Rica Sonrisa

Bienvenido a mi Rica Sonrisa!
Where our dishes are guaranteed to put a smile on your face!!

The Place in our Blog where I will be posting my adventures in the Hispanic Cusine always promising to deliver dishes which take 30min or less! All the time I usually have to prepare our meals. If you are Hispanic, you probably know 101% of Hispanic Dishes take a long time, the longer it takes, mas rico el sabor!
I have decided to use my own experiences and adapted recipes which do not skip the flavor part, just some prep work using some Goya’s products and other special tips!

This week I will be sharing two recipes, Huevos Rancheros and A Cinco de Mayo Feast!

Try this Huevos Rancheros recipe, which a friend of mine shared and it is so yummy!

Huevos Rancheros

Makes 4 servings

3 tbsp. olive oil, divided
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
1/2 red bell pepper, chopped
1/2 green bell pepper, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. cumin
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. dried oregano
1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 1/2 cups tomatoes and their juices, chopped (or diced canned tomatoes)
1/2 cup chicken stock
1 tbsp. jalapeño peppers, finely chopped (or ortega chiles, for milder heat)
2 tbsp. fresh cilantro, finely chopped
8 corn tortillas
8 large eggs


To make the Ranchera Sauce, heat 1 tbsp. oil in medium pot over medium-high heat. Add onion, bell peppers and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes, or until onion begins to soften. Add salt, cumin, pepper, oregano and cayenne pepper and stir to combine. Add tomatoes, chicken stock and jalapeños and bring to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove cover, add cilantro and cook an additional 5-8 minutes, or until sauce begins to thicken. Season with salt and/or pepper, to taste.

In a small skillet, add 1/2 tsp. oil over medium-high heat. Add 1 tortilla at a time and cook on each side until golden brown, about 30-45 seconds per side. Keep warm by wrapping in paper towel while you cook the eggs.

Heat remaining 1/2 tbsp. oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the eggs to the pan and lightly season with kosher salt and pepper. Fry eggs until the egg whites no longer giggle on top and turn white. Cover pan with lid and cook additional 1 1/2 to 2 minutes, or until eggs are cooked sufficiently (If you would rather your eggs over medium, just flip the eggs over on their yolks and remove from heat after 1 minute).

To plate, place 2 tortillas next to each other on the plate and top each tortilla with a fried egg. Spread desired amount of Ranchera Sauce over the eggs.



This week, we are bringing you Pasteles, I personally never tried this recipe by myself, I helped a friend once, but I must warn you, it is very time consuming, but worth it! Try and share!


Makes about 12 to 15 pasteles, enough for 6 to 8 people


Masa (dough)

  • Green bananas, peeled and chopped — 5
  • Green plantain, peeled and chopped — 1
  • Yautía (taro root), peeled and chopped — 1 1/2 pounds
  • Russet potato, peeled and chopped — 1
  • Salt — to taste


  • Onion, chopped — 1
  • Green pepper, seeded and chopped — 1
  • Garlic, peeled and chopped — 3 to 4 cloves
  • Oil — 2 to 3 tablespoons
  • Pork butt or shoulder, cut into small cubes — 2 pounds
  • Tomato sauce — 1 cup
  • Water — 1/2 cup
  • Cilantro, chopped — 1/2 bunch
  • Oregano, dried — 2 teaspoons
  • Salt and pepper — to taste

For Assembly

  • Banana leaves, hard spine removed and cut into 12×6-inch rectangles — 15 pieces
  • Parchment paper, cut into 12×6-inch rectangles — 15 pieces
  • Kitchen string –15 (20-inch long) pieces and 30 (10-inch long) pieces
  • Achiote or vegetable oil — 1/4 cup


