Editor’s Be aware: The CNN Unique Collection “Eva Longoria: Trying to find Mexico” journeys throughout the nation’s many vibrant areas to disclose its distinctive and colourful cuisines. The sequence premieres on CNN at 10 p.m. ET/PT Sunday, March 26.


Eva Longoria has taken on many roles, together with award-winning actor, producer, activist, entrepreneur — and now TV present host. However all through her demanding profession, she has stayed true to certainly one of her unique passions: cooking.

“My love affair with cooking began way back,” Longoria stated in her 2011 cookbook, “Eva’s Kitchen: Cooking with Love for Household and Pals.”

She found her ardour when, as a hungry 6-year-old, she pulled a chair as much as the range, grabbed a frying pan and cooked up an egg all by herself.

“After all, the pan was stuffed with eggshell. I didn’t use any butter or oil, so the egg caught in every single place. I can’t even bear in mind now what it tasted like, however I can recall the sensation of accomplishment I had after cooking that egg. I discovered it empowering and energizing.”

The Texas native stated it was a revelation, and from that time ahead she discovered all the pieces she might about cooking.

Longoria has come a good distance since then. She wrote her cookbook, impressed by her globe-trotting travels. She additionally incessantly shares her favourite dishes on Instagram along with her 9 million followers.

“There’s nothing like a selfmade meal and sharing reminiscences within the kitchen together with your family members!” she wrote in a single submit.

Lots of her dishes pull from her Mexican heritage — like her tomatillo salsa, tamales, huevos rotos (fried eggs and potatoes) and pan de polvo (Mexican shortbread).

Listed below are 4 iconic dishes from Longoria’s cookbook, alongside along with her private notes about every recipe.

Longoria's tortilla soup is a favorite dish among her friends. The soup is light and flavorful, but the best part is the delicious salty crunch of the fried tortilla strips.

My mates request this recipe extra typically than some other. I’m typically requested if it’s a household recipe. I take it as a praise that folks all the time appear so stunned to listen to I discovered it in {a magazine} after I was about 12 years previous. I’ve made it so many instances since then, and it has developed into what it’s at the moment. I believe it’s so scrumptious — and fashionable! — due to its clear however very flavorful broth. So typically tortilla soup is heavy, however this one is hearty with out being unpleasantly thick. Search for dried pasilla and ancho chiles within the spice aisle of supermarkets or Mexican or Latin grocery shops.

Make 4 to six servings


4 kilos | 2 kilograms hen legs

4 kilos | 2 kilograms hen thighs

12 cups | 3 liters selfmade hen broth, store-bought low-sodium hen broth or chilly water

4 dried pasilla chiles

4 dried ancho chiles

6 tomatoes, chopped

1 giant white onion, diced

6 giant garlic cloves, peeled

2 teaspoons | 6 grams kosher salt, or to style

2 giant bunches recent cilantro, leaves and tender stems chopped

For serving

1 cup | ¼ liter vegetable oil, plus extra if wanted

36 white or yellow corn tortillas, sliced into ¼-inch-thick (6-millimeter-thick) strips

1 head iceberg lettuce, cored and shredded

6 giant avocados, pitted, peeled and diced

3 cups | 366 grams grated or crumbled queso fresco (about 12 ounces)


1. In a big stockpot, boil the hen legs and thighs and the broth over medium-high warmth. Cut back the warmth and simmer till the hen is opaque all through and tender when pierced with a fork, about half-hour. Utilizing a slotted spoon, take away the hen from the pot and put aside to chill. Put aside the stockpot of broth. As quickly because the hen is cool sufficient to deal with, pull off and shred the meat; discard the pores and skin and bones.

2. In the meantime, place the pasilla and ancho chiles in a medium saucepan and add chilly water to cowl. Convey the water to a boil over medium warmth. Cut back the warmth and simmer till the chiles are comfortable, about 10 minutes. Drain the chiles and take away their stems and veins. If you would like a spicier chew, maintain the seeds; if not, take away the seeds as properly.

3. Within the work bowl of a meals processor, place the chiles, tomatoes, onion, garlic and a pair of teaspoons salt. Course of till clean, including a ½ cup of the reserved hen broth to loosen the combination whether it is too thick.

4. Stir the chile puree and half of the cilantro into the broth. Convey to a simmer over low warmth and simmer for 20 to half-hour. Style and add salt if wanted. Stir within the reserved hen and the remaining cilantro and take away the pot from the warmth.

5. Whereas the broth is simmering, line a baking sheet or giant plate with paper towels. In a big skillet, warmth 1 cup oil over medium-high warmth till scorching however not smoking and shimmery. Add a handful or two of tortilla strips — they are often touching however not overlapping — and fry simply till evenly browned across the edges, about 45 seconds. Use tongs or a spider strainer to switch the strips to the baking sheet, tossing and shifting them round so that they tackle squiggly shapes as they cool and harden. Proceed in batches till all of the tortilla strips are fried, including extra oil to the pan if crucial.

6. When able to serve, place the lettuce, avocado and queso fresco in separate bowls to make serving simpler.

7. For every serving, place a number of tortilla strips and a scoop of lettuce in a soup bowl. Ladle the soup into the bowl. High with a spoonful of avocado, sprinkle some queso fresco on high and serve.

No matter where you go in Mexico, you will find a variation of this traditional appetizer that has a spicy kick, Longoria wrote. This is one of her dad's favorite dishes.

Editor’s word: Longoria makes use of extra-small shrimp seasoned with loads of cayenne pepper that she sautées for six minutes in butter forward of time, in keeping with her cookbook.

