Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Seven Roads Gallery

Curious. A single typing mistake in the title turns my online art gallery into a kitchen on a ship.

Cooking is a side interest of mine along with food. I grab a Mexican cookbook with glossy pictures of fabulous classic Mexican recipes like tortilla soup, tamales chilles rellenos and fajitas. I decide to make my first flour tortillas. Dawn made some previously which were good, albeit a bit thick.

The recipe calls for 5 cups of flour, 1/2 tsp of baking powder, pinch of salt, 1/2 cup lard and 1/2 cup warm water. They turned out to be fabulous shreds of flour. My arms almost fell off trying to create a dough. When the 1/2 cup of water wasn't enough to make a nice dough, I cautiously added more water, bit by bit until the water company called to say that I was creating a water shortage downstream from the Kickapoo. I go to the computer and do a search for flour tortillas.

I choose a recipe handed down from an abuela. I don't speak Spanish. I assume from context that the abuela is her grandmother. I get confused when grandmother is referred to as Abuelita.

From brief experience trying to find the home of a lost beagle puppy I name Scratchy, I drive to the Rodriguez home behind us on East River Road. The Rodriguez family works for a local dairy farmer. They do not speak English. Hand waving, pointing at my truck and a cute puppy with me muttering "Bambino" , I get a head nod I take as a yes response, "That's our dog." Needless to say I learned after the fact that puppy is perrito or little dog. Do not call me on the spelling.

Grandmother's recipe call for less flour ( 3 cups) 2 tsp of baking powder, 4-6 Tbsp. cup lard OR vegetable shortening( 1/4 to 1/3 cup), 1 tsp salt and 1 1/4 cups of warm water. The result is a smooth pliable tortilla dough which I mangle into 11 balls. There were supposed to be 12 so my tortillas are a bit on the thick side. I blame it on the lack of a tortilla press.

If you're not into flour tortillas check out

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