Montenegro (Crna Gora) - Must See, Must Do, Must Eat Things and Places!

One of the most exciting events at the Olympics for me, has to be the opening ceremony when each country parades its colors and athletes proudly. I don't know about you but hearing the name of each country just takes my breath away. They all sound so unique (obviously) and packed with history and culture (and scandals) that set each apart from the other. One country that captivates me with its name alone, is Montenegro ... It just sounds so enchanting and luxurious! I just couldn't help but explore this country, to see if it lives up to the sound of its name.

Curried Lamb and Vegetable Chow Mein

(photo flickr user mswine)

As requested by @savorthethyme here is my Recipe for Curried Lamb and Vegetable Chow Mein. It's what's for dinner tonight!

1 lb Lamb Stew Meat
3/4 cup Leeks sliced
3 tbps Bajan Seasoning
3 tbsp Curry Powder
3 tbsp Red wine
1/2 Maggi cube
200 g or half pack of Chow mein noodles
2 cups Broccoli
2 medium potatoes cubed
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp Ketchup
Black Pepper to taste
1/2 tsp Clove
Water for cooking

1. Marinate Lamb with leeks, seasoning, soy sauce, red wine, curry powder, black pepper and clove.
2. Brown meat on stove approx 5 mins on medium-high heat
3. Add water and let simmer on low heat. Keep adding water as it drys out and continue to simmer.
4. When meat is almost tender add potatoes and more water. Wait 5 minutes.
5. Add broccoli and then chow mein noodles. Add maggi cube. Stir.
6. Let cook on medium heat, stirring often until noodles are done.

Serve hot | Serves 3 - 4

NB. Measurements are approximate. I rarely measure when I'm cooking from my head. Feel free to experiment - add more or less according to your tastes

Chow Mein on Foodista

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Recipe Spelled D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R? Not at all!

(photo by flickr user kevincrumbs)

It's funny how recipes are created, invented if you would. When you really sit and think about how did that recipe you have come into being? Was it because you had none of this but some of that? That your taste buds told you a dash of this and a cup of that would produce culinary excellence? Was it perhaps that you were traveling somewhere and something caught your eye and your brain immediately started wondering how it would go with such and such that's been sitting in your cupboard for the longest time? It's just so fascinating.

I think cuisine is just like fashion in the sense that it comes from feeling, creativity, passion. I can't recount how many times I would start to cook a meal and just feel my way through it. Well that's exactly what I did this weekend. While traveling, and visiting friends I decided to cook up something special. Now when you're cooking in someone else's kitchen you quickly realise that you don't have all your "special" ingredients - this could spell D I S A S T E R! Or it could spell the creation of something pleasantly delicious!

Monterey Jack Raisin Cucumber Salad

1 medium sized cucumber peeled and diced
1/2 cup of raisins
1/2 cup of Monterey Jack cheese
1/4 cup chopped celery
Dash Black Pepper
3 tbsp Ranch Dressing
Turkey bacon bits (optional)


Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and serve chilled.

Cucumber on Foodista

I wanted to make a salad and those were the ingredients at hand! Enjoy...

Fresh Homemade Golden Apple Juice - It's a Bajan Delight!

For those of you who don't know what Barbadians (Bajans) call Golden Apples, it's a fruit known as a June Plum, that can be described as having the flavor of a cross between a young mango and a pineapple. Needless to say it's deliciously tangy!

I don't know if November is Golden Apple month, but lately my uncle has been bringing bags and bags of Golden Apples for us and since we can't eat all, why not make some Golden Apple Juice - a Bajan favorite?!

So here's what I've been making today. Give it a try, you'll love it!

