flan recipe

Last week I was craving for a flan but for the kind of flan that you can have at any restaurant in Buenos Aires.

I went through my argentinian cooking books but I must confess, I didn’t have the will to cook something¬†with a¬†crazy amount egg¬†yolks.

So after a little research online, I got to this argentinian TV chef’s recipe. I pretty much follow the recipe but I made just 2 quick changes (no vanilla, different bake method and time).

Here’s what you’ll need for the adjusted recipe:

  • 1 can of sweet condensed milk (you can get organic condensed milk at Trader Joe’s)
  • 2 1/2 cans* of warm water¬†(*use the can from the sweet condensed milk)
  • 4 organic large eggs
  • 2/3 cup organic sugar

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In a bowl, mix the sweet condensed milk with the warm water. Slighlty beat the eggs in another bowl and then add it to the condensed milk and water mixture.

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Prepare a caramel on a deep pie pan and let it cool.

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Once the caramel is cool, add the mix to the caramel pan.

Place the filled pan into a larger one and add 1 inch of hot water to the outer pan and bake in a preheated oven at 365F for 50 minutes.

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Cool one hour on wire rack, then chill in refrigerator 6 hours or overnight.

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Serve chill and…

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 Enjoy!

sleep regressions || las regresiones del sue√Īo

L√ČELO EN ESPA√ĎOL

When Marco was about 8 months, he was finally¬†sleeping in blocks, he had a consistent sleeping pattern but then,¬†suddenly, he started waking up earlier or some days¬†those peaceful blocks faced various interruptions…

I didn’t know what was happening. So I did my research and read a lot, from different books and online websites, until I found out that he was facing a sleep regression.¬†But¬†he wasn’t actually “regressing”, he really was “progressing” because he was reaching a milestone.

Developmental milestones can be physical (rolling, crawling, cruising, walking, talking) or emotional (permanent object, separation anxiety, weaning, nightime fears, etc) and when our little ones are reaching one of these important marks in their development, consequences in other areas occur, like their sleeping.

Here are some facts and ideas on how I¬†handled Marco’s¬†sleep regressions, according to my experience:

  • First, I checked he¬†wouldn’t be ill. Then¬†I thought about what milestone was he heading to so I could confirm that it was a sleep regression.
IMG_5589Marco learning to cruise around his crib. Naps became a hard work!
  • Sleep regressions usually happen at 8-9 months, 10-12m, 15m, 18m, 2 years, 2 1/2¬†yrs. A lot of sources say that they also happen at about 4 months, but I couldn’t noticed that one.
  • Once the milestone is reached, the regression is over.¬†If the baby/toddler was previously sleep trained, he’ll be back to his routine. Also important: wait until the regression is over to start sleep training if you haven’t done it before.
  • When the baby is facing a sleep regression it’s important to help him to get the sleep he needs. Your routine for nap and bedtime will help you to do this but you”ll also need to help him sleep. At this time, everything comes in handy: a stroll with the stroller, using the carrier or also the white noise app can be very useful at this time to help him soothe himself.
  • How to know when is over? Well, sleep regressions usually¬†last about 2 weeks average ‚Äďin my case they lasted even up to 4 weeks‚Äď but you will also notice it because your¬†baby starts to be more receptive to naps and nighttime… the struggle is ending!
IMG_5662Milestone reached now a let’s go for a good time sleep!

*I’d love to know how was your experience with your baby’s¬†sleep regressions!


ESPA√ĎOL

Cuando Marco ten√≠a 8 meses, finalmente estaba durmiendo en bloques m√°s largos, ten√≠a un patr√≥n de sue√Īo m√°s consistente pero de repente empez√≥ a despertarse antes o incluso esos pac√≠ficos bloques de sue√Īo se enfrentaban a varias interrupciones….

No sab√≠a qu√© estaba pasando. Entonces me puse a investigar y a leer distintos libros y tambi√©n sitios online y as√≠ me enter√© que mi beb√© estaba enfrentando una regresi√≥n del sue√Īo.¬†Pero en verdad, estaba “progresando” ya que estaba alcanzado un punto importante¬†en su desarrollo.

Los hitos del desarrollo de un beb√© pueden ser f√≠sicos (darse vuelta, desplazarse¬†con sost√©n, gatear, ¬†caminar, hablar) o emocionales (creaci√≥n del objeto permanente, ansiedad de separaci√≥n, destete, miedos) y cuando nuestros ni√Īos est√°n alcanzando estos puntos importantes de su desarrollo, algunas consecuencias ocurren en otros √°mbitos, como por ejemplo: en el sue√Īo.

