Food is underrated and needs more attention. I know we eat it every day and America kind of has an obsession with letting it control emotions, destroy lives, and permeate our very being, but let me have my bold sweeping statements when I want them. I’m going to tell you about all of the food I’ve been eating, oh dear private diary.To start, I’ve been cooking more than I did back in Boston. Back in the States, I was able to usually cook for two for myself, because I was lonely. I still do and still am, but it’s so much cheaper now. It’s not even about being worried about the money, just seeing how far a dollar goes while making something tasty is a good time. For example, I bought a bag of potatoes and a few servings of whole carrots for the cost of my soul (~$3), and each time I cut a few papas and carrots, I was able to have a dinner and a lunch. A quick purchase of cayenne pepper and some hot sauce satiated my devilish toungue.
Last night, I tried a new recipe that I found, something that Puerto Ricans have used to live in expensive New York City (probably illegally, unlike the native European descendants) on a tight budget. The main reason I was attracted to using this (the first one) was because of his attitude and the way he wrote, so I suggest you check it out. If you are too lazy to look, it’s just rice, beans, onions, garlic, and some seasoning. After going to the grocery store for the ingredients and dropping 1,100 pesos like a boss ($28), everything was all set. That money went a long way, too: 1 bag onions, 5lb rice, 4 cans black beans, 4 bulbs garlic, 750ml olive oil, big bottle seasoning sauce, 1 box seasoning packets, 1/2lb cheddar, and 1 dozen eggs. This meal probably cost less than $.75. I followed the directions like he said, and it all turned out great. The taste, the timing, the ease was so perfect. Again, it’s not about saving money, it’s just about seeing what I can do with the simplest of ingredients and trying to get some ethnicity into my diet. Also, I like beans a lot and having them twice a day bothers me about as much as getting a great night’s sleep. I know I’m going to make tostones at some point, and if possible I’m going for the pork shoulder as well. For breakfast, I always make an egg sandwich with hot sauce and cheese. I think I’ve made that over 100 times so far in 2011 alone, and never get tired of it.
Also, I was fortunate enough to try another of my hosts’ dishes. This one I originally referred to as “Lasagna Dominicana”, but it’s really called “pastel de berenjena” (eggplant cake). It’s a bottom crust of those really candy-like bananas called “rulos” topped by ground beef and herbage, and top-topped by a layer of lightly fried and baked eggplant. It was delicious, of course. Overall, I eat a bunch here, but I think I’ve lost a little weight given that I have a positive self-image and open each day with these affirmations. Also, it might help that I am cooking a higher proportion of meals, eating less Dunkin’ Donuts hash brown tater tot mouthwatering sex nuggets, and sweating by the time I think about going to the gym.
Have a good day, diary!
Listening: Rabo de Nube, Silvio Rodríguez
Learning: Vamos a Andar, Für Elise