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Can you recommend great Mexican markets in Denver?

Help! I loved shopping at Rancho Liborio in the Denver area, but they went bankrupt and closed last spring. Also Avanza Market was sold and became Lowes Mercado - which I checked out and do not like. I have not been able to find a Mexican market worth shopping at, and my readers at http://denvergreenchili.com are emailing me with the same problem.

I particularly miss much of the produce - Rancho Liborio was the best place for tomatillos and Mexican papaya, but there were many wonderful Mexican foods there.

Can anybody recommend a really good Mexican market in the Denver area?

Dec 10, 2012
edgerdemain in Mountain States

How do you pick a great cookbook to give as a gift?

Taking a look at the giftee's personality is something I hadn't thought of, not in those terms. It occurred to me that a food snob (I don't mean it derogatorily) belongs in there - someone who values the high-end prestigious restaurants. That's where you might focus on the cookbooks from prominent restaurants. I included the book "Recipe, Please: Favorite Recipes From Colorado Restaurants" and I'm going to alter my review of it a bit. Actually, I'm going to do a rewrite of many to reflect the personality. It even occurs to me that the cookbooks you pick could be a personality test.

Dec 04, 2007
edgerdemain in Home Cooking

How do you pick a great cookbook to give as a gift?

I am compiling a list of the best Southwest cookbooks to give as gifts (for denvergreenchili.com), so I thought I had better come up with the criteria for evaluating a cookbook. I came up with this list, but I find I’m not always sticking with it. Please give your input!

Here are the characteristics I look for:
1. A theme: recipes from a particular restaurant, culture, or locale. Lowfat or high-fiber. 30-minute meals or cooking for two. Possible themes are endless.
2. Good basic recipes. I expect a Southwestern cookbook to have chili verde, salsas, guacamole, enchiladas, tortilla soup, etc.
3. Interesting, imaginative and unusual recipes.
4. Easy-to-prepare recipes. When a recipe can be made in 30 minutes and uses easy-to-find ingredients, I’m inclined to try it right away.
5. Colorful pictures. Seeing gets the taste buds interested.
6. Recipe descriptions. Commentary on how popular the dish is, what it goes with, how good it is as a leftover, etc. brings the recipe to life before you even try it.
7. Basic how-to information. What the less common ingredients are and where to buy them, how to use the tools needed, etc.
8. Entertaining, informative commentary. The author’s philosophy or story, history of a dish or cuisine, and anecdotes or legends about a dish all add color and make for great reading. When you can sit down and read a cookbook for fun, you have something memorable.

What do you look for? Did I miss something?

Since I started the “Denver Green Chili Recipe of the Week” in September, 2007, my priorities have shifted. I no longer scout wide varieties of cookbooks for interesting recipes. I now stick to the wonderful cookbooks that offer solid basics along with interesting recipes well-presented. The great cookbooks hit home run after home run and are entertaining reading to boot. My list of the best Southwest cookbooks keeps growing, but you can view the current list and reviews at denvergreenchili.com/books.aspx

Do you have any special books I should add?

Nov 30, 2007
edgerdemain in Home Cooking

Green enchilada sauce?

If you take a look at the 2006 World Champion Green Chili recipe, it uses a 10 oz can of green enchilada sauce as one of the ingredients. Of course, they add a lot more ingredients. You can find the recipe at http://denvergreenchili.com/chiliverd...

Sep 03, 2007
edgerdemain in Home Cooking

New invention! Green Chile Cake recipe. Any adventurers out there?

I was surprised how well this turned out. I took my favorite applesauce recipe and substituted pureed green chiles, adjusting some for dry/liquid balance. I'm in Denver and added a little extra flour for high altitude. I have not tried it at low altitude, but I expect it should work well as-is.

Green Chile Cake

Don’t let the color of the batter put you off (fondly referred to as puke-green)!
This is a sweet spice cake made with pureed green chiles. I used fresh roasted 6-4’s (a mild Anaheim hybrid with a slight bite). This cake has a nice, full flavor with a slight heat sensation afterward. Very interesting. I would only use mild chiles in this recipe. Some say it’s addictive.

2 1⁄2 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
1 1⁄2 teaspoons baking soda
1⁄4 teaspoon baking powder
1 1⁄2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1⁄2 teaspoon cloves
1⁄2 teaspoon allspice
1 1⁄2 cups green chiles (if using canned, separate the chiles from the liquid before measuring and use the liquid as part of the 2/3 cup milk)
2/3 cup milk (or milk combined with chile juice from canned chiles)
1⁄2 cup oil
2 eggs

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour baking pan 13x9x2 inches. Put green chiles and milk in blender and puree. Measure all ingredients into large mixer bowl. Blend 1⁄2 minute on low speed, then 3 minutes on high speed, scraping bowl occasionally. Pour into pan. Bake approximately 55-65 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool.

For updates and variations on this recipe, see http://denvergreenchili.com/recipes.aspx.

Let me know if you like it or have suggested changes.

Sep 17, 2006
edgerdemain in Home Cooking

Where to get the best green chili in Denver?

I just put up a web site all about green chile (peppers) and green chili (the dish) at http://denvergreenchili.com and I'm trying to build a good page on the best restaurants for green chili. I've started with recommendations from the Denver Post and Westword, but I'd like to hear some direct recommendations.

Then I'm planning on a tasting party followed by writing reviews. Anyone interested?

The page I'm working on is http://denvergreenchili.com/eatingout...

Sep 17, 2006
edgerdemain in Mountain States