza every single day of your life and never repeat the same combination. Delectable, creamy cheese that melts in your mouth is the one layer that’s a constant among many variations. Usually, it is the endless toppings that range from spicy meats to fresh vegetables on top of a delectable crust make pizza unique. I decided to take my infatuation of pizza eating to the next level by driving to several of El Paso’s locally owned restaurants to try a diverse range of pizzas.

Food truck trend continues to grow as profits roll in

EL PASO — A hungry motorist driving on the desert highway on the east side of this border city could suddenly come up on Jesus Ramos’ El Vaquero food truck, stop and enjoy an “elotes,” a corn concoction that has its origins in old Mexico. “I have been in the food truck business for 30 years,” said Ramos, who specializes in serving the elotes, a mix of corn, butter, cheese and chile in a styrofoam cup. “I began in Mexico, and have only recently been in El Paso for three years. I sell 300 elotes a day at $3 to $5 each and to me it’s well worth the work of owning a food truck.” Opening a mobile restaurant or food truck is not an easy task.

Videos capture a taste of autumn on the border

As the scorching heat of the summer gives way to afternoon rains and cooler temperatures in the low 80s, residents along the Texas, Mexico border begin to prepare for rituals of autumn.  Some of the staff of Borderzine for the fall 2014 semester practiced their multimedia skills by capturing signs of the season in our community. 1. Abuela’s Chicken Soup

This is the time of year when stock pots on stoves across the nation simmer with the comforting goodness of chicken soup. Here, reporter Marilyn Aleman presents a typical El Paso version prepared by her mother using big chunks of vegetables and corn still on the cob. The wine for the cook is optional.

Few local restaurants offer menus in braille for the vision-impaired

EL PASO – Trying to pick from the vast number of dishes on a restaurant menu can be challenging, but imagine not being able to see the menu. Blind or vision-impaired persons must deal with that anomaly. Only a few restaurants in El Paso offer braille menus to their blind or vision-impaired customers, according to phone interviews with 21 local restaurants. The only ones were the national chains Red Lobster, Olive Garden, Applebee’s, and BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse. Some 21 million adults – about 9 percent of the U.S. population over the age of 18, reported having vision problems, according to the 2011 National Health Interview Survey prepared by the National Center for Disease Control and Prevention.