Aqu√≠ van algunas cuestiones de las regresiones del sue√Īo y tips de c√≥mo manejarlas, basadas en mi experiencia con Marco:

  • Primero chequeaba que no se tratara de que est√© enfermo. Si todo estaba bien, entonces pensaba a qu√© logro se estaba acercando as√≠ podr√≠a confirmar que era una regresi√≥n del sue√Īo.
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Este bebito no se podía dormir porque estaba practicando caminar alrededor de su cuna.
  • Las regresiones del sue√Īo usualmente ocurren a los 8-9 meses, 10-12m, 15m, 18m, 2 a√Īos, 2 1/2¬†a√Īos. Muchos refieren que la primera se da a los 4 meses pero yo no he notado esa regresi√≥n con Marco.
  • Una vez que el logro ha sido adquirido, finaliza la regresi√≥n. Si¬†tu beb√© hab√≠a aprendido a dormir en una rutina antes de la regresi√≥n, entonces volver√° a ella cuando la regresi√≥n finalice. Tambi√©n es importante tener en cuenta¬†que no es aconsejable ense√Īar a dormir a un beb√© mientras est√© atravesando una regresi√≥n del sue√Īo.
  • Cuando el beb√© est√° en una regresi√≥n de su sue√Īo, es importante ayudarlo a lograr¬†el sue√Īo que necesita. La rutina de sue√Īo que ya tengas establecida te ayudar√° a lograrlo pero tambi√©n es importante ayudarlo a dormirse si no puede solito. En este momento, todo sirve: mecerlo en el coche, el cargador, o incluso la aplicaci√≥n de ruido blanco que ayuda a que se calme.
IMG_4675Una tarde en que Marco no podía dormir su siesta, nos abrigamos bien y salimos. El fresquito y el movimiento lo ayudaban a dormirse.
  • C√≥mo saber cu√°ndo termina? Usualmente las¬†regresiones del sue√Īo duran un promedio de 2 semanas y hasta 4. Pero notar√°s que lleg√≥ a su fin tambi√©n porque el beb√© empieza a estar m√°s receptivo a las siestas y a la hora de dormir en la noche… ¬°la lucha est√° terminando!
 IMG_5287¡Ahora a dormir bien de nuevo hasta el próximo hito!

*Me encantar√≠a saber de tu experiencia con las¬†regresiones del sue√Īo que ha enfrentado tu beb√©.

eggs in a basket

This is an easy recipe for breakfast.

You’ll need:

  • 1 organic large egg
  • 1 piece of toast
  • 1¬†tbsp unsalted butter
  • cookie cutter (the shape you like)

Spread 1/2 tbsp of butter on both sides. Use the cookie cutter in the center of the slice of bread.

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Heat a frying pan with 1/2 tablespoon of butter. Place the bread into the pan.

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Break the egg in the hole of the bread, add a pinch of salt.

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Let it cook for about 2 minutes, flip it with a spatula and let it cook for 2 more minutes at a low temperature.

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Serve warm with some orange juice and coffee.

IMG_2833Enjoy!

DIY cars play table || mesa de juegos para autos

L√ČELO EN ESPA√ĎOL
Marco is with an awful cold so we have to create different things to play while staying at home.

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I thought of sharing one that can also be useful for those terrible weather days.

You’ll need:

  • Packing paper
  • Tape
  • Markers

Attach the packing paper to a coffee table using the tape.

Use your markers to draw routes, houses, parks…¬†Let your imagination and¬†your little one guide you.

Play and have fun!

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ESPA√ĎOL
Marco está enfermucho con un resfrío horrible así que tuvimos que inventar muchos juegos para entretenernos mientras estamos en la casa.

Pens√© en compartir uno de ellos, que puede ser muy √ļtil tambi√©n¬†para los d√≠as de lluvia.

Necesitar√°s:

  • Papel de embalar (pero al final de cuentas, cualquier papel grande puede servir)
  • Cinta scotch
  • Marcadores

Adhiere el papel a la mesita de caf√© usando la cinta scotch. Utiliza los marcadores para dibujar casas, rutas, parques… ¬°Tu ni√Īito puede indicarte¬†y pueden dejar¬†volar la imaginaci√≥n!

