Azalea’s school was having a bake sale and since I’m not working, I thought it would be fun to make cupcakes to sell. I’ve never been a baker and I’ve pretty much only made things that required a box and a couple other ingredients, so what I needed to find was a box of cupcake mix, a jar of icing, and a cupcake tin. I had no idea that this task would take me over 3 hours to complete and that’s not including actual baking time.
I told our maid Juanita, in my terrible Spanish, of my desire to make cupcakes and she informed me that I would need to go to the closest city Rivas in order to obtain the necessary items. Rivas is about 30 minutes away, but I had the time while Azalea was in school, so I set out on my shopping adventure with Juanita as my co pilot.
We thought we would find a muffin/cupcake tin at Maxi Palí which is a bigger version of the grocery store we have in town, but there was nothing that would work. They also did not sell box mix or ready-made icing. Juanita directed me to park close to the center of town and we went on a wild goose chase through many tiny filled stores before we finally found a tin sitting on top of a shelf as high as the ceiling. It wasn’t just the tin, but it was a whole carrying case with stand! Luckily this same store also sold powdered sugar to make the icing, which I discovered I would need when Googling recipes while Juanita negotiated. We went back to Maxi Palí again to buy flour and baking powder. With my items in tow, we drove back to San Juan del Sur just in time to pick up Azalea at noon. I felt very proud of my accomplishment as I promised the other mom’s that I would be making cupcakes for the bake sale.
Our furnished rental did not come with measuring cups or spoons, so on my first experience baking from scratch, I had to eyeball the measurements. Juanita said something about putting orange juice in the mix, which gave me an idea. I brought a box food coloring with me from the US, so I mixed in orange juice and orange food coloring into the batter before baking. They actually turned out quite nice! Not bad for a first time baking.