Sunday, March 15, 2015

Florencia's Arroz Caldo

Darlene cooked this: Arroz Caldo

I named this Arroz Caldo after my paternal grandmother, Florencia. Although, its no different from other Arroz Caldo recipes, I like a little back story of it.

One weekend morning, my dad came back from the market with a smile on his face. He bought a beef tripe. I was disgusted simply because of the smell - the tripe wasn't dressed as I was told. Honestly, I never knew about tripe until that morning. My dad spent the rest of the morning dressing the tripe. Afternoon came, he asked me to help him cook Arroz Caldo using the tripe.

That's when he told me a story of of grandmother. I never met her or seen any pictures of her as she was long gone even before I was born but, she was often described to me as a statuesque mestiza. Dad told me when he was a child, Florencia often prepared big batches of this and take it  to the nearby cockpit, along with a table, some chairs, bowls, some cutlery and him. With a makeshift restaurant, she sold bowls of porridge to the hungry bystanders and it was his job to keep a flow of clean bowls.

Over the years, I made Arroz Caldo so many times. Every time I do, I made it with a lot of care and patience - seriously, lots of care that it would take me at least an hour an half to cook it (not including the prep time). Each time I cook this, I try to replicate the porridge I had that afternoon.

For me, its not just a bowl of Arroz Caldo, its my dad's memory and mine in a bowl.

Darlene Cooked this: Arroz Caldo

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