A jugar y divertirse!

homemade horchata recipe

I’ve discovered this sweet and delicious spanish/mexican drink when we moved to California and Marco and I’ve felt in love with this sweet beverage. But, since it is so sweet I wanted to prepare it myself with better ingredients and maybe… less sugar?

This is what you’ll need:IMG_2460

  • 1 cup¬†uncooked white¬†rice¬†
  • 6¬†cups¬†water
  • 1/2 cup¬†2% organic¬†milk
  • 1/2 tsp¬†ground cinnamon
  • 2¬†cloves
  • 2/3¬†cup¬†organic¬†sugar (if you want less, 1/2 cup will still work well!)

Pour the rice and 1 cups of water into a bowl. IMG_2604

Use a manual blender to break the rice a little bit (30 seconds will do the trick). 

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Add the cloves. Let the rice and water stand at room temperature for about 3 to 5 hours.

Strain rice water into a pitcher. The remaining rice can be discarded or you can also use it for a second horchata but it¬†will have to be with¬†half of these ingredients because the rice¬†won’t contain much starch at this moment.

In the pitcher, add the sugar, ground cinnamon, milk and the 5 cups of water remaining and stir.

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Chill in the refrigerator for about 3 hours. Stir and add ice (optional) before serving.

Enjoy!

soothing a fussy baby || calmando a un bebé

L√ČELO EN ESPA√ĎOL
Many of you already know that white noise helps soothing a baby and even help them to fall asleep. From the “human white noise” when we do a constant “shhh” to the rhythmic and continuos sound of a fan in the background.

Marco used to have this “witching hours” of crying from 5pm to 7 pm EVERYDAY until he was about 4 months. We tried so many things!¬†But he didn’t want to nurse¬†neither he needed a diaper change,¬†it wasn’t colic… And in those situations¬†the white noise was extremely helpful because it helped him to soothe himself while I was rocking him.

IMG_3416Baby starting to get fussy…

It was also a very good tool while we were sleep training him. Turning on the white noise helped him to fall asleep faster.

IMG_5662Finally sleeping “like a baby”!

So today, I want to share with you the app that it was absolutely helpful for us, it’s called WhiteNoiseApp and it’s free in the App Store¬†(Not an iPhone user? For other platforms, click here.)

You may ask yourself, why an app when you can buy a white noise machine or play the sound of a video on YouTube? Because if you have it in your phone you can take it everywhere with you and it’s not something more that you’ll need to carry in the diaper bag.

Besides, this app doesn’t need your phone to be connected to wi-fi neither it needs signal so you can use¬†it while your phone is on¬†plane mode or even on the subway… Wherever!

And I must confess that it also helped me to sleep better!

Sweet dreams!

—-

ESPA√ĎOL

Muchos de ustedes ya sabr√°n que el ruido blanco ayuda a los beb√©s a calmarse e incluso a dormir. Desde el “ruido blanco humano” cuando hacemos un “shh” constante¬†hasta el ruido r√≠tmico y constante de un ventilador de fondo.

Marco sol√≠a tener unas horas de la “chiripiolca”, unas horas locas de llanto todos los d√≠as entre las¬†5pm y las¬†7pm. Trat√°bamos todo pero rechazaba el pecho, no necesitaba que se le cambiara el pa√Īal, no eran c√≥licos… En esos momentos el ruido blanco fue muy √ļtil porque ayudaba a que se calmara mientras lo mec√≠a.

El ruido blanco tambi√©n ha sido una muy buena herramienta cuando le est√°bamos ense√Īando a dormir. Al ponerlo en la cuna, encend√≠amos el ruido blanco y ese sonido continuo lo ayudaba a dormirse mejor.

Por eso, hoy quiero¬†compartirles la¬†aplicaci√≥n de ruido blanco que fue¬†tan¬†√ļtil para nosotros, se llama WhiteNoiseApp y est√° disponible gratis en el App Store (si no tienes iphone, chequea aqu√≠ para la aplicaci√≥n en otras plataformas)

Se preguntar√°n por qu√© una aplicaci√≥n para el m√≥vil cuando uno puede usar el sonido de un video gratis en YouTube o hasta comprar una m√°quina de ruido blanco. Bueno, lo pr√°ctico de que sea una aplicaci√≥n m√≥vil es que la llevas contigo a todos lados y no es algo extra que debas cargar en la pa√Īalera.

