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Welcome to the new look of Latin Times Magazine – NOW Serving Central AND South and Southwest Florida! One side of the Magazine caters to Central Florida, and when you FLIP it! You will see South AND Southwest Florida!

I hope you enjoy it!

Meet the Team!

Name: Gabriela Guerrero What is your position with Latin Times Magazine:  I am the Regional Marketing Director for the South Florida region.Your Pais: My pais is Peru, but I have to say, I also consider the United States as my Pais. I am proud of both countries.Hometown:  I have two hometowns, Lima and Tampa. I recently moved from Tampa to Miami and I miss it as much as I miss Lima!

owners to understand the need to have a marketing plan for the growth of their business. I always give business owners ample time to tell me about their operations, from beginning to their ultimate objectives. My clients are always surprised by the amount of time we spend talking…I believe that communication is the basis to a smooth and effective execution of marketing and sales goals.

Latin Times: How did you get started in your career? Gabriela Guerrero: I knew at a very young age that marketing was my calling. I can still remember when I was a child I would find myself trying to understand the strategies used by companies to reach their target audience. Sometimes it was funny, I would get mad at the TV set or at print ads because a certain approach was used instead of the one I knew –in my mind- would be the perfect one! After I finished high school in Peru, I continued on to attend the University of South Florida where I earned a BA Degree in Business Administration.

Latin Times: Tell us about your family Gabriela Guerrero: How much time do you have? Don’t worry, I will be brief…Both of my children live in Florida. My son lives and works in Tampa; my daughter goes to school in Orlando. I wish they were still babies and that I could still have them by my side every day; however, life does not stop. They must choose and follow their own path. They are wonderful children and I am very proud of them.

Latin Times: What do you enjoy most about what you do? Gabriela Guerrero: I enjoy being able to find techniques to help a product/service reach the masses successfully and most importantly, being able to help my clients achieve their business goals.

Latin Times: Who is a hero/role model that you admire (Living or deceased) and why do you admire them?   Gabriela Guerrero: This may sound a little unconventional as you may expect to hear the name of a famous author, politician, artist, etc.; however…I must say I admire my parents. Their strong moral and work ethics have been an inspiration to our entire family. I admire their dedication to giving their children a happy life, an education and a bright future, even if it meant living far away from them.

Latin Times: Please tell us about your biggest obstacles, and how you have overcome them.    Gabriela Guerrero: The biggest obstacle would be the hesitation of business

My husband and I moved to Sunny Isles Beach -in Miami- about five months ago. I love it here! This city is beautiful, vibrant, motivating and full of energy.

Name: Claribel Levinson What is your position with Latin Times Magazine: Regional Marketing Director, SW FL Your Pais: Dominincan Republic Hometown: Brooklyn, New York Latin Times: How did you get started in your career? Claribel Levinson: As Talent Producer, model, & International beauty pageant winner Lady Belleza Clasica Int. 2011. In 2013, I also became the Regional Marketing Director for Latin Times Magazine in South West Florida. Latin Times: What do you enjoy most about you what you do? Claribel Levinson: Meeting New faces and Helping other to be success. Latin Times: Please tell us about your biggest obstacles, and how you have overcome them. Claribel Levinson: Getting up every day and thinking about how bad the economy get it. I’m stronger believer in my dreams and myself. I don’t give up and keep going. Latin Times: Tell us about your family Claribel Levinson: My son Richard & my mother Martina are my bigger motivation to keep going in life. Latin Times: Who is a hero/role model that you admire (Living or deceased) and why do you admire them? Claribel Levinson: Jennifer Lopez and Mark Anthony. J-Lo as an artist and Movie Star came from New York and become successful. J-Lo believed in her dreams and helped the Latino community to be recognized and respected in Hollywood. Mark Anthony has a fantastic voice and incredibly romantic songs.

LUZ URBAEZWEINBERG I derived great experience that made me who I am today and got me started on where I am today.

