Ministry of Butter

December 7, 2011

Russian Tea Cake Cooking Class 2011!

I was walking through HiperSeis, my nearest grocery store, trying to evade the slutty sample attendants (seriously, they post big bosomed girls dressed in bikinis and roller skates to promote random items like milk and anti-bacterial cleaning solution), headed for the refrigerated dairy section. After a few calculations, it dawned on me that in the two months that I have been in Paraguay, I have probably purchased close to ten pounds of butter. I miss Costco and the world of wholesale.

I never envisioned that baking would be such a major part of my job responsibilities as a female missionary. Already I have concocted the following in multitudes: Double Chocolate Devil’s Food Cupcakes both with Peanut Butter Frosting as well as with Chocolate Buttercream, Carrot Cake with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting, Upside-Down Mango Cake, a Halloween Graveyard Cake, Blueberry Muffins, Mora Muffins, Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, Lime Biscotti with White Chocolate, Chinese Eggs Tarts, Sugar Cookies for all occasions, French Silk Chocolate Pie, Peanut Butter Blondies, and Pecan Pie Brownies. And to think that my little oven that can only fits one baking sheet at a time.

Fortunately, I harbor secret (and expensive) dreams of going to cooking school someday, so producing a constant stream of baked goods is actually an activity I quite enjoy. And to be honest, most days it feels like the only thing that I really excel at (and who doesn’t love an occasional ego boost?).

Naturally, the Taller Navideño de Cocina (Christmas Cooking Workshop) we put on as an outreach event this past Sunday was right up my alley. We had stations teaching women how to make pan dulce, banana cake, Snickerdoodles, and by popular demand, the Russian Tea Cakes I rolled out en masse (I have literally made several hundreds of these) for the Women’s Tea in October.

We had a fantastic turn-out of visitors, which, considering Mi Esperanza’s track record for inviting newbies, was a cause for rejoicing, and my powdered sugar-fueled class was a scrumptious success.

As disturbing as her recipes are at times, I think Paula Deen might be onto something. Praise the Lord for butter!

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