Top Chef fans were enthusiastic about chef Maria Mazon. Although she may have started out as a cook who loved her chillies and always offered a generous plate, head chef Maria quickly became a fan favorite. Although she did not win the title of “Top Chef”, she proved that her soulful cuisine was as caring as it was delicious.
Recently, Chef Maria teamed up with Estrella Jalisco and Tastemade to celebrate Michelada Montage. This summer celebration of the most popular Mexican drink is the perfect time to discover or rediscover that refreshing sip.
Even if head chef Maria agrees with the motto “If life gives you lemons, make a michelada”, this concept is only the first sip to enjoy this classic drink. Whether it is time to discover a new taste or uncover a compound you didn’t know existed, this glass is an invitation to travel the world through taste.
FoodSided recently spoke to Maria Mazon about her partnership with Estrella Jalisco, Tastemade and Michelada Mondays.
While more people are familiar with the classic Michelada, some people are just getting to know this drink. Chef Maria said, “Micheladas are a staple of Mexican culture and there are so many different creative ways to customize the look and taste to suit your unique tastes.”
Regarded as a “drink for everyone”, head chef Maria has a preference for her drink. She said, “For me, I love trying the beer and citrus fruits in my Michelada, so Estrella Jalisco’s latest Classic Michelada is just the ticket. They do it by mixing a Mexican style lager with clamato and lime juice and it brings back memories of summer and time with family and friends. This is what makes Micheladas so great – a refreshing balance of sweet, savory and spicy that really hits the mark. “
Given all the flavors in a michelada, food pairings can take all sorts of forms. While they are “typically associated with seafood or even as a popular breakfast or brunch drink,” this is not the only option.
Chef Maria said, “I take inspiration from pairing micheladas with things people wouldn’t expect, like pasta or dishes that are hot off the grill. I’m a big grill at home. As part of my “Michelada Mondays” partnership with Estrella Jalisco and Tastemade, I’ve actually created two Michelada-inspired recipes that people can cook at home, including a Sonora hot dog with Thai salsa and a Mediterranean torta with hummus and goat cheese all in one traditional Mexican bolillo roll. These dishes taste fantastic together with a spicy Michelada. “
When you look at these food pairings, many home cooks will be inspired to think outside the box. While Chef Maria paid attention to bold flavors, the drink can embrace its subtle qualities as well. Overall, it’s a drink that invites everyone to take a sip and explore the many options.
How food and culture affect Maria Mazon
While food TV fans got a glimpse into her approach to cooking, the acclaimed chef feels deeply connected to her culture. In a way, Chef Maria peeled back the layers of herself in every dish she serves.
Chef Maria said: “As a Mexican cook, I believe in being authentic to myself and my heritage. Much of my cooking style is inspired by the simplicity of the cuts of meat, an important achievement in northern Mexico where cattle are a part of life. Emphasizing the diversity of Mexican cuisine has been the focus of my cuisine and my intention is to implement this passion in all of my recipes. As a Sonorense, I try to incorporate this deep, intimate connection with my heritage into everything I do in my cooking style. “
While this approach opens the door to what is possible, head chef Maria is always looking forward to it. Even if gourmets are looking for a little culinary adventure, it is more than just an unknown ingredient or an undiscovered taste.
Chef Maria said of her culinary creativity: “I make a conscious effort to integrate dishes that are not represented by other Mexican states such as Jalisco, Puebla and Yucatan. The flavors of these regions offer a lot of creative inspirations, which give my guests the long-awaited surprise and joy when they enjoy my food. One recipe that I think your readers will like is the Mediterranean Torta I created for the Michelada Mondays campaign with Estrella Jalisco and Tastemade. I loved taking a classic Mexican street food (torta) and mixing it with creamy Mediterranean goat cheese. Paired with the Michelada, the whole thing is salty, lemony and refreshing … I hope it makes you think of the sea breeze. “
If you listen to Chef Maria describe her food, the reality is that emotions and passion are mixed in this bite. As everyone in Top Chef has seen, their food is more than just another meal on your plate. From that huge bowl of stew to the overflowing plate of tacos, Top Chef provided an open door to give people a glimpse into their skills.
Chef Maria appreciated the opportunity that Top Chef presented and said it affected her in many ways. “It was a great experience that I would do it again and again. The show was my cooking school, bottom line. And as a good student, I already use the techniques of my cook colleagues and the invaluable feedback from the jury in my own kitchen. I am eternally grateful. “
More importantly, her time on the show proved that Mexican food is diverse and rich in culture. As head chef Maria explained, “Top Chef was the perfect opportunity to highlight my strong cultural ties to Mexican food. My goal has always been to improve Mexican cuisine, and every dish I made on the show pays homage to that mission. The show gave me the platform to present the beauty of Mexican culture on a dish and to show how creative you can get with the ingredients. Now I want to continue to present this rich beauty of the kitchen by working with new partners like Estrella Jalisco and Tastemade and continue to share Mexican dishes with the world. “
And of course it had to be asked for. What is Chef Maria’s secret to making the best taco?
Chef Maria reveals: “For me, a taco has to consist of good products. It can be as simple as egg and cheese or topped off with layered toasted salsas. From chicken to lengua, the best products make the best tacos. “
Whether you are enjoying the best taco, a dish from Michelada Monday or any other culinary creation, Maria Mazon is ready to greet you on a culinary adventure with a refreshing Estrella Jalisco Michelada.
How do you enjoy a michelada? Are you ready to try Maria Mazon’s recipes?