Tag Archives: cooking

Something sweet

How about a superhero chocolate cake…


Or an ice cream cookie?



A girly white chocolate cake?


Or a chocolate soccer ball?


I love cake decorating. It gives me the opportunity to expand my creativity :)

Blue Jellybeans Top Ten

When I was little (I don’t like the sound of “when I was young”…) I used to listen to a show on the radio called American Top 40 with Casey Kasem, I loved it and every week I will listen to it for hours. Well, with this show in mind I leave you with the BJB Top 10 (most viewed)  ;)

The 10 most popular posts on BJB clearly reflect the spirit of my blog, simple and easy recipes but with character and a deep connection with my culture, as a Panamanian living in Madrid (who loves America!)

” Now, on with the countdown! ”

Number 10: Panamanian style Codfish with potatoes

A delicious recipe from Panama.
Bacalao con papas

Bacalao con papas

Number 9: Bon Bread

This one is from back in the days when I used to write my posts in both languages… now I know better ;)

Number 8: Meatballs in caramelized wine sauce

One of Panama favorites at parties

Number 7: Panamanian cocada

From 2011 come these beautiful and delicious treats made with coconut
In sixth place we have our Corn fritters, another Panamanian hit
The top five begins with an American classic…Peanut butter cookies. You can’t have only one!
The forth place in this top ten are M&M’s cookies! No wonder these are among the top five…
Now is time for the three posts on top of the chart.

Number 3:

My post about the Separation of Panama from Colombia with a delicious recipe for my mom’s Crème caramel (flan).

Number 2:

And finally, here it is. The number one! St. James cake!
And that’s it, ladies and gentlemen…BJB/T10. I hope you enjoyed this walk down memory lane… I certainly did!
Take care

Wild rice with caramelized onions and balsamic vinegar

The wildlings

The wildlings

While my mom is in town a rarely cook, she takes care of everything. I miss her already…

Last month she made stuffed Peppers, and as a side dish I made a batch of wild rice with caramelized onions and balsamic vinegar.

Mom’s recipe I’ll post soon, but today I’m sharing this simple recipe as an amuse-bouche.



  • 500 g of wild rice mix, made up of wild rice, two kinds of brown rice, and red rice.
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 white onions cut into julienne
  • 500 ml balsamic vinegar.
  • Water


Put the rice in a large pot, add cold water until it is cover and the water exceed 5 cm. Bring to a boil and cook covered for 15-20 minutes.

Strain and wash with cold water, letting it drain well again.

In a large skillet or a wok, pour a bit of olive oil and when it is hot, add the onion and sauté for a few minutes on high heat until browned. Pour the balsamic vinegar and continue to cook until reduced and the onions are caramelized.

Finally, add the rice, season with salt and stir well.

This rice is delicious hot as a side dish or it can be enjoyed cool as a salad or starter.

Take care


How long has it been? … Too long

Too much time has passed since my last post…I’ve been baking like crazy. But I promise that I’ll be back with new recipes pretty soon. Well, actually after my trip to the US to fetch Pilar (that’s my excuse… ;) ) Anybody in the Georgia Area or NYC? Let me know.

Here are a few pics from my last works.

See you soon!




Chili with pasta


Spring made a spectacular entry into Madrid. With a hint of summer, temperatures invited us to wear sandals and sundresses… But this weekend, cold winds and rain sent us back home, saying turn on that oven and bake, bake! ;)

  • 500 g ground beef
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder
  • 500 g crushed tomatoes
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Pepper to taste
  • ½ jalapeno chopped
  • ½ cup water
  • 500 g elbow macaroni
  • 4 cups Béchamel sauce with cheese *

* Béchamel sauce with cheese

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 225 g shredded cheddar cheese

Béchamel: Melt butter, add flour, stirring constantly, incorporate the milk gradually, stirring to avoid lumps. Add cheese and stir until melted. Finally add salt and nutmeg. Set aside.

Chili: Sauté onion, bell pepper, jalapeno and garlic in a pan with olive oil until soft. Remove from the pan and add the meat. Sauté until golden brown. Reincorporate the veggies, add tomatoes and chili powder. Stir well, add water and cook until most of the liquid has evaporated.
Cook the pasta al dente according to package directions.
Mix three-quarters of the béchamel with the pasta and three quarters of the chili. Pour into a baking dish and cover with the rest of the béchamel and the chili; sprinkle with grated cheese and bake at 180 ° C for 20 minutes.


Marshmallow Cupcakes revisited


Last year I made a batch of these marshmallow cupcakes, but I wasn’t 100% satisfied with them. Don’t get me wrong, they were delicious, is just that the fact that they filled with melted marshmallows made it so difficult and created such a mess in my kitchen…

That’s why today I give you a new version of these beauties, they are moist and tender and of course super delicious, you are going to love them.
This cheerful dessert will take us all back to our childhood and, as Frank would say, they will make us…“ ♫ ♪ want to run and play hide-and-seek, and bounce the moon just like a big toy balloon… ♫ ♪


  • 120 g flour
  • 140 g caster sugar
  • 1 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 45 g unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 120 ml whole milk
  • 1 egg
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 12 medium pink marshmallows
  • 200 g mini marshmallows, to decorate
  • Vanilla frosting


Preheat your oven to 170 ° C (325 ° F). Line a cupcake pan with paper cases.P1110640

Put flour, sugar, baking powder, salt and butter in an electric mixer and beat at low speed until you have a sandy consistency.

