Leaving Ecuador was harder than I thought. Leaving Guayaquil wasn’t hard, it was leaving Galapagos, then San Cristobal…THAT was hard. Even though Guayaquil was dark in the rainy early morning, I wasn’t prepared for Boston snowy, sleety, gray, and yucky. I had to keep telling myself “but you LOVE Boston” it’s just hard to remember why.

I was thinking of the blue-green waters of Galapagos, the color hovers somewhere between emerald and sapphire.

sea lion sunbathing

The lovely, lazy sea lions sleeping on the beaches we shared, swimming by on our snorkeling outings, and even napping at bus stops:

 

Bus stop

 

 

And then we came home to gray, snowy, sleety, yucky Boston. Piles of filthy muck-crusted snow have melted down somewhat; which only means that the ratio of pretty white to yucky gray-brown has shifted. I must accept there will be no lovely sweet white Ecuadorean pineapple at lunch, no happy hour on the sunset deck followed by a briefing on our agenda for tomorrow. Nothing in my day will involved iguanas, sea lions, snorkels or sunscreen. After a quick dinner in Chinatown (why didn’t the waiter understand me? oh, I was speaking Spanish!) we began to attack the mountains of laundry and prepare for our first week back in “civilization”. With a cold in my chest and the laundry done we called it early.

Today we woke to more snow and sleet. Yippee.

But there’s always food. To console myself I made a Japanese lunch. Rolled omelet, “sarado” of shredded cabbage, tomato and homemade “bulldog sauce” rice and loaded miso soup. South River Red Barley miso is my new fave. Loaded wtih mushrooms, carrots, snap peas, tofu.

japanse lunch tamago

 

 

 

As I’m posting the sun is peeking out for the first time today. It’s lovely but I can’t imagine our sunset will rival this:

Galapagos Sunset

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Green smoothie of the day – today’s green smoothie has a smooth frothy texture, fiber, a bit of protein and lots of refreshing sweet-tart flavor. Sweetness comes entirely from the citrus and we get an antioxidant boost from the matcha and the mint. With a Vitamix you can blend oats and even seeds into a perfectly smooth drink. Enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Granny Smith apple
  • 1/2 Sumo (or other) orange
  • 1 1/2 small Japanese (or English) cucumber
  • Two small frozen kale chunks*
  • two springs fresh mint leaves, stripped off stem
  • 3 TBSP oats soaked in water ten minutes
  • 1 tsp matcha
  • small handful fresh baby spinach
  • juice of one small lime
  • juice of half Meyer lemon
  • 1 TBSP pepitas (raw unsalted pumpkin seeds)

Directions:

Soak oats in cold water while you chop other ingredients.

Chunks of apple, citrus in bottom, then add cucumber. Sprinkle in matcha, seeds, mint. Add a handful of ice and about 1/4C of cold water.

Vert_du_Jour

 

Vert du Jour

With the greens and mint and oats I kept thinking of that very old children’s ditty my father once told me about: “Mairzy doats” anyone remember it? (“Mares eat oats and Does eat oats and Little Lambs eat Ivy, a Kidd’ll eat Ivy too, wouldn’t you?
or Mairzy Doats and Dosey Doats and liddle amzy divey a kiddly divey too wooden shoe.”)

Pro-Tip

*Blanch and freeze mint, or greens like spinach or kale. Freeze in Mini muffin tin or small ice cube trays then pop into zip top bags. These portioned out ready to go ingredients in your freezer make a quick smoothie a breeze. Once blanched and frozen, greens are easy to add to pastas, soups, stews, as well as your next Vert du Jour.

Spinach_mint_tin

Mint leaves ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Baby Spinach

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30 Days of Vitamix: Chocolate peanut butter banana smoothie – The Un-chunky Monkey

February 12, 2015

Yesterday started out with a frenzy of work, the early morning punctuated by the image of some gorgeous brownies topped with salted peanut butter frosting. Occupational hazard of food writing is that you get a steady stream of enticing food images and recipes every minute of every day. I was so tempted. Brownies, after all, […]

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Thoughts on the Boston Globe Travel Expo

February 9, 2015

As a Globe Correspondent, I was invited to attend the 10th Annual Boston Globe Travel Expo at the Seaport World Trade Center last weekend. Cruises dominated the areas nearest the entrance and Aruba had a huge presence. All I could think was “Norovirus” and “Natalee Holloway”. I moved quickly past both. I wanted to see […]

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See you at the Boston Globe Travel Expo!

February 8, 2015

So excited to be heading to the Boston Globe Travel Expo. I’m looking forward to the culinary demos, meeting old friends and editors, and making new acquaintances. While many of my regular readers know about my focus on food, they may not be as familiar with the travel writing I’ve done. As much as I […]

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Winter

February 6, 2015
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Onigiri, Omusubi and a sometimes good Hapa

February 4, 2015

This article (thanks Rf Koda​!) inspired me to create a new Pinterest board. Good Hapa/Bad Hapa which is a phrase I’ve been kicking around a while. Hapa is a term for half Japanese and used to be derogatory. Now hapas (of many Asian stripes) have relcaimed it as a positive. In my own life, many times […]

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Oyster News!

January 29, 2015

Come slurp with me: Saturday January 31 — SOLD OUT (where should be bring the show next?) Boston Wine School is hosting “Oysters Deluxe” a master class including fun oyster facts, a shucking demo, and Capt. Marden’s lobster dinner to follow. We’ll learn about merroir and pair oysters with various wines. Ticket price also includes […]

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Don’t Let Food Allergies Ground You – me in the Boston Globe

January 18, 2015

Thrilled to share my food allergy/travel piece in this morning’s Boston Globe. This has been in the works a while and my editor did a great job preserving the heart of the piece while trimming it enough to accommodate the section’s need for space. Don’t let food allergies ground your travel Online version includes this recipe […]

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So Glad You Asked! What is Canola Oil?

January 13, 2015

I’m starting a new feature here, a series called “So Glad You Asked!” – I want to hear from you. I’ll tackle topics like ingredients you’re curious about, techniques, recipe revisions or whatever piques your culinary curiosity…for example: What coriander is? How to use it? Wondering about a new cuisine and looking for a starter […]

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