Sesame Street Inspired Cilantro Hummus

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This post was made possible in collaboration with HBO and DiMe Media. However, all opinions, comments, and my love for Sesame Street are my own.

I know even with more and more ways to communicate, sometimes we still lose touch with our kids. I know I do. But Valentine’s Day is coming and it affords me the perfect opportunity for a teachable moment. By this I mean an opportunity to take time to connect with my boys, talk to them about how they show love for friends and family, and even make them a bit of the cilantro hummus they enjoy so much.

It just so happens Sesame Street is making the final touches on a special episode about showing love for family and friends in anticipation of Valentine’s Day. It will show Saturday, February 13th, at 9am EST, 8 central, on HBO and HBO Latino, and I think this will provide the perfect opportunity to ease into that teachable moment for many of us (Be sure to check out the related giveaway after the recipe at the bottom of this post.)

To give you an idea of the sort of thing I’m talking about, here’s a behind-the-scenes clip of Sesame Street character Rosita teaching Abby Cadabby words of affection in Spanish:

We all show love for friends and family in different ways, of course.

For instance, on Valentine’s Day, my boys, my husband and I love to play board games. It may sound strange at first, but it’s something the boys really enjoy doing, and so taking the time to play board games with them shows them, in admittedly a very simple way, how much we love them.

Valentine’s Day is a teachable moment when we parents have a brief chance (with maybe a little less eye rolling from the kiddos at least) to talk to our kids about how to show love to friends and family. We’ve tried to encourage our kids to show love to family and friends through service, for example, and we’ve noticed this makes both those they serve happier as well themselves.

Qwirkle game -

On Valentine’s game night, another way we might show our boys how much we love them is by making and serving them special, healthy snacks to enjoy as we play. This year, in honor of Sesame Street’s new episode, we thought we’d make one inspired by a favorite character.

Guess who?

Oscar the grouch - cilantro hummus -

Oscar the Grouch, of course. It’s very simple, here’s how:

Cilantro Hummus

Makes 3 cups

  • 2 (15 oz) cans garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 4 tablespoons tahini paste
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 4 tablespoons lime juice
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 20 cilantro sprigs (leaves and stems), washed

Cilantro hummus ingredients -

Place garbanzo beans, tahini, olive oil, garlic, lime juice, salt and cilantro in a food processor. Mix until well blended and smooth.

Serve with your favorite raw vegetables

Oscar the Grouch

To make Oscar, I split almonds for the whites of his eyes and his eyebrows. I used the very tips of olives for the centers of his eyes, and a bit of tomato inside his mouth (see photo above).

Cilantro Hummus -

There you have it!

How do you celebrate Valentine’s Day with your families? I would love to hear your insights and advice and at the same time give you a chance to win something special.

But before we get to that… did you know you can tune in to watch your favorite characters on Sesame Street on Saturday mornings at 9:00 am ET/8:00 am CT on HBO? It’s true! Emmy Award-winning Sesame Street and HBO have joined forces to air all episodes, as well as classic episodes from the last five seasons of the iconic series, on HBO (English) and HBO Latino (in Spanish).

Also, current and past Sesame Street seasons will also air daily on HBO Family at 8 a.m., while the last five seasons will be available to stream on HBO Now, HBO Go and HBO On Demand. Amazing right?!

The new season will also include Sesame Street’s usual line-up of celeb guest stars including: Gwen Stefani, Ne-Yo, Pharrell Williams, Gina Rodriguez, and Lupita Nyong’o.

Now to the giveaway for a chance to win a special prize package…

Sesame Street Prize Pack

Win it!

To participate for your chance to win one (1) Sesame Street Prize Pack including: Sesame Street cookbook, child’s Elmo apron, cooking utensils, and a tote bag  is easy. Just leave me a comment telling me how you celebrate Valentine’s Day with your family and friends. That’s it! That is your required entry.

Would you like more chances to win? I have a few of those, too! These entries are optional:

      1. Subscribe or already be a subscriber to my blog by email or by RSS – 1 entry
      2. Follow me or already be a follower on Instagram (mamalatina) -1 entry
      3. Follow me or already be a follower on Pinterest (mamalatinatips)– 1 entry
      4. Follow Mamá Latina Tips on Google + – 1 entry
      5. Visit Mama Latina Tips on Facebook – 1 entry
      6. Follow me on Twitter and tweet the following:

Enter this #giveaway for a chance to win a Sesame Street Prize Pack #SesameStreetonHBO #HBOLatino

(limit: one tweet per day, just please leave me a comment for each with the link of the tweet) 1 entry per tweet.

