Family Traditions / Tradiciones Familiares

One of the things that I remember growing up is that my family always ate meals together. My mom always cooked breakfast at the same time and lunch and dinner, and we sat at the table together. I remember we always had a good, nutritious breakfast before school. Sunday's breakfast was the best for me. We attended an early mass and my dad always made pancakes for breakfast after church. That was a yummy tradition.

Rich and I have very different schedules - we can not always eat at the same time but we always have Sunday's breakfast together. Every day Rich gets up before me and by the time I'm up he has already eaten breakfast (which is okay with me because I rather sleep five more minutes). But no matter how hungry my dear husband is on Sunday, he always waits for me so we can eat breakfast together.

I have such warm memories of my father's pancakes that I've decided to make Sunday pancakes my own family tradition. My dad always prepared his pancakes the same way but I try to use different recipes and I like to flavor my pancakes with things like vanilla, walnuts, orange or lemon zest. Last Sunday I prepared an adaptation of a recipe taken from a family cook book titled Weeks to Weeks (Rich's mother's family). The original recipe came from Bertha Weeks; here is my version.

Whole-wheat-orange pancakes

1 egg
1 c. milk or half and half
1/2 c. self-rising flour
1/2 c. wholewheat flour
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. baking powder
1t. sugar
1 T. vegetable oil
the zest of 1 orange

In larger bowl sift flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt and sugar.
In a separate bowl whisk egg then add milk, oil, and orange zest. Combine the sifted ingredients and the liquid ingredients with a few quick strokes just to barely moisten the dry ingredients. Do not over mix. Cook pancakes in a hot, well greased griddle.


Corico of My Dreams / Corico de Mis Sueños

I got home late from work last night. I was tired and although I was not too hungry, I had a huge craving for coricos, a Mexican cookie, so my plan was to make some coricos for dinner. The recipe I wanted to follow said to weigh some of the ingredients but I do not have a scale. I tried to make the conversions from kilograms to pounds and then to cups but I was not successful. Frustrated, I abandoned my plan and went to bed.

Last night I was so depressed because I couldn't make coricos that I had a dream about them. So I got up this morning with one thing in mind - I was going to make coricos even if I didn't own a scale! I played with the measurements from the recipe and the results were delicious!

When I was growing up our dinner was usually a glass of milk or a cup of hot chocolate accompanied with Mexican sweet bread. We used to fight among ourselves for coricos. My knitting and cooking club is meeting tomorrow at my house so I have prepared a big quantity of coricos and I'm going to surprise my sisters with them. There will be enough for everyone so no fighting will be necessary. :-)

Coricos are cookies made with corn flour and are traditionally made in the Northeast of México (Sonora and Sinaloa).
Here is my adaptation of a recipe taken from Mi Recetario, a Spanish language food web page.

Recipe for Coricos (about 36)

1 c vegetable shortening
1 c sugar
2 eggs
2 c corn flour (Maseca brand is what I like)
1 t baking powder
1 t vanilla
1/2 t salt
1/2 c warm water or orange juice (optional)
1/4 c whole wheat flour (divided)

In a big bowl cream vegetable shortening and sugar with an electric mixer until well blended; add eggs and continue beating until incorporated. Add the corn flour, baking powder, vanilla and salt and continue beating, scraping the sides of the bowl with a spatula. All ingredients must be well mixed. If desired you can add warm water or orange juice and a tablespoon of whole wheat flour, to better handle the dough.

After mixing all ingredients take a small portion of dough roll it between your hands to form a log the width of your index finger, forming a ring with the desired diameter (usually about 3 inches in diameter.) If the dough is soft and sticky use the remainder of whole wheat flour to dust your board and hands. Place the rings on a cookie sheet dusted with flour and bake in a 375°F oven for approximately 18 minutes. Start checking after 10 minutes and remove when they start to change color (take care not to burn, as they cook very quickly).

¡Buen provecho!