“Let’s go somewhere. Anywhere. I don’t care. I need a vacation.”
“Just like that? Pick a place, then,” replied the husband.
And just like that, Playa Del Carmen in Mexico became the guideless, point-a-finger-at-a-map-with-your-eyes-closed-then-scootch-it-to-where-you-actually-wanted-to-go destination of choice.
“Let’s go eat a lot of tacos and film you eating them.”
And with just as much decisiveness as our destination choice, our vacation quickly tu…Continue Reading
I. Playa del Carmen, Mexico
I arrive at Playa del Carmen six hours too early to check into my hotel. This is the overzealous way I like to start my vacations: I torture myself with the earliest flight into the city so I can cram an impossible amount of meals and activities into my day. I usually end up with a weird limp and a bout of acid reflux that leaves me cowering in my hotel room, but it’s the thought that counts.
It’s my fifth wedding anniversary and Carlos and I …Continue Reading
Hey, it’s a video! I visited my friend Debi J. at her house and we decided to make our friends a curry feast.
We cooked. We filmed. We cried (well, Debi did) and we had one too many Stella Artois ciders. Enjoy.
Curried Chicken and Cashews
adapted from Cooking Light
For the sauce:
2/3 cup fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
6 tablespoons water
3 tablespoons fish sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
2 teaspoons rice vinegar
For the rest:
1 1/2 pounds …Continue Reading
It was early on a Saturday morning, much earlier than I would usually wake up on a weekend. But, this day was a special day. Waking up with only four hours of sleep, instead of the usual workweek-recovery eleven, is entirely fueled by hunger. Not a breakfast hunger, or a hung-over hunger. It’s the type of hunger usually reserved for Thanksgiving, or in this case, the South Beach Wine and Food Festival.
10:07 AM: Talking about food but not eating food
I ar…Continue Reading
Joe’s Stone Crab is a South Florida culinary institution and one of the most iconic restaurants in the city. It’s a twenty-mile trip from the suburbs of West Miami, over the brightly lit MacArthur causeway into Miami Beach on the way to Joe’s for someone’s 65th wedding anniversary where your rich uncle is footing the bill.
Until a few years ago, I only had the pleasure of imagining what a restaurant with such notoriety would be like. I imagined dusty chandeliers and penguin…Continue Reading
Cooking for another person is an act of love. It requires an amount of time and effort that I’m completely unwilling to put in if I were cooking for just myself. It’s not that I don’t personally deserve an amazing home cooked meal all the time, it’s just that I’m perfectly okay with eating all of my kitchen failures: the burnt pork, the soggy sweet potato fries, the unsettlingly chewy chicken.
Cooking for someone else means you’re willing to give up a sliver of your soul. I…Continue Reading
I always knew where my pork sandwiches came from. I’d been staring at the lifeless eyes of a roasted whole pig on an annual basis since I was five years old. Eyes that didn’t mean anything but, “I’m feeding your entire family tonight, and your mom will creatively insert me in various meals for at least a week.”
As a fifth-grader with an enormous appetite for carbohydrates and Nickelodeon, you could often find me sitting in my parent’s pink leather recliner eating a bowl of delicious processed foods every day after school.
Sitting in my lap was usually a bowl containing a small mountain of spaghetti, topped with Prego-brand tomato sauce, a flurry of Kraft shredded mozzarella cheese and a single hard-boiled egg, sliced in half.
I’d be lying if I said my mother didn’t still tempt …Continue Reading
I was practically raised by a television set as a kid, sitting in front of a constantly blaring screen of images and noise for as long as both my parents worked and for as long as my daycare sitters were lazy (which was all of the time.) These, of course, were the days before Baby Einstein existed and mommy-guilt forums touted the need for “social stimulation” at an early age.
With so many hours of TV, I naturally forged a deep kinship with the characters I watched and felt…Continue Reading
I find it fascinating to learn about a person’s go-to recipe. Their secret weapon. A tried-and-true recipe that they’ve kept close to their heart not only for its versatility, but also for its crowd-pleasing ability. These are the recipes that define a person. Astrological signs? Pfft. Ask them what they cook for the people they love.
I have an uncle who brings out the big guns every Christmas Eve – a huge, creamy caramel flan. Every year we experience the same routine – cr…Continue Reading