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Portobello & Tomato Tilapia & Cheese Winner!

I couldn’t stay away two weeks. Are you kidding me? I have so much to share with you guys (like taping for CBS Better Mornings, a new writing gig, etc…) and even the weekly posts are getting harder to stick to. I’d really love to post 2-3 times a week. But my dog Geisha Dior requires a lot of attention. And quite frankly, I’m tired of staying up until 3 am every night as I peruse the ‘net looking for new bloggers and handbags (ooh, I just bought the prettiest maiz colored leather bag to d.i.e for!)

I mentioned in my last post (Isaac Hayes’ passing) that I was off traveling again and that I wouldn’t be blogging this week. But I get home (DC) last night after a super long Wednesday and dealing with nasty attendants at Airtran on Thursday morning (Jesus kept me from royally cussing him and her out in my really crass Cuban-esque Spanish), and the only thing I want to do is eat my mother’s 5 star food. I haven’t been home since the “Emeril Green” taping, which was 4 months ago, and I quickly realize how that’s simply unacceptable.

Mami’s kitchen if fully stocked, niece is running after the very clumsy puppy doberman and new cooking gadgets with my name on them tucked away in a corner. I even spotted in the pantry, a new black label café by Bustelo!

This is casa. And I’m so happy.

And so with a great feeling of visiting mi familia comes a phenomenal dinner. My mother has this incredible ability to come up with a 30 minute meal for 8 people in no time, without any prior thought to it. So here is how it went:

“Mihita, quiero comer tilapia. Que tu crees de ongo y tomates?” “No, no let me make you this mango salmon burger I just came up with; you’ll love it!” “No, no. No estes inventando, you quiero tilpaia.” “Ugh, okay. That sounds great mom. Rice, right?”

So in 30 minutes, dinner was ready and I was kissing her all over, just so thankful for the gift of being a damn excellent cook, of which I have maybe 88.55% skill!!! I even asked her, “mami, when am I going to cook like you”.

You have to make this! I promise you’ll be emailing me kisses too! The tilapia is perfectly seasoned with an excellent point of doneness. The mushrooms are so meaty and add so much texture to the tender fish. And oh my goodness, the sauce is “smack yo’ momma” good! Well, I didn’t really smack my mother, but I bit the hell out of her cheek!



  • 1 pound fresh tilapia
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • 1 Spanish onion, sliced
  • 8 oz. tomato sauce
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 cup white cooking wine (dry)
  • 1 pack of portobello mushrooms, about 3 cups
  • 2 tsp. balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp. cumin
  • 1 tsp. oregano
  • 1 pack of Sazon Goya seasoning (w/out achiote or annatto)
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Season tilapia with salt, pepper, cumin and oregano and vinegar. Cover and set aside. In medium non-stick sauce pan, saute green pepper, red pepper, onion, garlic in canola oil for 3 minutes. Add tomato sauce and stir gently. Cook on medium for another 5 minutes. Add cooking wine and allow for reduction to occur for about 2-3 additional minutes. Immediately add mushrooms and tilapia (including all juices). Cover and cook on medium for 15-20 minutes.

Serve with white rice and green vegetables. We garnished with chocolate mint leaves I’m growing in my mom’s garden! Serves 6.

I really am traveling again. This time, back to Mexico! No lavish, all-spoiled, all-indulgent press tour– just a good ol’ much needed family vacation. We’re going to Nuevo Vallarta. And I have every intention of doing all kinds of foodie things. If there’s anything you’d like me to bring back in particular, leave a comment and tell me. You know I plan on having all kinds of goodies and giveaways! Like smoked mole or paprika!!!

The CHEESE WINNER is late in being announced, so I apologize! I almost forgot! Plus, I still owe Amy over at We Are Never Full her French Cookbook! SO… Lys over at Cooking in Stilettos and Just Anotha Gal has randomly been picked and is the winner of the all that cheese, brie, cambert and pepperjack!!!!

Congrats Lys! You deserve it, anyway! You and Amy will be getting your goodies as soon as I get back from Mexico (well, Amy you will since I have your book with me here in DC. Lys you’ll have to wait til I get back to ATL at the end of the month!)


Oh and I’d be remiss if I didn’t thank the Atlanta editor of the Daily Candy! Are you familiar with D.C.? If not, you must check it out and sign-up!, especially the ladies. It’s like getting a good piece of candy in your inbox everyday. And, the cool thing is that they have major city editions (LA, DC, ATL, NY, London, Boston, Miami, etc..). Anyway, I was the featured Daily Candy this past Wednesday, and can I tell you, it landed me 5 gigs on that same day! Talk about the power of the media!

Have a great week and I’ll see you week after next!


Identity Crisis: Spicy Tilapia

My 30-Minute Meal, What!?

In The Mood For Reminiscing & Batido de Mamey

It Happened, I Really Cooked With Emeril!

Say Cheese Contest!

I love The BIG APPLE



Eat well, love unapologetically, pray with true intention, and take care of yourself.

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Don't forget to check out my debut cookbook!

49 thoughts on “Portobello & Tomato Tilapia & Cheese Winner!

  1. Your mom sounds like a wonderful cook and mom!  Im going to try that fish recipe..it looks scrumptious.  You are quite the star!

  2. Wow, Bren… I am very impressed with how busy you are.  That’s great that you get to travel all over and spread your love of food to so many places.  I agree that nothing can beat a homemade meal mom just whips up out of nowhere.  I swear, it’s a crazy gift they have.

    Cool stuff from Mexico?  Mole all the way.  I’ve never met a mole I didn’t like 🙂

    Congrats and good luck 🙂

  3. I did missionary work with my parents in the poor parts of mexico, i.e. near San Felipe…I’ve only been back once. I’d really love to see the beautiful parts of Baja Cali.

    What to bring me back? A twenty something! 🙂 Or some mexican dulce. Surprise me.

  4. HI all!! Greetings from Mexico!! Thanks so much for the comments! The dish really was incredible and just so darn delicious! We left the mint chocolate leaves in just for the hec of it and it set in the day after. Go MOM!!!! I’ll write when I get back! Thanks for the comments.

  5. Bren, you are not going to believe that I have never eaten Tilapia! This dish sounds so good and I love it when my mom cooks for me. You life sounds full of excitement!

  6. Sometimes I don’t know what to do with the fresh portabello mushrooms from HEB.. but I googled and found this recipe and it looks DELICIOUS! My hubby and I love tilapia and we could eat it all the time.. It’s really fresh down here, so this will be awesome!

    Antique Jewelry

  7. Bren, this recipe looks so good. I love tilapia and portobellos, so this is going to be my lunch tomorrow. With rice and some veggies, of course. Will your mom cook with me sometime? She is the queen of cooks and can´t wait to meet her.

  8. Wow! You were featured on Daily Candy? Kudos, mija! You and your mom seem to have such a great relationship. I see where you get your cooking skills from. Awesome!

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