What is your Profession? 1. Commissioner, City of Aventura, Florida 2. Director of Communications, Bouygues Construction’s Port Miami tunnel and Brickell City Centre projects 3. Gubernatorial Appointee, MiamiDade Expressway Authority Your Pais--Hometown: I was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico in 1972 to Dominican parents and I was raised between both islands until we moved to Miami in 1985. Latin Times: How did you get started in your career? Luz: Which one? (Laughs!) – My first real, “adult” job was at age 20 as case manager for Dr. Leonard Haber, a respected forensic Psychologist (and former Miami Beach Mayor) who taught me all about effective writing, public speaking, managing the media and people! From those 11 years working on some of the best highprofile criminal cases in South Florida,

Latin Times: Please tell us about some of your biggest obstacles, and how you have overcome them. Luz: There are many who look at me and see a Woman, a Hispanic and an Afro-Latina at that, but I have never viewed those as an obstacle or perceived myself to have had obstacles in my career, and I believe that is the first step to overcoming those. I see any situation I encounter, positive or negative, as an opportunity, and I believe that attitude has served me very well. Latin Times: What organizations are you involved with? Luz: I am Vice President of the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials (NALEO) and sit on the Vice Provost Executive Council of my alma matter, Florida International University Biscayne Bay Campus. I am a member of the CASEnergy Coalition, the Aventura Marketing Council, the Puerto Rican Chamber of Commerce and the South Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Latin Times: Describe a “Big” moment that happened for/to you……. Luz: I have been fortunate to have many “big” moments throughout the last twenty years of my career, but

I have to pick my favorite “Career Maker” to be going on stage with the future president of the United States in 2008 to ask a question on Foreign Trade during the NALEO Presidential Forum in Washington, D.C. We were live on national TV and in front of hundreds of elected officials and members of the media. I ignored the specific directions given relative to our time on stage and before asking my question of Senator Obama, stated, “It is an honor to stand beside you as a Puerto-Rican born Jewish mother of three with Afro-Dominican blood in her.” The crowd went wild with laughter and applause, and I spent about an hour after the forum ended doing media interviews on my perspective of the election as a representative of all the minorities and communities I described myself to be. It was definitely a defining moment for me and identified me as a leader in the organization. Latin Times: Tell us about your family Luz: I have three amazing children that I couldn’t be prouder of: Jonathan is 20 and Jessica is almost 19, both attend Miami-Dade College on a scholarship. And my baby, Justin is 12 years old and is in the 7th grade. My mother lives near me, and I have four siblings all living here in Florida. My baby brother lives in Tampa and I visit him as often as possible. We are an extremely close knit, loving and supportive family.

Sef Gonzalez to be able connect folks to their new “Favorite” restaurants & food trucks. When I get a Tweet, Facebook comment or Email thanking me for suggesting a particular joint, it makes me feel great. And helping to get the word about some great local mom & pop shop is great too. Remember to #EatLocal

What is your Profession? Food Blogger & Event Curator Your Pais: 1st Generation American, my parents are Cuban. Hometown: Westchester, Florida Latin Times: How did you get started in your career? Sef Gonzalez: After fifteen years in retail management I was burned out. One day I was just stressed out over the whole thing and my wife Marcela suggested I write a blog about my favorite Burgers in Miami. She also suggested the name and so the Burger Beast blog was born. Latin Times: What do you enjoy most about you what you do? Sef Gonzalez: It’s a great feeling weight loss success D!

Latin Times: What is in the future for your Food Truck events? Sef Gonzalez: I can’t reveal my secrets about the Food Truck Events but I have a new found focus on Food Events that feature restaurants like my recent Frita Showdown, and the upcoming South Beach Wine & Food Festival event Medianoches & Martinis which I’m curating. Latin Times: Tell us about your family Sef Gonzalez: I grew up with my maternal Grandparents (Gollo & Maruca), my Mom (Cary), Dad (Serafin) and younger sister (Michelle). A typical Cuban in Miami upbringing ala the classic show ¿Que Pasa USA?. We used to sit together at the dining room table as a family every night, enjoy dinner and one another’s company. My late grandparents were very supportive of


“I wanted to fit into an amazing costume that I wore when I was 18…

weight loss success


Marie Osmond lost

50 LBS.*

whatever I threw myself into whether it was learning Guitar in my teens to my little independent film store in the heart of our neighborhood, Westchester. Both of them were not around to see the great success of the Burger Beast blog unfortunately. And....although she prefer I never speak of her, my wife is an integral and important part of the success I have received. It was her idea after all.

