By MARY CULLEN
After studying four years at the Metropolitan Autonomous University, Storm Laker Julieta Castillo Campo earned her law degree in Mexico City in 1995. She studied criminal law, earning a 3.8 GPA.
“After I got my law degree, I worked in Mexico City for 15 years as a federal police officer and a lieutenant of military justice in the Mexican army,” Julieta explained. “Then I was a judge’s assistant in the high court of criminal justice for 10 years with the rank of a three star general. I also taught criminal law, human rights and ethics in the Army University for three years.”
Julieta explained that the Mexican judicial system has judges rule on the guilt or innocence of a person prosecuted, unlike the American jury system.
“I needed two more years before I could be a criminal judge. But then I fell in love with my husband.”
Julieta met Rev. Craig Cummins through the internet. He is the pastor of St. Paul Lutheran Church in Alta.
“I was studying English and he was studying Spanish,” she noted. “We had to practice our languages and we fell in love. We were married in December 2010. Craig has three amazing children: Sarah, 7, Matthew, 10 and Kristine, 12. After putting my papers in order and getting my residency, I moved to Iowa in December 2011.”
Now the Cummins live together as a happy family. Julieta is an active member in her church, serving as treasurer of St. Paul’s Ladies Aid. She works as a teacher’s aide at Alta Elementary School. Sometimes she helps Spanish speaking people translate papers and helps translate trials at the courthouse. She also writes in Spanish for La Voz de Iowa and for ‘El Sol’, a digital newspaper in New York.
“And Craig is preaching in Spanish now. The kids are learning now too, listening and answering in English. It’s amazing.
“Now that I live here, I have the opportunity to take classes at Iowa Central Community College in Storm Lake,” she added. “My English improved a lot. I finished government class and studied fundamentals of writing. Currently the main focus in my professional life is to study English. After obtaining an excellent degree in English, I want to get my master’s degree in law, submit the review to the bar association in Iowa and begin work as a lawyer.”
Julieta mentioned that she will be on the ICCC float with others studying English for the Star Spangled Spectacular parade this year.
In her free time, she runs five miles every day and is practicing to run in a marathon. The family swims several times a week at the health center in Cherokee. They also like to travel. Julieta said that she takes two trips every year, one with just Craig and one with the kids. They just returned from traveling to Paris; in several weeks, the family is going to Washington D.C.
“Today I hope to be a good wife and mother, a good Christian and continue my law studies so I can become a good lawyer in Iowa to help all those in need. To reach the stars you only need three things: wanting to reach them, never stop trying and having love in your life,” Julieta remarked.
Julieta chose her recipe for three milk cake to share with The Times’ readers.
Three Milk Cake
1 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1 cup of flour
1½ teaspoons of baking powder
1/4 cup fresh milk
1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk
1/2 pint whipping cream
Fruit (peaches, blueberries or strawberries) you can get fresh fruit, at least a quarter pound, or if you prefer to use canned fruit, a large can of 30 oz. can serve. But if you like put all the fruit you prefer.
All extra cream for decoration prefers.
Food colors only if you want to give color to the decoration.
Preheat the oven to 350 F (170 C) degrees. Beat the eggs and sugar in a medium bowl until fluffy (aprox. 3 min.), stir in vanilla and beat well until smooth. Sift flour and baking powder three times. Add one third of the dry ingredients into the batter, mix well. Pour in the fresh milk and incorporate the rest of the flour mix.
Pour batter into prepared pan. (Do not forget to put butter or oil to the pan, so that the bread will not stick to it.)
Bake for 25 minutes or until cake tester inserted into the middle comes out clean. Let it rest for five minutes. Remove cake from pan and pierce surface all around with a fork or toothpick.
Here it is best to cool the bread very well so that the mixture of three milks penetrates fully. (I leave it to cool at least one hour)
Blend sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk and whipping cream. Refrigerate it for one hour at least.
Pour the milk mixture over the cool cake slowly until absorbed. Let it rest until cool and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
Frost cake with whipping cream and garnish with fruit.
If you want a taller cake, you have to make two loaves and put one above the other, giving all the fruit you want in the middle of the two and decorate the end.
This cake is very famous in the Hispanic culture, because it is very simple to make, but incredibly delicious, because the texture of milk, makes it fresh and soaked. In Mexico we use it especially on important occasions, such as baptisms parties, quinceañeras or wedding anniversaries.
And remember that baking a cake is like living with the family. Each of the ingredients is such amount as the other. Each provides a special touch without that ingredient nothing could go right. We can show our love to the family baking this delicious cake any day, without waiting to be a holiday.