Graffiti in Colonia Guadalupe

March 23rd, 2013

Roaming around Colonia Guadalupe in San Miguel de Allende, near Via Organica, we stumbled onto a graffiti fest in progress.

There were DJs, other vendors, and lots of neighbors out to see what was going on.

It’s quite possible that the next Diego Rivera was somewhere in the crowd…

Quebec City and Ile d’Orleans

September 18th, 2012
Ile d'Orleans Grocery store

Ile d'Orleans Grocery store

We recently spent a week in QC and environs- more of the getting to know Canada tour. This time, we went to Quebec City, Ile d’Orleans and then up to Ottawa and the Ottawa valley.

I’d heard that QC is about the closest you can come to Europe, while staying in North America. It definitely has an old-world feel.

Here’s something I didn’t know: Canada is fully bi-lingual… except in Quebec, where it is ALL French. Most of the hospitality people spoke some English, but all the signage is French. Which can be very disconcerting when you’re driving. Luckily TMIML speaks French. After a few days, my high school French started kicking in, as well. Some of the most fun we had was listening to our navigation system mangle street names. (OK, we’re easily amused.)

We had a great time in Quebec City, staying in old town and sampling the cuisine there. I tasted creme brulee with duck liver pate, and was totally hooked. (It sounds weird, but is totally luxurious.)

I’m sure not everyone in Quebec has a green thumb & is a phenomenal cook, but that’s not my experience. Our stay on Ile d’Orleans, at the Canard Huppe (crested duck) was fantastic.

One experience especially… we were driving past Oka, and needed a place to stay, so stopped at the info center. The lady sent us to a b&B in St-Placide, La Capucine. Julie, the hostess, and her husband Alcide made us incredibly welcome, and immediately whipped up a light dinner, not to mention a breakfast the next morning beyond compare.

I really enjoyed this trip, and hope to explore Quebec further, especially the Gaspe Peninsula.

Summer of Kale Chips

September 1st, 2012
Kale Chips

Kale Chips- before

kale chips after

Kale Chips- After

I’ve eaten more kale this summer than in my entire life. (Actually, I’d only tried it once before, so that’s not too difficult.) Now that I’ve found kale chips, I’m having kale several times a week.

I’m using a very simple recipe from allrecipes.com. There are more complicated ones, but why bother? They are so yummy. Oh, and as they bake, they make a snap, crackle, pop noise, too. If you like nori (the seaweed that wraps sushi), these are along the same lines.

So far the only failure I’ve had is when I forgot about them… and then I had “charred.” Seriously- set a timer!

This is so delicious, and addicting. I made some for my mom & she immediately decided to plant a whole row of kale.

Yes, kale is a great fall crop, so get planting now!

Zucchini madness

August 26th, 2012
Organic Zucchini, originally uploaded by ilovebutter.

It’s that time of year… be sure to lock your car doors, or you may find a sack of zucchini waiting for you. In fact, zucchini is about the only garden plant I know of that just doesn’t take much TLC. In fact, you don’t even need to plant it. Just befriend a gardener, and you’ll have plenty.
My personal preference is grilled zucchini. A grill wok with zukes, onions, peppers, mushrooms, etc is a beautiful thing.
I just discovered a new use, though, thanks to Traditional Foods, one of my favorite websites. They’ve actually figured out how to morph zucchini into something like raisins. Here’s their recipe for zucc-raisins.