Featured, Kitchen

We Got Sauce!

May 5, 2021

And two new recipes to use it on!

I have been working in the produce industry for about 25 years now and very few industry folks are familiar with my other career  in food; specifically culinary education, food writing and recipe development. I have published countless recipes and written extensively on how to choose and use almost every varietal of vegetables and fruits as well as many other food items. I have taught everyone from kindergarteners to Wholefoods executives about organic, sustainable, local and fairly traded fruits and vegetables and, most notably, herbs.

My produce roots are strong in fresh herbs, as is my culinary strength. It’s fair to call me an herb expert (also fair to call me a mango expert) in the culinary world and those that know my herbal prowess know that above all else, I am a sauce master. I’ve made hundreds of sauces  in my years and I make them all exceptionally good and rarely the same. So, it’s no wonder when I started working with Crespo Organic mangoes and developing recipes for the Crespo Organic Kitchen, sauces would materialize. And that they did!

Out of all the amazing recipes I’ve produced from the Crespo Organic Kitchen over the last several years, everything from sweet to savory, the most beloved recipe of all my mango creations  is the Crespo Sinaloa Sauce, aka Mango Habanero Hot Sauce. Falling closely behind in terms of standouts and love is my Mango Turmeric Tabasco Sauce.  Both of those recipes are among the only recipes I make the exact same each time. These are standouts of my career, in food, produce and mangoes. ( And yes we will be selling them soon!)

Both of these recipes are my fresh take on many of the hot sauces I have tried over the years in Mexico and they utilize fresh mangoes for their wonderful textural quality that lends beautifully to a silky sauce. The sweetness of mangoes tempers spicy hot chilies and you get a kind of soothing fire feel that’s completely adjustable in terms of actual heat. Mangoes and chilies are simply wonderful partners especially in sauces.

This year for Cinco de Mayo I wanted to re-feature these two sauces because they are awesomely tasty and will pair perfectly with any type of Mexican and Mexican-centric foods many of you will be cooking up today!

I created three new recipes, designed specifically because you can load them up with either of these amazing mango hot sauces! The best part about these recipes is that they stay on our target for celebrating this holiday” by featuring the goods of two other Mexican farmers- Jacobs Farm Del Cabo and Covilli Brand Organics – two amazing companies that are among few in the business that actually care about the entire system from seed to mouth. All of us aligned in similar missions- bringing attention and educating customers and consumers on organics, the farming industry within Mexico. All of us are a part of helping change and drive perceptions of Mexican people and culture, as well as further developing sustainable (regenerative) agricultural  systems of growth and markets for the Mexican land and people. This for me is how I #CelebrateMexico #CelebrateMangoes.

Mango Tomato Bloody Maria (Mango Turmeric Tabasco)

I first conjured up this recipe last summer when I had an abundance of yellow heirloom tomatoes from Covilli and have just recently perfected it with a big birthday present box full of Del Cabo vegetables, which also included some of their beautiful yellow cherry tomatoes that I used for the base of this kind of weird but beautiful drink.

A Bloody Maria is at its basic a Bloody Mary made with tequila instead of vodka. I take it further and say you don’t even need to have the tequila in it. It is delicious with or without alcohol.

Makes 1 pitcher mango-tomato Bloody Maria mix


1 ripe mango, cubed
2 cups yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
1 spicy yellow chili, deseeded
1 ½ cup water
3 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon champagne vinegar (citrus flavor ideally)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 ½ tablespoons freshly grated horseradish or 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish sauce
1 teaspoon celery seeds
1 teaspoon lime zest
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 teaspoon course salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoon Mango Turmeric Tabasco

For the Bloody Maria
2 ounces Tequila blanco
3 ounces Mango- Tomato Bloody Maria Mix
A few drops of Turmeric Mango Tabasco
Lemon Wedge
Lime Wedge
Cherry Tomato Skewer Garnish
Fresh Diablo Chili Cilantro Salt *


Puree the mango, cherry tomatoes, yellow chili in a blender with the water. Press through a fine sieve into a large pitcher and discard solids.

Add the rest of the Bloody Maria Mix ingredients and stir well. Let stand at least a few hours, preferably overnight.

To make the Bloody Maria
If using the salt for the rim, run a lime wedge over the rim of the glass and then dip the rim of the glass onto a plate with the salt on it.

Fill the glass with ice, add tequila and mango-tomato mix and mix well. Add a lemon and a lime wedge and place a few drops of the Mango- Turmeric Tabasco Sauce over the top. Garnish with skewers or tomatoes and mangoes or whatever you fancy.

*Diablo Chili-Cilantro Salt Combine 2 teaspoons finely chopped cilantro leaves, 1 teaspoon finely chopped green chilies, ½ teaspoon lemon zest and ½ cup  Maldon salt and mix. Add a few drops of citrus bitters if you have it. ( I made this recipe originally for our margaritas, check out the video)

Chili & Cheese Stuffed Poblanos  (Crespo Sinaloa Sauce)

In my Del Cabo birthday box I also received several packages of their Cabo Diablo Hot Pepper Medley, which is one of my favorite chili pepper packs around and maybe even the only organic one out there. I decided to stuff some Poblanos that I received from yet another Mexican grower (Covilli Brand Organics)  for my birthday with queso fresco and Oaxaca cheese and tons of the Del Cabo chili peppers; yellow, red, green; all of them. These roasted, spicy chili and cheese rellenos, turned out to be the perfect vehicle for massive amounts of the Crespo Sinaloa sauce.

Makes 8 rellenos


8 medium poblano peppers
2 cups crumbled queso fresco
2 cups shredded Oaxacan cheese or mozzarella
2-3 tablespoons roughly chopped chilies


Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Cut slits in the the chiles from stem to almost tip in the shape of a long triangle and carefully scoop/cut out the seeds. You want the stem to remain and just have a small opening in the top for stuffing. Set the cut chilies on a lined baking sheet.

Mix the cheese and the chilies well and divide the chili cheese mixture into the peppers. Place the baking sheet of stuffed peppers in the oven for 40 – 45 minutes until the peppers are soft and slightly charred and the cheese is melted.

Drizzle Crespo Sinaloa Sauce on top!

Mini Bell Pepper Beef & Bean Burritos (Crespo Sinaloa Sauce or Mango Turmeric Tabasco)
Many people don’t know this about me, but as a child I lived in Central America for several years. That combined with growing up in southern California with a significant Mexican food presence, my go to simple weeknight meals are typically some type of quick and easy Latin American fare, most often pumped full with fresh and healthy vegetables. Tacos and burritos happen at least twice a week over here and this burrito recipe is a favorite of my nieces and nephews who are often over. I usually start by making a pot of beans and serving those with tacos and a few days later using up the beans in these burritos. My fridge is usually stocked with mini bell peppers; hence this burrito recipe is usually chock-full. I never use taco seasoning; I always just make my own and you can too. I smother my burritos with either sauce as well as a few dollops of sour cream, I use yogurt if I’m out of sour cream.

Makes 6 burritos


2 tablespoons neutral oil
½ cup chopped white onion
6-7 mini bell peppers, chopped
1 ½ pounds of ground beef
2 tablespoons ground cumin
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
2 teaspoons chili powder (a good quality chili powder is key)
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups cooked beans (pinto or white preferably)
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
½ cup chopped cilantro leaves
½ cup water
6 whole wheat or white flour tortillas
1 cup crumbled queso fresco
½ cup Monterrey jack cheese, cubed small
Crespo Sinaloa Sauce
Sour Cream or Yogurt


Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a large sauté pan, heat oil over medium high heat. Sauté onions and peppers about 5 to 7 minutes until they are soft. Add the ground beef and continue to sauté until the ground beef begins to brown. Add the spices and continue to cook and brown the ground beef. Add the tomatoes, cherry tomatoes and cilantro and sauté a few more minutes and then add the water and mix. Cover and let cook about 8 minutes on medium low, or until most the water evaporates and all the tomatoes are soft. Take off the heat.
To assemble burritos, place tortilla flat on cutting board or flat surface and spoon a little sour cream or yogurt on it first, spreading it out around the center middle only. Sprinkle a little queso fresco and cheese cubes down next. Add some meat filling, depending on the size of your burrito, you want a big burrito but not an overfilled one. Keep a few inches of tortilla around the sides and don’t pile it higher than a few inches. Fold the burrito using your fingertips, folding in the sides and then rolling the top over, keeping all the fillings snug inside and not letting them come out the sides. Place the wrapped burrito fold side down on a lined baking sheet. Continue until finished with all the tortillas. I don’t like a crispy hard burrito so I get my hands wet and moisten each burrito before placing it in the oven so the tortillas stay semi softish. Then I place the baking sheet of burritos in the oven and bake for about 30 minutes.
Top with sour cream and either the Crespo Sinaloa Sauce or the Mango Turmeric Tabasco sauce. Mango Pico de Gallo is also a great idea on these burritos!


Slide through for more of  the Crespo Organic Kitchens best Mexican-Centric recipes that #CelebrateMexico #CelebrateMangoes!


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