Our Story

It all started with tamales...

It all started with tamales

Last Christmas I made a batch of homemade tamales! This may not seem like a big deal to some… but for those of us who grew up in homes where tu mamá, tías y abuelitas made them from scratch, it was always a giant production!

My husband Dan asked me to make tamales after having them at my parent’s house – over 7 years ago. He was hooked….he had repeatedly asked me to try to make them, but I always had an excuse. Where could I buy a tamale steamer? It would take me all day! I just can’t do it! I am not sure I can get all the ingredients! Instead of making tamales, I bought them.

Last year, I bought a tamale steamer online –

...there were many to pick from and they were cheap. Ok, that was not an excuse anymore. Then I called a local Mexican market – they had all the ingredients that I would need. I could cross that excuse of my list too. I mentioned my reluctance to make tamales to my mother-in-law, who lives nearby. It would take me all day, I insisted.

She happens to also love tamales and without hesitating offered to help me “all day long” to make them. Hmm, what excuse was left? Oh yes, it’s soooo hard to make them! I called mi mamá and told her I was thinking about making them…she laughed and asked me if I was serious – they were so hard to make, after all!

Perhaps I really just wanted to prove to her that I could make them or maybe my list of excuses was getting too short. When we spoke later that day she happily gave me the recipe…with lots of tips and some anticipation in her voice.

I will spare you the details of actually making the tamales, but after many hours of working on them, they were finished. And yes, they tasted great! My husband said they were better than mi mamá’s ;)  I even substituted several ingredients and made them much healthier than the traditional recipes.

I did it…

I conquered my fears and made my Tamales! Coco is about finding the “tamales” in our lives and overcoming them.

  • How can I make Mexican food that is healthy?
  • How can I raise bilingual children?
  • How can I stay organized and fit while raising children?
  • How can I enjoy the culture of my homeland with the culture of my home?

What are the Tamales in your Life? We hope you discover exciting ways to make your Tamales at VidaCoco.com!

About Coco

CocoSeveral years ago I decided that my family should become more healthy and green. I enrolled in “healthy” cooking classes and began to rework mi mama’s traditional Mexican recipes. I also began a research project to learn all about safer foods and products for my family.

In addition to crafting, cooking and blogging, I have spent quite a bit of time working with Latino children who act as translators for their families. I have spent a number of years researching, writing, speaking and consulting on this topic.

I am the oldest daughter of Mexican immigrant parents and grew up in the inner city of Chicago.  It was through the help of scholarships, mentors and non-profits aimed at helping inner-city youth that I attended Northwestern University receiving a bachelor’s degree in Social Policy and the University of Southern California where I received a Master’s Degree in Public Policy.

Coco & FamilyThank you for spending time with me and my family on my website. I hope that you enjoy it and I encourage you to give us feedback early and often ;)

-- Coco