After making an early morning venta run at 8am to get the necessary ingredients for the day's endeavor, I grabbed my computer, speakers, cell phone and ipod and set up shop. Today (Wednesday) is the day of our Apoyo Escolar parent's party, a meet-and-greet-and-hang-and-eat with all the families of our Apoyo Escolar students. Seeing as how we now have 25 students enrolled in our course, chances are the Casa Barrial is going to be packed. Thus, I barricaded myself in the kitchen to get to work cooking for the 60-80 people we could potentially be entertaining tomorrow. Luckily, my mom is an amazing cook and has a rockin' recipe for cold linguini pasta salad (recipe can be found at the end of the post). Couple that with an enormous fruit salad and countless loaves of bread, and I'm hoping we'll have enough food.
Making kitchen matters a little more complicated (ie. dirty), the faucet under our sink now has a serious leak. For the past few months the drip has been small, manageable with a big tub under the sink to collect the occasional drip. But for some unknown reason, in the past two weeks our small drip has turned into a serious flow of water. Every time anyone turns the water on to, say, fill up a huge pot to boil water for 4 pounds of pasta, the faucet leaks, the pipes leak, and within 2 minutes the entire floor is dripping wet. Yesterday was a bit of a mess, especially since after I finally finished cooking for today's party around 4, Serena and I had to start cooking family dinner for the 8 of us plus our three boss guests AND Christian (the Ecuadorian we partner with to host English conversations with his students) and his girlfriend. We quickly found out that vegetarian shephards pie is a beast to make, especially for 13 people. This morning, circa 7:30am the plumber finally came; here's hoping that our kitchen is now a dryer and safer place.
Keep your fingers crossed for us this afternoon; sometimes the electricity in the Casa Barrial randomly disappears. If that happens, we're going to be eating dinner by candlelight, listening to Mark provide music via his guitar and pretending like we can see the slideshow I've put together on the projector. You never know down here.
1/4 c. best quality olive oil
1 c. sliced radishes
1 small green pepper, chopped finely
1 med. cucumber, peeled, seeded, cut in halves lengthwise and then into 1/4 inch slices
4 scallions, minced
1/3 lb. prosciutto or Missouri cured ham, cut in julienne strips (I use ham -proscutto is ver $$ and not everyone likes it)
2 T. wine vinegar or tarragon vinegar
1/3 c. imported grated Parmesan cheese or more
1/2 cup heavy cream or more
salt and pepper to taste
black olives for garnishes
Toss pasta with olive oil, making sure pasta is evenly coated. Add radishes, gr. pepper, cucumber, scallions and ham. Toss. Add vinegar and cheese and toss again. Add cream and seasonings. Toss. Chill until serving time. Add more cream if necessary. Sprinkle with olives.
Tune in again later today for a guest blog!