Golden Apple Juice

Golden Apples/June Plums (not too ripe) (the quantity is up to you - if you're like me, it's too many to count)
Freshly squeezed lime juice to taste (optional)
Brown sugar to taste
Angostura Bitters


1. Wash golden apples and cut into pieces (leave the skin on for better tasting juice).

2. Place golden apple pieces in a blender and add enough water to puree. Blend on high speed until pureed.

3. Strain puree using a strainer and a large spoon. You may need to do this 2 or 3 times.

4. Dilute juice with water and add sugar and lime juice and angostura and spices to taste. Stir and Strain again.

5. Chill and shake before pouring. Enjoy!

June Plum on Foodista

Thanksgiving From Afar

It's been a while since I last posted and that's because I've been swamped with work and travelling and working and travelling some more! I've finally found ... no Made some time to write a post and what better thing to post about than Thanksgiving!

In Barbados, we don't celebrate Thanksgiving, but I had the pleasure of experiencing an American Thanksgiving a couple years ago when I was in California. I must say it is a most splendid occasion. For one day people are actually thankful for what they have, unlike other holidays when people are upset about what they didn't get. Maybe that's what makes it such an enjoyable holiday!

This year, I'm thankful for many things - for love of friends and family, for a job (especially in today's economy!), for a home, for health, for peace in my life...for everything I've got and even for the things I don't. One of the highlights for me this year was getting engaged to the love of my life! So even though I won't be in the USA this Thanksgiving, I've still got plenty to be thankful for.

So while many are feasting on Turkey, pie and more pie, I will be reminiscing on my last Thanksgiving and looking forward to the next. I'll be getting ready to celebrate Independence Day in Barbados (Nov 30th)...and I'll also be dreaming about eating these exciting foods that I found on Foodista. May it give you some inspiration this Thanksgiving!

Roast Turkey on Foodista

Italian Turkey Stuffing on Foodista

Cajun Tomato Gravy on Foodista

Bourbon Mashed Sweet Potatoes on Foodista

Cream Cheese Pecan Pie on Foodista

And of course, I've gotta have a good cocktail! I'm a sucker for Pina Colada!

Pina Colada on Foodista

Seychelles - An Unforgettable Dream Vacation

Whenever work was super slow, I'd pass the time by "traveling" to a destination I'd never heard of or been to via the internet. Then I'd day dream and imagine what it would be like to visit that place, and I'd plan a trip there as if I were fortunate enough to actually afford it. Yes I'd look for the most luxurious hotels and just gaze at the photos, imagining myself laying on the soft fluffy bed or sitting on the balcony with my gourmet breakfast while taking in the fresh crisp air blowing across the sparkling water and believe that it was blowing just for me..aahhh! And then I'd look at the restaurant photos and the menus, and pretend to order everything that looked good on the menu as if the chef were my personal chef. Have you ever done this? If you haven't let me tell you it's almost as good as traveling for real. In fact it's better because there are no airport layovers, rude travelers, or bad service and you never ever run out of money!

So that's what I did one painfully slow day I work. I packed my bags and took a trip over to Seychelles. Now where on earth is Seychelles? Seychelles (a multilingual nation with French, English and Creole being the main languages), I found out is actually located in the western Indian Ocean , approximately 1000 miles off the eastern coast of Africa. Yeah it's way out there, that's why I have to dream. What I found fascinating about this destination is that it is made up of 115 islands...yes you read correctly...1-1-5!! Wow that could make for a neverending vacation! And what's even more fascinating is that some of the islands are granitic (said to be the oldest and probably the only mid-oceanic islands of this kind) and some are coralline which presents an exciting combination of flora and fauna. Of the 115 islands though, only about 5 are the main centres of attraction. However, if you happen to be wanting to shed a few million dollars, who knows maybe you could own a little piece of paradise. But if you're like me, (yes I know this is a dream but I'm trying not to be too out of this world) then the main islands of Mahé, Praslin, La Digue, Alphonse and Desroches are where we want to be!

So here I am on Mahé (the largest island), and I can't wait to reach my hotel. Since I'm dreaming I will stay at the Maia Luxury Resort and Spa....this place captivates me. Just visiting their website took my breath away as I listened to the ever so gentle, hypnotic rhythms of the wind dancing with the harp and piano (at least that's what it sounds like). I chose to stay here because it looks like the kind of place you can only dream of - it's small and intimate - and oh so luxurious. I had a Villa all to myself, complete with a personal butler and panoramic views of the ocean...Ahhhh. Talk about a holiday for the soul. This place is nestled amongst the flora as though the two were formed from the earth together. Lush, scented, well manicured gardens entice you, beckoning you to stop and stare....and I do because I've got all day.