Makes 4 to six servings


1 cup | 240 grams ketchup

Juice of two small lemons (about ¼ cup or 59 milliliters)

1 tablespoon |14 grams scorching pepper sauce

1 tablespoon | 15 milliliters distilled white vinegar

Freshly floor black pepper to style

1 pound | ½ kilogram additional small shrimp (61 to 70 per pound), peeled, deveined, cooked and cooled (see headnote for prep information)

4 avocados, pitted, peeled and cubed

Lemon wedges for serving


1. In a small bowl, place the ketchup, lemon juice, scorching pepper sauce, vinegar, salt and pepper. Stir till the sauce is properly blended.

2. In a medium bowl, place the cooked shrimp and avocado. Pour the sauce over and gently toss with a wood spoon or rubber spatula till the shrimp and avocado are completely coated.

3. Cowl and place within the fridge for half-hour. Divide amongst 4 to six glasses and serve with lemon wedges.

Guacamole is a Mexican classic dating back to the Aztecs. Longoria's version is thick and chunky.

I’ve a number of tips that give my guacamole nice taste and texture. First, I exploit lemon, not lime, juice. Lemon has somewhat sweetness that brings out all the opposite flavors. Additionally, the bottom line is that I by no means skimp on the lemon or the kosher salt. I mainly make a salty lemonade for the avocado and different components to swim in — belief me, it makes all of the distinction! And eventually, by no means stir as you add every ingredient to the bowl or the guacamole will change into too watery.

Makes 8 cups


6 ripe avocados, minimize into ½-inch (1¼-centimeter) cube

4 medium ripe tomatoes, minimize into ½-inch (1¼-centimeter) cube

1 giant white onion, finely chopped

1 serrano pepper, minced

½ bunch recent cilantro, leaves and tender stems chopped

Juice from 4 small lemons (about ½ cup or 118 milliliters)

2 teaspoons | 6 grams kosher salt or to style


1. With out stirring, place every of the components in a big bowl.

2. Subsequent, stir gently till properly mixed. Use a lightweight contact to keep up the guacamole’s chunky consistency.

3. Switch to a serving bowl and serve.

Empanadas are loved by many cultures around the world. Longoria's version, which has a sweet potato filling, is a perfect fusion of American pumpkin pie and buttery Mexican empanada shell.

Empanadas are a quintessential instance of what conventional Latin meals is manufactured from: rock-solid methods that may be tailored to accommodate what’s out there regionally, or within the case of my Aunt Elsa, in her pantry. She might pull collectively probably the most scrumptious ingredient mixtures after which fill and fry a number of dozen pastry wrappers in a flash. When Thanksgiving rolled round, these tender, flaky and evenly candy treats had been our model of the basic American pumpkin pie. These little “Mexican pumpkin pies” make scrumptious appetizers, too.

Make 30 empanadas



4 cups | 120 grams all-purpose flour plus extra for floor

¼ cup | 50 grams sugar

1 teaspoon | 6 grams desk salt

1¾ cups | 359 grams shortening, at room temperature

1 giant egg, evenly overwhelmed


2 kilos | ½ kilogram candy potatoes, peeled and coarsely chopped (or 2 15½-ounce or 439-gram cans candy potatoes)

2 3-inch (7½-centimeter) cinnamon sticks

¼ to ½ cup sugar, or to style


1. For the dough: In a big bowl, place 4 cups (120 grams) flour, sugar and salt and whisk collectively till properly blended. Use your arms to knead the shortening into the flour combination. It is going to be crumbly and appear like coarse meal, and if you happen to squeeze a handful it would stick collectively however crumble once more when dropped again into the bowl. Add the egg and ½ cup water, then combine properly with a wood spoon or your arms. Kind the dough right into a flattened disk, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.

2. For the filling, choice 1: If utilizing recent candy potatoes, place them in a big saucepan with the cinnamon sticks and canopy with chilly water. Simmer, uncovered, till the potatoes are simply pierced with a fork, about quarter-hour. Drain properly. Take away and discard the cinnamon sticks. Let stand till cool.

Choice 2: If utilizing canned candy potatoes, place them in a big saucepan with the canning liquid. Add the cinnamon sticks and warmth over medium warmth for about 10 minutes. Drain properly. Take away and discard the cinnamon sticks. Let stand till cool.

3. Switch the cooled candy potatoes to the work bowl of a meals processor and pulse in 1-second bursts simply till the potatoes are mashed; don’t puree. If utilizing canned candy potatoes, they might already be sweetened, so verify for sweetness stage and regulate sugar measurement as wanted. Stir in sugar to style.

4. Preheat the oven to 350 levels Fahrenheit (177 levels Celsius). Line 1 or 2 rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.

5. Kind the dough into 30 golf ball-size balls; maintain the balls lined with a moist fabric. On a evenly floured floor, use a rolling pin to roll every ball right into a 4-inch (or 10-centimeter) circle. Fill every with a scant tablespoon (or 14 grams) of the mashed candy potatoes. Fold the dough over the filling to type a half circle and pinch the sides collectively. Switch to the ready baking sheet and canopy with a moist fabric. Proceed till all of the empanadas are shaped.

6. Take away the fabric and press the tines of a fork across the edge of every empanada to crimp. Bake till browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool barely on the baking sheet. Switch to a platter and serve heat.

Longoria's cookbook features a wide array of recipes showcasing her Mexican heritage, Texas upbringing and worldly travels.

Craving extra? Join CNN Journey’s Unlocking Mexico e-newsletter sequence. The four-part information curates the alternatives in a rustic with a colourful cultural heritage to provide you a style of the superlatives.

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