Bue Grasso [Earl Grey Pound Cake]

thumb_dsc_0526_1024One of the things I love about the restaurant/food industry in Ottawa is the collaboration that exists between many business owners, entrepreneurs, chefs, brewers, etc. (In fact – I was lucky enough to write about that very topic in the latest Edible Ottawa magazine! Subtle plug, I know.) Through having the opportunities to write beyond my little neglected blog I’ve loved getting to meet and know many of the people that feed this city. It’s nice, too, that it sometimes overlaps with Tristan’s community, colleagues, and friends.

Matt Gardiner is one of those aforementioned entrepreneurial industry folk. After hosting Continue reading

Sautéed Garlic: The Cure for Homesickness?

garlictomatoAfter five days, I think I’ve shaken off the jetlag (I’ve been unlucky with my flights — delays and missed connections made for a tiring 28 hour trip from Ottawa to Huelva), and am getting back in to the swing of things in Spain (ie. getting back to my salsa classes!).

I’m not going to lie: after such a nice holiday at home I was having a hard time getting excited about coming back to Huelva. I kept a positive attitude on my way back, but upon arriving at my empty apartment on Saturday night I immediately felt incredibly homesick. (This may or may not have included a call home and a good cry…)

Sunny winter day in Christopher Columbus' Huelva.

Sunny winter day in Christopher Columbus’ Huelva.

I know I’m a homebody (and have probably written it too many times now, on this blog — you will all think that I am faking my love of travel! Damnit.), but I was surprised and kind of embarrassed by how homesick I felt the first few days I was here. I figured coming back would be way easier than when I first arrived in September, but I guess I still needed a few days to adjust after enjoying the cozy familiarity of being at home.

Industrial Huelva.

Industrial Huelva.

All the shops were closed when I arrived in Huelva on a holiday weekend but I had pasta, canned tomatoes, garlic, and olive oil on hand. I didn’t much feel like cooking (a sure sign that I am down in the dumps) — but the smell of sautéed garlic? Probably one of the best in the world. It’s a smell that carries the promise of something tasty and comforting on the way. Food has that magical way of evoking memories of times, places, and people. This tomato and garlic sauce is a way simplified version of the pasta sauce my parents always make at home. The smell of garlic on the stove with tomatoes will forever make me think of my Dad; this is the pasta he’d whip up for us when we would get back from a long day of sightseeing during our family travels. All you need is a can of tomatoes, a tablespoon of olive oil, a few cloves of garlic, and some pasta (I’d recommend some kind of cheese as well, herbs, olives, and any other veggies you like to throw in your sauce, but the results will be delicious even if your fridge is empty!).

Despite feeling a little rocky at the start, I know I have a lot to look forward to here and am looking forward to sticking with my resolution for 2013! I hope the year has gotten off to a great start for all of you! xo

Following my Dad's advice for a little bout of homesickness: cook and read a book.

Following my Dad’s advice for a little bout of homesickness: cook and read a book.

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Brussels Sprout Pesto

Even people who cringe at the thought of the little green veggie can like this pesto — you can’t tell the brussels sprouts are there, but the end result is a simple, delicious pesto (in an awesome shade of bright green!).

I like things full of garlic, so if you’d rather keep your pesto on the lower end of the garlic-breath scale, cut back on the amount of cloves you throw in… Brussels Sprout Pesto Recipe