Happy January everyone!
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and New Year and that you’re looking forward to a great 2017.
My family back in the UK have had some super cold, frosty days recently, while in contrast we’re experiencing the hottest January for 19 years I believe!! It’s crazy hot and humid and the only thing that makes it bearable is ice cream. A lot of ice cream!
We started the day again with breakfast on the balcony looking out over the beautiful square.
After having our fill of cheese, bread, cereals and fruit, we set off for the market.
Felices Fiestas Patrias!!!….or Happy Independence Day! July 28th and 29th was holiday here and almost everyone had a chance to sit back and relax for a couple of days midweek and recharge those batteries whilst celebrating one of the biggest moments in Peru’s history.
For us, July has also involved a complete upheaval in holiday plans and now we’re heading back to Europe for Christmas.
My ultimate Christmas happy place!
A family Christmas full of food, drink and fun times (and maybe snow?), followed by a whirlwind trip to the Christmas market in Bruges, a foodie trip to Paris, and I final stop full of jamón, cheese and tapas in Madrid.
I will likely arrive back in Lima the size of a house. Ho hum!
So….. let’s see what has been happening this month……
THIS MONTH I HAVE BEEN….
Some of you might say “That’s not a dessert”, or even “What the hell is lúcuma?”, but I assure you that this is the main ingredient in some of the tastiest desserts here in Peru. So, yes, technically not a dessert in itself, but a major player in the dessert arena, and I could not make a list of Peruvian desserts without it.
Lúcuma is a fruit native to Peru and I have not noticed it to be eaten commonly as a raw fruit. It has quite a burnt taste about it, but when mixed with ingredients for ice creams or mousses, it lends a caramel note to the dish, which is just beautiful. The colour is a deep yellowy-orange, not that far removed from an egg yolk or a sweet potato perhaps. Which is a coincidence because a sweet potato also gives a sweet, caramel flavour to dishes when cooked. When sliced in half, the lúcuma looks like an orange avocado, due to its green skin and large brown seed in the middle.
The fruit is most commonly used mixed with dairy ingredients to make ice cream, smoothies and mousses, and it also partners very well with chocolate.
Where would I recommend in Lima to eat a lúcuma dessert?
I hope you all had a great Easter break, whether it was Thursday – Sunday, like in Peru, or Friday – Monday, like in the UK!
4 days is a nice little mini holiday and I spent the majority of mine eating.
No surprise there then.
So here begins my food diary for the Easter weekend!
Day 1 (Thursday) – Naruto
Naruto is this great little Japanese restaurant that serves a damn fine ramen soup.
We’ve been meaning to try this place for a while, and holidays are always a good excuse to go out to eat! I also knew we would probably be eating a lot over the weekend so we thought a good soup would do the trick.
The front of the restaurant is plain black with their logo and gives nothing away.
But inside is a whole other story.
When I say Asia I’m referring to the beach, not the continent. That would be a lot of travel for only 24 hours! Seeing as it’s getting towards the end of the hottest part of summer, we decided to whisk ourselves off for 24 hours to enjoy some sun, sea, sand, food and drink in the vibrant coastal area of Asia. Driving down the Panamericana Sur on a Saturday lunchtime meant I had to make a couple of stops on the way to our destination. Food is necessary for a good road trip! Continue reading
I know haven’t written in a long while, but once I got my residency here in Peru I could start working! Therefore, after my trip back home to the UK I became super busy with work and I didn’t have much time to write. But anyhow, not important because…….
Summer is here! Meaning I am eating ice cream and spending days at the beach (obviously in between working) so I am crazy happy! I had the coco ice cream at Laritza D’ this week and man was that good. Jam packed full of coconut. And I mean full. I also managed to find myself some ice lolly moulds so that I can even make my own! I have some strawberry ones waiting in my freezer for me right this second, which I feel is always a good thing.
