Twenty 18 with a twist

This new year is only 6 days old and in my part of the world it is frigid. It seems that by the time I get warmed up, I’m ready to leave the warmth of my house or leave the store. Thoughts of traveling the world keeps me warm and already I want to BE THERE wherever THERE might be. But, not yet…

I opened the pantry, made some clanking sounds with pots and pans, and ended 2017 with exotic homemade dishes that I wanted to try and miss. The word “exotic” might seem ambitious but if you live where I live these dishes are closely exotic. So, what better way to melt my Winter blues than cooking, right? So, let’s travel around for a bit:

From the Philippines, I made ensaymada and Spanish rolls.

The task of baking is foreign and intimidating for me. I’m not confident with my skills nor do I know the art of kneading well. I initially goofed on the yeast thing (long and embarrassing story) and after poring over YouTube and other internet sites, I discovered my mistake. I’m impatient about the task and I don’t wait well.

24 hours after the initial yeast fiasco, I redeemed myself with this delicious Spanish rolls

From Vietnam, I made clay pot fish (oh so yummy), Banh Xeo, Banh Cuon, and vermicelli noodles and grilled pork. I had a bit of a struggle with the batter for the Banh Cuon. Although it was tasty, the batter came out slightly thicker than what it usually is. I started criticizing the stove then the pan and finally the unevenness of them all! In the end, I realized the effort wasn’t lost because I was truly enjoying the Banh Cuon!

That’s where this ethnic Mama stopped before the new year arrived. I was enthusiastic about the dishes and amiably surprised at the results. It’s not perfect but it filled some craving deep beneath. So, maybe in the midst of the clanking of pots and pans and the need to pummel a good dough, I might have found my word for 2018: MINDFULNESS.

On this first Saturday of the month and year, I sit here enjoying this delicious Vietnamese hot coffee from the newly opened Saigon Baguette and contemplating other dishes to make. Outside is frightful and frigid but the sweet taste of this drink makes me think of my time at Madge Coffee in Iloilo City.

Until next time,

Sleepless but Mindful for 2018

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