My First Days of Spring Break

Hello world!

I’m sorry its been a few days since my last post, I’m on my spring break right now and Matt doesn’t have school on Tuesdays so we headed out to his hometown to visit his dad for a few days.

Before we headed out, we made a quick breakfast of Goji Berry cereal with some sliced up Fuji apple, it was tasty!

Usually when we go over to Matt’s dad’s we cook, to show our appreciation for letting us stay and cause we like to. But tonight, his poppa had a real nice Croc Pot stew goin’ – and we weren’t gonna mess with dat!

It was a fairly simple stew: beef, potatoes, carrots, and onions in a nice broth. Matt’s dad wasn’t happy with the consistency of the broth, he said it was too thin, so I taught him how to make a slurry of cornstarch and water to thicken it. It was much better. Nice and hearty, which is exactly what you need on a chilly night.

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Sometimes it’s nice feeling like the kid and having a parent cook for ya!

Afterward, we indulged in some oatmeal chocolate chip cookies.

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It was supposed to rain in the morning, so we were a little apprehensive about what to do before we had to go back to the city. But when we woke up, it was gorgeous out! Hallelujah!
We grabbed a sammie from Matt’s favorite delicatessen for lunch.

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I keep it classic with a turkey and cheddar on sourdough with the works, but light mayo. The deli is one of those mom and pop places where the owners know their customers by name and have the art of sandwich making down pat.

After letting our food settle for a little, Matt and I headed out to go on a hike through some trails behind a monastery. This place is gorgeous, secluded in the woods, the air is fresh and the trees are huge.

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On our way back up the trail we came across this statue of the Virgin Mary. Yes, I know we were at a monastery, but it was still such a surprise.

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As I was walking away from the statue, I noticed these wild mushrooms. They were just so pretty and untouched and something you hardly see in the city.

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Even though we only went back to Matt’s hometown, relaxing and just hanging out was the perfect way to kick off my spring break.

What do you like to do on your days off?

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Chicken Tacos and Fresh Pico de Gallo

Remember how I love Mexican food? Well, sometimes I like to try to make my own Mexican food – because hey, I am ambitious. I wanted to do something relatively simple and abundantly fresh so chicken tacos with a fresh pico de gallo was just the ticket.

I started with the pico de gallo first to allow the flavors to marry before topping my taco. Although you can use a variety of tomatoes I prefer to use cherry tomatoes because of their tart bite and generally they burst because they are so plump. The perfect way to start my pico. I diced them into fairly small pieces and placed them in a bowl. Next I took red onion. Now again, this is totally up to you. You can use a yellow or white onion as well. I just chose red because its vibrant color contrasts nicely with the bright red tomatoes. I diced it the same size as the tomatoes.

It looks like this

Some pico de gallo recipes stop at this point. I say no, I must forge on. The best way to do this is by adding my favorite herb, cilantro. Chopped up thinly – stems and all and into the bowl.  It goes great in just about anything because of its distinct fragrance and the freshness it brings to every dish it accompanies.  I have loved cilantro since I was a little girl and though there have been others (parsley mostly, sometimes basil), no herb can push cilantro from my its top spot in my heart.

What’s not to love?

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Germany, What I Ate

After seeing and experiencing the raw ingredients that many Munich local restaurants use in their food (Viktualienmarkt) it is really no shocker that the food is seriously to die for. I can honestly say there wasn’t one dish that I didn’t adore. The flavors are bold and the ingredients are fresh.

Not going to lie, I was a little apprehensive about my trip because as my favorite customer, Jim, explained you gain about a pound after every meal. Considering my wardrobe for the trip consisted of high waist Maxi skirts, skin tight leotards, and skinny jeans I seriously couldn’t afford to pack on the pounds abroad. I guess I didn’t take into consideration the fact that because the meals are so filling you don’t get hungry as often – thank God.

Not to mention my M.O. for the trip was to not waste carbs on anything but beer. And dessert. Mission accomplished.

I suppose I should backtrack a tad, I was lucky enough to be invited on this trip by my parents. My dad had business in Germany with the car company Audi and was taking my mom. My mom however didn’t want to gallivant around the country on her own so she wanted to take her “city-slicker” daughter along on all the day trips. She called and asked me 2 weeks before our scheduled departure if I could afford to take the time off school and work (and somehow manage to get a passport in time). My response, “uhhh is that even a question – of course I can come!”

The fam and I stayed at the Kempinski Hotel Airport (the hotel was attached to the airport by this gorgeous rainbow hallway)

Now, staying at the hotel had it’s perks, mainly the in house restaurant, Charles Lindbergh which I got to eat at almost every morning for breakfast. The breakfast buffet had every kind of meat and potato you could imagine, among other things.

On the first day I most of it. After a 14 hour flight, I was in desperate need of some fuel, can you really blame me?

Coffee, mango-papaya juice, bacon, sausage link, sausage patties, sauteed mushrooms, swiss cheese, tomato with melted cheese, fried egg, fresh mozzarella, blackberries, raspberries, lychee, and physalis. What a way to start the day.

What the hell is physalis? Cousin to the kumquat, its a bite-sized citrus explosion in your mouth. My waiter, Markus, told me a charming story about his friend who was in the mood for some syphilis because they were so good. Confused, Markus told his friend that syphilis was in fact not good, and that he probably didn’t want it. Turns out the friend actually was craving some physalis – personally I would have loved to see the outcome if this word mix up wasn’t cleared up. Is that bad?

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