Gradually add half the milk and beat until it is well incorporated.

In another bowl, whisk the remaining milk with the egg and vanilla, and then pour this into the flour mixture. Continue beating until the mixture is smooth and creamy. Do not beat too much.

Fill the cupcakes cases with a spoon until 2/3 of its capacity and bake for 15 minutes; after that time, without taking the cupcakes out of the oven, place one medium pink marshmallow on top of each one and continue baking for 5 more minutes or so. The cupcakes should be lightly browned and a toothpick inserted into the middle will come out clean.

Allow them to cool slightly in the pan before turning them out onto a rack to cool completely.

Now brush the cupcakes with vanilla syrup and decorate with a vanilla buttercream, such as this one and place a few small marshmallows on top of that.

Recipe adapted from The Hummingbird bakery. Cupcakes and muffins

Strawberry cupcakes

These delicious cupcakes were made for a lady who wanted to try our strawberry cupcakes for her daughter’s First Communion celebration, so they are pretty special.

First you have a moist vanilla cake, soak in natural strawberry syrup, topped with a scrumptious strawberry buttercream and a little bit of diced fresh strawberries to add a touch of color.

French style onion soup


These photographs have been “sitting” in my computer for weeks, waiting to be posted alongside a clever and enticingly written post. Well, good luck with that! ;)

Anyway, here it is. I hope that now those delicious caramelized onions will stop yelling at me that they were born to be published every time I walk by my desk.


  • 1 tbsp. olive oil
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 4 – 5 onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp. sugar
  • 2 liters vegetable broth
  • 2 tbsp. flour
  • 160 ml dry white vermouth
  • 3 tbsp. brandy
  • Salt and pepper


Heat the oil and melt the butter in a large saucepan. Add onion, stir well and cover. Cook at low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Raise the heat a bit and add garlic, sugar and one teaspoon of salt. Cook for 30 – P111055940 minutes, stirring frequently until the onions are caramelized.

Meanwhile, pour the broth into another pot and bring it to a boil.

Add flour to the onions and cook for another 3 minutes stirring constantly. Pour the vermouth and cook for 2 more minutes, stirring, until the alcohol had evaporated. Then start adding the broth and bring everything to a boil, turn down the heat, put on the lid and allow it to boil for 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, we can make the croutons (but be careful! I burned my only batch of baguettes and ended using slices of white bread instead).

Preheat the grill and roast the bread in both sides. Rub them with a garlic clove, cover with grated cheese and grill again for a few minutes until the cheese has melted.

Finally, add the brandy, remove the pot from the heat, taste it and add salt and pepper as needed.

Serve immediately with one crouton on top.


This recipe is courtesy of Chica Andaluza, who gave me this fantastic book: 1 stock 100 soups

Sweet baked samosas two ways



I made these the other day to take to a friend’s house where we were having a small gathering.

The “recipe” couldn’t be easier: just go and by some filo or brick pastry and then prepare the filling. You may use one of these two, which are delicious, or come up with one of you own.



  • 8 sheets of filo or brick pastry cut lengthwise
  • Melted butter to brush the pastry
  • 2 sweet bananas, diced
  • 1 or tbsp. of sugar
  • The juice of 1/4 lime
  • 175-200 g chopped dark chocolate
  • Confectioner sugar and cinnamon to sprinkle
  • Wild berries
  • White chocolate
  • Brown sugar


Preheat the oven to 190 ºC (374 ºF).

Filo pastry needs to be protected from air, or it will dry and crack when working with it, so it’s best to handle it one by one and keep the rest covered.

To make the first version, mix in a bowl bananas, lime juice, sugar and chocolate. Brush one rectangle of pastry with the melted butter, place a couple of teaspoons of the filling near the top. Fold the end of the pastry over the filling making a triangular shape and continue folding down the strip to the bottom, alternating diagonal and straight folds to maintain the triangular shape.

I found this fantastic step by step at Chef in disguise blog (and another filling!); the link is in the picture.


To make the second version, simply mix the fruits with the chopped white chocolate and fill and fold the pastry as before. But bear in mind that berries tend to release plenty of juice when cooked, so don’t overfill them or the pockets will burst.

Place them on a baking sheet; sprinkle the banana-chocolates somosas with confectioner’s sugar and cinnamon and the ones with berries with brown sugar and cinnamon.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.

Well, that’s it! Now is your turn :)


Sausages with bacon and apple

P1090974This is a quick recipe for these long and cold winter days. You just need a few ingredients and the result is a delicious and heartwarming dish.


  • 8 slices of smoked bacon
  • 8 pork sausages of good quality
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 red apples cut into eighths


Preheat the oven to 200 ºC (390 ºF). Wrap each sausage with a slice of bacon.

Pour the oil into an ovenproof dish, place it on the stove and sauté the sausages until golden brown. Put the baking dish in the oven and bake for 20 minutes.

Add the apples and bake for 10 more minutes, until the sausages are done and the apples are caramelized.

A good choice as side dish are mashed potatoes, a match made in heaven!


From the book 101 Budget Dishes


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