About three weeks ago, I was on the Campesino Breakfast Tour when I had the chance to see a boa sleeping in the chicken barn. This morning, the collection and preparation of breakfast ingredients went by without such an exciting event. But since unlike last time today I had a video camera with me, I can share some of the audiovisual details of the breakfast tour that were lost last time. I still recommend reading the previous post for a more elaborate text description than that which you will find here.
When we left the fowl barn and headed to Doña Candida’s traditional Nicaraguan house, we found her kneading balls of freshly ground corn into doughy balls. She had just used a simple metal grinder (hand-operated) for maybe ten minutes, whereas her grandmother had grown up using stone-hewn tools and worked from 2AM till 6AM making huge tortillas for the family before they went out to work the fields.
With all the expertise that comes with generations of foodcraft, Doña Candida demonstrated how to flatten the tortillas evenly, working with a music-like rhythm that the first to follow, two young brothers, attempted to mimic (they eventually succeeded, perfectly in sync, but off camera). Their father playfully did the same in his own altered beat, and after their mother patted out a tortilla that even Doña Candida professed to be as good as her own (the guest’s secret being well-practiced pastry-working), the family enjoyed a breakfast that couldn’t get any fresher. After all, the eggs, milk, gallo pinto, and tortillas were literally made that morning; the Nicaraguan cheese was pressed the day before; the peppers, onion, and tomato salad was prepared with local produce.