Monday, May 31, 2010

Blogger Awards & Guest Post

I know that I am breaking format here by posting on Monday. However, there are so many things going on at once that I cannot ignore and cannot wait until next Saturday. Plus, I am sure enough not going to encroach on Nancy’s ever popular Vegan Voice Tuesday. So, I will get right to it.

Firstly, the Birthday Girl, who actually reads this blog we have come to find out, would like me to thank you for all of your birthday wishes. She was quite touched…and not just by me.

Second, I will be guest posting on the fabulous Tanantha's I Just Love My Apron. If you remember she dazzled us with her guest post on LC last week. She made a wonderful, Tilapia in a Silver Pouch dish. Please visit her blog. Not because of my guest post, but because she does a really great job and you will love her. My guest post will be on Wednesday June 2, 2010.

On behalf of Nancy and me, we would like to thank three of our blogger friends who graced us with awards these last few weeks. I view blogger awards as the ultimate display of appreciation I can receive. I blog because it merges my two strongest talents, cooking and writing, I do not make a penny from this. So to be recognized, to have someone say, “Hey I dig your blog”…That is priceless. I appreciate it more than I can properly express. It never gets old or tired.

On May 14, 2010, Tanantha at I Just Love My Apron, nominated us for the Sunshine Award.

On May 28, 2010, Juliana at Cook Fast, Live Young & On May 29, 2010, Turmeric n Spice nominated us for the Honest Scrap Award.

Please check out Juliana & Turmeric n Spice.  Both blogs are amazing, and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading them both.

Since I have now won both awards before, I will make up my own rules.  As per the Sunshine award, I will list 5 things that make me happy.  And as per the Honest Scrap rules I will list 5 random things about myself.  I wll be bypassing the obvious things that make me happy because as I said I have posted them before.

1. Audi
2. Fringe on Thursday
3. My supportive blogger friends (You know who you are!)
4. Writing for Blogcritics
5. FIFA 2010 for the PS3
6. I have been known to cook dishes up to 20 times before getting them right
7. All 5 of the cats I've had in my home are all strays
8. I have an odd infatuation for a fictional character - Olivia Dunham from Fringe
9. According to my wife, I agrue with people in my sleep - mostly in Spanish
10. And when I snore, and she tells me to stop, I always apologize and stop

Now I will nominate some of my favorite bloggers for these awards.  Take one, take both.  This is just me passing along my respect and admiration for what you do.  Now...Denise, Silvia, Sam, and Natasha, I could give you every award I get, you know how I feel about your blogs.  But, I want to spread the wealth around a bit.

1. Stella at The Witchy Kitchen - Spellbinding
2. Trix at Tasty Trix - Sophisticated Cook
3. Vanessa at Coffee & Pie - Amazing writer & Photographer
4. Jacqueline at Jacqueline's Cat House - An Angel on Earth for cats
5. Mo at Mo's Kitchen - 16 year old dynamic cook
6. Joanne at Eats Well With Others - Fantastic cook & Witty Writer
8. Ashley at Sweet Southern Prep - Sunshine in a blog, A smile everytime
9. Dennis at More Than A Full Mount - A Professional Chef I Respect
10. LeQuan at Luv to Eat - Super Mom & Blogger

For those of you still with me, I will not leave you without a recipe!  I was recently speaking to Natasha at 5 Star Foodie, who incidentally will be guest posting this coming Thursday, you won’t want to miss her amazing post. Natasha told me about a cooking contest on another blog that is similar to our Quickies Challenge, only their two ingredients are Mango & Tomatoes. Well I love a cooking challenge, so my mind went to work for a few days, and finally I came up with this dish.

It is quick, creative, and super-tasty. My wife ate it yesterday and absolutely loved it. Give it a try, if you feel daring. Serve this to your next dinner party and blow their minds.

Mango Custard with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes

1/4 cup superfine sugar
2 large organic egg yolks
3 tbs Mango puree
3 tbs Moscato d’Asti
½ cup whipping cream – (lightly whipped)
1 pint of cherry tomatoes
Fresh chopped orange basil leaves

1. In a heat-proof bowl add the sugar & egg yolks

2. Set the bowl over a pan of simmering water. The bowl must not touch the water.

3. Using a hand-held electric mixer, beat the egg & sugar till tripled in volume, and thick enough to form ribbons

4. Off the heat, fold in the mango puree & Moscato d’Asti

5. Carefully fold in the whipping cream

6. Add the cherry tomatoes

7. Using a cook’s blowtorch, wave it over the cream to caramelize it and slightly roast the tomatoes.

8. Garnish with the orange basil

Note: In the photo, I used thyme leaves. However on my second attempt I used fresh orange basil from my Brother’s garden and it was even better.

That’s it for now…till we exchange a few words again…Peace!


