The last time we were in Barra, I was absolutely fascinated with the large dome oven that was very obviously built by the family.
Alonzo, Señora’s son, told me it took a very long time to build. It is much more complicated than it looks. Below the oven, in the foundation, there is actually broken glass to help make it very hot. You can watch this video and see basically the process that they use. I want one in my backyard!
On our trip in July, I got to watch Señora make some tortillas on the side “grill” area, but they usually only fire up the big oven to make a huge batch of whatever they are baking.
Fresh tortillas! Mmmmm!
When I went back just recently, the family had a big celebration in honor of the life of her son who passed away 7 years ago. It is a huge celebration of life, and the whole town attended. The morning prior to this, I woke early to find Señora in the outside kitchen with a huge wooden tub full of fluffy, risen dough for bread. I was soooo stoked to see this. Her son had come in the wee hours and kneaded that huge mass of dough for her. Love this family. Let me go down a rabbit hole for a minute about that. I LOVE how this family works together and provides for each other. I fear that we have lost much of this in the states. So many are geared to personal gratification that the art of family has been lost or pushed aside. I won’t let that happen in my family.
Anyhow, I spent the morning watching Sere working the dough into balls, and after a second rise, she baked them in the big brick oven.
Absolutely beautiful!! There is nothing so wonderful as home baked bread, and add to that the fact that it was cooked outside in a brick oven and, well….. oh Lord have mercy, it was heavenly. Just a hint of sweetness and perfectly crisp on the outside but soft on the inside.