Adem√°s, esta¬†aplicaci√≥n no necesita que tu tel√©fono est√© conectado a internet (como si YouTube) ni siquiera necesita se√Īal en tu tel√©fono para funcionar, con lo cual puedes usarlo hasta en modo avi√≥n o ¬°incluso en el subte! Donde sea.

Por √ļltimo, quiero contarles que el ruido blanco hasta me ayud√≥ a m√≠ a dormir mejor.

¬°Dulces sue√Īos!

pancakes

I love American style pancakes¬†so¬†today I’m sharing my favorite pancake recipe!

You’ll need:

  • 1 cup organic all purpose flour
  • 2 tbsp organic sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 egg
  • 2 tbsp organic unsalted butter
  • 3/4 organic 2%¬†milk
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar

Start by adding the tablespoon of white vinegar to the 3/4 cup of milk. Let it rest for about 5 minutes. Yes, it’s weird but trust me, this recipe is¬†amazing.

In a bowl, add the melted butter (15 seconds in the microwave might do the trick, beware that the butter isn’t hot before the next step), the slightly beaten egg and the¬†milk already combined with¬†the vinegar.¬†Then, add the dry ingredients.

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Mix it until there are no lumps left.

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Heat a skillet and add a pinch of butter or cooking spray and start cooking your pancakes until bubbles appear on the surface (the mixture is a little thick, so you might need a spoon or a spatula to help to spread the mixture a little bit over the skillet).

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Flip the pancake and cook until the other side is golden brown as well.

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This recipe will give you about 5 fluffy pancakes. Serve them warm. I usually add a thick slice of maple bacon that goes perfect with my pancakes!

IMG_2483Enjoy it!

what I’ve learnt about baby sleep || lo que aprend√≠ acerca del sue√Īo del beb√©

L√ČELO EN ESPA√ĎOL

I’m not a doctor.¬†I’m a mom and a psychologist and these are some facts that I learned about teaching a baby to sleep¬†(+6 months old):

  • Schedule, routine and consistency are the key to success. Babies and toddlers thrive in routine. A good idea is to¬†start by creating a daytime routine, learning¬†how many hours your of sleep you baby needs and adjusting his naps. Once daytime is scheduled, it will be easier to teach¬†him to sleep at¬†night.

IMG_3960We started teaching Marco to sleep when he was almost 7 months old.

  • The more your kid sleep, the better he’ll sleep:¬†Even¬†if it happens to you as it happened to me that almost every friend or family member said¬†“You should keep him awake so he’ll sleep better at night” or “Try putting him to bed later”… I have to tell you,¬†it doesn’t¬†work like that. Odds are that it even makes your baby sleep worst!¬†But you don’t need to believe me. Observe your baby and you’ll see.

IMG_5751Marco taking a nap in a cold morning in Montauk, NY. Seems that cold weather helps them to sleep longer as well.

  • Don’t overtire your baby. Well-rested babies fall asleep easier. Remember #2, the more your baby sleeps, the better he’ll sleep. A good idea is to play active games during the morning and quiet games in the afternoon/evening.

IMG_4052Afternoon nap in the Subway.

  • There’s something called sleep regressions and they will happen…¬†a lot¬†(8, 10, 12, 15, 18, 24 months and more). These regressions can occur¬†for different reasons¬†(reaching milestones, teething, separation anxiety, changes in the environment, etc.). If your baby was trained to sleep before the regression, most probably he’ll be back to his sleep pattern after the issue is resolved.

IMG_5585Marco couldn’t fall asleep. When I entered the room, I saw him cruising on his crib practicing new skills.

  • Start¬†a bedtime routine.¬†With time, the¬†bedtime routine will indicate¬†your baby that it‚Äôs time to drift off to dreamland. But you have to be consistent!¬†Everyday, every night. Even if you’re going on holidays, grab¬†a book with you. Remember #1, being consistent is key!

IMG_0529-3Story-time. We started this bedtime routine when Marco was 8 months old.

Fellow moms and dads, these facts were¬†some of the things that we’ve learnt and that are still very¬†useful for our family and they helped¬†creating¬†a good sleeping habit.¬†It takes time, but the reward is great!

*I hope it can also helps more fellow moms on the web!