Latin Times: Who is a hero/role model that you admire (Living or deceased) and why do you admire them? Sef Gonzalez: My late Grandfather was the voice & palate of my family. He had Cafe con Leche & Tostadas for breakfast every day. He loved Caldo Gallego and Pastelitos de Carne. He always knew where the best spots were, which kept us driving all around town to eat from restaurants he had “heard” about. It was always Thursday night cause that was my Mom’s half day at work. I can still hear his voice when I eat at some those places today like Rio Cristal where we shared many meals as a family. Man, I miss that dude.






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Frank nieves What is your Profession? Community Leader Your Pais: Puerto Rico Latin Times: Please tell us about your biggest obstacles, and how you have overcome them. Frank Nieves: Being a minority is a huge obstacle but you can overcome it by winning people’s respect, being a professional, a man of words and convictions, standing proud and looking people in their eyes showing security, falling and standing up to come back stronger and admit when you are wrong and others are right. Latin Times: Tell us about how the Puerto Rican Hispanic Chamber of Commerce got started Frank Nieves: A big cultural celebration, showing what we were all about, Business, Community and Culture, it came to be because there was a need a change in what was happening in Broward County Hispanic community Latin Times: Tell us about your big annual event Frank Nieves: Fiestas Patronales is going on its 13 year and it is the most complete family event in Florida. It has Culture going back to whom colonized us, tradition, culture, entertainment for the entire family, education, community services, rides, music, arts and craft, authentic Hispanic food, and the world most danced and listen to music, SALSA! Latin Times: Tell us about your family Frank Nieves: I am married to a devoted special education teacher, Hilda Ortega. I have two sons from a previous marriage Frank Nieves Jr. and Sherida F Nieves, Sherida has given me two great grand children Franchesca (Down Syndrome 17 years old) and Nicolas 16 years old and now we just adopted a 9 years old Down Syndrome with Autism and I am very happy and proud of him, it is what God wanted so let it be. Latin Times: Who is a hero/role model that you admire (Living or deceased) and why do you admire them? Frank Nieves: My Parents both with only 7th grade they raised 4 boys during a very hard time but taught us the right values and the other person I admire is God and all three of them live inside of me.

Julio Altuna

What is your Profession? Currently Retired from Active duty Navy and small business owner Your Pais: Dominican Republic Hometown: Janico, Santiago Latin Times: How did you get started in your career? Julio Altuna: Upon eligibility for retirement form the armed forces I began to contemplate where to enter the regular work force or to follow my dreams of being a small business owner. Soon I made of my mind to combine my passion for home cooking and family atmosphere so with the help of those that always support me in everything that I do, I opened a small family restaurant in Ft. Myers called Quisqueya Restaurant! Latin Times: What do you enjoy most about you what you do? Julio Altuna: The sense of a family atmosphere when the Latin community comes together. Latin Times: Please tell us about your biggest obstacles, and how you have overcome them. Julio Altuna: While many signs tell the public that Florida is opened for business it was very challenging to navigate through the bureaucracy of licensing, inspections, and requirements in place. While I am very savvy in regards to finding solutions to problems, based on the length of my time as an immigrant, I can only imagine the amount of citizens the process deters. Latin Times: What is your favorite Latin Food Dish? Julio Altuna: I am proud to be a white rice and red beans kind of guy Latin Times: Tell us about your family Julio Altuna: We are a group that is living life as a single unit. We are rooted in our beliefs of blood is thicker than water and people will always come and go, but family are the ones that are here for support. Latin Times: Who is a hero/role model that you admire (Living or deceased) and why do you admire them? Julio Altuna: My mother, Maria. Since I can recall, she has always been there for me and others. There is nothing that she would not do for any of us, and to my jealousy, for others. She is an amazing human being who is always willing to give people the benefit of the doubt.

