WHAT IT MEANS TO BE THE SPICE OF POINT PLEASANT, NEW JERSEY

So exciting to start blogging and reach as many people as I can with my message. Why have I started this blog you ask? Well because I would like everyone to have the opportunity to learn more about my authentic Mexican food, our culture, the loves of my life (my three children) and my passion and mission as a restaurant owner here in the lovely Point Pleasant, New Jersey.

I am the owner of Tornandez Restaurante Mexicano and my name is Minerva Torralba. I am also the Head Chef.

Torralba

I come from a traditional Mexican family. I have always had a love for cooking. I grew up always wanting to learn more and more about the traditions of our countries dishes. What was the significance of many of the different foods, spices, culture and traditions during the holidays. This inspired me to learn and develop my recipes with the hope of one day opening up a place of my own where everyone could enjoy them.

Being a restaurant owner is great. However, I can tell you that opening up a restaurant is a lot of work. It requires working endless hours of your time and dedication. However, that does not matter to me as I find joy in seeing people’s faces once they try my food. I put my heart and soul into my recipes so that everyone can enjoy them. I spend hours and hours going through every detail of our restaurant’s daily operations. I am so pleased when we have our regular customers come into Tornandez and we have wonderful conversations about the food or whatever is on their minds. I also am pleased each and every time our new customers light up as soon as they taste our entrees and desserts. We even have the little kids come in with their parents and they already know what they want. To me, this is my purpose and the reason I love what I do.

My 3 Loves

I have 3 children, Kaztenny 14, Aisha 13, and Christopher 7.

I Thank God for them daily. They are a great support to me and I could not be fulfilled in life without them. Let me tell you a little bit about them.

My Kaztenny likes to read, likes her guitar and sports (Lacrosse and Field Hockey)
Aisha likes to cook and specializes in desserts

Christopher is an avid reader. By the age of 3, he was reading. He loves Legos and Dinosaurs.

My Three loves
Torralba-2

As for me, what I like to do (when I am not doing my favorite thing, which is cooking up my recipes for you at Tornandez) is dancing, and listening to music. There is a specific type of dancing and music that I love. I will tell you more about that in another blog. At the end of a long day, music relaxes me. I also love plants. I would love to have more time to learn more about all the different plants.

HOLIDAYS

Holidays and our tradition are always a special part of my family. In our culture we spend days cooking ahead of time to prepare for the festivities. Here I am with my children and also with my children’s grandfather.

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Holidays-4

WHY DID I CHOOSE TO OPEN UP A RESTAURANT?  WANT TO KNOW?

Simply put it’s always been my passion to be able to open up a restaurant.  I came to live in Asbury Park, New Jersey in 2001.  I have a background in working in the restaurant industry at various locations here in New Jersey as well as in Mexico.  Since the age of sixteen I always envisioned one day owning my own restaurant.  There was no one who could change my mind.  I was on a mission to own a restaurant where I could share my Mexican dishes not only with my family and friends but with everyone!

Our customers always ask if I were to select one dish which one would be my favorite.  I can honestly tell you that I cannot select just one as I take pride in all my recipes.  My menu items are all fresh and made to order.  We have, for example, El Mole Poblano

Mole-Poblano

El Mole Poblano

A signature specialty dish here, which is prepared from scratch and takes hours to make.  It is filled with rich flavor. When we have new customers come to our restaurant and they taste our food they are significantly surprised at our detail of flavor and richness.  One of my missions in my lifetime is to spread the word about real authentic Mexican food.

My authentic recipes from Mexico will remain solely mine and eventually will be passed down to my 3 children who already know how important these family recipes from Mexico are to me.

A QUICK VISIT TO THE MEXICO I KNOW AND LOVE

Have you heard of the beautiful city of Veracruz?   Well, I was one of the lucky ones to be born in Veracruz.  However, I grew up in Puebla, Mexico.

Puebla was founded as Puebla de los Angeles in 1532.  It is located in East Central Mexico.

It was a manufacturing city and known for traditional onyx products.  Its streets are adorned with colorful buildings and ornate tiles.  It is just spectacular! The state has over 2,000 historic buildings. Did you know that the state is best known for mole poblano, cemitas (like a sandwich roll similar to a torta) and chiles en nogada.

One of the magnificent sites is the Catedral de Puebla.  It is a beautiful grand Roman Catholic Church.  The interior of the Catedral is not to be missed.

Mexico

If you plan a trip to Mexico visit Puebla, you can get more information on www.tripadvisor.com for top places to visit and things to do in Puebla.

The state celebrates a number of festivals and traditions. For example, some important events include the battle between Puebla de Los Angeles and French troops on Cinco De Mayo.  This battle was led by General Ignacio Zaragoza and for France General Charles de Lorencez.   The French troops outnumbered our Mexican soldiers but in the end, Puebla was victorious.  Sometime thereafter, due to General Zaragoza’s victory against the French troops, Puebla was renamed Puebla de Zaragoza.  Mexicans celebrate the anniversary of this battle as Cinco De Mayo.  It is a holiday in the state of Puebla.  Other well-known celebrations include the Day Of The Dead and the Carnival Of Huejotzingo to name a few.

I hope you enjoyed this.  Stay tuned here at my website and on Facebook as I will be sharing more of my business adventures, my culture and many stories with you.

-Minerva

For more information about Tornandez Restaurante Mexicano visit www.tornandezmexicano.com. 732-899-3939