  1. I know tomatoes are really fruits but the idea is just so weird! Might see if the hubby is brave enough...

  2. mango and tomatoes! That's an interesting and delicious sounding combo! Oo I've never tasted orange basil before, will def look out for that

  3. Congratulations!
    Mango custard looks very delicious.

  4. now that is an intriguing custard, looks smooth as silk~ yum

  5. What a great combo! I will be checking out the basil, bet it's great!

  6. Thanks so much for the awards - I feel very honoured. You thoroughly deserve them for the great work you do. The recipe sounds different but looks so delicious that I can't resist.

  7. Thank you so much Lazaro. :) I've been very bad about doing a post to thank everyone for all the awards I've been getting and to pass them on but I will make sure to to do it soon!

    Now, this custard... You wouldn't think it at first glance, but I bet that's delicious. I would have done something obvious like a mango-tomato salsa, so I'm very impressed with your creativity!
    I haven't planted them yet, but I bought two types of basil seeds to grow. I remembered your suggestion to get orange basil but the only thing I could find like that was lemon basil. I wonder if they're the same thing? Apparently lemon basil contains citral, so maybe it is because I can't find orange basil anywhere, even online. I look forward to trying the lemon basil, though!

  8. I often use fruit in savory dishes for a little contrast. I can see how tomatoes in a dessert would be a nice surprise! I bet they are really sweet right now anyway. Very curious--I'll give it a go!

  9. Glad you are posting this amazing mango and tomato dish! I definitely need to try it very soon! Congrats on your awards!

  10. Congrats on the awards! You have a very interesting blog with so much happening. The mango custard looks really good!

  11. Wow! Laz, I think if I were you, my head would've exploded around last week!! You are one busy blogger!

    Congrats on all your awards - every one you get is well and truly deserved.

    Now this custard, is so out of the box, it begs to be tried! It looks gorgeous and I am so intrigued by how crackling a threesome, mango, tomato and Moscato d'Asti would make ;)

  12. Congrats on your awards Lazaro and Nancy, and thank you for passing them on to me. Like you said, receiving an award is priceless and it never gets old or tiring. I really appreciate this and am honored to receive this from such a great blog.
    Your mango custard looks delicious! I like that you used your favorite wine. Adds a personal touch and the sparkling effect must add a little kick to this. Great recipe. Good luck with the challenge.

  13. Congratulations on yet more awards. Very well deserved Lazaro. I really like the idea of mangos and tomatoes together. I'll have to give this a try. Hope you are having a wonderful Memorial day weekend.

  14. Congrats on your well-deserved awards! The mango custard is such a unique dish -- I think it sounds phenomenal!

  15. Congrats on ur wonderful award!!!
    U deserve d wonderful award u have!
    Way way much!
    Ofcourse we sure thinking of mangoes too!!
    Today i was trying to shoot some mangoes too, we got another delicious batch home,3 local types and all delicious!
    I love ur custard , though i doubt i would play with the cheery toms, but they are so so pretty there and the blow torch sure did the custard and cherry toms good!
    Ahh ,basil gets me excited, i love them too and my family has been looking around for seeds for me, we usually get 'em from a local resorte but i so wanna those purple streaks and the orange ones u talk about!
    Well have a super day and i sure am gng to try ur custard sooonnn...

  16. Hey Lazarito, thank you! My cheeks are rosy right now, and Cauldron Boy just asked me why I smiled and sighed. I'll e-mail you about this later to let you know how I 'handle' awards (smile)...
    By the way, I'm intrigued by the dish with mango and tomato. It sounds odd, yet kind of really good. I bet it would be a great palate cleanser between courses, no? Oh, and I think it's really funny that you argue with people in your sleep. Not sweet Lazaro? I don't believe it...

  17. Thanks so much for the award! As for your wife, I'm glad she enjoyed the birthday wishes. Cooking a dish 20 times to get it just right?! That's a lot of patience, and a lot of repeated meals. I'm sure your wife enjoys every single one. :)

  18. Congrats on your awards and to those that you have passed them on to! Mango and tomatoes...I have to try this one! I am sure this truly would be a conversation piece for a dinner party.

  19. Congratulations on the awards and thank you so much for thinking of my blog and for your kind words, they really mean a lot to me!...Your mango and tomato dish sounds interesting; ingredients I think most people would never put together, so these contests are super cool since they make you think of such creative food ideas...Happy week, my friend.