Bochinche Blvd

Jolie Gonzalez-Padilla receives NFL / Hispanic Heritage Foundation Award for Hispanic Leadership – serves as guest Captain of the team during their Hispanic Heritage Game and performs the Game Coin Toss! The NFL, Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF) and Courtyard by Marriott have partnered for the third annual NFL Hispanic Heritage Leadership Awards Presented by Courtyard by Marriott during the 2013 celebration of Hispanic Heritage Month. The awards recognize the contributions of Hispanic leaders in each NFL market. Each award recipient was recognized instadiums at their annual Hispanic Heritage game in their local market. In Tampa Bay, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers recognized Jolie Gonzalez-Padilla, President of Latin Times Media, Inc., President of the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Tampa Bay and creator of the world famous annual Cuban Sandwich Festival (along with her husband Victor Padilla). The Hispanic Heritage celebration was held on Sunday, September 29th at Raymond James Stadium. With the support from Courtyard by Marriott, each award recipient selected an organization of their choice that serves the local Hispanic community to receive a $2,000 donation. Jolie Gonzalez-Padilla will be donating the money to Judeo Christian Health Clinic.

Si Te Llamo – Hit single wins Golden Mic Latin Awards! Congratulations to CUQUI Gonzalez, recording artist, entertainer and business woman, on her award song of the year for best pop ballad of 2013 by the Golden Mic Latin Awards for her single “Si Te Llamo” –check her on iTunes.

@ Mi Quisqueya Restaurant located at 3420 Cleveland Avenue in Fort Myers, Florida. A Special thanks to Maria and her beautiful familia for their warm hospitality and welcome! Each Month at a NEW and Exciting LOCATION!!!! Each month, Latin Times Media will take you to a NEW and Exciting location throughout Florida to connect YOU “Florida’s Business community” with other great business professionals. Expect these events to be FUN. Expect to make new friends, and GREAT new business connections, while enjoying GREAT food and friendly conversations. Events take place on the 1st Friday of every month at a new and exciting location! To attend the next 1st Friday in SW Florida contact our Regional Marketing Director Claribel Levinson for more info at (239) 204-9344 or email:

The RETURN of 1st Friday, Latin ConneXions! Dinner with the Governor and First Lady!

Tampa Bay’s longest running monthly Hispanic/ Latino Networking is back!

Jolie Gonzalez and Victor Padilla were recently invited to the Governor’s mansion for dinner, right before dinner Jolie snuck into the Governor’s office and tested out the desk and chair to see how it fit….. you never know!!!!

Latin Times Media cordially invites you the premier of the ALL NEW 1st Friday, Latin ConneXions Networking Social which took place on Friday, October 4th, 2013!

1st Friday – Fort Myers a BIG HIT! The “first” 1st Friday in SW Florida took place in Fort Myers in September of 2013

What you can expect at 1st Fridays! Expect these events to be FUN. Expect to make new friends, and GREAT new business connections, while enjoying GREAT food, cultural and business exhibits and great music and dancing. If in Tampa Bay on the 1st Friday of the month, join us at Jackson’s On The Harbor @ 601 S Harbour Island Blvd, Tampa, FL 33602. Event Details: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm. Enjoy a DELICIOUS Complimentary Buffet / Appetizers compliments of Jackson’s. This event is FREE to attend. Bring Business Cards and your dancing shoes! Music and Entertainment by: Delite Entertainment. Participation Opportunities: (813) 407-6866 or (813) 407-7191.

My relationship with God…

By John Oliva President Oliva Tobacco

Recently, my friend, Victor Padilla, called to ask about a group of men he heard met at our building every week to study the word of God. He had spoken to Tim Paskert, the young man who leads and moderates our bible study and was impressed. He asked if I would write something for the Latin Times about my relationship with God. I initially turned him down and suggested that Tim was much more capable of this task but even before fully verbalizing this response I experienced the sensation one feels when consciously choosing the “easy” rather than the “right” course of action. I was coping out and knew it so I stopped mid-sentence, accepted his invitation and thanked him for the opportunity. My preference would be to demonstrate what I believe in by how I live, but I believe God wants it heard as well as demonstrated that I have no problem stating my relationship with Him to anyone, and I don’t. It is simple. He is my Creator. He is the Being that proved his love by sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to die on a cross for my wrongdoings so I can spend eternity with Him as I have chosen. He is the only Being to have resurrected Himself from the dead as prophesized. He is the Being that guides me on a daily basis to make the right choices. Admittedly, I have too often not followed His guidance but it was and remains always my decision. God is with me 24/7 from birth to eternal life and He is available to everyone who accepts Him as I have. That’s just about how my relationship with God has been since I can remember although there have been some subtle changes as I have aged. My prayers to and conversations with Him have taken a more direct form. The Holy Spirit is with me every day so I speak directly to Him in the same way I would speak to my best friend and, yes He speaks back, just not out loud yet. I mostly ask Him to remove the shadow from the cloud of doubt that seems to block his eternal light from time to time and He always complies. It’s so simple and it’s just like He says; all you have to do is ask.

