Thursday, October 22, 2009

Is there such a thing as too much chocolate?

I roasted and ground up another two pounds of cacao yesterday. I started to make antioxidant cup cakes to take over to Laurence and Thelma's last night. Unfortunately we didn't have any electricity most of the afternoon, so my oven wouldn't light. I went to plan B and decided to try chocolate mousse. But I don't have any cookbooks; I haven't made mousse since I lived in Berlin, and there was no way to check for recipes online. I had to wing it. Amazing what we do when there is no internet. At one moment, Jules was swimming, Noah was reading a book in the hammock and I was experimenting in the kitchen. The electricity came back on just in time to throw the cupcakes together. Mousse saved for another day.

Decided it be a perfect time to try mole sauce, so today looked up a Oaxacan Colorodita and Moni and I tried to make it. Actually, I translated and told Moni what to do and she did all the work. I was very excited about having tortillas with the chicken mole, but for the first time ever, Natalie didn't come shout at my door at 5 to see if I wanted tortillas. Maybe she or her grandmother are sick. I went to ask the neighbors who were sitting in their rocking chairs on the sidewalk if they had seen her. No, not at all. I asked at the Pulperia and they said, she wasn't here today and we wanted tortillas too. They directed me to a close by pulperia and said if there weren't any tortillas there, they were not to be had this evening. It was closed up.

Jonathan was sure he would have better luck, so he took his bike and went to a different pulperia. They told him where to go into the barrio to find the tortilla lady. He went down a dirt path and asked everyone he met, yes, just down that way they said. Doña Maria's developmentally disabled son was sitting in front of the house and Jonathan asked him about the tortillas. He indicated yes and the mom called from the house - come on in. He found Doña Maria at the back of her house surrounded by a huge pile of firewood. Her gigantic comal was on a wood fire and she was throwing tortillas at an incredible rate. He asked for twenty and she said, just wait a little bit. While he waited for the tortillas, he asked her about her work. She decided to do tortillas twenty years ago so that she would have enough money to take care of her son. Her hands were calloused and she tossed and turned the tortillas directly on the grill. Jonathan came home with piping hot tortillas. They were the best yet.

The mole was amazing. We had the mousse for dessert. Yesterday, Laurence asked me what kind of cake I wanted for my birthday. I said, fruit tart please.

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