Local News

Authentic Mexican fare

September 16 - 22, 2015

Gulf Weekly Stan Szecowka
By Stan Szecowka

Gulf Weekly Authentic Mexican fare

ONE of Mexico’s most celebrated chefs Margarita Carrillo will be visiting Bahrain for the first time to demonstrate her culinary prowess and to sign copies of her best-selling cookbook as part of the North American country’s national day celebrations.

She will be cooking up a treat alongside Chef Joan Gomez at La Vinoteca Barcelona restaurant in Adliya on Saturday and will be the latest celebrity chef to meet fans at the Words Bookstore Café at Palm Square, off Budaiya Highway, on Monday. Both events start at 7pm.

The Mexican Embassy has organised the visit in coordination with the Bahrain Authority for Culture & Antiquities. Mexico’s Ambassador Arturo Trejo Nava said: “I’m very excited about the visit of Chef Margarita. This visit takes place in the framework of a promotional project to make Mexico culturally more visible in the Gulf region.

“I hope that Chef Margarita’s presentation and book will make authentic Mexican food more popular in the country and that this will, in turn, attract more visitors from Bahrain to Mexico.”

The ambassador describes himself as ‘an admirer for a long time’ of the celebrity chef and says he has been ‘an assiduous visitor’ to her famous restaurants in Mexico City.

“My favourite traditional Mexican recipe is my grandmother’s Mole de Olla, a hearty flavour and mildly spicy soup combining freshly chopped corn and vegetables,” he added. “Chef Margarita masterfully reproduces this traditional Mexican recipe in her book.

“We hope that her culinary presentations and book will enable Bahrainis to get a taste of Mexico and further awaken interest about our country.”

Born in Mexico, Chef Margarita has dedicated more than 25 years to researching, studying, teaching and cooking her country’s cuisine.

From 1996 to 2006, she was the Mexican Ministry of Agriculture’s chef and organised Mexican food festivals and gala dinners across North America, Europe and Asia. In 2010, she led a campaign to get Mexican cuisine recognised as a UNESCO cultural property.

She said that she wants everyone to appreciate the food and techniques that have survived generations and made traditional Mexican cuisine an ‘invaluable representation’ of a nation with a rich cultural identity. Mexico: The Cookbook is the definitive bible of Mexican home cooking and features more than 650 authentic recipes.

With a culinary history dating back 9,000 years, Mexican food draws influences from Aztec and Mayan Indians and is renowned for its use of fresh aromatic ingredients, colourful presentations and bold food combinations.

From tamales, fajitas, to cactus salad, blue crab soup, and melon seed juice, the recipes are a celebration of the fresh flavours and ingredients from a country whose cuisine is revered around the world.

She will also be appearing at invitation-only events such as the Mexican National Day celebrations tomorrow at Art Rotana Hotel on Amwaj Islands and at the National Museum on Sunday. She leaves next Wednesday.

Reservations for the La Vinoteca Barcelona dinner costing between BD28-35 can be made by calling 17007808. Words Bookstore Café, opened by mums Rana Aljalahma and Eileen Abuhamad regularly hosts free literary events. “We are hosting a cooking demo and book signing. We are very excited by Chef Margarita’s visit,” said Eileen.

For more details, call 17690790.

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