I’m always happy and proud of native El Pasoans who leave the Sun City to make a name for themselves. Yvette is doing just that. Yvette now lives in Colorado. She’s an extremely busy food blogger, author, mother and wife. Yvette travels to promote her books and recipes.
I recently came across her blog, Muy Bueno and saw she was a native Tejana (Texan). I decided to ask her if she would be willing to do an interview here on Life of an El Paso Woman. She happily agreed to do the interview! Please be sure to take a look at her blog, Muy Bueno, along with her social media pages.
Me: Tell us about Muy Bueno Cookbook. I know you feature a lot of excellent Hispanic/Mexican dishes in it, who inspired you to cook?
My mother and grandmother inspired me to cook. When I was younger I hated to cook. It’s not that I didn’t know how to cook, but I had no interest spending my days in the kitchen. I always loved to entertain and that’s when I cooked. After my grandma passed away in 2004, I realized I didn’t want her delicious Mexican dishes to die with her. In 2010, my daughter who was 8 years old at the time, was the one who suggested I write down the recipes. That’s when I turned to my mom and said, “We should write a cookbook.” That’s where it all started. I started a blog and then eventually in 2012 we had our first published cookbook. Muy Bueno: Three Generations of Authentic Mexican Flavor.
Me: I know you’ve been writing for awhile. How did you get started with writing?
I was not a natural writer. As a matter of fact, my English teachers always criticized my writing. With blogging, I am able to write just like I talk. It isn’t about complete sentences or perfect punctuation, but about writing the way you talk. I’ve realized it comes easy to write about my life, memories, or something personal vs. researching a subject.
Me: Besides having amazing recipes, you’re a native El Pasoan so I wanted to reach out to you. Tell us about your life in El Paso. Do you plan on returning at some point?
I grew up in the lower valley of El Paso. Do you know where Speaking Rock is? Well I lived about a block away. My mom still lives in the same house. My mom had a grocery store, Soza’s Grocery and I worked there from the age of 15-20 (off and on). My grandfather built the store in the 50’s. We lived next door to my grandma who helped raise me. My mom retired and closed the store in 2003. The store was open from 1953 – 2003 (50 years). My barrio was poor but we grew up rich with love. I love El Paso for the food, culture, and of course my familia. No, I do not plan on returning to live there. I visit often, about 2-3 times a year. I now live in Colorado and have lived here for 17 years. It’s my new home. It’s where my two children were born. El Paso will always be home, but Colorado is where my heart is now.
Me: Do you write your blog and/or books on a full-time basis or is it a hobby?
I blog full-time. I never knew it would turn into a business, but thankfully my love of Mexican food, culture, history and traditions has turned into my career. I keep very busy developing recipes, testing recipes, taking photos, styling, sharing my journey on my blog with stories and via photos on my Facebook page, Twitter and Instagram. I also keep busy producing videos on YouTube. I also work as a brand ambassador for different brands and create recipes for them and/or test their products. I also write for other sites, such as Parade.com and soon About.com. I am a public speaker and have traveled as a speaker at blogging conferences, media tours and cooking demos. I tour for book signings with my two books: Muy Bueno and Latin Twist.
Me: Are you currently working on any upcoming projects?
I am currently a brand ambassador with Crisco. I share baking recipes and YouTube videos for the holidays. I will also be signing books at a couple of different holiday shows in Colorado. I’m sure I will be busy in the kitchen cooking up holiday recipes for my blog and my family. My goal is to enjoy my family for the holidays and take a break from traveling.
Me: What’s one or a couple of your favorite recipes and why?
I have so many favorite recipes but some of my favorites are enchiladas (red and green) as well as homemade pumpkin empanadas. All of these recipes are in our cookbook: Muy Bueno: Three Generations of Authentic Mexican Flavor .I have a few of these recipes in muybuenocookbook (the blog) but we saved the BEST for the published book. All of these recipes bring back so many great memories. When I smell these scents in the kitchen, it’s as if I am transported to my childhood in my grandma’s kitchen.
Me: What word of advice would you offer up and coming writers and bloggers?
Write from your heart and take pretty pictures. Everyone judges a book by its cover, so it’s important to share good looking photos. More than likely, people will not read your words if they do not like what they see. You only have one chance to make a good impression. Learn to style and photograph.
Photo from www.muybuenocookbook.com