Posts tagged Seaside
The Happy Meal

Exploring | Rasdu Atoll, Maldives

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Paradise (definition):

- a very beautiful, pleasant, or peaceful place that seems to be perfect

- a place that is perfect for a particular activity or for a person who enjoys that activity

- a state of complete happiness

 

"...what about Maldivians who live here? Are they always happy? What do they dream about? What is their idea of paradise on earth?..." 

 

 
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The water is crystal clear. I see my footprints fading in the sand. I look around. The breeze is blowing through the palm trees. The air is warm and humid and there is a delicious smell of fresh, charcoal-grilled fish. I want to try every single Maldivian seafood dish. It´s all just too perfect here. Am I dreaming? 

But what about Maldivians who live here? Are they always happy? What do they dream about? What is their idea of paradise on earth? 

 
 
Faraha and Anha

Faraha and Anha

 
 

Faraha, Anha and Ahusan.

Later on I met Faraha and Anha on a neighbouring island where locals live. The two little girls were going to see their older cousin Ahusam play soccer and they invited me to follow them.

Ahusan was wearing an old Real Madrid T-shirt. He came to greet us and I took the chance to introduce myself.

Ahusan, may I ask you something? If you imagined yourself in a paradise, what would it look like and what would you like to eat there?

- Chicken McNuggets.

Sorry?

 
 

"...Ahusan, may I ask you something? If you imagined yourself in a paradise, what would it look like and what would you like to eat there?

- Chicken McNuggets.

Sorry!?..."

 

- Chicken McNuggets, says Ahusan again.

Are you serious? Is this your idea of Paradise?

- Yes. My idea of Paradise is to eat a box of Chicken McNuggets while watching a game between Real Madrid and another team at the Bernabeu stadium in Madrid. That would be my dream.

- Yeeeeees, Chicken Mc Nuggets! - yelled the two cousins.

But why??

- We saw these Chicken McNuggets yesterday on tv!

***k globalisation.

 
 

© Text, Artwork and Photography by Fred Mel / Eatnologist

 
 
 
 
 
Shades of Nero di Seppia

That Recipe on my Mind | Ravello, Amalfi, Italy

 
 

Linguine al Nero di Seppia Recipe (Orig: Probably Sicily)-Cuttlefish black ink pasta.


Ingredients:

500 grams medium cuttlefish, cleaned & diced
spaghetti for 2-3 serves
4 tbsp oil
3 cloves garlic
1 onion
500 grams tomatoes, quartered
1/2 cup white wine
the little black ink sacs from the cuttlefish
bunch of parsley, chopped finely


How to prepare:


Boil water for the pasta.  When the water boils, add the salt then the pasta. When the pasta is cooked keep it warm. 
In a frying pan, heat 2 tbsp of the oil and saute the onion and garlic until golden.
Add the wine and let it simmer, uncovered, until the liquid has been reduced to half.
Put back to medium and add the quartered tomatoes.  Cook for about 15 minutes. Season with salt & pepper.
Stir in the black ink sacs, breaking them apart with a spoon. 
Once mixed, add to the already boiled linguine or spaghetti and continue to keep warm.
Meanwhile in the frying pan, add the last 2 tbsp of oil and stir fry the diced cuttlefish on high heat for 1 minute (2 minutes max).
Stir into the pasta and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil before serving. 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
No Etna, no Ice

That Recipe on my Mind | Sicily, Italy

 

Granita al Limone (Lemon Granita) Recipe

Ingredients:

 1 liter water
¾ cup sugar

lemon juice (4 lemons)
Zest of 4 organic lemons

 

How to prepare:

Combine 2 cups of the water with the sugar in a medium nonreactive saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Add the salt, stir, and remove the pan from the heat. Stir in the remaining water and let cool to room temperature.

Cover and refrigerate for a minimum of 1 hour.

Meanwhile, place a shallow metal container (such as a large cake pan) in the freezer to chill. Add the lemon juice, lemon peel, and extract to the chilled sugar mixture; stir until well blended. Pour into the chilled metal pan.

