This is the story of how the farm maiden, farmer, and five farm animals all work together to make a surprise recipe (rice pudding or arroz con leche) that they serve at a fiesta. With the familiarity of “The House That Jack Built,” this story bubbles and builds just like the ingredients of the arroz con leche that everyone enjoys. Cleverly incorporating Spanish words, adding a new one in place of the English word from the previous page, this book makes learning the language easy and fun. Rafael Lopez covers each page with vibrant, exuberant color, celebrating tradition and community. Back matter includes a glossary of Spanish words and a recipe for arroz con leche—perfect for everyone to make together and enjoy at story time.
Samantha is an award-winning author of six children’s picture books including three alphabet transportation books with illustrator Ryan O’Rourke titled “Alphabet Boats”, “Alphabet Trains”, and “Alphabet Trucks” as well as the bilingual picture book “The Cazuela That The Farm Maiden Stirred” (illustrated by Rafael López) – a spicy, bilingual tribute to the classic nursery rhyme “The House That Jack Built” – and its companion book, “The Piñata That The Farm Maiden Hung” (illustrated by Sebastià Serra). Samantha’s first book, “Before You Were Here, Mi Amor” (illustrated by Santiago Cohen) was selected by Parents Magazine as “Best for Babies.” A former practicing attorney, Samantha is also a mom, dog-lover, and an incurable chocoholic. Samantha, her husband, son, and rescue pup live in the Bay Area.
Where did you originally get the idea for this book?
The idea for “The Cazuela That the Farm Maiden Stirred” popped into my head one morning while making pancakes. Lacking two ingredients, I thought how much more fun it would be if I was a farm maiden living on a farm and the cow was kind enough to provide a cup of fresh milk and the hen offered an egg. I had a pot on the stove and I thought of the line, “This is the pot that the farm maiden stirred.” I liked the words and the rhythm reminded me of the familiar British nursery rhyme, “The House That Jack Built.” Like the nursery rhyme, “The Cazuela That The Farm Maiden Stirred” is a cumulative tale in which the action and dialogue build as a few Spanish words repeat. I never finished making pancakes that morning, but I did manage to write a first draft of my story!