Saturday, October 4, 2008

My Kitchen, My World Celebrates Ecuador

I'm sitting here "trying" to type and concentration is next to impossible. You see, we have acquired a new kitten. She is now about 11 weeks old but her family was moving and could no longer keep her. We, of course, adopted her into our family. Okay, all of us "except" Fluffy, our other rescued black and white kitty. Fluffy was abandoned as a baby and we rescued her one stormy night. Now the kitten, Socks (already named before she came to our home), gives Fluffy nothing but grief. Fluffy was casually sitting next to me when Socks jumped on her. I can not get a very good picture of the two duking it out. I bet you can't tell which kitty starts and which kitty ends? I think it is hilarious that the two cats look so much alike.

Ecuador was the country of choice for this week's event in My Kitchen, My World. Shelby, of The Life and Loves of Grumpy's Honeybunch, chose this country for a fantastic reason and you should go check her blog out to see what the great reason was!

Personally, I did not have as great of a reason to make the meal aside from belonging to this wonderful group of blogging friends. My choice for the meal? I had to do a little research for this but I found out that Locro (potato soup) and Ensalada de Frutas (Fruit Salad) are both loved staple dishes for Ecuador. I think of potato soup and a picture of a creamy chowder with chunks of potatoes, cream, herbs, and whatever else sounds wonderful comes to mind. Ecuador potato soup is "nothing" like this. Simple, filling, and delicious with the addition of Munster cheese for this version. The fruit salad has zero additional ingredients, just fruit basting in there own juices for several hours in the refrigerator. Delicious!

There are many varieties of potatoes in Ecuador and they were first eaten in the Andes
Mountains. Potatoes are staple in Ecuador and for many Ecuadorians they are a primary
source of food.

Potato Soup (Lucro)
1 cup butter
1 tsp. Sweet paprika
1 onion
4 cups water
4 lbs. Potatoes
1 cup milk
1 cup light cream
1 lb. Muenster cheese

Peel and slice potatoes. Heat butter in a large heavy saucepan. Stir in paprika. Chop
onion, add to saucepan and sauté over medium heat until onion is softened.
Add water, bring to a boil then add potatoes and reduce heat. Simmer uncovered over
low heat, stirring occasionally.

When potatoes are soft enough to put a fork through them, add the milk and cream. Cook
until potatoes begin to disintegrate.
Add Muenster cheese and salt to taste.
Makes 4 servings

Ensalada de Frutas (Fruit Salad)
A variety of fruits are grown in Ecuador.

2 packages fresh strawberries
2 large mangos
2 bananas
2 honeydew or cantaloupe (or one of each)
1 large can diced pineapple, well drained

Have a large bowl prepared for the fruit. Mix fruit together after each addition. Rinse and
slice strawberries. Peel, pit and dice the mango. Scoop out melon balls from the
honeydew and/or cantaloupe or cut into chunks. Peel the banana and slice. Mix well,
cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Makes 8 servings

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