Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Feliz Cumpleaños!

It was Cristina´s birthday on Dec. 14th, so she made tiramisu the night before so she could bring it to work.

Let me ask you one thing: Why the hell isn’t everyone in the world making tiramisu every freaking day to eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner? It’s so easy to make and sooooooooooooo good.

She had her husband brew the coffee before she got home from work so it would have time to cool to room temperature. And when I say coffee, I really mean “a bowl of 20 espressos.”

If you are familiar with tiramisu and how it’s made, then you won’t be surprised with the description below. If you aren’t familiar and you think “tiramisu? Sounds fancy!” then you will be surprised.

First she separated about 10 eggs (the yolk in one bowl and white in another). She whipped the egg whites (and maybe cream?) until it was nice and fluffy, and in the yolk bowl she added the sugar. Then she lightly mixed the two together.
Then she took cookies (thin ones, like graham cracker style) and dipped them in the coffee and made a layer of cookies in a tupperware container. Then she topped it with the fluffy white cream stuff. Then another coffee-soaked cookies layer. Then fluffy white stuff. And she kept layering until the container was full, making sure the top layer was fluffy white stuff. Then she sprinkled some Colacao (kind of like Nesquik) powder on top (usually it´s done with cocoa powder, but she likes this because it´s sweeter), and stuck the lid on and put it in the freezer. An hour or more later, you have tiramisu to enjoy.

No cooking. That´s it. And it is delicious.

I went to a cute little papelería near our house, which is a stationery shop. But it´s so cute and it has all sorts of things like books, greeting cards, wrapping paper, stickers, jewelry, pencils, notepads, notebooks, bookends, kids´ toys, backpacks, a small clothing selection, and so much more crammed into this tiny little shop. It reminded me of this little basque shoe store in San Sebastián that was so much like the magic wand shop in Harry Potter, with boxes stacked from floor to ceiling. But this stationery shop was a little bigger, and the little old ladies who work there are adorable and know exactly where everything is, despite the place looking like it was filled with things that couldn´t fit in your junk drawer. Someone came in and asked for an English book for toddlers. The lady ran over to the overstuffed bookshelf that seems to have no rhyme or reason and went straight to the back of the second shelf from the top to find just what the customer was looking for. How do you remember stuff like that?!

After moseying around a bit, I found a cute little card that simply said “felicitades” and the book The Help, which in Spanish is called “Criadas y Señoras” (Nannies and Madams). My host mom reads the same authors and books as my real mom, so I thought this book that my (real) mom loved so much would be equally enjoyed by my host mom.

Then, for free, they wrapped the book with a pretty green paper and put a nice silver ribbon on it with stickers. They took the utmost care to make sure it looked pretty.

My host mom enjoyed it, and I explained how my mom liked this book so she probably would, too. She said she saw a commercial once for the movie, and saw it was based on a book, but didn´t want to see it until she read the book. So she was glad to have the chance now.

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