mexican food

Some Updates

Guys, I bought a ticket. After what seems like forever I am returning to my favourite place on earth this December. I am so excited for a NZ summer! Road-trips, Kapiti ice-cream, hikes, waterfalls, P.Y.O berries… ah, the list is endless. I also can’t wait to simply kiss my family to death. I told my mom, I said, I’m just gonna take the first three months to sit next to you in some beautiful park on some probably-graffitied bench and just breathe and enjoy the moments.

So, I’ll be home in December. And that’s all I know of my future at this stage. And I don’t mind it. I don’t mind it one bit because I like the possibilities such openness of plans brings. I’m grateful and I’m excited. If travelling has taught me anything, it’s that the world has SO much to offer and that I am by far in the top top top wealthy and fortunate. So, not only is it my dire obligation to really live but my calling to make the most of it.

Some updates: 
These cuties recently arrived back from their epic holiday in Israel to their mountain-side home in Japan, but here are some of the pics Lifa sent me last. Sabich is an Iraqi and Israeli sandwich, consisting of a pita bread stuffed with deep-fried eggplant, hard boiled eggs, salad, tahini, amba (mango pickle) and spice. Lifa says this is healthy street food at its best. Oh man. What a tease. Me want now.
Pics from Jose (father of the munchkins I looked after in Spain) of the kids and their mother making brownies and biscuits. I miss Spain and I miss Jose’s delicious and healthy dishes. Of course I miss you too, Bea! Are you still eating my homemade muesli for breakfast?
Yasu, my unexpected friend is still making healthy smoothies like I taught her and spending me pictures of them. I can’t wait to see her again. Also, her middle sister recently got married and oh my, the pics are gorgeous!
As for me, I was recently taken to a really fun and delicious Mexican restaurant, one like I’ve never experienced and I LOVED it. I can’t say enough. I wish NZ had something like this. First off, everyone is given complimentary chips and dip. Then throughout the night, if you wish, your chips are topped up again and again by the wait-staff walking around with literal shovelfuls of chips – in the same manner coffee cups are refilled here. Anyways these chips, they’re not like your regular over-salted thick Dorito crips. Instead, they’re really thin and light and crispy and unsalted. So good. Okay and the food, cheap as chips (as Kiwi’s say and of course, suitable in this context) fresh, and flavoursome. I had vegetarian enchiladas and he had something called a Chicka Chicka Bang Bang. Or was it Boom Boom (hehe)? I can’t remember.

Last but not least, don’t forget to check out my latest Savvy Article featuring baby potatoes and I use “baby” in the strongest sense of the word here, by clicking THIS.

Move Move Move

With all the dreadful earthquakes hitting Japan, I’ve been thinking about how important it is to MOVE NOW. I’ve come to realize that if we wait for the “right” time we will be waiting forever. There is no right time. There will always be a better time; when you’re in a better place, more financially stable, healthier, fitter, stronger, with a clearer state of mind etc etc and that is an endless chase. So wear your nice suit and your best skirt, tell your crush/partner/spouse and loved-ones just how much they mean to you or your colleagues, local baker and next-door neighbor, how much you appreciate them. Use your expensive crockery yourself, don’t save them for a special occasion. Today is the special occasion. And if there’s something you’ve always wanted to do, do it. Life is short. So cliche or not, make the most of your life and move NOW. Though your move(s) doesn’t have to be huge nor melodramatic, it doesn’t have to be migrating to a new country or changing your career (though it can be). Movement can also happen in small steps. For each of us these are different. They can be baking a pie, a quiet walk in nature or building a chair. In the words of Miranda July, “don’t wait to be sure. Move, move, move.” To which I want to add: love love love and create create create.

Pictures from top to bottom: morning walks before work in my very rural and very pretty village, Mexican night at Kaori’s with brown rice and slow-cooked boar meat, Persian bento game on point with mayo-free Persian salad olivieh (recipe HERE) and last, a Kiwiana delivery by Anisa sensei for the other senseis.

Step by step guacamole

Not to blow my own trumpet or anything but I’m kind of the guacamole queen. Once at a dull party (not mine, obviously), this random dude came up to me before leaving and said, “I only stayed this long for the guacamole”, which is how I became the guacamole queen, you see! My secret? Simplicity. No need for coriander or chilli.

1 avocado
half a lemon
salt and pepper
1 tomato

scoop out avo flesh
add lemon
season with salt and pepper
top with chopped tomatoes

oops i did it again

What is wrong with me? I’ve become obsessed with Mexican food! I blame seaweed and pickled plum. That, and living alone is hard. I mean, I like the freedom of having my own space (especially as a writer/someone who enjoys to write-not sure if I can call myself a writer yet…) but coming home, and waking up to, the silence of an unshared home is, well, lonely. So, I invite people over and serve them food which just happen to be Tacos.
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Corn salsa:
2 cups cooked corn kernels
1 red capsicum (diced, small)
1/2 red onion (diced, small)
juice of half a lime
1 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Mix errythang together, das all.

this is why i love to travel

A moment of applause for yours truly for having brought Mexican food to rural japan. My colleagues tried tacos, burritos, corn chips, guacamole, salsa and more for the very first time last night and of course, they loved it. This is why I love travelling (insert inspirational quote here). Nah, what I really mean is, wherever you go whoever you meet, deep down in their very souls they all love TACOS! OLAY!

taco night and a guacamole recipe

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Last night I had the absolute pleasure of sharing a delicious Mexican feast with my beautiful neighbor and dear friend, who may i add, truly looks like a princess straight out of a Japanese folktale and her adorable family. Now, Princess Kaori isn’t just a pretty face (or lush long hair), she’s also an incredible cook. As in, I ate so much I’m still bloated. Seriously, just look at that picture! I’m madly resisting from licking the screen, again. We ate brown rice, mince beef, salsa, chicken fajitas, a wholesome salad with chickpeas, edamame, cucumber, tomato and walnut dressed with maple syrup and mustard (a killer dressing and definite must try), HOMEMADE wholemeal tortillas….
and guacamole – which I love because I love avocado or as the Japanese say, abocado, so much. Now, not to blow my own trumpet or anything but I’m kind of a guacamole queen. A year ago, I recall having a guest come up to me after a dull party (not mine – obviously) and saying: “I only stayed for the guacamole” – made by yours truly. Anywho, here’s how you too, can rock the guac:

the flesh of 4 avocados
juice of half a lime
a sprinkle of salt and pepper
a bigger sprinkle of red chill
5 cherry tomatoes (diced super small)

Mash the avocado flesh with a fork
Add the lime juice, salt, pepper and red chill and mix mix mix until smooth.

Lastly, top with cherry tomatoes – don’t mix them in! Mixing discolors the dip so, when it comes to it, strategically scoop up a bit of errthang with your Dorito, instead.