Please leave me separate comments for your required entry and for each optional entry (1,2, 3, 4, 5, and/or 6), so I know how many entries you have, thanks.

This giveaway will end on Friday, February 19th, 2016 at 11:59 p.m. PST. No purchase necessary. Open to residents of the contiguous United States who are 18 years of age or older. The Winner will be randomly chosen and notified via email. Winner must respond to notification email within 72 hours or a new winner will be chosen. Void where prohibited. Please, no P.O. Boxes. Entries/Comments that do not follow the submission guidelines will be invalid.

Good luck and Have Fun,



Beef Volovanes: Southwest Picadillo and Beef & Broccoli

Beef Volovanes by

Thank you to the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Association (NFRA) for making this post possible. All comments, opinions and my love for exploring new cultures, tastes, and flavor combinations are my own!

We like beef volovanes a lot, and, although you may not have heard of them, they are very popular where I grew up in central Mexico. If you are a fan already, I would love to hear your own thoughts about them. If this is the first you’ve heard of them, I bet you’re the kind of person who likes to learn about new products and cuisines, so I wanted to share them with you.

Beef volovanes are very easy to make and eat, and of course, they’re delicious. We make them for all kinds of occasions, like bridal showers, baby showers, birthday parties, or any get-together where bite-size, finger foods are in order. They’re perfect for watching the big game or serving as after-school snacks. That’s why I’m sharing them now, because it actually is National Snack Food Month.

Southwest Picadillo volovan by

Beef volovanes are versatile, you can customize them by adding anything you want. You can make these for a meat lover or swap out ingredients and flavors for vegetarians. To find these customizations, I love the convenience of dropping by the frozen food aisles on my regular shopping trip. This section has everything I could ever want, and more!

For my volovanes, I like to pick up the frozen pastry shells (super easy to prepare, just bake and fill!) along with other fixings like vegetable varieties. The shells come out of the oven piping hot in almost no time. Then, it’s as easy as filling them with some of my favorite combinations. Here are two quick, nutritious combinations; one very traditional, like we used to make them at home in Mexico, and one you can serve with a tangy, unexpected Asian flavor profile. Both are yummy!

Beef Volovanes

2 packages of Pepperidge Farm® Puff Pastry Shells

Bake puff pastry shells following the instructions on the package, it will take approximately 35 minutes. While they are baking, prepare the fillings below.

Puff pastry shells (uncooked)

Puff pastry shells by

Puff pastry shells -

Southwest Picadillo Volovanes

  • Makes 6 volovanes
  • Prep time: 7 minutes
  • From start to finish: 35 minutes

Southwest Picadillo Volovanes ingredients -

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 3 tomatillos, peeled, washed and chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups Birds Eye C&W® Ultimate Southwest blend (petite super sweet corn, mild poblano chiles, black beans, red peppers, roasted onions)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 6 baked Pepperidge Farm puff pastry shells

Heat oil in a medium pot, add garlic and move it until golden. Incorporate ground beef and cook until browned.

Add tomatillos, Southwest blend and salt, mix and cook covered for 6 minutes at medium-high heat. Uncover and cook for another 6 minutes. That’s all!

Filling a southwest picadillo volovan -

Fill up the volovanes.

Beef and Broccoli Volovanes

  • Makes 6 volovanes
  • Prep time: 3 minutes
  • From start to finish: 20 minutes

Beef and Broccoli volovanes -

Open the InnovAsian box, take the bag of sauce and place it in a bowl with warm water to thaw.

Add oil to a skillet or wok and heat on medium until hot. Add broccoli beef and frozen pepper strips, mix, cover and heat for 7 minutes, stirring occasionally. Pour in sauce and rice vinegar. Add ginger and heat uncovered for 2-3 minutes.

Filling a beef and broccoli volovan -

Fill up your volovanes and serve! They are quite delicious!

Beef volovanes by

For more meal inspiration, check out the NFRA over at and our “Cool Food Panel” board on Pinterest here.



Poblano Chile and Onion Tostadas

Poblano chile and onion tostadas -

These poblano chile and onion tostadas are a great meatless dish for Lent, and easy to prepare. You just need poblano chiles, butter, onions, cream, refried beans, cheese and salt and pepper, that’s it! It is that easy.

