Last week was an extremely challenging one!
I use a lot of cream and butter in my truffles and caramels and this needs to be imported. Whilst we do have cream in country made by the Mennonites, this is extremely thick. It’s great for making ice cream, but for caramels and truffles… not so much.
I order my cream from one of the biggest stores on the mainland, this is shipped in a refrigerated container from the US .Once I have put in my order it gets driven to the airport in Belize City and then transported to us here on Ambergris Caye, on the local airline Tropic Air. This is a feat in itself, timing it so that it doesn’t get spoilt and often just because of bad timing, it does.
Last week was a different story. I ordered my usual two cases several weeks ago and the container was due in at the beginning of the week. Unfortunately the vessel was turned back from the Port of Belize with all the cream and amongst other things all the Christmas turkeys for Belize, because the stevedores staged a strike… Not good for us, or all those people waiting for their turkeys! I scoured the island first and then the country of Belize. Nada…. Oh dear it was stressful, especially coming up to what is to be the busiest week of the year. I improvised by using the Mennonite cream, watering it down with a little milk and also using Media Crema. Both actually worked, but they were certainly not as easy to work with and did taste different from my usual recipes whilst still being palatable. I resigned myself to the fact that if this was all I had to work with then so be it.
Luckily Chris was on his way to Chetumal, the border town in Mexico, to pick up the in – laws who are joining us for Christmas. Here, he managed to purchase 3 huge buckets of crema (see below) Judging from the picture on the label, it looked more like crème fraiche. And its suggestions for use are over a filled jalapeno (or at least that’s what I am assuming it is… it’s a slightly off putting graphic)
I am sure this is workable with but its thicker than what I am used to so a bit of experimentation will be needed. At one of the busiest times of the year, when people are ordering caramels by the bulk, that’s a difficult one.
In the end, Walmart, saved the day. Here he found Crema para batir( whipping cream )and purchased 24 of them.. hopefully that should last me over the Christmas period until the next cream carrying vessel arrives to a bunch of happier dock workers, now that the situation has been sorted. More on working with caramels and Crema para batir in a later post.