My room is everything I dreamed it would be - private, with panoramic views of the diamond kissed waters of the Indian Ocean. There's nothing to interrupt my view, nothing to interrupt my pleasure - no demanding boss, no unruly tourists, no loud music, no kids screaming - just the sound of the waves dancing with the sand and the breeze playing with my hair and running laps about my body...mmmm. I don't want to wake up. Let me stay here forever. I've got my own private verandah, an infinity pool, a private outdoor sunken bath that allows me to gaze at the stars while I enjoy a jasmine scented bath(and I've even got all the technological comforts of home if I want to stay connected). I just don't know how to act! Can you imagine honeymooning in a place like this? I guarantee you'd never forget it!

As if that's not enough to totally relax me. I decide to indulge a little bit more. So I head over to the Spa. Like Queen Latifah in the movie "Last Holiday", I'm about to live it up! Ooh I'm gonna get an Island Pleasure Combo - yes I'm gonna get my skin polished and exfoliated, and then I'm gonna get it massaged ... ahhh so invigorating! I'm glistening from head to toe with skin I thought had left me for good when I turned 3yrs old.

Now I'm just plain hungry! What's good to try? I'm in luck! Their restaurant Tec Tec is the only gourmet restaurant on Mahé. Ooh can't have a dream holiday without a treat for my culinary senses now can I ?! Then I wouldn't be dreaming right. Since I'm on the all-inclusive plan, I can have whatever I want. I can have the Chef prepare something just for moi! (I knew this dream was gonna be good!). I think I'll have my personal butler organize a fabulous meal for me right next to the ocean. Yes that's what I'll do. And it'll come with a perfectly paired bottle of wine - the best there is - money is no concern of mine. I hear the food here can be described as Meditteranean and having the rich textures of French cuisine, the exotic spices of Indian food and the spicy flavors of the Orient. Mmmm my journey is complete.

What's that you say? What about things to do? Well who says I want to do anything on my dream vacation?! (Okay okay we'll do at least one thing) Let's see ... Oh I know, let's visit the local markets and see what treasures await. And then let's island hop! Just get out on the ocean blue and "discover" every bay and atoll - robinson crusoe style. Let's go snorkelling while we're at it, then stop for an unforgettable gourmet lunch at a secluded beach. Yes! I'm loving these things to do.

May you please speak to our technical staff? Excuse me? Who are you, what are you doing in my dream and what are you talking about? Oh yeah! I'm at work... I guess this is where the dream ends...but first chance I get, I'll be right back on Seychelles.

Here's a recipe I found online for a taste of Seychelles:

Seychelles Fish Curry (adapted from


For Masale

2 tbsp coriander seeds
2 tsp cumin seeds
2 tsp black peppercorns
1 tsp cardamom pods
1 tsp cloves
Small piece of cinnamon
1 tsp ground chilli
1 tsp grated nutmeg

For Curry

2lb Snapper
Freshly ground black pepper and salt to taste
2 tbsp Canola oil
2 onions, chopped
½ tsp ground turmeric
2 cloves garlic, chopped
small piece ginger, shredded
3 tbsp tamarind water
2 sprigs thyme
1tsp flat leaved parsley
450ml fish stock or water


To make the masale, take all the whole spices and dry roast them until lightly colored.
Then grind the nutmeg and chili and stir them in.
To make the curry, cut the fish into small pieces, season with salt and pepper, and set aside.
Heat the oil in a heavy pan and fry the onion until golden. Stir in the massalé and turmeric and sautee.
Add the fish, and all the other remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer and cook for about 10 minutes until the fish is cooked.
Serve with basmati rice.

Indian Fish Curry on Foodista

Enjoy! While on Seychelles be sure to try out these other dishes: Chatini, Daube, Soupe de tectec, Bourgeois grille, Bouillon brede, Chauve-souris or Fruitbat, and Cari Bernique.

