I was riding my bike eastbound on Madison Avenue and suddenly I realized the colours in the sky. What happens when we switch the perspective? It depends on each one of us I guess. Looking at the sunset from a different point of view it raised the question of when is the last time I faced east when the big all ball of burning hydrogen and Helium is going down in the western horizon? I couldn't recall. You don't see pictures of the eastern sky at sundown on social media or the news. So while riding on my bike the other day I saw the spectacle of colours and thought to my self "Wait a second, that's east, the sun sets on the other side" and just to double down on what I was observing I looked west and confirmed the sun was indeed going to sleep on the ocean side. I looked everywhere to make sure it was safe for me to prompt my phone up and snapped the picture above. With just a block left before I arrived at Cueva Bar Café for my Friday shift of passing tapas and small plates around, I kept thinking about the grandness of nature and the perspective of human life in the humongous Universe. I used to think no one would like my revoltijos but to my surprise, the Revoltijo #1 that served as our weekly special turned out to be a huge success. Did you get a taste for it? So for this week came up with another revoltijo put together with ingredients found on my pantry and fridge. I didn't need to buy anything additional at the store. With the help of leftovers and some other fresh or un-used elements, I prepared this for my family: Broccolini and black beans on an ancho and mushroom sauce served with Trader Joe's tamales. It was so good there were no crumbs left in any of our plates. A dollop of sour cream is optional by the way. As you can tell, the pictures aren't Pinterest or Instagram ready and that's ok. To me the flavour is what is important, it always has. Also, who has time to make tamales the old fashion way all the time? Not me, so if you can't buy tamales from la vecina, your tia, or the Laura at the office, Trader Joe's tamales are the best out there so far. They've got the right ratio of masa and stuffing.
Want to try this at home? Here's what you'll need and the steps. This recipe makes four servings:
A bunch of broccolini
16 oz cooked black beans
1/2 cup of ancho/mushroom sauce ( you can buy some ancho sauce from us at Cueva Bar Cafe)
1-2 tamales per person.
1. Use a steamer or a homemade steamer like the one Jo put together. You'll need a soup pot, a plate that fits in the pot, water and cover for pot. Make sure pot doesn't run out of water or it will create a vacuum effect between plate and pot base.
2. Place tamales open side facing up with the steam facing in inside the pot, cover and turn heat to medium until it starts simmering. Turn heat to low medium and steam for 20 minutes. Remember to keep an eye not to run out of water.
3. Chop or cut broccolini in whichever fashion you want. Sautee it until it looks bright and starting to turn colour.
4. Add beans, sauce, season to taste and cover to cook in low medium heat for 5 minutes or longer if you want softer broccolini. I like mine with a little crunch.
5. Toss the broccolini with beans so they get covered with the sauce before serving.
Plate, serve and enjoy.
Lastly. If you have been to our establishment located on Adams Avenue in the University Heights neighbourhood you probably caught a glimpse of an art show in Barrio Logan we were promoting. That show was my friend Randy's opportunity to expose his artwork to more San Diegans and expose the artwork he did. Jo and I had the opportunity to step away from Cueva for one night on Saturday to go support our dear friend at the In Gallery located on Main Street in the heart of Barrio Logan right underneath the Coronado Bridge. The art is on display this week so if you have time and want to go for an adventure I encourage you to drive down the 163 to Barrio Logan. Plan to visit one of the eateries located nearby like Salud or El Pulpo.
To our surprise, there was live music going on performed by San Diego Blues Icon Robin Henkel and we also go to see a couple of our University Heights Neighbors who went there to support Randy as well. Jo and I were celebrating 19 years of marriage so after a couple of hours, we left the building to go find a place for dinner. No more details on that story are needed if you know what I mean. 😉
Before I forget (I actually forgot. This here is an update the day after the blog went live) I want to share that tickets for our monthly wine tasting are up and live. February's wine tasting promises to be fun, interactive and filled with surprises. The theme is LOVE FOR WINE IS BLIND. Want to join? CLICK HERE to read more and sign up.
About the author:
I chef Oz write these blogs. I am a home cook gone pro when my wife Jo and I decided to open Cueva Bar Cafe in San Diego California. I am passionate about offering a space where people gather for a good time, and to enjoy mindfully prepared tapas, made with love and passion by our culinary team. I'm all about inclusive peace, love, mutual respect, unity, kindness, and compassion under the sun with liberty and justice for all.
Let tapas bring us together!
Cueva Bar Café is my approach to the concept of Tapas and small plates with an essence of Mexican cuisine, known for continuous reinvention and embracing evolution, where food is prepared in a cosy, relaxed and inclusive atmosphere.
Letting the inspiration flow and keeping balance in mind, I marry Mexico’s ingredients and flavours with elements from around the U.S and the world using local - organic produce and vendors as much as possible to create both delicious and healthy dishes that have little to zero impact on our environment.
Cueva Bar in San Diego California offers a tapas and small plates inspired menu with plenty of omnivores, gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options.
Late-night menu on Friday and Saturday from 9 pm to 11 pm we offer a pizza menu with 12 inch and 6 inch pizzas.
Happy hour is from Tuesday to Friday from 4 pm to 6 pm.
Happy hour offerings are $2 off all food on the menu and $2 off all drinks by the glass.
Monthly Wine Tasting. Happens every first Saturday of every month from 3pm-4pm.