Place the pan in the freezer for 30-60 minutes, or until ice crystals form around the edges. Stir the ice crystals into the center of the pan and return to the freezer.

Repeat every 30 minutes, or until all the liquid is crystallized but not frozen solid, about 3 hours.

To serve, scoop the granita into chilled dessert bowls or goblets.

 
 
 
 
 
A perfect greek Wedding

Exploring | Santorini, Greece

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The small village of Imerogivli at Santorini is one of the most breathtaking and romantic places I have ever been to. It ́s no wonder that so many people want to get married there. It ́s also one of the few places I know where I could spend days doing nothing more than just look at its minimalistic architecture, the dark lava and the blue sea. That blue, in all those shades, has me hypnotized.

 
 
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Imerogivli is one of the few places I know where I could spend days doing nothing more than just look at its minimalistic architecture, the dark lava and the blue sea.

 
 
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Mezedes at a traditional mezedopoleío.

Mezedes at a traditional mezedopoleío.

 

Testing the pool...

 
Simple Greek meze: Bradada on the left side.

Simple Greek meze: Bradada on the left side.

 

With their tomatoes, Santorinians prepare their "Tomato Keftedes", a mint-flavoured fritter that goes well with the ubiquitous tzatziki.

 
 
 
 

Santorini is particularly well known for its "Vinsanto" wine, but it has some other interesting culinary specialties. For example Bradada, a cod dish that, like the wine tradition, was imported to the island by the Venetians.

The volcanic soil and the dry climate of the island combine not only to produce the famous wine, but also outstanding sweet tasting tomatoes and a characteristic kind of yellow split pea called fava (not to be confused with fava beans). With their tomatoes, Santorinians prepare their "Tomato Keftedes", a mint-flavoured fritter that goes well with the ubiquitous tzatziki. "Married faves" is another local dish, a puree of fava with sizzled onions, olive oil and capers. Marry all this again with a fresh grilled octopus, a glass of Vinsanto and the superb sunset view from the terrace of a restaurant and you have the perfect greek wedding.  

 

© Text, Artwork and Photography by Fred Mel / Eatnologist

 

 
 
 
 
 
Notes from Ambergris Caye

Exploring | Caye Caulker & San Pedro, Belize

- Fieldnotes - 

 
 
 It takes a 2.5 hour boat ride from Livingston (Guatemala) to the Sapodilla Cayes. The Sapodilla Cayes are the southernmost group of atolls in Belize. They are mostly uninhabited (just a few people live there)

 It takes a 2.5 hour boat ride from Livingston (Guatemala) to the Sapodilla Cayes. The Sapodilla Cayes are the southernmost group of atolls in Belize. They are mostly uninhabited (just a few people live there)

 
 
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Cassava (Manioc) - Coconut Cakes and some notes

Cassava (Manioc) - Coconut Cakes and some notes

 

Island hopping. Going slow is easy to achieve at Ambergris Caye, also known as San Pedro. The Island has been nicknamed ‘La Isla Bonita’ ever since the 1980’s release of Madonna’s hit song. At Ambergris Caye Seafood is a common delight, with feasts of lobster, conch, and a array of fish, squid, mussels, scallops or shark with some mexican and cajun twist. I don’t think it’s possible to get more chilled than here.

 

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Conch Ceviche

Conch Ceviche

 

Cutting the conch into very small cubes is the most important step to prepare a Conch Ceviche, a dish that is common in Belize (also in Bahamas). After covering the conch cubes with lime juice and let it marinate for a couple of hours (if possible in the fridge), add chopped cilantro, onion, tomato some chili (or tabasco) and salt.

Many other variations are possible and just as delicious (for example adding small cubes of pineapple or avocado).

 
 
 
Cementery with sea view

Cementery with sea view

 
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Coconut Tree Sketch

Coconut Tree Sketch

 
A cozy bar at "The Split", Caye Caulker.

A cozy bar at "The Split", Caye Caulker.

 
 
Cassava / Manioc / Woman | Sketch

Cassava / Manioc / Woman | Sketch

 
I spent in this house some days. It's very close to the beach.

