Culture

Change Up Your Thanksgiving Dinner With These Latin American Substitutes

Thanksgiving is almost here and the pandemic is changing things for the holiday season. One of the biggest changes is that it is not advised to gather in person for the celebration. This might seem like a bad thing but it does give you the chance to mix things up before a Zoomed Thanksgiving feast. Here are some Latin Americans substitutions you can make to your Thanksgiving table as a test run for next year.

Turkey is great but give some lechon a try.

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Lechon is a Cuban pork dish made for big celebrations. Thanksgiving is a big celebration the revolves around food. Lechon is already the meat of choice at a Cuban Thanksgiving and is usually the star of the plate. You can spend hours dealing with a turkey for the tenth year in a row or you can be a little more excited and make this delicious Cuban meal.

Tostones (patacones) are the perfect replacement for potatoes.

Tostones, also called patacones, are made using green plantains. They are tough and starchy so they make a great savory side dish. make sure you double fry these bad boys. Once when they are chopped and a second time after smashing them to their iconic flat shape. If you let the plantain ripen, you can use it to make maduros instead, which are sweet.

Or, take those plantains and make mofongo.

Mofongo uses the same green plantains except they are fried once then mashed. It goes great with pork so this is a perfect little dish to pair with the lechon if you really want to go for it. The Puerto Rican dish is something that will forever change your mind about what you’d like to see at Thanksgiving.

Causa rellena is a Peruvian take on the classic mashed potatoes.

If you want to stick to the potatoes you are used to buying, Peruvian causa rellena will given them a Latin American spin. The dish does not take long to make and requires minimal cooking. The most you have to really cook is boiling the potatoes so you can mash them but the way the dish ends it by popping it in the fridge. Just layer the cooked ingredients and set it in the fridge overnight to save on Thanksgiving Day cooking time.

Corn is always a hit, especially as esquites.

Esquites is one corn dish everyone needs to try at least once. It is a neater version of elote because it is all the same ingredients but in an easier to eat way. Better yet, you can make a big batch or opt for personal servings to make it all cleaner and easier for everyone involved.

Guava con queso pastelitos are the dessert everyone is really asking for.

This little Cuban pastry is probably one of the best desserts ever created. This is not up for debate. It is just a simple fact of Latin American desserts. Honestly, when you taste the sweet and tangy flavor of the guava wrapped in the flaky, buttery pastry, your life will change. Drop the pumpkin for one year and give this Cuban dessert a try.

READ: Take A Tasting Tour Of Latin America This Thanksgiving With This Curated Menu

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Viral Video Of Overworked Texas Dominos Workers Burdened By Snow Storm Goes Viral

Things That Matter

Viral Video Of Overworked Texas Dominos Workers Burdened By Snow Storm Goes Viral

NAJMUL HAQUE/ Getty

Texas’s current power crisis from a devastating storm has disrupted power generation and frozen natural gas pipelines. The is historic storm has driven electric demand higher than the state has ever seen, but it’s not just electric energy being overextended as a result. It’s physical and mental human energy as well.

Recently, an image of two exhausted Domino’s Pizza workers went viral for showing the extreme exhaustion workers are experiencing.

In a post shared to News4sanantonio.com’s Chime In page a user by the name of July DeLuna explained “This Dominos in San Antonio. Working during this crisis. They had a weekend worth of food and it was gone within 4 hours. This team helped those that needed help. These are the essential workers that need recognition. They were the only pizza place open. Every pizza place was closed but dominos stayed open to help those in need.”

Little else is known about the exhausted workers in the viral image but it did rack up over 8K comments within hours of being posted.

“Dominoes better pay them for the shifts they’ll miss while they don’t have any ingredients. With this practical free advertising it’s the least they could do. Otherwise these kind people worked themselves out of already bad hourly pay,” one user commented.

“,As someone who works in the food service industry, the thought of selling out of all product in only four hours and how much work goes in to preparing that much food is unfathomable levels of nightmare fuel,” another noted.

In another response to the image, a Reddit user wrote “I cannot express to you how upsetting it is to be the only food source open during hard times, to still be open and show up to do your job with higher than normal levels of orders, and still get yelled at by management for not having orders out within a window of time.”

Images of overworked and stressed is nothing new of course.

Fast-food workers are often burdened by their field’s daily challenges. In 2020, food industry workers are being forced to endure customer abuse at even higher rates. Last year a TikTok video of a Subway restaurant falling asleep while in the middle of making a sandwich went viral.

“This is actually really sad. I can’t imagine how underslept she is. Not to mention the wage people get paid at Subway… She deserves better,” one TikTok user by the name of Monique Emilia commented at the time. The skincare influencer Hyram also commented writing “Poor thing… Can’t imagine how underslept she is, we’re too hard on service workers.”

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CDC Warns Of Listeria Outbreak Linked To ‘Hispanic-Style’ Cheeses

Culture

CDC Warns Of Listeria Outbreak Linked To ‘Hispanic-Style’ Cheeses

Marcos Elihu Castillo Ramirez / Getty Images

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is warning everyone against “Hispanic-style” cheeses linked to a listeria outbreak. The latest food outbreak is attacking one of the most sacred things in our diets and people have a lot of opinions.

Listeria has been detected in “Hispanic-style” cheeses, according to the CDC.

According to a warning from the CDC, listeria has been detected in what they are calling “Hispanic-style” cheeses. This means that people should avoid queso fresco and queso blanco. The source of the outbreak is being tracked and there is some understanding about where the outbreak is coming from.

The CDC recommends that people avoid these cheeses right now and to make sure that the cheeses they buy are made from “pasteurized milk.” Listeria is a serious illness for the elderly, people who are immunocompromised, and pregnant people.

The CDC reports that Connecticut officials have found Listeria in some El Abuelito queso fresco. The cheese was purchased from a supermarket in the area where a patient purchased “Hispanic-style” cheese. The outbreak seems to be concentrated in the Northeastern United States and has impacted four states.

Seven people have been hospitalized because of the Listeria outbreak.

The announcement is a very personal attack for a lot of people. Queso fresco and queso blanco are very important for a lot of dishes in our cuisine and to go without, during Lent and Covid, is asking a lot of us.

People are kind of irked that the CDC didn’t use a different phrase to talk about the cheese.

We get that technically the cheese is in Spanish and that it is more commonly used in Latino food. However, the cheeses have names that can be used. Sure, there was no idea of the brand but would it really be that hard to say “queso fresco and queso blanco”?

At least it would have prevented other people from having to answer other people’s questions.

It’s called efficiency. Some news outlets were sharing images of yellow queso dip because it is also technically a “Hispanic-style” cheese but it not the cheese in question.

READ: Chuck E Cheese Is Advertising As Pasqually’s Pizza And Thank You

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