Wednesday, November 09, 2005

It's the Great Halloween Enchilada, Charlie Brown

Note: This is a post describing our weekend festivities which we meant to put up on Monday but couldn't because the internet was down. There are more pictures on our flickr site (see link to the right).

At least, enchiladas were in our plans when a package containing a mysterious item arrived for us in Jamaica. Because the box was too large to carry, Kaelyn opened it and placed the contents our canvas tote bag. This is a bag I had received as a gift from the Lawrence Waste Reduction and Recycling Division when I worked there as an intern. It said “Local, Perennial, Indigenous” on the side and had pictures of native wildflowers that Lawrencians should plant in their gardens. But what did this tote hold?

Well, when Kaelyn got home, I was just finishing up teaching a tennis lesson for the students at the local high school. I hurried home and met Kaelyn at our apartment. We decided to go to the store and get some supplies for the weekend, and we left so quickly that I did not have a chance to really look in the bag. All I noticed at the top was some Zeiss lens cleaners. “Well, those are useful,” I thought to myself as we walked to the store. But really, I had been expecting something more exciting, since we had received lens cleaners in our last package. While at the store, Kaelyn let it slip that there were tortillas in the bag.

***In case you didn’t catch that, Kaelyn's mom had sent some very exciting tortillas! ***

That was a big surprise. It’s amazing how the little things like burritos can instantly remind you of home. Kaelyn let me in on the secret so that we could pick up supplies to make Mexican food. So we got some chili powder and canned tomatoes. We already had black beans, tomatoes, and hot pepper at home.

On Saturday, I set the beans to soak while we went to the beach. When we came home, I rinsed the beans in a colander. I cooked rice and set it aside. Meanwhile, I chopped onion and garlic and sautéed them in the pan with a couple tablespoons of chili powder. Then I added the black beans, hot pepper, can of tomatoes with juice, and some water. I let that cook for an hour and a half, adding a little water. It thickened up into a nice sauce, quite like enchilada sauce. Cubed avocado and corn rounded out the meal. The star was the tortillas; they were soft and luxurious. We filled them with the beans, rice, avocado, corn, and some Caribbean hot pepper sauce. We put our Halloween pumpkin light on the table and ate off of our Halloween plates and napkins that also came in the package. It was our Halloween feast, as you can see in the picture.

On Sunday, we added another onion, garlic, another can of tomatoes, chili powder, and veggie mince. We mixed it all together and heated it up. Instead of avocado, there was guacamole. It was very good. Then, to finish off the mixture on Tuesday morning, I refried it and had it with an egg, Costa Rican style. A very fun Halloween celebration, which should continue next week when we get my Mom’s package with some more candy.


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