Ceviche de Soya

Ceviche de Soya, made with texturized soy protein, is a tasty and refreshing alternative perfect for meatless Mondays or Lent Fridays.

Ceviche de Soya recipe - lacocinadeleslie.com

Soya (texturized soy/vegetable protein) is a very popular ingredient here in Mexico. Not only is it a great alternative to meat, it's also budget-friendly and it's easy to store in your pantry. I use soya (TVP) most during Cuaresma (Lent). It's quick and easy to prepare, and is a perfect substitute for ground meat if your budget is tight or you're simply trying to eat more meatless meals. And best of all, it's super versatile. Some of my favorite ways to prepare soya is in carne adobada for tacos al pastor, sloppy Jose's, and picadillo.

But my favorite way to enjoy soya in a cool and refreshing Ceviche. Made with finely chopped fresh tomatoes, onion, serrano chiles, and freshly squeezed lime juice, Ceviche de Soya is perfect for a light lunch or no-fuss dinner. If you've never tried texturized soy/vegetable protein, this soy ceviche is the easiest and most flavorful way to enjoy it.

Like most ceviches, serve Ceviche de Soya atop crisp tostada shells and garnish with avocado slices and a few drops of your favorite bottled hot sauce. And while you're at it, serve yourself a tall glass of ice cold Agua de Jamaica or pop open a bottle of your favorite Mexican beer.

Mexican Soy Ceviche recipe - lacocinadeleslie.com

Yield: 8 to 10 servings

Ceviche de Soya

Ceviche de Soya, made with texturized soy protein, is a tasty and refreshing alternative perfect for meatless Mondays or Lent Fridays.

prep time: 30 MINScook time: 2 hourtotal time: 2 hours and 30 mins


For the soya:
  • 1/2 medium white onion
  • 2 cloves garlic 
  • 1 handful fresh cilantro 
  • 1 cube Knorr Suiza chicken bouillon 
  • 8 cups water 
  • 8 oz. texturized soy/vegetable protein 
For the ceviche:
  • 5 roma tomatoes, finely chopped 
  • 1/2 medium red onion, finely chopped
  • 1/2 medium white onion, finely chopped 
  • 4 serrano chiles, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro, finely chopped 
  • 1-1/2 fresh lime juice 
  • Tostada shells 
  • Mayonnaise or Mexican crema (optional) 
  • Avocado slices (for garnish) 
  • Bottled hot sauce (like Tapatío, Valentina or Tabasco) 


  1. To cook the soya, place onion, garlic, cilantro and bouillon cube in a large saucepan. Pour in the water. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to low and let simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Using a slotted spoon, remove and discard the onion, garlic, and cilantro.  
  2. Add the dried soya to the hot broth. Stir gently to combine. Cover and let soak for at least 10 minutes until the soya is completely hydrated. Drain and let cool completely. 
  3. Once the soya has cooled completely, squeeze out any excess broth that the soya has absorbed. (You don't want the excess moisture to water down the ceviche.) 
  4. In a large serving or mixing bowl, add the drained and cooled soya, the tomatoes, onions, serrano chiles, chopped cilantro, and the lime juice. Stir gently to combine. Season with coarse salt to taste. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. 
  5. To serve, spread tostada shells with a little mayonnaise or Mexican crema, if desired. Top with a few heaping tablespoons of ceviche de soya. Garnish with avocado slices and a few drops of your favorite bottled hot sauce. ¡Buen provecho! 
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Comfort Food Classics: Albóndigas en Caldo (Mexican Meatball Soup)

This hearty Mexican meatball soup with veggies simmered in a clear broth is just what you need when you're in the mood for some good old-fashioned comfort food like your abuelita used to make.

Albondigas en Caldo - lacocinadeleslie.com

Traditional Mexican Albóndigas Soup:

Albóndigas en Caldo is a traditional Mexican meatball soup simmered with carrots, potatoes, and calabacitas (zucchini) in a clear broth. It's a comforting soup for when you're craving a home-cooked meal or something to warm you up on a cold winter's day. And it's also my all-time favorite soup.

The flavor-packed albóndigas made with lean ground beef, onion, tomato, garlic, serrano chile, and oregano add a ton of flavor to the clear broth, which is also seasoned with a little extra oregano and fresh cilantro.

Once the soup is served, don't forget to garnish with chopped cilantro, a squeeze of fresh lime juice, and a spoonful of your favorite salsa. Two of my favorite salsas include my Chile de Molcajete (roasted tomatillo & árbol chile salsa) and Salsa Macha (an oil-based garlic & árbol chile salsa). And don't forget to have plenty of warm corn tortillas on hand.

Mexican Albondigas Soup - lacocinadeleslie.com

I will forever remember the first time I attempted to make albóndigas on my own. It was one of my biggest kitchen fails ever! I cooked one pound of meatballs in about ten quarts (40 cups) of water. (The recipe I'm sharing today calls for 2-1/4 pounds of meatballs in 16 cups of water.) No amount of salt or beef bouillon was enough to season the insane amount of water I added to my soup. And I also went a little overboard on the oregano. As I was adding a sprinkle of oregano to the broth, the stopper fell out and out poured at least half a bottle of oregano. It was a horrific mess! And to make matters worse, I was expecting company for dinner and had no other food in the house to feed them. Thankfully we ended up ordering pizza, and my friends were no-show's to dinner.

How to make authentic Mexican albóndigas: 

But, as we say in Spanish, "La practica hace al maestro." (Practice makes perfect.) It took me a couple of attempts, but I finally mastered my albóndiga recipe which borrows elements from both my grandparents' recipes and my suegra's. I add old-fashioned oats to my albóndiga mixture as an added binder, just like my abuelito used to do, I also add chopped onion and tomato like my suegra taught me, and I always add lots of veggies just like my grandma.