Like most human relationships, little by little I started to take the one I had with God for granted and believed I was in control of just about everything in my life so about six years ago I got a real spiritual wakeup call that let me know unequivocally that I was in control of nothing. I accepted this fact immediately and asked for His forgiveness. Again, He complied. At this point I decided to read the bible. Although I had attended Catholic school for 12 years I had never really read nor consciously studied the world’s number one bestseller. About six months later, The Holy Spirit, enlisted the services of my close friend, Mondy Flores, to start a bible study with only one simple rule: It was to be strictly non-denominational. We would focus only on the Word. Our first meetings consisted of four regular attendees: John Reaves, Wade Entzminger, Mondy, and myself. We met at John Reaves’s office and welcomed all who wanted to come. We began to grow and moved to our cigar factory in West Tampa a couple of years ago. Everything fell into place perfectly. Tim Paskert, fresh out of Theology school, took over as our moderator/ referee (we have some energized discussions and tend to go off in tangents more often than not). One of our most loyal attendees, Dave Brewer, named our group “The Cigar City Bible Study” and the name stuck. The study has grown to an average of about 25 to 30 guys ranging in age from the mid 20’s to the mid 70’s. We definitely have more serious fun than any group I have ever been a part of and, from every indication; this study has had a positive influence on every single participant in one form or another. For me it is my time to learn, open my mind and give serious thought on why I’m here, where I’m going, where my priorities are, where they should be and why. It’s just a happy time where I have seen what I would define as miracles and where I strengthen my personal relationship with God and I am filled with the sincere desire to have everyone experience the same happiness and peace this relationship has given me.

Can Latinos be Sephardic Jews? By Victor Padilla

Ever since I was a child I was always drawn to Israel, the land, its people, and birthplace of my King and Savior Yeshua Hamashea (Jesus Christ). When I would hear Hebrew songs or Hebrew spoken from the Holy land as most people call it, a yearning would grow inside of me to know more about this land and her people.

In 1482, the King and Queen of Spain wanted the Jews to convert to the mother church that was in power. They commissioned a Spanish Monk named Torquemada to devise a way to convert the Jews. He designed and executed the Spanish inquisition, which led to our people to be murdered and butchered for a period of ten years.

It was not long ago that my wife and I began to research our lineage from the Island of Puerto Rico, back to Spain the mother land, and after several meetings with our friend, Sephardic Rabbi Gary Fernandez, it was to our surprise that we discovered we were in fact descendants of Sephardic Jews who are traced back to the lineage of King David, Joseph (Son of Jacob), and in the first Temple period. The original inhabitants of Jerusalem were the Sephardim which were the Holy Temple Keepers under King Solomon until the Babylonians came to conquer Israel, destroying the Temple and almost wiping out the Sephardic Jews who were being slaughtered.

In 1492, Christopher Columbus was set to take his famous journey to the Americas. Columbus tells the Queen that he can find no one who wants to join him on his voyage on the three ships she has built for him, because they believed the world was flat. The Queen assures him that she has plenty of people she can give him because the dungeons were full of “criminals.” They were the “criminals” of the state... the Sephardic Jews! The King then issued a decree to banish all the Jews from Spain for good.

