I do not like sandwiches, I think they are boring and I am always insulted when they are my only food option. Sometimes I choose to starve instead. It’s just not worth eating something so lame. I could go on and on about why they are so bad and how I don’t understand why people eat sandwiches. But I had to revise my thoughts on sandwiches when I tried some American sandwiches. OMG they were so good, the fantastic bread, thinly sliced meats, fresh crispy lettuce and the perfect amount of sauce. I never thought I could crave a sandwich!
I had the best sandwich at Erick Schat’s Bakkerÿ in Bishop, CA. It was just roast beef, mayo, alfalfa, tomato, lettuce and maybe some horse radish cream. Simple but made to order on freshly baked fluffy bread and it was delicious. Who would have thought alfalfa had so much potential! Mat had a ham sandwich which was just as good and I also ordered half a peanut butter and jelly sandwich because I have never had one before. I know it’s very much an everyday food for Americans but trust me to non-Americans it is a weird sounding combination. It was surprisingly tasty! I would eat it if someone offered it to me…I am not sure if I would make it for myself though. Another memorable sandwich was the bacon and collard greens sandwich at Cochon butcher in New Orleans, this one was recommended by Alexandra and was every bit as good as it sounds. Although I guess it’s not really a ‘normal’ sandwich. It is probably closer to a burger on sandwich bread.
So thanks to American sandwiches I now think sandwiches have some potential, but only if they are made to order and use good bread. I still look down on those pre-made, refrigerated sandwiches they sell at convenience stores and chain cafes. Ew!
If you like broccoli as much as I do then it would be pretty hard to pass up chilled broccoli soup. It sounds pretty good and I finally got a chance to try this recipe from Sassy Radish recently. Since it’s been hot I figured a refreshing cold soup would be perfect and it would be healthy too!
Refreshing yes, healthy no. You have to use so much oil to brown the broccoli so even though it’s full of vegetables it’s quite oily. I definitely did not feel healthy after having this soup. However apart from that the soup was nice, very dill-flavoured but nothing mind blowing. Note to self: stay away from soups – you don’t actually like soup. Unless it’s gazpacho.
Finally after 3 months of travelling we are back in Australia and it is good to be back! Catching up with friends, eating at all the places we’ve missed and basking in the sun, I am so pleased it’s not dark and cold here like in London right now! I am also enjoying having a home again, after 3 months of staying in hotels and AirBnbs it’s nice to finally have a place to call home. And a shiny new kitchen. The place we’ve rented is brand new and it has the biggest kitchen ever with tons and tons of bench space. It is seriously amazing.
When we got to Mexico City I started looking for Mexican cooking classes, I found various food tasting tours to markets around the city but it appears that Mexico City is not the place for cooking classes, unless you want to go to a cooking school and do a diploma. But in the end I managed to find a half day cooking class for Antojitos at a culinary institute. Antojitos translates to ‘little cravings’ and covers pretty much all the food sold in street stalls across Mexico. The location was central and easy to get to, the food sounded excellent so it all perfect except for one little problem. The classes are conducted in Spanish.
So I called up the school (Escuela de Gastronomía Mexicana) and found someone who spoke English. They said that as long as I don’t have a problem with the class being in Spanish they don’t have a problem with me joining in.
Alright! So I signed up and rocked up to the class the next day. There were seven of us in the class and we were given photocopies of the ingredients for each dish with blank areas to write notes and the instructions. I wasn’t too worried at that point, I could make notes as I go and google translate the ingredients at home later. The class started with the instructor giving what I assume to be an introduction to Antojitos. The only bit I managed to catch is Antojitos is not Spanish tapas. I’ve done a bit of Spanish on and off but I barely know enough for basic small talk so this was just all going over my head. But I expected that so it was not a problem.
But then everyone started taking lots of notes and I realised that the introduction was over and the instructor was giving instructions on how to make each of the dishes. What do I do? What if we got to end of the instructions and we were expected to just start cooking? What have I done?! Continue reading
After enjoying street food in Mexico I really wish we have street food in Australia. It is so nice to be able to go out and get quick, delicious and cheap food without the fuss of ‘going out’ somewhere. Street food is just about the food, there is no fussing over the food to make it pretty or menu full of fancy words to make the food sound more exciting. They make the food and they give it to you, sometimes you don’t even get a plate. You can see exactly what food each vender makes, even if you can’t speak the language you can just point. Plus you can always tell good street food by the people lining up to get it, I almost always make us stop to at least check out what food is being served at popular street stalls. You never know when you might miss out on the best tacos of your life because you were in too much of a hurry to stop! Continue reading
There are tortilleria everywhere in Mexico, however this is by far the most popular one we saw. This was in Mexico City near the La Merced Market, there of about 10-12 people lining up just to buy tortillas. I have to admit I got a little excited when I saw the line because it was around lunch time and I thought we’d stumbled onto a really awesome food stall. Sadly we did’t have a kitchen where we were staying so I had no use for a stack of tortillas or I would have bought some for sure. However the staff there were nice enough to let me to take some pictures of how it all works. Continue reading
Guacamole in Mexico is freaking amazing, everywhere we go it is delicious. And after seeing avocado being sold by the kilo here I can understand why it’s everywhere. I’ve never seen avocados being sold so cheaply and not only are they cheap they flawless and tastes great! We haven’t been cooking too much while in Mexico because there is so much great food to try but one thing we’ve made a few times is guacamole.
I’ve been making guacamole how the Mexicans do it, it’s simple and delicious and there’s no messing around with extra herbs and spices. I had the chance to learn from the cook at our Spanish school and she had some very specific advice on what you should and should not do when making guacamole.
After Morocco we made our way to Belize and spent a week staying on an island with very little facilities. We stayed in a cabana out over the water and had to take groceries for the week with us. It’s hard trying to shop for a whole week’s worth of food when there is no fridge and trying desperately to no forget anything, after all there is no corner shop we can pop to if we are missing something. Here’s what we took with us:
- About 2kgs of rice (this turned out to be way too much, everyone on the island had left over rice)
- 6 carrots
- 2 bags of Chinese greens
- 2 avocados
- 5 onions
- 4 tomatoes
- 1 capsicum
- 2 boxes of instant macaroni and cheese
- 6 packs of instant noodles
- 6 limes
- 1 box of digestive biscuits (life saver when we were starving)
- Knob of ginger
- 3 clove of garlic (turns out this is too much or one week)
- A big container of parmesan sprinkle (the kind that doesn’t need to be refrigerated)
- 24 eggs
- A bottle of hot sauce (hot sauce made everything taste better)
- 1 bag of dried milk powder (I think we actually got baby formula but it did the job)
- Small jar of instant coffee
- Tea bags
- A small container of cumin (I had it in my head that this could be used for everything but I only used it once)
- Salt + pepper
- 3 packets of stock powder
- Box of oats
- Box of raisins
- 4 pineapples
- A little supply of lollies and chocolate
We were actually supposed to pick up more fruit and vege before we headed out to the island but I was given the wrong information and the fruit and vege man did not come. I was really worried about running out of food at this point but we did not starve. We actually did very well with the food that we had. Continue reading