The time Grandma made breakfast for the president of Ecuador

My father’s parents Paul and Orpha Rhoades lived all their lives in a small farming community in Illinois. My aunt says that they did not see much of the world but the world came to them. My Grandma Rhoades cooked for everyone from church executives to refugees from Easter Europe.

But the Christmas of 1952, they came to visit us in Ecuador. During that time, the Ecuadorian president Galo Plaza came to visit the mission farm. He had met my father at the annual cattle show in Quito. President Plaza had several dairy farms in the highlands of Ecuador. My father took the lovely brown Swiss offspring of cattle donated by Heifer Project (now Heifer International.

While President Plaza and his entourage of officials and body guards inspected the cattle, Grandma was busy in the kitchen. But, on the way to the table, she tripped and her always-perfect sweet rolls almost ended up on the floor.

In the picture, Grandma is sitting next to President Plaza and Grandpa is sitting at the end of the table.

Grandma’s Sweet Roll recipe


2 cups warm milk

½ cup sugar

½ cup margarine 2 t salt

2 pkgs yeast dissolved in ½ cup warm water

Add 2 well beaten eggs and enough flour to make a soft dough about 7 cups, le raise, work down and when double in size again, divide and roll to ¼ in. Spread with melted margarine or butter. Sprinkle with cinnamon and brown sugar. Roll up and slice in 1 inch pieces .


1 cup brown sugar1/4 cup margarine

3 tablespoons milk

Cook 2 minutes. Pour in pans and place pecans on syrup then add rolls. Let raise and bake 25 minutes at 375oGandma at breakfast with the president

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