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Small Batch and Hand Made

Last night a friend and I were talking about the recent explosion of Paleta Pop Culture and, out of concern, asked me if I was ready to hire out help for the kitchen… maybe let someone else take over the culinary aspect and just focus on the business side?  I feel kinda bad because I snapped a defensive ”NO!” at him and forced a change in subject, but of course this is now in the forefront of my mind and I feel the need to (nicely) share why I don’t think I could ever give up control of the kitchen.

My husband would most likely tell you its because I have to have complete control of everything in my life, but this aspect it not because of a default in my personality, but because I really feel that no one will love my paletas the way I do.  I’ve spent the past 6 years learning the ins and outs of paleta making.  The perfect way to prepare each fruit, the chemistry behind a consistent freezing texture and all the other details that go into making each and every paleta special.

Like fate, I was hit with the answer to my dalema while working in the Kytchen last night.  I was making and excessive amount of Nectarine paletas for the markets this week and decided it best to split the batch in half to prevent issues with blender capacity.  I selected half of the Nectarines at random to make the first and then the second batch —Mind you, the fruit was selected from the same bushel, purchased on the same day at the same place.— Two batches, made using the same ingredients within minutes of each other, and yet they still turned out with two unique hues.  

There are a number of factors that could have effected the color change, exact measurement of water or maybe the time spent whirling around in the blender, but it is a common occurrence in small batch and hand made products like mine.

I may make hundreds of paletas at a time, but I sell them one at a time and each one is special for each person buying it.  I take pride in what I do and want that to reflect in every one of my paletas.

Each paleta is unique for a number of reasons: the ingredients, the season, and most importantly, the love put into them.  I know its corny, but it really is a factor in each recipe.  I personally make each batch by hand, taste testing as I go and adjusting each recipe until it is perfect.  As much as you my want to convince me otherwise, no one will ever put the same amount of love, time and care into my paletas as I do.

Caramelized Banana w/ Toasted Coconut

I am so excited to share this beautiful paleta with you.  I’ve been working on this recipe for a few weeks now, trying to work all the kinks to make sure it is perfect for its debut this week.  I’m doing this one for my friend Steven from my Saturday market, he’s a self proclaimed banana fanatic!  And what’s better than banana?  Banana caramelized in butter and cane sugar with pan toasted coconut.  Yummy!

I start this recipe by melting butter with evaporated cane sugar in a large pan, then adding sliced bananas when the butter mixture is hot and bubbling.  I cooked the bananas for a few minutes on each side, until they were the color of caramel and shinny.  (Its hard to see in these pictures, the lighting was bad, but let your imagination run wild.)

                    

I then transferred the bananas to the blender where I added milk, cinnamon and the toasted coconut to the mixture.  I think toasting the coconut was my favorite part of this process.  I used the same pan as the bananas to do this.  So with bits of caramelized butter and cane sugar stuck to the pan I threw in a hand full of shredded coconut and let the heat do the rest of the work.  I would like to refer to this as perfection.  

A whirl in the blender and the mixture was ready to pour into molds and freeze.  The final product is a creamy, decadent experience that is just too good to miss.  You have to try one of these!  

                

Farmer’s Market

A big thank you to everyone who came out to support me today at the farmer’s market.  I had great support from my friends, old and new, family and a huge welcome from the regulars at The Louisville Farmer’s Market as well as from the other vendors.  Today was a great success and I am so excited to share my love of paletas with you!

If you weren’t willing to brave the heat today or simply couldn’t make it over, that’s okay!  I’ll be at The Louisville Farmer’s Market at Oxmoor Mall again next Saturday from 9:00am to 1:00pm.  Fingers crossed we have better weather, but either way I’ll be there.

One of my favorite parts of selling at the farmer’s market is being able to buy at the farmer’s market.  I was able to snag some amazing peaches from Sunshine Farms and cucumbers, which I plan to use to make next week’s paletas: Peaches n’ Cream and Cucumber Jalapeno!  I guess you’ll just have to come out next week to try all my new flavors.  Yummy!

Don’t forget to like Paleta Pop Culture on facebook and follow me on twitter for more updates as to when and where you can find my amazing paletas!

Fyi, I felt like such a dork while my hubby took this shot.  It was like the first day of kindergarten, getting on the bus while mom tears up with the camera in hand.  But I am so proud of my little spot in the world and the opportunity to do what I love… and I love paletas!  

Also, my sign and table cloths are just too cute, right?

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