Saturday, January 2, 2010

Dos mil diez (2010)

Our New Year's Eve was pretty tranquil. Since we're in the US this year we're living near my family, which means we get to spend time with them. My parents and my brother and his family came over for dinner.

Lizet made salteñas. Salteñas are a delicious pastry from Santa Cruz, Bolivia, where Lizet's from. They're a version of the pan-Latin empanada, a flour pastry filled with chicken, beef, cheese, or other things, and often deep-fried. The salteña, though, is baked. It can be filled with beef, either fresh or in the form of charque, which is sun-dried. Or it can have chicken, which is how Lizet usually makes it, along with raisins, boiled eggs, onion, garlic, olives, cumin, salt, and pepper.

One unique feature of salteñas from Santa Cruz is that the pastry has an orange tint. This comes from the addition to the dough of the extract of the urucú seed. Urucú is the achiote plant, which grows in Bolivia and Paraguay, and from which the international food industry gets the natural food coloring anatto.

Lizet's salteñas are delicious and always a hit. In fact, she's really a talented cook, which is something I didn't realize until after we were married!

After dinner, Mom & Dad left, we put the boys to bed, and my brother and his family stayed until shortly after ten, playing 'Whoonu' which we had never played before. Anna and Lizet and I stayed up for a while watching the celebration in Times Square but Lizet and I were in bed well before midnight.

In Paraguay we would probably have been up adding to the cacophony of fireworks, though in our neighborhood, as rural as it is, the cacophony is pretty subdued. We shot some off last year but Timothy was pretty scared of them, and Oso didn't like them at all. Lizet's parents and her sisters were there to share the celebration with us.

Here's to a surprise-filled 2010!


Jeff and Amy McKissick said...

Happy New Year! Wow! 2 posts in a couple days??? Is your New Year's resolution to update more????? My kids really really missed the fireworks (Christmas eve and new years)and were very disappointed when they realized we couldn't do them here (in city limits).

Andy Bowen said...

Yeah! Can you believe it? Actually I was feeling ashamed that there were only two posts in 2009! I love hearing about how your kids deal with their cultural expectations. I'm looking forward to watching Timothy and Lucas go through all that negotiation. Happy New Year to you too!

Ruth said...

Yeah, I was thinking the same thing - it must be a resolution! Keep posting! I like reading your posts.