So in honour of my ice cream/ lolly obsession (although its pretty much all year round) I want to share the greatness of ice cream/ lolly recipes from the web. Here is my top 10 that I have found so far, but there may be greater ones yet to find…. MUST. KEEP. LOOKING. (and eating).
With a Cherry on Top
Ok, let’s talk about ice cream.
It may be winter here, but to be honest at 18C I’m still thinking about ice cream, even though its cloudy, rainy and there is not a hope of sun. I have been eating a lot of it recently, I can’t help myself, because Lima has some great ice cream. Even Wong supermarket has awesome ice cream. And it’s not the regular ice cream tubs I mean, they have their own ice cream counter in their stores, so you can just casually do your shopping with an ice cream cone in hand. Freakin’ genius.
I’m going to have to start updating you with the best places and flavours, maybe one a week to keep my addiction going. I’ll tell myself I’m only eating the ice cream for research purposes and then it’s fine.
This week I have been:
READING // Alongside last week’s purchase of Citadel, I have also bought a short story by Kathy Reichs called Bones In Her Pocket. It’s still a Temperance Brennan story, but miniaturised!
WATCHING // Alongside watching the Emmy nominated House of Cards (1. Kevin Spacey is excellent, and 2. I never realised it was a British mini TV series in the 90’s first!), we are having an Alien movie marathon. After watching Prometheus, we decided to re watch them from the start. So good.
EATING // Hmmm, what have I eaten except ice cream? Maybe I should give you the name of my latest ice cream haunt Laritza D’. Good flavours, great sundaes, and FUDGE SAUCE. (I can’t find a website for these guys, if anyone knows of one, let me know)
My top online finds this week are (in no particular order):
- Trekking Peru’s Santa Cruz trail.
- Strange hotel jobs. My favourite is the guacamologist….say what?
- What makes a terrible airport….and a wishlist for a great one!
- OK Mum it’s Birthday Cake O’Clock! This week there is a chocolate theme…. This one with marshmallow frosting, or this salted caramel six layer one (both Martha Stewart), or perhaps even this one with dark chocolate ganache and raspberries (Call Me Cupcake). And just in case these aren’t enough, let’s see What Katie Ate…
- Get cravings? Sweet or salty? This article will tell you what your body is really craving.
- And just because ice cream is my ‘thang’ right now, check these koalas out. Ge-ni-us haha.
Wow, what a weekend! A lot of food, a lot of culture, a lot of movies, a lot of fun. Fiestas Patrias was such a celebration! See more about the celebration in my last post here.
This week I have been:
READING // I have just bought Citadel by Kate Mosse (not the model), the third and final book in the Languedoc Trilogy based in the same region in France. The books are set in both past and present with the stories intertwining. The first two books were very good, so I have high hopes for this one.
WATCHING // We have seen a fair few films this weekend, but some highlights included Prometheus, the prequel to Alien, (it was actually a very good film, and made us want to watch all the Alien films again!) and Kon-Tiki about the Norwegians who sailed a raft from Lima, Peru to Polynesia (an excellent film, mostly in Norwegian but with English subtitles, and beautifully shot).
EATING // We have eaten in abundance this weekend! Peruvian food from the Dulce Peru food festival, great Chinese food from San Joy Lao, super tasty pizza from Il Piccolo, huge ice cream sundaes from Laritza D, and sweet and crunchy toffee apples
VISITING // We took advantage of the free entry to museums and sites this weekend! We visited the archaeological site at Pachacamac, a religious centre built before and during the Inca reign, consisting of pyramids and a cemetery. It is incredible that you can still see some of the original paintwork on the bricks. We also went to MALI (Lima Museum of Art) to see the exhibition if paintings by Sabogal, one of Peru’s most famous painters.
My top 5 online finds of the week (in no particular order!):
- So, I’ve been carrying on my birthday cake hunt. Maybe this retro ice cream cake from Rachel Allen, or this chocolate cake from Bon Appetit?
- Perhaps this themed epic tower by Jacques Pastries? (It’s OK Mum, we can do the last one together, it might be a bit much for you by yourself!)
