HomeCook Alicia’s Story
Alicia was born in Tepeaca, a small, charming town in Puebla, Mexico, famously known for its ‘Mole’ sauce. Traditionally, Moles are prepared with a plethora of spices and ingredients, but chili peppers are always the main, unwavering star. When cooked down, it becomes a velvety, decadent, deep brown sauce customarily served with meat.
From a young age, “Licha,” as her friend’s call her, would watch her mom whip up unmistakably, delicious meals out of seemingly simple ingredients to feed a large family of thirteen children. One night, when she was just eight years old, her father was home alone with all the children and dinner time was fast approaching. Licha was selected by her dad to cook the meal and proudly rose to the occasion. “It was then, at that very moment that I fell in love with cooking. My older sister taught me how to cook and although she is no longer with us, her memory lives on in the dishes I make.”
“In Puebla, my family and I had a ‘puestesito,’ which, at a glance, looked like a humble food stand. What it lacked in appearance, it more than made up for in popularity. The food we made as a family always sold out and received rave reviews. Eventually, my sisters and I expanded the stand to different locations throughout our town.”
Her family’s Puestesito may have originated from a need to make ends meet, but now Licha’s passion for cooking has blossomed into a fulfilling business and a source of perpetual joy. “When I moved to the U.S., I began learning about different cultures and the variety of ingredients and spices each had to offer. To mix things up, I’ve learned to expand my palate and infuse my authentic, traditional Mexican dishes with new, multiethnic ingredients.”
Licha’s specialties include American, Italian, Latin, Mediterranean and Mexican dishes along with healthy helpings of barbecue. Her favorite food memory is teaching her daughters how to cook a traditional Mexican meal called, ‘tamales.’ “It’s very time consuming and requires a lot of effort, patience, and love. My darling daughters have very distinct personalities. One is patient and one adds more effort, both however, always add copious amounts of love.”
Teaching them how to make tamales was a lovely experience for Licha. Each recreated something traditional within Licha’s family recipe, yet somehow infused their respective batches with their unique personalities. “Tamales are now a holiday meal we all make as a family, and play a friendly guessing game to match the cook with her masterpiece.” Licha’s passion for cooking is a never-ending cauldron, bubbling over with spices, flavors and love.