Add an agua fresca, like my watermelon cooler or agua de jamaica (a traditional Mexican favorite made with hibiscus flower), and finish with a delicious dessert like 3 milk cake, blueberry-lemon flan or Mexican cheesecake and your family will be thrilled.

Here is how:

Poblano Chile and Onion Tostadas

Makes 4-6 tostadas

  • 4 poblano chiles
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 white onion, sliced
  • Salt and Pepper
  • 1/2 cup Mexican cream or sour cream
  • 2 cups refried beans
  • Tostadas
  • Queso fresco or queso panela (find these in the Latin section of the supermarket)
  • Red salsa or avocado salsa (optional)

Clean and peel poblano chiles (if you are not familiar with the process, check out how to do it right here), remove seeds, then stem and cut in long strips. Set apart.

poblano chiles and onions -

Warm up butter, add onion, salt and pepper to taste and cook until onion is soft, approx 5-7 minutes. Add poblano chiles and cook for one more minute.

Turn off the heat, add cream and adjust salt.

Rajas con crema -

Take a tostada, spread warm refried beans over it, add the poblano chile and onion mixture, then top with queso fresco or queso panela and a salsa of your choice.


This recipe is part of our annual 7 Weeks of Lenten Recipes event. Check out other yummy recipes from my sister bloggers below and check out different Lenten recipes in Spanish underneath my Tostadas de Rajas con Crema recipe here.

Nacho Quesadillas

Nacho Quesadilla by

Thanks to the great folks at Cacique and Society Culinaria for making this post possible. As always, my comments, opinions, and my love for family celebrations and quesadillas are my own.

My favorite part of big game day is the food. I know all those commercials are entertaining, but for me the best part is still the food. But a quesadilla? Am I kidding? Big game day is supposed to be the time when we say “go big or go home!” Can a quesadilla be more than a tortilla and shredded cheese? Well, I say of course it can. It can be anything you want it to be. But to be great, to be right for the big game, you have to use the best ingredients.

That’s why right here, right now, it’s time to go big by combining two all time favorites, nachos and quesadillas! The following was inspired by a recipe I found on Cacique’s microsite.

Nacho Quesadillas

Makes 4 rounded quesadillas

Nacho quesadillas ingredients

You will also need a comal, or, if you don’t have one, a skillet, large pan, or a griddle.

Heat a skillet or large pan over a medium flame. Cook pork chorizo and white onion until soft and crumbly, approximately 10 minutes.

Warm up refried beans in a pot and 8 tortillas on the comal. Keep the tortillas in a tortillero or inside a cloth kitchen towel to keep them warm.

Take 4 tortillas and evenly spread on top of each, one layer each of refried beans, chicken, chorizo, jalapeños, black olives and Four Quesos blend. Cover each quesadilla with one of the remaining 4 tortillas.

Nacho quesadillas layers -

One by one cook both sides of the quesadilla on the comal until it is crisp and the cheese has melted. Remove from heat and cut into quarters.

Serve with Crema Mexicana and guacamole, if you wish.

Nacho Quesadillas con crema mexicana

After you tackle this one, if you want to find more great game day recipes, be sure to check out Cacique’s microsite, which is full of recipes featuring authentic cheeses, creams and chorizos for making truly authentic, traditional quesadillas in addition to modern classics, like the BBQ chicken and peach quesadilla, the Cuban quesadilla, the waffle quesadilla, the Hawaiian quesadilla and many more!

While you’re there, join the Club to receive coupons for great savings on Cacique products, enter recipe contests, and learn authentic techniques.

Enjoy and Go Team!


7 Weeks of Lenten Recipes 2016

5 Easy Lenten Recipes :

Lent starts soon. Are you looking for Lenten recipes? Our annual event, 7 Weeks of Lenten Recipes 2016, is here! Starting this Monday, February 8th, and for 7 consecutive weeks, find a new vegetarian, meatless, or fish recipe right here at Mama Latina Tips. Plus, check out a new gallery of photos with links featuring more delicious recipes made by food bloggers who have joined with me in the fun this year. While you wait, here are some ideas if you need a meatless recipe right now:

I also invite you to follow our Lenten Recipes Pinterest board to find recipes from previous years, all delicious!

Follow Mama Latina Tips’ board Lenten Recipes on Pinterest.

I would like to thank my sister bloggers who will be sharing recipes this year:

Be assured, this will be the place to find lots of yummy, meatless recipes throughout the season.