ESPA√ĎOL

No soy un doctor. Soy una mam√° y una psic√≥loga y √©stas son algunas de las cosas que he aprendido acerca del sue√Īo en beb√©s de m√°s de 6 meses:

  • Organizar el d√≠a, la rutina y la consistencia con la clave del √©xito. A los beb√©s y los ni√Īos les encanta la rutina y se desarrollan bien en ella. Una buena idea puede ser organizar primero el d√≠a, aprender¬†cuantas horas de sue√Īo necesita tu¬†beb√© y ajustar sus siestas. Una vez que tengas el d√≠a organizado, ser√°¬†m√°s f√°cil ense√Īarle a dormir en la noche.
  • Hay algo que se llama regresiones del sue√Īo¬†y suceder√°n… ¬°mucho!¬†A¬†los 8, 10, 12, 15, 18, 24 meses y m√°s. Estas regresiones pueden ser por distintas causas (cuando est√° por alcanzar un logro como gatear, caminar, hablar, etc.; dentici√≥n; ansiedad de separaci√≥n; cambios en su ambiente, etc.). Si tu beb√© ya estaba entrenado para dormir antes de la regresi√≥n, volver√° a su patr√≥n de sue√Īo cuando se resuelva lo que caus√≥ la regresi√≥n.
  • Cuanto m√°s tu beb√© duerma,¬†dormir√° m√°s y mejor. Incluso te¬†pasa como a m√≠, que muchos amigos o familiares me dec√≠an “Ten√©s que mantenerlo despierto m√°s tiempo as√≠ duerme m√°s en la noche” o “ten√©s que acostarlo m√°s tarde” … no funciona de ese modo. Lo m√°s probable es que incluso tu beb√© duerma menos o… ¬°peor! (se despierte muchas veces). Pero no necesitas creerme, observa el comportamiento de tu beb√©¬†y te dar√°s cuenta. M√°s duerme, mejor duerme.
  • No canses demasiado a tu beb√©, de ese modo podr√° dormirse f√°cilmente. Recuerda, cuanto m√°s duerma tu beb√©, mejor dormir√°. Una buena idea es hacer juegos¬†m√°s activos durante la ma√Īana y otros m√°s tranquilos acerc√°ndose la hora del sue√Īo.
  • Cr√©ale¬†una rutina para ir a dormir. Con el tiempo, la rutina actuar√° como una se√Īal de que es hora de dormir. Leer cuentos o canciones tranquilas son siempre un buen ingrediente para el ritual de ir a dormir. Pero tienes que ser consistente. Cada noche, todos los d√≠as. Incluso si te vas de vacaciones, lleva un libro contigo. Recuerda el punto #1, ser consistente es clave!

Estos puntos fueron cosas que he aprendido y que han sido muy √ļtiles para mi¬†familia, han ayudado a mi¬†hijo a crear un buen h√°bito del sue√Īo. Lleva tiempo, ¬°pero la recompensa es grande!

————–

Do not reproduce without author’s permission.¬†No reproducir sin autorizaci√≥n del autor.

cheesy corn souffle (torta de choclo)

Hello friends! In¬†this #meatlessmonday I’m sharing another family recipe: torta de choclo or¬†chipa guaz√ļ (that’s the name in guaran√≠)¬†and it’s¬†something like¬†a cheesy corn souffl√©.

In Misiones (north east of Argentina) and in Paraguay, this dish is always present whenever there’s an¬†asado (BBQ) and it’s also a classic during the Christmas dinner.

It’s a meal¬†that it’s high in calories but… Hey! You have a lot of proteins and fiber in it, right? ūüėČ

You’ll need:
  • 8 corns on the cob
  • 2 medium onions
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup milk
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp all purpose flour* (opt. you can avoid it if you want a¬†gluten-free dish)
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ¬†1 cup grated gouda cheese
In a sauce pan, sauté the chopped onions with some olive oil and a pinch of salt over medium heat until translucent. Set aside.

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Cut the corn kernel off the cob.¬†Place the corn in a bowl, add the egg, vegetable oil, salt, milk and mix with a manual blender. You don’t have to over mix it,¬†you’ll need to have some pieces of corn in between the mixture.

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Add the baking powder and the tbsp of all purpose flour to the mixture (if you want this dish to be gluten-free, avoid the flour).

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Transfer the onions with all of the remaining juices and oil to a baking dish. Spread a layer of the corn mixture over the onions and then add a layer of the cheese. Repeat this step.

Bake it at 350F for 50 minutes or until the top becomes golden brown. Serve warm.

IMG_1872Enjoy it!