Tuesday, May 27, 2014

May 2014 Daring Bakers' Challenge: Pao De Queijo

Please don't ask me how to pronounce this month's challenge. My high school German is rusty at best ... and my Spanish is practically non-existent, aside from asking where the bathroom is located, asking how to get to the beach, and ordering beer.

I'd never heard of this food and thought it would be an interesting challenge. Come to find out, the real challenge was getting my hands on the required tapioca starch. I looked high and low locally, but wound up having to order it from Amazon.

The dough came together really easily. (Easy project = good!!) We served them alongside some BBQ'd steaks and asparagus. We found the pao de queijo to be less flavorful that we expected. I think using a stronger cheese (Parmesan, perhaps?) instead of the called-for Jack would have gone a long way. Annika LOVED them and asked if we can have them every day. Conor didn't like them at all.  Eric and I gave them a so-so review. Nothing bad, just nothing exceptional about them. I do, however, give them a thumbs up for ease. :)

Ready for the oven


All done

First bite ... they're really HOT

Crunchy outside, chewy inside...just like they're supposed to have!

This month's Daring Bakers' Challenge took us on a trip to beautiful Brazil! Renata of "Testado, Provado & Aprovado!" taught us how to make Pao De Queijo, tasty cheese buns that make the perfect snack or treat, and that will make your taste buds samba!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Annika's Big Accomplishment

Before you read any further, go and grab your calendar and a pen. Go on... I'll wait....

Got 'em? Great!! Take your pen and circle yesterday and put a smiley face on the day so you can look back and always remember that yesterday was a great day for Annika. 

"Why?" you might ask. Well, I'll tell you! 

Yesterday was the first day she swam the length of the deep pool during her swim lessons. I was a nervous wreck, but she did GREAT!! She kicked that pool's behind (assuming pools have behinds). She did the crawl stroke from end to end without a single issue. She swam on her back on the return trip, t'boot!

The adorable part of the experience is how excited she was about being in such deep water and wondering how deep it was. The best I could explain was that the water was deeper than two daddies. Everyone we passed for the rest of the day heard how she swam deeper than two daddies. (I'm sure the gals at the fabric store got a good chuckle out of trying to figure out exactly what that meant!)

So, so, so proud of Annika for all of the hard work she has put into learning how to swim. It was days like yesterday that really show us how much she has learned and how far she has progressed as a swimmer.