~ Fred ~
It’s been a few decades since I’ve had tequeños and I think I’ve been craving them that long too! They are a snack food that I enjoyed greatly when I lived in Venezuela. We used to go the bar after work and play Liars dice. Loser had to buy beer and tequenos.
Definition of Liars dice taken from Wikipedia:
Liar’s dice, or Liar dice, with roots originating in South America and popularized in early Spanish History, was brought to Spain by the Spanish conqueror Francisco Pizarro during the 16th century. Liar’s Dice is known for being a game in pirate history, and a name for a class of dice games for two or more players. They are easy to learn, require little equipment, and can be played as gambling or drinking games. Playing them well requires the ability to deceive and detect an opponent’s deception.
Versions of the game are known as Dudo or Cachito in South America. The equivalent drinking game is sometimes called Mexicali or Mexican in the United States; the latter term may be a corruption of Mäxchen (“Little Max”), the name by which a similar game, called Mia, is known in Germany, while Liar’s dice is known in Germany as Bluff.
There are at least three different versions of Liar’s Dice; it’s uncertain which version is the original. In all of them, dice are rolled in a concealed fashion and bids made about the result of the roll. Players must then either raise the bid or challenge the previous bid in turn.
Mary and John were coming to visit, so I took the opportunity to finally fulfill this craving by researching recipes. In the process, I found that getting the right kind of cheese might be an issue. But, after going to several grocery stores, I was able to get four recommended types to try. The cheeses were: Farmers [this version was to bland], Queso blanco [this one didn’t melt], the other one was a Mexican frying cheese and Quesadilla cheese. Turns out, the best of these was the Quesadilla Cheese I picked up at Cub Foods. I still would like one with more salt and flavor. The key is to get very salty cheese.
Assembly was a completely different issue. Getting the cheese thoroughly wrapped in the crust was difficult. We ended up using a spray bottle of water to keep the dough moist as we worked, and we made sure to cover any holes where the cheese showed through.
It was in Venezuela that I purchased a really beautiful gold watchband with 3 kinds of gold and cultural symbols on it. Apparently, this is what Patty first noticed about me when we first met at a bridge-playing event. The rest is history!
Here is a video that helped a little in the wrapping technique used by the pros, at the 52 second marker you can get a good look.
this came from a combination of recipes on RecipeZaar
2 lbs Flour
1 cup vegetable oil or softened butter
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbsp sugar
3/4 Cup water or more if needed
1 lb white quesadilla cheese
Combine the flour, oil, egg, salt and sugar in a bowl.
Mix with your hands and add some water. At first it just makes a mess, but as you knead it it starts to take shape. Keep kneading until it does not stick to your hands. Add more flour or water as needed.
Let the dough rest for 1-2 hours . While the dough is resting, cut the cheese into strips into a finger-like shape. They should be maybe 1/2″ by 1/2″ by 3″. Don’t make the”fingers” too long, or they will be more difficult to use later.
After the dough has rested, shape it into balls slightly larger than your fist. Roll them out until they are 1/4-0.125 inch thick.
Cut the rolled-out dough into long strips that are 3/4″ wide.
Wrap the cheese”fingers” with the dough strips.
Make sure you cover all the cheese and seal the dough, because otherwise the cheese will leak out of the dough when you are frying it.
After you have wrapped the cheese in dough, dust the uncooked tequeños with flour and fry them in oil.