Since our arrival, we have enjoyed the traditional Colombian food that consists of rice and usually a stew of meat (chicken or beef) and potatoes. The family we stay with cooks for us once or twice a day, and we enjoy eating these fresh, home-cooked meals.
One night last week, I wanted to cook something for them, but there wasn’t much food in the house. They did have milk and bread, so we ventured out into the night to the local mercado and picked up some eggs, butter, and can-you-believe-it syrup courtesy of one Aunt Jemima! The mercado did not have any ground cinnamon, so I decided to keep it simple.
Delighted, we rushed home to light the stove in la cocina where sweet Gabriela pulled up her little stool to assist me. As I soaked the bread in a mixture of eggs, a spot of milk, and a pinch of salt, it reminded me of winter evenings when I was a little girl. It was always a treat when my mother would surprise us with a meal of french toast for dinner. Breakfast for dinner?! We kids laughed and smacked our lips as we poured an unhealthy amount of syrup onto the tower of french toast on our plates.
I remembered this as I directed my assistant, la princessa Gabriela, to whisk the eggs mixture, drop the bread in, and then listen to the sizzle of the toast frying in oil on the stove. A very capable, and willing helper, she spread the butter on the hot-off-the-stove tostada francesa, and we served it up on plates.We presented our french toast to Gabriela’s parents, Ana y Alexis, and introduced them to Aunt Jemima. Ana explained that the syrup was like honey, and Gabriela along with her parents dove into their plates. Little was said while we ate, but afterwards Alexis laid back on the couch with a satisfied smile and exclaimed, “That must be the toast that the gods eat!”.