Many escaped to Iran, Iraq, Morocco, Turkey and even Salonica, still others escaped to a place where King Solomon had created an import export business (in the shipping trade to finance the building of God’s Temple) a place called Tar-shish, a peninsula also called “Iveria” Ivri means “Hebrew.” Iveria means “the place of the Hebrews” thus also known as the “place of the Jews” which is better known as “the Iberian peninsula.” Many centuries later, this area became known as Spain – La Madre Patria of Latin America. The Jewish Settlers found the ground to be fertile and the climate perfect for them. Unfortunately while all of Israel was forced to serve to the will of the Babylonian King for 70 years, the Sephardic Jews continued to serve freely the Sephardim and were living freely as Jews, keeping the original covenant given at Mt. Sinai, in Sefarad.

The expulsion of the Jews from Spain gave Columbus the opportunity to fill his ships to the brim with Sephardic Jews. He arrived not in America, but in the Caribbean and South America first, where today the majority of the Latino/Hispanic people have Sephardic Jewish roots. Whether you choose to believe this or not, if you are a Latino, there is a very big possibility that you are a Sephardic Jew. This is an exciting revelation because, Jews are God’s chosen people, and if you read the Bible, in Obadiah 1:20 it says that in the end times before Messiah returns, the Sephardic Jews will return to their homeland Israel and this will fulfill the prophecy and our King can return to rule and reign. You can be a part of this great end time prophetic event, here is the web address to see if your surnames appear on the list and if it does then get ready for the real revelation of who you really are! Shalom and may Jehovah bless you!

Latin-Restaurants El Rey De Las Fritas! Although I had lived in Tampa Bay for over 13 years, my first experience with this Cuban treasure was quite recently at El Rey de las Fritas in Hialeah while visiting South Florida! Named appropriately, El Rey de Las Fritas was recently crowned winner of the annual Burger Beast Frita Show Down in South Florida! We stopped by to see (and taste) what all the fuss was about, and owner Mercedes Gonzalez served us a delicious Frita Cubana/ Cuban Burger (Frita). For those of you that do not know what a Frita is, allow us to introduce you to this delicious and very popular Cuban dish. A Frita is a Cuban burger with a seasoned ground beef patty (sometimes mixed with chorizo) on Cuban bread topped with shoestring potatoes, lettuce, onions, and a spiced ketchup sauce. If you are Frita lover, we highly recommend trying El Rey de Las Fritas, and if you haven’t tried them yet, what are you waiting for!? You don’t know what you have been missing!

El Rey De Las Fritas 421 West 29 Street in Hialeah, FL 305-863-0880

Piquant In case you haven’t heard about it, Piquant is all the rage in Tampa’s Hyde Park area! Delicious, Delicious, Deliciso!!!!!!!!!!! There is just no other way to accurately describe Piquant’s menu! LTM recently had the pleasure of visiting this French treasure! I (Jolie) ordered the Smoked Chicken Salad Sandwich which is an all-natural Chicken Salad, Apple, Brie, Avocado on a Croissant. The combination of Chicken salad with the apple and brie was sweet to the taste and held a bit of tanginess that was mouth-watering. The Avocado made it perfection. Of course, while at Piquant – since we are the creators of the World famous Cuban Sandwich Festival, so Victor tried the “French Cuban” – did it pass the Cuban Sandwich test? Absolutely, the sandwich was a creative creation made up of Roast Pork, North Country Black Forest Ham, Gruyere, Pickled Onions, Chardonnay Mustard and Grilled Garlic Bread! It was Yummmmy – this will make an excellent entry for the nontraditional Cuban Sandwich Festival! Café con leche completed our exploration of French Cuisine and it too was perfection! About the Chefs: They are not French, but Puerto Rican! Piquant 1633 West Snow Avenue. Tampa, FL 3360 813-251-1777

Grill 116 Don’t let the out fool you, it’s plain on the outside, but very appealing on the inside! The perfect place for a romantic dinner, the inside of the restaurant had a very dim interior that took a moment for our eyes to adjust to the lighting, we loved how the menu would light up when you opened it. The service was great, by far one of the best “VIP Treatment” we have ever received! We loved everything we tried! What we tried! KONA STEAK 30 Oak Grilled Sliced Steak, Lightly Marinated in a Ginger Ale Soy Reduction, w/ Caramelized Pineapple, Sticky Rice & Steamed Broccoli (served w/ House or Caesar Salad) FRESH CHILEAN SEA BASS Mkt w/ Steamed Broccoli & Mango Relish (Chef recommends w/ Spinach & Crab topping) 4 Hot Now! House made Donuts 8 w/ Caramel, Raspberry, & Chocolate Sauces (OVER 100,000 Donuts Served!!!) Grill 116 612 N Dale Mabry, Tampa, FL 33609

Ingredients: 1 can evaporated milk 1 can coconut milk 1/2 cup sugar 2 tsp. vanilla 2 egg yolks Cinnamon to taste

Limbers de Coco!

