In the Kitchen

“Let’s try it using your bacon.” Trish Lyons Kaller and Chef Cesar Gerardo hover over a big cutting board covered with tasty ingredients. There’s white onion, mozzarella, ginger…LOTS of good stuff.

“OK” Chef Cesar peals a long slice and begins wrapping it around a pineapple ring stacked with some of what’s on the table. “It’s holding together better” says Trish. One minute more, and two fat, donut sized surprises lay in front of them, ready for the oven. What exactly are they?

“I’ve been making these for years.” Trish is in the kitchen of Colin’s Cantina, located at the Princesa Resort. “Basically, a pineapple ring with toppings, wrapped in bacon, then baked. It was exciting to win the contest.”

The Contest

The contest was part of this year’s big Super Bowl Party at Puerta Privada. Every year, folks gather for what has become a well-known Rocky Point tradition.

Adding to the fun this time, Seaside Reservations CEO Steve Schwab decided to up the ante. “How about an appetizer contest” said Steve. “Whoever wins, we put it on our menu at Colin’s Cantina Restaurant.”

Steve has been running Colin’s Cantina at Princesa Resort for about three years now. Popular for it’s bistro style food, good selection of artisanal beer, and a Sunday Mimosa breakfast special, Colin’s always looks to present original and tasty surprises on it’s menu.

BBQ Short Rib Tacos are the latest tasty surprise. Offered on, you guessed it, Taco Tuesdays! Mondays see a two for one Bacon Cheese Burger special that regularly fills the place.

Many answered the appetizer challenge. Judges found themselves confronted with 40 different entries! “It was becoming hard to keep ‘em all straight” said Tina Elliot, one of the judges.“ I started placing them clockwise around the edge of my plate. First place, second place…I looked down the table at the other judges, and they started doing it to. I could see that we were all liking mostly the same ones.”

Out of the oven, onto the plate

Trish won, and now here she was, sleeves rolled up helping figure out how to adapt her recipe to a restaurant. “Before we bake them, I brush them with the sauce.” Chef Cesar shakes a small sauce pan resting over a blue flame. “Vinagre balsamic, ajo, azúcar morena, y?…“and Ginger” says Trish, as she looks at me, ‘how do you say Ginger?” “Jengibre” I say. “Ah, Claro” says the Chef.

After all of this goodness sizzles a while on Colin’s BBQ, it’s ready for the test. A sharp knife cuts the rings into bite sized pieces. Crunchy and chewy, spicy and sweet, the rings are exotic, and like comfort food all at the same time. “If I wasn’t on the clock, I would say that these would go real well with a beer” says the guy taking the pictures!

‘Pop’ – Chef Cesar opens a bottle of non-alcoholic ginger beer that we all share. Along with the waiters and waitresses on a quiet afternoon at the Colin’s bar, everyone gets a taste or two. All thumbs up too. “What are we gonna’ call it?” asks a waiter. “I was thinking…” says Trish “Piña Privada.”

What do you think?

Colin’s is located just inside the main entrance to Princesa de Peñasco Resort on Sandy Beach. Open to the Public, the restaurant serves a full menu from 8AM to 10PM, Thursday through Tuesday.