- The future of ice cream? And coffee, and yoghurt….
- Do you have kids? Are you a teacher? Check out this different coloured play-dough, no food colouring necessary…
- A great site for inspiration for quinoa recipes!
I get cravings for different sorts of food all the time. I remember once having this desire for cucumber for about a week. This week I seem to have been eating a lot of coconut. Coconut biscuits, coconut doughnuts, coconut pancakes (above), and even homemade coconut curry….I’ve gone coconut crazy. We’ve actually been doing a lot of home cooking at the moment whilst awaiting final confirmation of my migratory status. This has actually helped to take my mind off of the wait, and it has been a pretty long process with a lot of back and forth to different government buildings, but it’ll be worth it all once I have it!
This week I have been:
READING // Inferno by Dan Brown. The new episode in the Robert Langdon series is kicking off with a bang and a mystery as always. I can’t wait to see how this one pans out.
WATCHING // Wimbledon!! Obviously!
EATING // Homemade cooking. My personal favourite has been the chicken, peach and coconut curry. So, so good.
VISITING // Nowhere exciting unfortunately, only a number of government buildings! It’s all about the visa this week.
My top 10 online finds of the weekend:
- What’s your food of choice after a few drinks? In Lima I love Alf’s. They sell big fat sandwiches of meat, cheese, egg and crisps….epic! Check this list out of other countries food offerings, the one for England is dead on!
- Multicoloured ice cream holders…..with scoop.
- Check out these incredible eclairs. I need to go to Paris.
- I may pretend it’s summer because I want these.
- These will feed my coconut addiction….and there is peach too. Amazing.
- I want to stay in one of these incredible eco-lodges. Check out Peru’s Inkaterra Reserva Amazonica.
- Amazing photos of landscapes with tips on how to take your own
- Blur is coming to Lima! (link in Spanish)
- Breakfast to again feed my coconut addiction…..
- Happiness in a glass
Someone help me. I am addicted to Pinterest. I live it, I’m pretty sure I dream about it, and yes I have caught myself looking far to longingly at some of the food pictures.
Anyway, you can follow me or just take a peek at my boards by clicking the little red link on the right hand side that helpfully says ‘Follow me on Pinterest’. Amongst my boards there is obviously an amazing collage of photos about Peru, but also some damn tasty food, some beautiful places to visit in the world, little gold animals, things you never knew you needed or wanted but as soon as you saw them you had to have them, and generally some pretty nice pictures.
Check. It. Out.
This week I have been:
READING // The BBC sport website for up to the second updates from Andy Murray’s matches. Refresh. Refresh. Refresh. Although actually I’m pretty sure it updates itself. I fancy a Pimms now.
WATCHING // Luther. Just discovering this on Netflix. It is ace.
EATING // At bakeries/ cafés. San Antonio has fantastic desserts and salads, and Delicass has a great array of sandwiches and ice creams (see picture above). I recommend the bright green mint choc chip, if not for its amazing hue then for its fantastic minty flavour. 1 scoop for S/. 6.50 and you get waaaaay more than a scoop.
VISITING // The parks of Surco in the Sunday sunshine. Little, clean areas of green, green grass, bright flowers and big trees. We cracked out the sunnies and the flip flops, grabbed the dogs, and took advantage of the weather!
My top 10 online finds of the weekend (in no particular order):
- Totes need this new-school Polaroid camera. A-ma-zing.
- I need these in my belly.
- Buy red jeans. That is how they’re doing it in Lima. Coloured jeans galore and they are brightening up winter!
- Check out these aerial view photos. A different perspective.
- Super useful for cooking.
- We eat a lot of watermelon in Lima, and this knife is perfect for chopping it up.
- Really useful Peruvian cooking website, with recipes and information on Peruvian ingredients. In English and Español.
- This glass from Ikea.
- Learning Spanish? I’ve found the grammar section of this website very helpful.
- Really want to go to Huaraz and see beautiful lakes and lagoons as blue as this one.
Have a great week!