Meyer Lemon Pound Cake

I confess.  I have an addiction to Pinterest.  I am constantly wasting my time pinning and creating a virtual cookbook instead of doing more important things.  But what is worse is that I just gawk at the pictures and imagine how all this beautiful food tastes instead of actually making it.  After seeing that I have almost 300 food-related pins and haven’t made a single one of them, I set forth to make a delicious looking pin, Meyer Lemon Pound Cake, made with homegrown Meyer Lemons!

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Pan de Almidon – Ecuadorian Yuca Bread

Two years ago my best friend Mercy invited me down to Ecuador for a month long visit.  It was one of the most amazing trips I’ve ever experienced.  We stayed with her family in Porto Viejo but traveled the whole country to places like Guayaquil, Cotacachi, Puyo, Quito, Salinas, and Riobamba, and saw breath taking sites from the Pacific Ocean to the Amazon rainforest and even erupting volcanoes.  I truly believe in experiencing different cultures through their food and I ate many different things during my stay, such as cow udder and guinea pig.  I also had the opportunity to participate in many activities that I will never forget, such as zip lining across rainforests, singing with her uncle’s mariachi band called Mexico Lindo, and bungee jumping off a bridge down 350 feet over a rocky ravine.  But the best part of the trip was spending time with a beautiful family and sharing in their culture.

While we were in Ecuador we ate a ton of Pan de Almidon, or Yuca Bread (gluten free!).  It is made with yuca flour and fresh Oaxaca cheese.  I have not found Oaxaca cheese in upstate NY but it tastes like a cross between fresh mozzarella and feta cheese, which can be used as substitutes.  Mercy’s aunt, who we lovingly call Mami Maria, was kind enough to bring me cheese and coffee on her trip up to NY.  She has also provided me with an authentic Ecuadorian recipe for Pan de Almidon.  Pan de Almidon is great for anytime of the day, and when paired with Ecuadorian coffee it makes it a delightful treat.  I want to sincerely thank Mami Maria and Mercy for sending me these goodies, you two are wonderful and I love you both!

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Rainy Day Popovers

I am loving the weather today.  All morning it has been cool with strong winds and the smell of rain to come.  This afternoon the skies opened up and buckets of rain have been pouring down, accompanied by clashes of thunder and flashes of lightening.  I have been standing at my sliding glass door with it wide open, as I always do when it rains, breathing in the fresh rainy air and watching the waves of rain beat over the ground.  I love it.

I especially love warm baked breads on rainy days like today.  Popovers are light, hollow rolls that can be sweetened with jams or whipped cream, or made savory with meats and cheese.  I enjoy mine plain, with an occasional slathering of raspberry jam, should the mood strike.  They are often made in a popover tin, but as I do not have one a regular muffin tin works just the same.

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Christmas Cinnamon Rolls

Every Christmas morning, before the rest of my family gets out of bed, I am down in the kitchen with my mom making a whole spread of delectable sweets which we feast on throughout the day.  We don’t do the normal Christmas dinner with the nice turkey or ham, we do tooth achingly sweet breads.  Monkey bread and cinnamon rolls.  She makes the monkey bread, I make the rolls.  It’s tradition.This morning I woke up singing Christmas songs as though I were dreaming of the season.  I immediately got up and put on my Christmas radio station on Pandora and got a hankering for warm, gooey cinnamon rolls.  Yes, I do realize it is only August.  I also realize Christmas is only 4 months and 8 days away!!!

So I set out to make these rolls.  They require a pretty good amount of time to make as the dough needs to rise twice.  I jumped up and ran to the grocery store to gather some ingredients I was out of and hurried home to begin.

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