Directions: Mix evaporated milk, coconut milk, sugar, vanilla, egg yolks and Cinnamon in a bowl. Add additional sugar and Cinnamon to taste. Pour in plastic glasses or ice trays.

Freeze and Enjoy!!

Mofongo Crabmeat Stew Should serve: 4 people Ingredients: 1 gallon water 4 green plantains Oil, for sautĂŠing 1 white onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice 1 green bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice 1 red bell pepper, cut into 1/4-inch dice 1 large, round tomato, cut into 1/4-inch dice 2 chipotles, chopped 1/2 cup white wine 1 pound crabmeat, cleaned 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro Salt and pepper Canola or corn oil, for frying 1 cup chicken stock What to do! In a large pot, bring water to a boil and blanch plantains. Peel plantains and cut into 2-inch segments. In a sautĂŠ pan, heat oil and sautĂŠ onions peppers and tomatoes. When soft, add the chipotles and white wine. Cook until liquid is almost evaporated. Add crabmeat and cook for 3 minutes. Add cilantro and season with salt and pepper. Heat oil to 350 degrees F. Fry plantains for 5 minutes, then drain and divide into 4 equal portions. Place each portion individually in a mortar, and mash plantains, adding chicken stock as needed. Coat sides of mortar with plantain and fill with crab stuffing. Fold over the edges to form a dumpling and flip onto a plate.

Coquito/ Spanish Eggnog Ingredients: 1 can of condensed milk (Eagle brand) 1 can of evaporated milk (carnation brand) 1 can of cream of coconut (Coco Lopez) 1 can of coconut milk (Goya brand) Cinnamon to taste Directions: Mix all ingredients in a blender for 5 minutes add white rum to taste (1 cup) this make 2 bottles of wine


Latin Times Media Exclusive Interview with

Actress Valery Ortiz

Latin Times Media: Valery, please tell us about your family history and background? Valery Ortiz: Soy 100% Puertorriqueña! Mami, Papi, my brother and I were all born en nuestra isla del encanto. A lot of my family is still in Puerto Rico and the rest reside on the East Coast of the United States! Latin Times Media: What made you decide to become an actress? Valery Ortiz: My first dream was to be a ballerina. But really, my big brother Hector was my inspiration.  He always had our home video camera and we’d do little mini movies and fun shows growing up. It’s just him and I, so we really kept ourselves entertained. My mom had a huge part in getting us involved in things too. She found a place in Orlando, FL called Extras Express where Hector, my cousins and I got our first taste of real movie magic on the Universal Studios back lot. We also have a childhood family friend, Rodney, to thank for telling us about the Dr. Phillips High School Theatre Magnet Program. And again, Hector auditioned and got in so I was inspired (and a big fan of their productions) so I followed in his

footsteps! Latin Times Media: Coming from a Latino household have you ever struggled with weight and being fit? How does being healthy play a part in your life now? Valery Ortiz: Yes and yes! You know what and how much Latinos LOVE to eat! I’ll just speak for myself. There’s something about our traditional foods and celebrating around the dinner table or just straight up standing around the kitchen that just feels like ‘home’. It was hard moving to L.A. and being called “chunky”. It took me a bit to find who I was outside of my cultural traditions and who “Hollywood” accepted. More importantly who I accepted. And honestly, I look at some pictures of back in the day and although I wouldn’t say I was ‘chunky’ by any means, I could’ve had fewer plates of arroz con salchichas! Ha Ha! Being healthy plays a HUGE part in my life now. I have found what works for my body type and even blood type (from a book called: Eat Right for your Blood Type)! I eat a lot less meat than I used to and I LOVE to work out! I love

