Friday, July 23, 2010


When we lived in Oklahoma, I decided to try making sopaipillas from scratch.  I tried a couple of very different recipes and chose the one that worked best and tasted good.  I made them a couple of times soon after and then completely stopped.  I don't have a good reason, I just stopped.  I decided to give them another shot this week.  It's probably been about 7 years since I made them, but they still turned out pretty good!

The recipe is from a cookbook we inherited from Josh's grandparents when they passed away.  It is a New Mexico cookbook filled with all kinds of yummy things that I grew up eating in Albuquerque.  I haven't tried very many recipes, but I'm glad we have it in our cookbook collection.  It's a little piece of Josh's family and my family bound together.
When I posted on facebook that I made sopaipillas from scratch, I got this response from my friend Rachel:
"Mmmmm like, New Mexican sopaipillas??? The light fluffy ones with holes that you put honey in? Here in Lubbock, sopaipillas are flat, crispy things with ice cream...yuck."
Has anyone else had this experience?  Sopaipillas are very different in certain areas of the country and vary from restaurant to restaurant.  Some are flat, some have ice cream on them, others are covered in cinnamon and sugar or whipped cream.  I'm sure they're all perfectly yummy, but they're just not what we grew up with in NM.  We like ours puffy so you can eat the corner off and pour honey inside.  That's what this recipe gives you.

I'm going off memory on this recipe, so forgive me if I have to come back later and alter it!

Sopaipillas (New Mexico style)

1 1/2 c. scalded milk (cooled to about 115 degrees F)
1/4 c. warm water (again, about 115 degrees)
1 package of yeast (~ 2 1/4 tsp.)
2 tsp. sugar
4 c. flour
2 tsp. baking powder
cooking oil

Mix scalded (cooled) milk and warm water together.  Dissolve yeast in the milk/water mixture.  Sift the sugar, flour, and baking powder together.  Stir in milk/water/yeast mixture.  Knead dough about 15 times on a lightly floured surface.   Cover the dough and let it rest ~ 20 minutes.  Heat oil to about 350 degrees.  (use a deep pot or deep fryer) 
Roll dough on lightly floured surface to about 1/4" thickness.  Cut the dough into triangles or squares about 2-3" wide.  Cook the sopaipillas in the oil for about 1 minute on each side or until just golden.  Enjoy while hot with honey!
Makes about 3 dozen sopaipillas.

Some tips I have learned:
-Scalding means heating the milk to just below boiling, and yes, it does make a difference.  Several recipes don't call for scalded milk, and they just aren't the same.
-If you roll it too thin, it won't puff when cooked.
-The dough can be refrigerated and used for several days.  I think it actually works better (puffs more) after sitting for a day or two.  Just be sure to put it in a greased bowl that is about twice as big as your dough ball since it will continue to rise.  The pictures above are from day 2 dough.  They puffed about twice as much as the first day batch.
-The shape of the sopaipillas doesn't really matter.  I just roll out the dough and cut it into small sections.  You can tell from my pictures that I'm not too picky about shape. 

There you have it.  Let me know if you try them and if you have any additional tips!
**  Note:  We were too impatient to pour the honey inside and let it coat the sopaipillas.  We just poured the honey all over the top.  Unfortunately, the honey just melted right off and pooled onto the plate.  Still very yummy though!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Our vacation

We just got back a few days ago from a vacation full of good family times.  We started in Illinois with Josh's family.  It had been 2 1/2 years since our last visit.  I didn't take very many pictures which I am now regretting.  Mostly I just captured our nephews playing together, but there were 31 of us together for one of the meals.  The Brokaw gatherings are always lots of fun and we love catching up with everyone. It also happened to be Pig Day the Saturday we were there, which explains the first picture.

Benjamin and Jackson (our nephews) chatting about their day at the pool

Jackson brushing Ben's hair

Ben was interested in Josh's watch and computer

Ben sitting in his bucket reading

When we left IL, we went through St. Louis and stopped to try some frozen custard.

Then it was onto Tulsa, OK for a family reunion for my Dad's side of the family.  Our last reunion was in 1988, so there was a little catching up to do!  My grandma has 6 siblings, but only 3 sisters are still living.  It was great to have them all together along with some of the children and grandchildren.

The 4 sisters- my Grandma is the beautiful woman in the black and white top.

The whole bunch- it is so hard to get everyone to look at the same time and smile!  I hope someone else got a better picture than I did.

Our little part of the family- Josh, me, my Mom, Aunt Patty (Dad's sister), Uncle Bill (Patty's husband) and my grandparents.  My Dad's brother Bill and my brother couldn't make it. 

And what was Titus doing this whole time?  He stayed with Navi...

They did this...

And this...

And eventually this

Now we're dogsitting Navi for a couple of weeks.  He keeps Titus (and me) very busy.
Tug of War
Tug of War, part 2
Playing chase- warning!- video may make you dizzy!

Oh, I also turned 30 while we were in IL.  No more 20s for me!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Early birthday gifts

Josh and I quit giving each other birthday gifts years ago.  It was decided that instead of gifts we would take camping trips.  This year we will be in IL for my birthday, so I just kind of assumed that would be my birthday gift/trip.
As we were walking out to the car after work yesterday...
Josh: "So do you want your birthday gift today or on your actual birthday?"
Me: "What?!?  We don't do gifts anymore." 
Josh:  "Ok- so I'll give it to you now."
Isn't it pretty?  It's amber!  (and of course it's plant related- because it's from my Josh)

I've never really liked amber jewelry until our recent trip to Galveston.  There was a store there that had the most beautiful amber I had ever seen.  I didn't know that amber came in such beautiful shades of yellow, orange, and green!  Usually it's just some ugly brown/yellow/tree sap color.  Of course, I didn't buy myself anything and that was the last I thought of it.  Well, Josh found this necklace (on his own!) that has all 3 pretty colors of amber.  I absolutely love it!  Thanks hon!
I've also received one other early gift.  A few weeks ago, my mom sent me these:

Purple and gray Teva mandalyn wedge sandals.  If you don't know how much I love these, click here.
These go perfect with all my ACU clothes- thanks, Mom! 
I guess turning 30 isn't so bad!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Why did the turtle cross the road?

... to get away from Titus, of course!
Yesterday we saw our first turtle (ornate box turtle, I think) on our property.  Of course we had to introduce Titus to another animal.
Video 1: Titus cautiously closes in...
Video 2:  Titus isn't sure what to do
Video 3:  Titus loses interest
A few pics: