Cook’s Corner

Margarita mix makes ‘outstanding and easy’ marinade for kebabs


Sleuth’s Corner

Q. I am looking for a recipe from the Spiral Restaurant that was in Coral Gables in the late 1970s. Mama Mango, the owner, made a miso salad dressing I used to have the recipe for, and she made an apple crisp that was unique. Any help would be appreciated.

Kayla Friedman

Main Dish

Margarita Kebabs

1 cup margarita mix (or 1 cup lime juice, 4 teaspoons sugar and 1/2 teaspoon salt)

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 garlic clove, minced

1 pound pork tenderloin, cut into 1-inch cubes

2 tablespoons butter, softened

1 tablespoon minced fresh cilantro or parsley

2 teaspoons lime juice

1/4 teaspoon sugar

2 ears corn, cut into 8 pieces each

1 large yellow or red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks

More information

Combine margarita mix, coriander and garlic. Place pork cubes in heavy plastic bag, add marinade and refrigerate, sealed, at least 30 minutes.

Blend butter with cilantro, lime juice and sugar and set aside. Push the marinated pork cubes onto skewers, alternating with corn and bell pepper pieces.

Grill over hot coals, basting with butter mixture, for 10 to 15 minutes, until done as preferred. Makes 4 servings.

Per serving: 268 calories (29 percent from fat), 9 g fat (4.6 g saturated, 2.6 g monounsaturated), 70 mg cholesterol, 26 g protein, 24 g carbohydrates, 2.2 g fiber, 620 mg sodium.


Turtle Bay Macadamia Cream Pie

2 cups milk

6 egg yolks

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

2 cups heavy cream

1 tablespoon vanilla

3/4 cup chopped macadamia nuts

1 (9-inch) pie crust, baked

Whipped cream, chopped macadamias and/or toasted coconut for garnish (optional)

Heat milk in a heavy saucepan until hot; do not boil. Beat egg yolks with until fluffy and smooth, then beat in flour. Pour hot milk slowly into egg and sugar mixture as you beat. Strain back into heavy saucepan and place on low heat. Cook, stirring, until mixture is very thick. Remove from heat and let cool.

Whip cream until very stiff. Fold into cooled mixture. Fold in vanilla and macadamia nuts, and spread in prepared pie shell. Chill for 2 hours. Garnish as desired. Makes 8 servings.

Per serving: 578 calories (69 percent from fat), 45 g fat (19.6 g saturated, 19.3 g monounsaturated), 227mg cholesterol, 8.4g protein, 36.4 g carbohydrates, 1.6 g fiber, 214 mg sodium.

Main Dish

White Chicken Chili

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 teaspoons chopped garlic

1 rotisserie chicken, boned, skinned and meat cut into bite-size chunks

1 cup chicken broth

1 (13.5-ounce) can cream of mushroom soup

2 teaspoons ground cumin

1 (4-ounce) can chopped green chiles

1 tablespoon ground cumin

3 (14.5 ounce) cans Great Northern beans

1 (14.5-ounce) can corn

1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Monterey Jack cheese

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Sauté the onion until tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté a minute more. Add chicken, broth, undiluted soup, chiles and cumin. Bring to a boil, and reduce heat to a simmer.

Mash beans from one can (this will thicken the chili). Add to pot with remaining beans and corn. Simmer 20 to 30 minutes. Top individually servings with cheese. Makes 12 servings.

Per serving: 291 calories (26 percent from fat), 8.5 g fat 3.0 g saturated, 2.6 g monounsaturated), 47 mg cholesterol, 23g protein, 31 g carbohydrates, 5.9 g fiber, 463 mg sodium.

Trish lost an “outstanding and easy” recipe from a magazine for kebabs flavored with margarita mix. Happily, reader Lauren Bracken had the recipe in her files.

“I’ve been reading Cook’s Corner forever and always hoped I’d have a chance to share a recipe,” she said. “My daughter’s generation lives on takeout and TV dinners, but for me, putting a home-cooked meal on the table is an art.”

Bracken says that while the recipe calls for pork tenderloin, she has made it with chicken as well as shrimp.

Q. I recently downsized to a condo and realized that when I gave away most of my cookbooks, I lost favorite recipes of yours that I’d inserted into the pages. The one I miss most is a macadamia nut cream pie from Hawaii. Can you help? L. H.

The recipe came from the Turtle Bay Hilton and Country Club on Oahu in 1987. I can see why it became a favorite. While simple to make, the flavors bring out the best in each other. Just be sure to use a quality vanilla extract.

Make-ahead chili

Mary M. of Wilmington, N.C., shared the white chili here, along with this advice for “the woman who was stumped trying to keep out-of-town visitors fed and was looking for make-ahead meals.

“I stretch one supermarket rotisserie chicken to heartily feed 12 with this recipe, which you can make in advance and freeze until needed. It is also great to have on hand to take to potlucks, or you can divide it into portions and freeze for quick meals.

“You may want to leave out the green chiles if children are going to be eating this, and serve a nice green salsa verde on the side instead. I like to serve with tortillas or tortilla chips alongside.”

Send questions and responses to or Food, 1 Herald Plaza, Miami, FL 33132. Personal replies are not possible.

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