Jillian Michaels (a huge fan of ‘The Biggest Loser’), hiking, taking Zumba, and I just FEEL better when I am active! The difference is crazy! Now, it’s REALLY hard to say no to my dad’s bistec encebollado but everything in moderation, right?! Latin Times Media: Who past or present has been an inspiration and hero in your life? Valery Ortiz: There are a lot of people who have and still inspire me every single day. My husband (he’s an amazing singer and performer!) is a reminder every day of what a fighter and dreamer truly is. My dad has always inspired me to take big risks and do things that scare me and my mom, my hero, has always dared me to dream really, REALLY big. She’s inspired a lot of my creativity and has taught me a lot about true love and forgiveness.  Honestly, I can write a whole book about the close people in my life (family AND friends) and how they each inspire me. I like to keep people close to me that inspire and challenge me (and themselves!) to keep dreaming. 

Latin Times Media Exclusive Interview withDiana Laura Noris

Name: Diana Laura Noris My Profession: Artist, Actress, Model, Spokesperson, Animal Activist, President of Women in the Arts Miami and a very active Philanthropist. Pais: I was born in Puerto Rico and raised between Argentina and Puerto Rico. My parents are from Mendoza, Argentina and Germany. Hometown: Santurce, Puerto Rico. Latin Times: How did you get started in your career? Diana Laura: Diana Laura discovered a keen interest in performance dance and began her training at the prestigious Ballet of San Juan in Puerto Rico where she was a Prima ballerina, Not only did her training provide an excellent outlet for the enthusiastic and energetic person, it would also prove to be a fortunate precursor for the start of her professional acting career. After receiving an offer to become a part of the “Mendoza National Ballet” in Argentina which she rejected, Diana Laura landed a role in the Spanish soap opera “Tiempo de Vivir” in Puerto Rico. This took her career to another level and she began performing in many Soap Operas, talk shows and Game shows in her native Puerto Rico. In 1996 she finally did the crossover and Debut to American TV she moved to New York where she began her studies at the prestigious Fashion Institute of Technology

and completed her major in Fine Arts. She decided short after graduating to pursue her passion and enrolled herself at the “Stella Adler Acting Studio” in NYC. Latin Times: What have been some of your biggest obstacles and how have you overcome them? Diana Laura: “What makes this Industry frustrating is when a director or a studio head doesn’t see me for the same part that they’ll see, let’s say, an American actress for,” she said. It’s like, ‘No, we want more of an American type of girl.’ And it’s like, America has opened up. I’m an American girl, born and raised.” I can play with my accent and make it work and my looks are not the typical Latina looks but still, being Puertorrican/Argentinean is “not as difficult as it is being an Asian girl.” Basically the biggest obstacle is dealing with my industry in Florida and Los Angeles which are completely different markets, it’s hard to separate the latina from me and get ready for an American role. How do i overcome all the obstacles: I never give up. I don’t listen to negativity and i don’t envy anybody. I send everyone great and positive vibes and if one door closes, trust me the next will open! My latest films: All my Films and interviews can be seen at www.

Latest films: Por el Corazon – Lorena -Tuscany One Moment - Series Dotty Repulsive – Alexandria The Ticket Box – Sofia Runner Runner –Detective Sandra Leon Krissy Belle – Celina Pain and Gain Holiday Spin Rogue Space: The Adventures of Saber Raine –Louise Caught in the Middle- Dianna The Client List – Deidra (Episode 8 )”Games People Play”2012) Spilt – Susana Martinez Iron Sky- Katrina La Noche Anuncia la Aurora – Leonor Many more can be seen on IMDB Latin Times: Who is your role model? Diana Laura: My role Model is Sophia Loren. I consider her an amazing actress and the epitome of sexiness. She is stylish, elegant, classy and sophisticated. She is so respected in the industry, she is a true lady! But my biggest role model is any strong woman and life itself. I grew up in a very lonely household with just a mother and no family other than her so I was always admiring actresses, models, politicians and it was my escape. I believe women can do anything they want. We are strong and we can do it all! What better inspiration than that?

Latin Times Magazine - South/Southwest Florida: 4th Qtr Issue 2013  

Latin Times Magazine - South/Southwest Florida: 4th Qtr Issue 2013