  1. Masa: As you chop the bananas, plantain, yautía and potato, place the chunks into a large pot of cold, salted water to keep them from browning.
  2. Drain the water and puree the chopped ingredients in batches in a food processor. Add a little water or milk as needed to make a soft dough with the consistency of cooked oatmeal. You may have to let the processor run for a while, and make sure to scrape down the sides. Remove the masa to a large bowl and season with salt. Chill in the refrigerator while you make the filling.
  3. Filling: Add the onion, pepper and garlic to a food process and pulse to chop finely.
  4. Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium flame. Add the onion-pepper mixture and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the rest of the filling ingredients and simmer over medium-low heat for 20 minutes. Remove from heat, adjust seasoning and allow to cool.
  5. Assembly: Get the masa, the pork filling and all of your assembly ingredients together in a workspace. Lay out a piece of parchment paper, then center a piece of banana leaf over it. Wipe the banana leaf dry and then brush the top side with achiote or vegetable oil.
  6. Scoop up 1/2 cup of the masa and place in the middle of the banana leaf. Spread evenly over the leaf, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges. Place 2 to 3 tablespoons of pork filling in the middle of the masa.
  7. Fold the top edge down over the filling. Bring the bottom edge up over this. Then fold in both sides to make a rectangular packages. Be careful not to wrap it too tightly or the filling will squeeze out. Flip the package over on the parchment so it is seam side down.
  8. Fold the bottom of the parchment up over the wrapped package. Fold in each side, then roll up, burrito-like, to complete the package. Tie one of the 20-inch pieces of string around the pastel lengthwise and then three 10-inch pieces across the short side.
  9. Bring a large pot of well salted water to boil on the stove. Drop in the prepared pasteles and boil gently for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.
  10. Remove from the water with tongs, remove the outer parchment and serve the pasteles with or without their banana leaf wrapping. Goes well with arroz con gandules.


  • The recipe above is a basic pasteles filling. Additional items are often added to the filling when the pasteles are wrapped. Add 5 or 6 capers and 1 pimento-stuffed olive to the filling of each pastel. Or add 5-6 cooked garbanzos.
  • Pasteles can also be made with chicken, shrimp or ground beef. For vegetarian pasteles, substitute 2 (15-ounce) cans of drained garbanzos for the pork.
  • Stir a little of the sauce from the filling into the masa to give it extra flavor.
  • Puree 1/2 pound of peeled, chopped calabaza squash with the masa if you like. Or substitute yuca (cassava root) for the yautía.
  • If you want to avoid all the string tying, use aluminum foil to wrap up the pasteles instead of parchment paper.
  • Wrapped, uncooked pasteles freeze well for later use. Cook them directly from the frozen state.


  • Pasteles are a favorite Puerto Rican dish. They are special occasion food, and no Boricuan Christmas table is complete without them.
  • Don’t worry if your first few pasteles look kind of funny. The work will get easier and you will get better at it as you make more of them.
  • Spread the work over more than one day by making the masa and filling up ahead. Chilled masa is much easier to work with. Then gather some family or friends and make the pasteles in an assembly line. The work is much faster this way, and it makes for good family fun.
  • The special ingredients for pasteles–taro root, plantains, banana leaves–can be purchased at most Asian or Latino markets.

Recipe taken from LatinFood.com



Well, my opening recipe is Frijoles con Carne, an originally Cuban recipe, sprinkled with a PuertoRican Sabor!

First I season 1 pound of ground beef with cumin, salt, pepper and a little bit of red pepper, leave it in the fridge all day. At night, when it’s prep time, I chop one onion ( small), 2 cloves of garlic and sauté them and add meat when the onion leaves some of its juice! Que Rico!!! While the meat is cooking, I place 2 cups of water and one tablespoon of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil- I buy imported from Spain, for the best taste; I buy it at Wegmans) until it boils and I cook a package of Goya Rice and Beans, I chose the non hot packages like Arroz con frijoles Negros, because my son and hubby don’t like spicy hot dishes. I use 2 cups because I don’t like the rice looking like a risotto, I like it dry and crisp, South American way. If you like it soft, soft, cook it with 2 1/2 cups of water. The water will determine the texture of the rice, which is very important in this dish! When the rice is lose and you see no more water on the pot, it’s done! Please stir occasionally, specially if you have electric stove. I drained the ground beef before pouring in the middle of the bed of rice and beans. It took me 20 min to cook this dish! Low in calories and rico en sabor! Enjoy! Buen Provecho!


Claudia Krusch (65 Posts)

Mom and Foreign Language teacher at EasyLearn Languages, the author is a blogger and active member of South Jersey and Latino blogging groups.

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