Taste The Caribbean - So Many Islands, So Many Flavors...

Delectable Caribbean Dishes
You'd think that you'd find the same food on each Caribbean island, and you'd be right to a certain extent. But I can guarantee you that it won't taste the same! The way a Jamaican flavors rice, is surely not the same way a Barbadian (Bajan) would do it, and what one island calls Conkies the other calls Doucanou, and on and on the list goes. It can be quite confusing for visitors to figure out what they are eating and what foods they should try on each island. So I've compiled a list of favorites from each island to help you taste the Caribbean.

Kreativ Blogger Award

Starting a blog is not the easiest thing in the world. You've got to decide how you want it to look and feel, what's the purpose of the blog etc. Then you've got to commit yourself to writing posts that will actually interest others, which is probably the hardest thing. So then, when you've conquered all this and someone out there gives you credit for it, it's a very rewarding moment in time. It is with great pleasure that I accept this Kreativ Blogger award, given to me by the very very talented foodie/cook extraordinaire, Ruth of I Love Flavour Me. Ruth has succeeded in making me very hungry every time I visit her blog and she is the reason I want to find a way to taste food over the internet!

Here are the rules:
1.Thank the person who has given you the award-goes without saying lol
2.Copy the logo and place it on your blog
3.Link to the person who has nominated you for the award
4.Name 7 things about yourself that people might find interesting
5.Nominate 7 Kreativ Bloggers
6.Post links to the 7 blogs you nominate
7.Leave a comment on which of the blogs to let them know they have been nominated

Here are my foodie superstar nominees:
1. Yuca Diaries - I am so wanting her to write a cookbook or open a restaurant and stop teasing me with her tantalizing recipes!
2. A Slice of Cherry Pie
3. The Bake-Off Flunkie
4. Cooking Pleasures
5. Rao's Recipes
6. Cheat Day Cafe
7. Two Peas and Their Pod

7 things about me you may or may not know:

1. I once belonged to a singing group and had dreams of making it big. Too bad no one discovered us before Rihanna. lol
2. I speak three languages: French, Spanish and English (of course)
3. Apart from food and travel, I'd love to be a hair stylist or beautician.
4. I love fashion. One day I plan on opening a clothing store.
5. I dreamt of living in France when I was a teen. Haven't been there yet but hopefully one day soon.
6. I haven't watched soap operas...since I can't remember when. I'm fully cured and proud of it!
7. I got bumped up to travel first class once, because the check-in agent thought I looked fab! (that's my story and I'm sticking to it! lol

Red, White & Blue, Stars and Stripes, Fireworks and BBQ!!

Finally it's that time of year when the sun shines bright, the beaches are full and the grills come out. Added to that the fireworks and the celebrations...yes I'm talking about 4th of July! Now I'm not American but I do love to eat and celebrate, and the 4th of July is just the time for that!

This time I'm fortunate enough to enjoy the festivities here in Southern Cali. How about you? What's cooking this 4th of July and what's your list of places to see and things to do this weekend? Me? I plan on lazing around at the beach, maybe take in the sites and sounds of the San Diego County Fair and of course gorge myself with some good food! Then I'm gonna top that all off with some eye popping fireworks. Hopefully I can get a spot where I can see several fireworks displays at once!

Here are some recipes I'm contemplating for this weekend. (Yep I'm gonna be full!) Enjoy!

Barbecued Lamb On Skewers on Foodista

Avocado Chipotle Cheeseburger on Foodista

Garlic and Ginger Marinated Chicken on Foodista

Strawberry Spinach Salad on Foodista

Portuguese Tuna and Bean Salad on Foodista

Potato Salad on Foodista

Watermelon Salad on Foodista

Ancho Chili and Cheddar Stuffed Potatoes on Foodista

Hasselback Potatoes on Foodista

Black Forest Cake on Foodista

Splendid Strawberry Tart on Foodista

White Sangria on Foodista

Pina Colada on Foodista