How to make albondigas (Mexican meatball soup) - lacocinadeleslie.com

Yield: 8 servings


This hearty Mexican meatball soup with veggies simmered in a clear broth is just what you need when in the mood for some good old-fashioned comfort food like your abuelita used to make.
prep time: 20 MINScook time: 60 MINStotal time: 80 mins


For the meatballs:
  • 2-1/4 lbs. lean ground beef 
  • 1/3 cup long-grain rice, uncooked 
  • 1/3 cup old-fashioned oats 
  • 1/3 cup dried bread crumbs 
  • 1-1/2 teaspoon coarse salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, crushed 
  • 2 large eggs 
  • 3 roma tomatoes, finely chopped 
  • 1/2 medium white onion, finely chopped 
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced 
  • 1 chile serrano, finely chopped (optional) 
For the soup:
  • 16 cups water 
  • 6 medium carrots, peeled and roughly chopped 
  • 6 medium yukon gold potatoes. peeled and roughly chopped 
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons coarse salt 
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, crushed
  • 4 medium Mexican calabacitas 
  • Chopped cilantro (for garnish) 
  • Lime wedges (for garnish) 


  1. Combine the ground beef, rice, oats, and dried bread crumbs in a large mixing bowl; season with salt, black pepper, and crushed Mexican oregano. Stir in the eggs, tomatoes, onion, garlic, and serrano chile until completely combined. Divide and shape meat mixture into 1-1/2-inch meatballs. 
  2. In a Dutch oven or in stock-pot, pour in 16 cups of water. Carefully drop in the albóndigas, one at a time. Resist the urge to stir! (You don't want to break up the albóndigas.) Add a handful of fresh cilantro. Bring meatballs to a boil over high heat, skimming off any foam that rises to the top. Cover and reduce heat to low: let simmer for about 20 minutes. 
  3. Add the carrots and potatoes. Remember not to stir! Season broth with crushed Mexican oregano and coarse salt to taste. Cover and let simmer over low heat for 15 minutes. Add in the Mexican calabacitas. Taste broth and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Cover and let simmer for about 15 minutes until the calabacitas are cooked through. 
  4. To serve, ladle into bowls. Garnish with chopped fresh cilantro, a spoonful of your favorite salsa, and a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Serve with plenty of warm corn tortillas. 
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Chocoflan (Pastel Imposible)

Chocoflan, or Pastel Imposible, combines two irresistible desserts into one: rich chocolate cake and creamy vanilla-flavored flan.

Best Chocoflan recipe - lacocinadeleslie.com

Happy New Year, friends! This year I've decided against New Year's resolutions. Well, maybe not entirely. I do have one small New Year's resolution, and once you hear what it is, I'm sure you'll agree it's the best New Year's resolution ever. Inspired by the old addage of, "Life is short, eat dessert first!"... My one resolution for 2018 is to bake more desserts. At least once a week.

To kick off my New Year's resolution, I'm sharing this classic Chocoflan, a fun and flavorful dessert that combines the richness of a chocolate cake with the light creaminess of a tradtional flan. This is one of those dessert recipes that is perfect for when you want to impress guests with an elegant dessert that looks like it took hours for you to make, but you won't believe how incredibly easy it is to prepare. If you can make a cake mix cake, then you'll have no problem whipping up a Chocoflan.

Chocoflan is also known as Pastel Imposible, but this cake is pure magic. You start by layering the cake batter and then the flan mixture into a Bundt pan, but during the baking process, the flan mixture seaps through the cake batter to the bottom of the pan, so when you turn your finished Chocoflan onto a serving platter, the flan magically appears on top of the cake. Sounds impossible, but it's not. It's magic!

How to make chocoflan - lacocinadeleslie.com

Yield: 12 servings

Chocoflan (Pastel Imposible)

Chocoflan, or Pastel Imposible, combines two irresistible desserts into one: rich chocolate cake and creamy vanilla-flavored flan.
prep time: 10 MINScook time: 45 MINStotal time: 55 mins


For the chocolate cake:
  • 3/4 cups Mexican cajeta or caramel topping 
  • 1 ( box) Betty Crocker Devil's Food cake mix
  • 1-1/4 cups water 
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil 
  • 3 large eggs
For the flan:
  • 1 (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk 
  • 1 (10 oz.) can evaporated milk
  • 3 large eggs 
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 
  • Boiling water (for the water bath) 


  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly spray a 12-cup Bundt pan with cooking spray. Drizzle the Mexican cajeta along the bottom of the Bundt pan, swirling lightly to coat. 
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, combine the cake mix, water, vegetable oil, and eggs. Beat with an electric mixer on low speed for about 30 seconds, just until combined. Increase speed to high and beat for about 3 minutes until cake mix is thick and creamy, like a chocolate milkshake. Pour batter into Bundt pan over the cajeta. DO NOT STIR! 
  3. For the flan, puree the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, eggs, and vanilla extract in a blender until smooth. Gently pour the flan mixture into the Bundt pan, over the cake mix. Again, resist the urge to stir. 
  4. Place the Bundt pan inside a larger baking pan. Fill the larger baking pan about halfway with boiling water. Bake the chocoflan at 350° for 45 minutes. Remove from heat. Let cool completely. Turn chocoflan onto a serving platter. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Enjoy! 
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*Originally posted back in March 2010 to celebrate my 100th recipe here in my cocina. The recipe and instructions remain the same, all I've done is update the photos and added a printable recipe card.