I spent in this house some days. It's very close to the beach.

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© Text, Artwork and Photography by Fred Mel / Eatnologist

 
 
 
 
 
 
Maldivians: Tuna in the Veins

Exploring | Rasdu Atoll, Maldives

 
 
 
 
Ajit

Ajit

 

The apprentice chef

Ajit, a friend of Ahusan, works as an apprentice chef in the Island’s Tourist Resort and looks younger than his age. He is originally from India, is his middle 30´s and –like so many other migrant workers­– not so long on the island, but long enough to visit in his spare time many of the small restaurants of Male –the capital of the Maldives–and get an overview of the authentic local food.

The traditional cuisine of the Maldives -says Ajit- was very simple and consisted mostly of all derivates of coconut and tuna. The Islands are quite close to South India and Sri Lanka coasts –about 350 km north from  here– so maldivians have had over the centuries rice, flour and many other spices. This is why we find here so many curry dishes, but they are milder as the indian ones because maldivians use much more coconut milk. We also find like in India Naan, Papadum, Roti and Chapati. Eastern flavors are also present due to the contact to Arab traders, who stopped here on the way through to Asia and brought with them religion – the Maldives used to be Hindu and Buddhist but they embraced Islam in 1153– so alcohol and pork meat is banned from the local cuisine. Vegetables and tubers are also not very present due to lack of farming land on the islands. Agriculture is simply not profitable, so all greens must be mostly imported. Typical dishes are Mas Huni, shredded smoked fish with grated coconuts and onions, which is the most common Maldivian breakfast, or Garudiya , a clear Tuna fish broth, or Mas Riha, a delicious Curry with Tuna, onions, chili, fennel, garlic, sometimes lime juice and –see the the arabian influence– cumin.

 
 
 

"Vegetables and tubers are also not very present due to lack of farming land on the islands. Agriculture is simply not profitable, so all greens must be mostly imported."

 
 

„Maldivians love Tuna –continues Ajit–. Their favourite is Skipjack  and Yellowfin Tuna"

 
 
A maldivian family

A maldivian family

 

Maldivians love tuna

Do they only eat Tuna? They are surrounded by the sea. What about other fish species? did I ask Ajit. „Maldivians love Tuna –continues Ajit–. Their favourite is Skipjack  and Yellowfin Tuna, either dried or fresh, raw, boiled, grilled or as soup. In ancient times Maldivians did not use to eat fish from the reef for some social reason –as far as I know because other would make fun of them, but that has changed nowadays as they are not that isolated and see how foreigners eat other fish species too.  What they still do not understand is why tourist pay such amounts of money for a Lobster that –in their opinion– does not have any taste at all. I have to say, that I agree, because warm water lobsters that are caught here do not have the same taste as the much more delicate cold water lobsters. If maldivians could choose tuna from the can or Lobster I´m sure they will go for canned tuna.

 

"There is also something quite curious also related to tuna: It´s called Rihaakuru"

 

There is also something quite curious also related to tuna: It´s called Rihaakuru, a tuna-based thick paste which is the result of hours of cooking tuna in water and salt. This extract, present in almost every household in the Maldives, is a seasoning that can be use used as a flavouring for many dishes. It is the so called "Bovril oft the Maldives". Traders exported Rihaakuru to countries as far as China over centuries, but the histamine concentration of Rihaakuru has been described as being at levels that are regarded as a risk to human health. Only Maldivians are mostly inmume. 

 
Easy, spicy, healthy and exotic. Mas Huni, the maldivian breakfast.

Easy, spicy, healthy and exotic. Mas Huni, the maldivian breakfast.

 

Mas Huni, the Maldivian Breakfast

Ingredients
1 cup freshly grated coconut
500g boiled fresh tuna or 2 cans tuna packed in water, drained and flaked
2 Indian green chiles, stemmed and minced
1 small red onion, minced
4 Curry leaves
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Fresh chapati, for serving

How to prepare:
Combine coconut, tuna, chiles, onion, salt and pepper in a bowl. Serve with chapati.

 

© Text, Artwork and Photography by Fred Mel / Eatnologist