Strained yogurt

” Why would anyone EVER EVER EVER use those crappy pre packaged corn taco shells ???? Yeesh !!! “

Dear Friend’s
In response to my post :  ”  Tacos Al Camaron ” ,
the following esteemed comment was posted by a young lady who obviously knows and loves her food and with whom I basically wholeheartedly agree :


”  Why would anyone EVER EVER EVER use those crappy pre packaged corn taco shells???? Yeesh!  “

Dear Friend’s
In response to my post : ” Tacos Al Camaron ” ,
the following esteemed comment was posted by a young lady who obviously knows and loves her food and with whom I basically wholeheartedly agree :
” Why would anyone EVER EVER EVER use those crappy pre-packaged corn taco shells???? Yeesh! “

Whilst I agree with the reader that freshly made tacos are (usually) a tremendous improvement over ready-made products, my reply below should help to clarify a bit about how and why I enjoy food the way I do and most of all, how and why I choose the content I put on my Blog :

Dear disgusted reader of ChefsOpinion. First, let me assure you that I agree with you inasmuch that ” freshly made anything” is usually better than crappy ” store bought anything “.

Although I am in no way an expert on Mexican food, I’d like to tell you that I lived for a year in Mexico while I was married for the first time, back in the seventies.
Then In the early 2000’s, I went back to Mexico, where I was in charge of the food operation’s (at the same time) of three high-class boutique hotels, as well as one five-star Westin hotel and one four-star Sheraton hotel, all in the Yukatan, Mexico.
I am a huge fan of Mexican food and have certainly had my share of the good, the bad and the ugly.
I have had the finest tacos in the best restaurants and in the grimmest joints and at any place in between.
I have taught hundreds of cooks and thousands of culinary students about tacos, tortillas, flautas, burritos, you name it, I’ve done it.
However, when it comes to ChefsOpinion, I try to have a good time with like-minded folks who “GET IT”.
Good food is what we enjoy to eat; What is practical at the moment, what makes economic sense and what’s the best you can do whilst your time is extremely limited.
What I try to do on my blog is to share and discuss food and food-related issues with a broad range of folk’s, from culinary students to hobby cooks to perfectionists.
Also with old warrior’s like myself, who have seen it all and done it all, who are maybe just a bit more tolerant to situations where we must substitute with a lesser ingredient for some reason, or when we are just too damn exhausted to move another finger.
If I had a choice I would eat and drink only the best, freshest, most refined, most exquisite food and drinks available.
While I was privileged to live in that ideal world for most of my professional life, there were and there are situations when a sudden lust for a specific food or drink can sometimes require a quick fix just to take care of that overwhelming craving.
I have been immersed in this wonderful world of food service for 45 years. I have been in charge of meals for kings and queens, heads of states, the famous and not so famous. I am certainly aware of quality and perfection for which we should strife whenever possible. However, at this point in my life, I have just started a new job which keeps me away from my home for 11 hours. I live alone with my dear dog Bella, so before I take off for work at 5.00 am, there are already two solid hours of me getting ready for work, taking care of Bella for an hour, walking her, playing with her, trying to keep her from chasing the neighbors cat’s, etc.
When I come home at 5.00pm, my first priority is to take Bella for a long walk.
Then on to take care of the blog, usually for about three hours. Then cooking dinner, taking pic’s of the food for the next post, enjoying dinner, cleaning the kitchen, walking Bella for another hour. By the time I finally get to rest it is usually 12.30 am.

So then, please, forgive me for using pre-made tacos (They were actually very good, all things considered). The folks who will use the pre-made stuff will enjoy a quick and easy to follow food inspiration. The folks who are a bit more dedicated to only the best will no doubt spent the extra time and effort to produce awesome fresh tacos.
Hopefully, in the end, “Life is Good” for everybody. 🙂

So then :
Why would anyone EVER EVER EVER use those crappy pre-packaged corn taco shells???? Yeesh!

Because sometimes………

Have you noted the store bought! mayo in the picture ? Yeesh! 🙂


” Tacos Al Camaron “

These  tacos are in no way authentic Mexican 😦 

But they are are in every way delicious 🙂 



” Tacos Al Camaron “

Shrimp salad:

Cooked schrimp’s,                   tail removed, diced, except one for each taco for decoration
Avocado,                                    diced
Red onions,                               julienne
Tomatoes,                                  de-seeded, diced
Chilis,                                          julienne
Yellow peppers                          julienne
Cilantro                                      chopped
Lime juice,
Olive oil,
Scotch bonnet hot sauce,

Blend all ingredients, season to taste.

Lettuce salad :

Lettuce,                                     julienne
Red onion,                               julienne
Yellow peppers                       julienne
Chilis,                                       julienne
Cilantro                                    chopped
Greek yoghurt
Scotch bonnet hot sauce

Blend all ingredients, season to taste.

Assembly :

Fill tacos ¾ with lettuce salad. Top with shrimp salad.
Garnish  each taco with one whole shrimp.
Drizzle with yoghurt / mayo / hot sauce mix, Sprinkle with Cilantro.

Bon Appetit !  Life is Good !

” Curried Pumpkin Soup With Carrots, Yoghurt & Ginger “


Last week I bought  some pumpkin at the grocery store.
I had planned to use it as side dish, but the days passed and the pumpkin just sat there.
So today when I felt like having a soup, curried pumpkin and carrot cream with ginger and chili oil came to mind. I have done this soup a few times in the past for privat dinners at home, and it was always a success with my friends and family.




“ Curried pumpkin and carrot cream with ginger and chili oil ”


Pumpkin, peeled and deseeded

Carrots, diced

3  Banana, peeled and diced

Onion, peeled and diced

Ginger, grated

6  Garlic, chopped

Scotch bonnet hot sauce

Greek yoghurt

Curry powder

10 Cinnamon stick
11 Butter
12 Chicken or vegetable stock
13 Salt and cayenne pepper to taste


Sautee first 6 ingredients in butter until onions are translucent,
add curry and cinnamon and sauté for one minute.
add stock and simmer until vegetables are soft.
Mix in blender until smooth, add yoghurt and salt and Pepper to taste.

To serve, drizzle with more yoghurt and chili oil.

Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !


Cancun Cowboys

Chorizo Sliders and spicy Slaw
Tonights dinner  were these terrific sliders with caramelized onions and gorgonzola,
with a slaw of cabbage, corn, radish, cilantro and ranch dressing.


Sliders :
Take chorizo mix and shape into small, thick burgers.
Cook until cooked through but still juicy.
In another pan, saute onions until caramelized.
At the same time, brush buns lightly with olive oil and
toast under broiler until golden.
Arrange pickle, scallion, cheese and chili on top bun.
Put a dollop uf greek yoghurt on bottom bun, top with
chorizo patty and caramelized onion.
To eat, put to top and bottom buns together and enjoy
the heck out of it   🙂    
Slaw :
Season Cabbage and radishes wit salt and lime juice and let stand
for 30 minutes. Squeeze to remove all moisture, add diced avocados,
cooked corn, cilantro and ranch. Mix.
Bon Appetit !   Life is Good !