  20. I would say that tomatoes and mangoes alone would put a big smile on my face. However, these two fruits in unison with custard remains to be tasted. I will have to try this little experiment before judging. Always trying to keep an open mind. Lazaro, you just pushed me beyond my immediate comfort zone ;o)
    On another seems that your work is getting recognized in the most appreciative way. You deserve it! Congrats!
    Flavourful wishes, Claudia

  21. Hi Lazaro

    first off let me congratulate you on your awards, much deserved they are!!! And thank you so much for thinking of me, the feeling is definitely mutual...I have a deep respect for your abilities, not only in cooking but in writing.
    And then as for Fringe, I love it, and as for Olivia, I'm glad that I am not the only one fantazing about her!!
    Then your mango custard is just amazing, now I don't think that I would have ever thought about adding roasted tomatoes, but I can just imagine the explosion of flavours.....pure genius once again!!
    And last but not least, thank you so much for your constant support and friendship, it does mean so very much to me, and I do look forward to seeing your name pop up in my email...
    All The Best!

  22. The custard looks fabulous. Not sure I'm brave enough for the tomato part of things but here's to hoping! And a happy belated birthday to your wife! :)

  23. Aww ... *blush* I don't believe I've ever been called a sophisticated cook before - I must tell you, it's a huge compliment, and I hope I can deserve it! You totally deserve any and all awards that come your way, and I hope to be worthy of mine. Thank you so much, it's so sweet. As for this dish - I love how you incorporated these 2 ingredients, so clever. The sweetness, yet tartness, that roasted tomatoes get must match so well with the custard-y mango. Yum!

  24. Yum, that looks delish and such beautiful presentation!

  25. Monday it is! Congratulations on that extra award, well deserved for sure! That is definitely a good looking custard! almost looks like a savory crème brulée from that top shot! That would be lovely as an appetizer with a frisée! Honestly you are bluffing me here with the combo mango-tomato, it is a genius idea! Lazaro casse la baraque!

  26. Congrats on the so deserve them. And thanks for passing them on to me! I am honored :P

    This mango custard looks awesome! I love how inventive you were with the challenge!

  27. Mango and tomatoes? Hmmm... Together? Hmmm... Love the mango custard and the tomatoes look great in the picture. Just not sure if I can imagine the flavour combination! Great creativity!

  28. Ok, that is officially the strangest dish I have ever seen. But I guess it would be good right? With the sweetness of the roasted tomoatoes and all....hmmmm, I'll try it!

    Congrats on all your awards! You're like a super star!

    Lots of yummy love,
    Alex aka Ma, What's for Dinner

  29. The dish looks delcious! Congrats on another award!

  30. Congrats on the award Lazaro! And that recipe sounds AMAZING! What a great combination.

    Hope you had a great weekend :)

  31. Congratulations on your lovely awards, Lazaro! :-) I'm so happy for you! The custard sounds amazing!!! Such a unique combination of flavors. :-) Have a gorgeous day!

  32. Love your 10 things to make you happy! haha I can see you argue with people in sleep. Work is tough! :) Congrats on the extra awards. You deserve them. The custard looks amazing. You're so darn creative!

  33. Your mango custard looks fantastic! And very unique. Congrats on your well-deserved awards and thanks so much for thinking of me! I'm honored. I'm impressed that you cook some of your recipes up to 20 times - no wonder their so delicious!

  34. that looks both unique and delicious! I'll bet it was absolutely delightful. Thanks for sharing and I look forward to reading your guest blogging tomorrow. I'm already a fan of Tanantha's; love her blog!

  35. First congratulations on the awards...very well deserved. The custard looks and tomatoes...interesting combination!

  36. Congratulations on your award.
    As always great post ♥

  37. Congratulations on your awards, Lazaro! Well deserved. Your blog offers such a wealth of great ideas, and connections to other fine food bloggers. Your interest and generosity are much appreciated. And your mango custard with roasted tomatoes is one of those recipes I love to come across in the blogosphere - an idea I would never have thought of but that is most intriguing in its combinations. You inspire me to continue to cook, experiment . . . and blog. Thanks!

  38. Congrats on your awards, Lazaro! I love what you did to the custard... the addition of roasted tomatoes sounds like a terrific touch! Thanks for sharing. Hope you're having a nice day!
    Cheers, Kristy

  39. Custard looks the creativity of mango and tomatoes...cant wait to try it out. We just might chicken out and drop the tomatoes...or maybe not! will keep you posted :)thanks for sharing!! love to read your blog, say hi to the audi from us!

  40. I would never have thought to create a mango custard and top it with tomato! This is creative indeed.

  41. congrats on your awrds, you truly deserve them...great combo on your custard...looks so silky and then topped with tomatoes..yum


  42. Such an unusual combo of mango with cherry tomatoes. I am attempting to grow some on my balcony this year. Perfect? So.....wish I could get a couple of those Meyer lemons of you brother's tree he he.

  43. This looks and sounds completely amazing. Mango is probably one of the best foods in the world (imho). I will absolutely give this a try!

  44. That dish looks good... different but good! And congratulations on your awards. It's always nice to be recognized for something you don't get paid for but work very hard on. All of us bloggers can appreciate that. And p.s. I too love love love Fringe! Olivia rocks :)


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