Bolo's Mandarin Orange & Walnut Coffee Cake

Bolo is a guide we met who took us deep into the jungles of Corcovado Costa Rica. On our 4:30 a.m. morning hike, he worked his ethereal abilities spotting birds such as the Crested Guan, Keel Billed Toucans and Scarlet Macaws. We saw fresh Jaguar tracks on the beach, heard howler monkeys and spotted a Tyra Weasel foraging for food. We stopped for breakfast beside a quiet little creek and he pulled out a bread wrapped in some banana leafs. He then told us a story of his indigenous grandmother who belonged to a tribe that made the forests their home between Panama and the coastal zone where Corcovado sits. It was delicious, we talked about the origins of the recipe, the changes that time brought along such as cinnamon, oranges, sour cream etc. How each generation added and subtracted an ingredient. We asked for the recipe and when we returned back to tent camp (no electricity). He generously asked his wife to write it down for us. Thanks for a great hike Bolo. We hope our paths cross again.

2 eggs, beaten
One-half cup sour cream, room temp.
One-quarter cup canola oil
1 15-oz. can mandarin oranges, drained
2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
One-quarter teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 tablespoon sugar combined with one-half teaspoon cinnamon for topping

Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 10-inch ceramic round pie dish. In a large bowl, combine 1st four ingredients and beat on low with a hand mixer. In a separate bowl, combine next six ingredients, then add to bowl with orange mixture and gently stir (do not over mix). Pour into greased dish and sprinkle with cinnamon/sugar mixture, then bake for 30-40 minutes or until inserted knife comes out clean. Remove from oven and let cool, then slice into 8-10 pie-shaped pieces.




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