On Friday, I was suppose to reveal my foodie pen pal – but with all my new happenings I’ve had no days off and working double shifts like whoa. I’m exhausted but in a GREAT way! I couldn’t be more excited and inspired by everything going on. So no worries guys – tired but going strong.
But my match this month was truly amazing! She went sooo above and beyond. I’ve never received a package like this.
My foodie pen pal for November was Ilka Ivelisse Vera Ruiz. Exotic sounding right? Well that is because she lives in Puerto Rico!!!
That’s right, Puerto Rico. I was sooo pumped when I found this out. I’ve been crazy about island themed foods lately.
First off she sent me this crazy detailed survey that I had a blast filling out. One thing she asked was if there was any Puerto Rico specific stuff I wanted – ummm yea! Adobo seasoning, guava preserves, anything coconut, and COFFEE! But I did not want to get carried away.
Little did I know she was going to take this info and seriously run with it -
Then this amazingly thoughtful package shows up on my door.
Complete with litte notes and stories on every individually wrapped piece! It was seriously like Christmas came early.
Some had history about puerto rico, while others had more personal stories. I loved the more personal ones!
Like this mango marmalade. I lost my mango butter to hurricane sandy so this was such a pleasant surprise!
Ilka wrote about how her grandma had mango trees – can you imagine having your own mango tree – I need that one day!
She made mango mash to serve with yogurt / cottage cheese. I tried this with the cottage cheese! It was fabulous. I love the sweet and salty mix <3
This package just had so many thoughtful details. She really got to know me. I’m all about hot sauce and local purveyors here in NYC. So didn’t she send me Pique hot sauce from a local artisan!
Haven’t tried it yet – but it is totally going on a favorite meal of mine rice and beans! The memories she shared made me think of my own. Rice and beans is a favorite meal / comfort food of my mom and I. Anytime we were feeling lazy rice and beans it was.
And look! Adobo seasoning and coffee!
She seriously went way above and beyond! I was stunned.
I got tons of local candies and sweet popcorn that have come in snacking handy.
My favorite candy so far being that half eaten coconut fig one. Thats my guess at what it is anyway. Regardless, its yummy.
She even sent a tostone masher! HOW FREAKIN’ COOL IS THAT?! I love plantains and cannot wait to put this sucker to use.
Here is just another example of how thoughtful she is -
She knew bb’s name and EVEN spelled it right. People who have known us for years still spell Bryan with an i.
Ilka – girl you are awesome. I’m sorry this post was late. It was only because in any free time I’ve had lately, its been enjoying your goodies.
I got a lot of package love last week -
As always Chobani treats its people so well! Really cannot thank this company enough.
And quiet literally my favorite nut butter.
My super creative friend, Miss Smart Kitchen , and her Nutty Butter has become a daily snack for me. Funnily enough, it was this very month last year that I participated in Foodie Pen Pal for the first time and Sarah was my first match. I was first introduced to her nutty creations then.
Everyday by the spoonful, but mostly with apples because I can’t get enough right now.
This weekend, I received Pumpkin Pie and Cranberry Shortbread Cookie.
Magic in jar y’all. I love the combinations of nuts/seeds she uses. And I really enjoy her more spicy take on the pumpkin one – less sweet.
I really need to get back to making my own but Sarah just does it so well! Someone back this girl and give her some start up stat! Totally worth it.
What is the best thing in your mailbox recently? Food or not. Can’t wait for christmas packages to start rolling in.