All posts filed under: Puerto Rico

Announcing “Gordita: Craving Puerto Rico”

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Cocina Criolla / Food / Gordita / Puerto Rico / Uncategorized

My three-year journey exploring Puerto Rican heritage and cuisine Julie-and-Julia-style through the cookbook “Cocina Criolla” has taken lots of different forms—from videos to radio to personal essays, and even a TEDx talk. This process of discovery led to my forthcoming book, tentatively titled “Gordita: Craving Puerto Rico.”  “Gordita” will be a collection of stories and a fresh look at Puerto Rican food.  My goal is to use storytelling and recipes to explore the colonial and […]

Every Dish Has a Story: Mapping My Food History | TEDxPiscataquaRiver

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Art and Culture / Cocina Criolla / Food / Immigrants / Latinos / Media / Puerto Rico / Race / Videos / Women

This spring I was gave a talk about identity, family,Puerto Rican culture, and mofongo at TEDx PiscataquaRiver.  Watch it on YouTube, or read the full transcript below. [TRANSCRIPT]* Every Dish Has a Story: Mapping My Food History  I love mofongo… It’s a traditional Puerto Rican dish made by frying, then smashing green plantains, then adding garlic, olive oil, and chicharrón or fried pork skins. It’s super rico … really delicious. If you haven’t had mofongo before, maybe you’re looking at this image […]

Three Generations, One Cookbook, and Memories of Puerto Rico

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Cocina Criolla / Food / Immigrants / Latinos / Puerto Rico / Videos / Women

Originally published on August 25, 2014 as part of Feet in 2 Worlds Coming to the Table issue. My grandmother, known fondly as “Tata,” inspired me to start cooking. It was because of her that I started the Cocina Criolla project—where I’m cooking my way through the classic Puerto Rican cookbook by the same name. When I began the project, I was immediately transported back to Puerto Rico, standing in my grandmother’s kitchen while she […]

‘Gordita’ Supper Club at Lucky Luna on November 17

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Cocina Criolla / Food / Puerto Rico

Join me on November 17 at Lucky Luna for a special supper club featuring recipes adapted from ‘Cocina Criolla‘! Click here to buy tickets. Working with chefs and owners from Lucky Luna, a Mexican and Taiwanese restaurant in Greenpointe, Brooklyn, we’ve designed a night centered around bilí — a rum from the island of Vieques infused with vanilla bean, bay leaf, peppercorns and cinnamon. We’re keeping it intimate at 20 guests, and each ticket includes […]

Cocina Criolla on NPR’s The Splendid Table: ‘Cooking from a classic Puerto Rican cookbook, with mother and grandmother’

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Cocina Criolla / Food / Puerto Rico / Women

Originally published on The Splendid Table on September 20, 2014. When Von Diaz ended up with her grandmother’s 1964 copy of the Puerto Rican classic Cocina Criolla, she decided to explore the recipes. What started as an homage to her grandmother became “a project that was so much about culture and identity and understanding the history of an island’s cuisine that is fiercely underexplored,” Diaz says. She is working on a memoir and cookbook based […]

Tongue Tied: Some Dishes from Back Home Can Leave You Speechless

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Cocina Criolla / Feet in Two Worlds / Food / Puerto Rico
Lengua Estofada (Photo: Maria Watts)

By Von Diaz Originally published on Food in Two Worlds on May 2, 2013. Tongue? Seriously? It’s hard to think about cooking an entire beef tongue no matter how trendy it may be to “use the whole animal.” When I lived in the San Francisco Bay Area I discovered tacos de lengua at Taqueria Cancun in the Mission District. I ate them at least once a week, enjoying their texture – delightfully spongy yet crisped around […]

Fear of Frying: A Puerto Rican Cook Confronts Her Culinary Legacy

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Cocina Criolla / Feet in Two Worlds / Food / Puerto Rico
Making surillitos can be a group project. (Photo: Maria Watts)

By Von Diaz Originally published on Food in Two Worlds on April 18, 2013. I don’t fry. I don’t own a splatter guard, even though I could get one at any dollar store. I cook with olive oil and butter – coconut oil if I’m feeling fancy. But I don’t fry. I’m a Puerto Rican who can’t dance salsa and loves vegetables. Despite these ethnic shortcomings, I feel deeply connected to Puerto Rican culture, and […]

Despite Violent Turn, New Yorkers Show Support for University of Puerto Rico Student Demonstrations

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Feet in Two Worlds / Immigration News / Puerto Rico
Giovanni Roberto Caez, a student activist at the University of Puerto Rico, on a visit to New York City. (Photo: Von Diaz)

  By Von Diaz Originally published on Feet in Two Worlds on March 15, 2011. For almost an entire year, student protests have rocked the University of Puerto Rico. The demonstrations that began on April 21, 2010 are in opposition to fee increases and the elimination of certain merit-based fee waivers at the university. The conflict, known as much for mobilizing Puerto Rican citizens as for violence, police brutality and property destruction, has exposed deep […]