Monthly Archives: June 2010

Those nachos are disgusting NOM NOM NOM

What’s needed is a perceptual shift, Kessler said. “We did this with cigarettes,” he said. “It used to be sexy and glamorous but now people look at it and say, ‘That’s not my friend, that’s not something I want.’ We need to make a cognitive shift as a country and change the way we look at food. Instead of viewing that huge plate of nachos and fries as a guilty pleasure, we have to . . . look at it and say, ‘That’s not going to make me feel good. In fact, that’s disgusting.’ ”

YES HALLELUJAH YES. Thank you, year-old-article-on-WaPo. You have perfectly articulated the transformation I am trying to make in myself. Somebody tweeted this article, I don’t know whom. It’s a very shallow but fascinating look at the way the brain reactions to delicious delicious food.

Roasted Onion Dip

Roasted onion dip peaking out from a forest of veggies

The invitation for this past weekend’s BBQ has been sitting in my inbox for a week, striking fear into my calorie-phobic heart. How to enjoy delicious pork BBQ, coleslaw, and baked beans while not going disastrously off plan? The answer is simpler than you’d think: bring a vegetable platter. This roasted onion dip was a hit, and it’s insanely easy: roast some onions; blend w/ mayonnaise, sour cream, and salt; add scallions; pepper to taste.
Continue reading

Spinach Frittata

Spinach Frittata

Every Tuesday, I pick up over a kilo of spinach from my CSA. Today is Sunday, and I have the week before last’s, this past week’s, and OMG MORE SPINACH IS COMING ON TUESDAY. To give you some perspective on the photo below, each tile on the counter is 30cm x 30cm. That’s a lot of spinach. Continue reading

Shopping for deep sea fish in Cotonou

Last week, I decided that I absolutely needed a hunk of fresh tuna. Never mind that I had no idea how to go about buying tuna. I had to have it. In Cotonou, salt water fish are bought fresh off the boat at the Port of Cotonou. Chaos reigns as fishermen and fish mongers negotiate prices and quantities. There’s never enough fish for all of the fish mongers to get their share, and the women get vicious. Once the women have their fish, they happily make their way to their stands, basins tottering precariously on their heads.

Fish in a basin

Yesterday, there was no tuna to be found. None had been brought in Sunday and frozen, and while there were still boats at see when I went to the market, the fish mongers didn’t expect to see any until later in the week. No problem. Now that I was at the fish market and had seen the fish debark from the boat, I was happy to settle for something else.

Fish in a basin

Bertrand and I went searching for good looking fish. Although we were hoping for some red carp, we were eventually convinced to buy Dorade. I only wanted one (they’re big!), but Bertrand wanted two. And since they’re sold in kilogram units, we bought three to bring the weight up to 2 kilos. 5 000 F CFA ($10!) for 2 kg of fish is a pretty good deal.

After paying for the fish, there are young women who are happy to scale and clean the fish for a hundred francs a kilo. Like all the women at the market, she was unwilling to have her picture taken. Next time, maybe. :)

Once home, I got online. What’s a dorade, and how do you cook one? Turns out, dorade is the French word for Mahi Mahi! We’d unknowingly brought home three enormous mahi mahis, something I definitely know how to cook.

Mahi mahi #1

Mmmmm. Dinner!