Welcome to Latino Food Blogs We Love. Every week we’ll highlight a Hispanic food blogger we admire and ask them how they do what they do and what inspires them. This week’s pick: The Noshery, where Meseidy Rivera shares traditional Puerto Rican recipes and mouth-watering food photos. Below, Meseidy in her own words:
Who’s blogging: Meseidy (Me-say-dee) Rivera. My name came from an early 1970s movie “When Dinosaurs Ruled the Earth.” It was the early 70s and my father was in Puerto Rico watching a movie dubbed in Spanish. A cavewoman in the film was named Meseiby, and he changed the “b” to a “d” and christened me with it as his first-born. Being tall, fair-skinned, green-eyed and having no accent when I speak English most people don’t believe me when I say I am 100% Puerto Rican, but a lot of PR pride pumps through my veins.
I was an Air Force brat born in the northern most part of Maine, but no matter where my family lived, Maine, Georgia, Guam, wherever, it was PR when you walked through the door and PR was home. My mother always made sure we knew the language and especially the food. When Papi retired we moved back to PR, where I finished my last two years of high school and did my first two years of college studying Pre-Law. I never lived in one place for very long, so I transferred back to the states and worked for several law offices in Washington, DC. After 8 years of working as a legal assistant/paralegal I learned that it was not the career route for me. Took me long enough right? Luckily enough I met a wonderful man in the Fall of 2006. A year later we were engaged and I was living in Florida, and a year after that we were married. Thankfully enough he said I could take some time off from work, and that is when I discovered I loved to cook. Most recently I decided to enroll in culinary school here in Tulsa, OK where I now live and am glad to say I just graduated from The Culinary Institute of Platt College.
Explain your blog name: There really wasn’t a whole lot of thought behind the name to my blog. At the time that I started blogging I was just experimenting and wanted to do something fun. I used the word nosh a lot and thought it would be fun to call the blog The Noshery, a place where you come to nosh or nibble on a little something. Later I found out it was a yiddish derivative so I ended up with a blog with a Jewish name that featured Latin foods.
Blogging since: The Christmas before we were married, my husband Obed gave me a Canon 40D. In the summer of 2008 I was cooking a lot more and developing my passion for photography, thus The Noshery was born. All I wanted to do was document my experiments and experiences in the kitchen. I wasn’t really focusing on any type of food.
Blogging from: I blog from my couch in my pajamas. My couch and kitchen are currently located in Tulsa, OK and most of my Latin ingredients come from an local Asian market, go figure. I never thought in a million years that I would ever be in Oklahoma. In fact I never thought I would be west of the Mississippi. But I have to say that we love it here. Although we really miss all our family back in Florida and it’s a pill to get to PR from here.
Most popular post: Interestingly enough my most popular post is a breakfast item: bacon & egg toast cups. It was one of my earliest posts. But a close second is a Pastelon, one of my favorite dishes and one that I would beg my mother to make when I was a kid. I refer to it as a Puerto Rican lasagna.
What you’ve learned about food while blogging: I have learned that you should never set boundaries when it comes to food. Just because you think you don’t like a certain kind of food or dish, don’t give up on it. You would be surprised how different something can taste just by experimenting and preparing it a different way. A prime example is brussels sprouts. My husband and I thought we hated brussels sprouts. Many people do, but instead of steaming them, we cut them in half, toss with olive oil, season with garlic powder, salt and pepper and roast at 400 degrees for 10 -15 mins. Drizzle with a balsamic reduction and you can thank me later. Food should never have boundaries – you should try everything at least once because it’s amazing what you can discover.
Where do you get inspiration for your posts? The seasons inspire me and I love to cook with what’s in season. In fact, that is a cornerstone when developing a recipe. Fruits and vegetables that grow within the same season almost always complement each other. A lot of times things pop into my head late at night while in bed. I keep a pad on my nightstand to write them down, otherwise I will be up all night trying to develop a recipe. I also pull a lot of inspiration from reading magazines and internet articles. There are also times that I come across two recipes and take bits and pieces from each and create something totally new.
What have you learned from blogging? I have learned to write. Seems like a silly answer but it’s the truth. When I first started blogging, I was lazy with my writing and my grammar was horrible. My grammar still needs work but I have learned to be more open with my writing in order to develop more of a relationship with my reader. I have also learned that the blogging community is tight and we all try to be supportive of each other.
Where else can we find you online? I have been featured on other sites like Saveur, The Pioneer Woman, Lil Sugar and others. I am hoping to continue to develop my writing and my blog and maybe make some appearances on other blogs and e-magazines.
What are your favorite food blogs? I love T’s Tasty Bits and how she always posts very true to the Latin cuisine she grew up on. A Puerto Rican chef that I idolize is of course Mr. Wilo Benet. I love how he stays true to the flavors of Puerto Rico but give a little refined twist to it. Some other blogs that I read are Tartellette, Cooking for Seven, Running with Tweezers and Smitten Kitchen.