From Publishers Weekly
Martinez serves up a jazzy tie-in to her new public television cooking show of the same name, and while the subtitle's claim that the recipes within will "rock your world" is pure hyperbole, Martinez does offer a decent introduction to Latin "soul food." The overly chirpy tone can feel cloying, yet Martinez succeeds in demystifying staples of Latin cooking. Starting with important such basics as Sofrito (a blend of onions, peppers, tomatoes and herbs that adds "zing" to dishes), Achiote Oil (which also adds a "quick kick") and Recaito (a Sofrito-like seasoning, sans the color and extra liquid), she moves on to tapas, soups, meats, vegetables, starches and desserts. Recipes for the truly cooking-impaired (e.g., Guacamole, Black Beans, Basic White Rice) are unnecessary, but exotic dishes like Breadfruit Tostones (twice-fried crispy chips), Sole Baked in a Banana Leaf, and Stuffed Flank Steak are welcome. Health-conscious readers, beware: this cuisine is laden with animal products, carbs and things fried and refried, and Martinez admits to leaning toward too-large portions, which she calls "Daisy Servings." Still, anyone new to Latin classics like Paella, Ropa Vieja, and Dulce de Leche should find plenty of motivation within these colorful pages. Photos. (Sept.)
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About the Author
Daisy Maria Martinez
was born to mainland Puerto Rican parents in Brooklyn, New York, where she lived at her grandmother's house until she was almost five years old. Her extended family includes relatives from Central America, Spain, and other parts of the Spanish-speaking world. She has modeled and acted in commercials and in numerous films including Carlito's Way
and Scent of a Woman
. She attended Long Island University and the French Culinary Institute before establishing her catering business, The Passionate Palate. Daisy lives with her husband and children in Brooklyn.