by Mateo Gomez
If I was asked what my favorite part of living in Nicaragua was, I’d immediately start talking about my host family. They’ve been the biggest influence in my experience thus far, and without them I don’t know what I’d do. They are smart, funny, and above all, caring. Not to mention, it’s been quite an adventure having four new brothers (Like, seriously. I grew up in an all women household). Though things are great with them, I wish that we had more time to spend together. We are all very busy, so it takes extra effort to carve in quality time. Nonetheless, I try to make sure that we are able to do something together every now and then.
This week, I decided that I wanted to hang out with my youngest host brother. I was unsure at first about what we could do, but I eventually concluded that it’d be fun to teach him how to make chocolate chip cookies. I desperately needed the taste of something familiar, and I knew that cookies would satisfy that craving. I was happy to share something “traditionally” American with my host brother, and also get that one on one time. This event felt even more special, as we finally got to use the oven! People in Nicaragua don’t normally use their ovens since gas is costly, and they make the house hotter (which is a real concern when your days average 90-degrees). In fact, my host mother was actually scared when we turned the oven on.
Step-by-step, we went through the measurements and placed each of the ingredients into the bowl. We mixed the chocolate chips into the dense batter, and formed the balls to put onto the tray. After much anticipation (well…more like 15 minutes), the cookies were ready! The whole family came out, and we enjoyed them fresh out the oven with a glass of milk. The richness of the sugar was so strong that I couldn’t eat more than 2, but I’m pretty sure I saw one of my host brothers eat 8! I’m glad that I got the opportunity to share a part of my culture with my host family. They most certainly enjoyed the treat, and I look forward to the next time that we can make something together.