Chicken Tingas

Every so often, we’ll run a daily special of chicken tingas tostadas.  Like so many of our dishes, there is history behind them that has roots that extend deep into the Mexican culture.  Chicken tingas is no different.  The tomato and chile sauce based recipe originated in the Puebla area, which is especially famous for its cuisine.  Taking into account that true Mexican food “is considered one of the most distinguished in the world due to the complexity of their preparation, distinctive flavors and ancient traditions”*, this is high praise indeed.  Like so many of the dishes Mario prepares, his version has a more organic, humble beginning as he learned about the tingas preparation from his mother.  It has all the kudos and culture that is distinctive to the region, with a touch of love from the Cercedo family kitchen.

Now you know a little more about the wonderfulness of Mexican food in general, and more specifically, Mario’s culinary inspiration!

*http://hispanickitchen.com

The Process

I made this video in response to a fairly common question. There are those of you who would appreciate a little more advance notification on our specials, and others who would like a set daily lunch special.  I keep getting asked for sneak previews, and I always have to respond with, “The only one who knows is Mario.”  I’ve always felt it was rather off-putting, but it is the truth!  The video was taken at a moment’s notice, and it shows. Mario is very camera shy, and he wasn’t going to set aside a time to be filmed, so this a catch as catch can!  Hope this explains his method.

 

“Street” Style Tacos

street style tacos with carnitas 2

Street style tacos with carnitas as the meat option

I’ve had many customers ask about the “Street Style” tacos and what it means.  There’s a little bit of history behind this popular treat, and as with so many American ethnic favorites, it’s theorized it started out as a working man’s lunch.  Silver miners working in Mexico in the 18th century called the charges used to excavate the ore, “tacos”.  After a period of time, this name carried over to their portable meals; easy to carry, tasty to eat, filling and nutritious.

The taco has gone through many transformations since its humble beginnings and continues to change, such as tacos arabes introduced in Mexico City with the arrival of Lebanese migrants back in the 50s, which was changed a little more by the second generation to become tacos al pastor.  (Click on link and read the article!)   Here in mainstream America, the “street” style has enjoyed great popularity amongst Mexican food devotees and casual restaurant patrons alike.  But where did it come from?  Mario tells me that the street vendors in Mexico can not have any dairy on their food because the heat spoils the cheese and makes people sick; so, in order for the vendors to offer their hungry customers a favorite, they simply omitted the cheese.  Clever, huh?  And now you know.

 

And the results are in…

About 3 months ago, we asked our customers and friends to cast their votes for the Best of the Best here in Colfax, and for the second year running, you’ve all showed your love for our cafe  by voting us best in Casual Dining, Catering, Ethnic Food, Lunch AND Restaurant. Best of the best 2016Well, just like the picture says!  LOL!

Our overall philosophy is it’s one thing to have a “business”, it’s another to have a cozy place to eat great food, chat and return to again and again.  We like to think we’ve created that cozy place.  We love our small community and want to give our best!  I mean, isn’t Colfax a great place to live?!

So, thank you, thank you!  We look forward to serving you in the coming year!

A New Addition to the Cafe Luna Family!

Mario slammed 1

Busy Mario

We’ve been so busy here at our cafe!  With the article in the Foothills magazine – pg 26! and warmer weather, our waiting times for service had sneaked up to an hour.  Gasp!  When informed of this, most of you decided to wait it out – thank you! thank you! – but we knew this couldn’t continue.  Our food is great, but we understand that our customers have busy lives and can’t consistently spend a leisurely hour waiting for their lunch or dinner.

As it happens sometimes, when need reaches a certain point, help comes along from the most unexpected source.  In this case, Mario’s brother, Benjamin Cerecedo.  He is also an accomplished cook and has worked in many Santa Cruz restaurants and most recently

Benjamin

Mr. Benjamin Cerecedo

opened a new restaurant on the Santa Cruz wharf, Firefish.  The need to be closer to family and see his nieces grow up was the motivation for him to make the move to our small town, and he couldn’t have come at a better time.  He loves Colfax and he and Mario have been hatching up plans for new specials, new menu items and expanded hours.  There will be a lot more for you lunatics to love and there will be more reasons for those who haven’t tried our awesome food to get on in here!

Little Things

You asked for it malt vinegarThroughout the course of the day, we’ll hear the occasional special request from a customer, such as having certain condiments and teas on hand.  When we start getting the same request over and over, it’s time to have these things available!  So, we want everyone to know that we are now carry Matcha tea for your drinking pleasure and malt vinegar for the french fries (especially when we have the fish and chips special!).

Just to let you all know that there’s one day left for the polling!  Get your vote in before it’s too late!  And don’t worry – when all the votes are in we will be addressing the comments you have been making.  Just felt it was better to do them all at once!

The Poll

Earlier this month, I had posted that we would be putting a poll out there, trying to find out what you like.  Taking into consideration which specials have been consistently popular, and expanding our breakfast menu, Mario and I came up with some ideas.  It’s just a few options, but if you have a specific item in mind, note it in the comments, and if we get enough requests or responses for it, we will definitely give it serious consideration.  There are no wrong answers and you can choose all or one, but be certain because there are no repeat votes allowed!  Thank you for your ideas, everyone!