Las Cascadas Resort – Riding in Mexican Country Side

As promised a couple of posts ago, now that I am leaving Mexico in only a few months, I seriously need to get blogging on all these amazing things to see and do in this wonderful country.  So I thought I would start with Rancho Las Cascadas.

http://www.lascascadasresort.com/

I been to the Ranch a couple of times last year, once with my good friend Miako, and another time with C along with another couple. Both times I thoroughly enjoyed it and both times I promised myself to write something about it. Keep Reading

Touching Base and the LCHF Diet!

My dear friends, it has been a while since I last wrote and I apologise for that. But I do have a pretty good excuse (well at least I think so) I went off to get married…(again!) :)

I had planned to write a few posts on restaurants and Peruvian food while I was in Peru- but quite frankly, who was I kidding? From the minute we touched down in Lima to the minute our wheels left Peruvian soil 3 weeks later – we were on the move non-stop!

However all those months organising, all those details, all that planning, all that agonizing – it was all worth it. In fact I should write a post about “how to organise a wedding in Peru”!  The wedding itself was amazing and what a wonderful feeling, having all your loved ones in one place and all there because they love you. The energy and the ambiance was just so joyous. It truly  is a memory of a lifetime.

We got back to Mexico about 3 weeks ago – and both C and I were absolutely exhausted. Apart from going to work and to the supermarket for some essential supplies, we barely left the apartment (which Khloe and Pixie are thrilled about!)

However we have started something new since we got back – and that is the LCHF diet! It stands for Low Carb High Fat – I know, it sounds odd, crazy and flips everything we have learnt about food and nutrition on its head, but when you start looking into it further, and read the science involved there are some very compelling arguments! We have decided to try it out for a month to see how it goes and how our bodies feel about it. If you are interested I have started a little ‘mini-blog’ charting my feelings about it here: LCHF….WHAT? 

I don’t know if this is something for me – but both C and I thought it was very interesting and wanted to try it out for our selves before we made any judgements. However, from people who are doing it – i have only heard really positive things.

That is all for the time being. It’s great to be back and now that I don’t have the wedding looming over me anymore, I am really looking forward to getting back to The Travelling Chopsticks and doing some serious blogging (well now I have our move to Brazil looming over me instead…but I don’t need to organise so much for this next life changing event!)

Untill next time!

Alex XXX

Brazilian Wax, Brazilian Bikini, Brazil Nut….

What do all of the above have in common?! Yep, you got it! BRAZIL!

We are moving to Brazil! :)

Flag_of_Brazil.svg

2 weeks ago C and I found out our next post was going to be Brasilia. 1 week ago, we found out that instead of moving in 2014 (which was planned) we are going to be moving in the summer. I can tell you one thing – there is nothing that can distract you more from your own wedding plans, than finding out that you are moving to a new country in less than 6 months!

We have done nothing but talk and think about Brasilia since we found out we were moving there. If I am going to be honest, the news was not met immediately with joy on my part…quite the opposite. I really had my hopes set on Tokyo which was our first choice, at the end of the day my heart is and always will be in Asia, and finding out I was moving further away from my family was hard. But as the reality sank in, that Brasilia is going to be our new home for the next 3-4 years, I have slowly warmed to the idea and am now quite excited about the prospect.

Even as I write this post, I still cannot completely fathom that I am moving to Brazil! Those of you who knew me in my late teens and early 20s, know that I was obsessed with Brazil, Brazilians, Latin American’s in general –there was something so exotic about that side of the world. In my rather uptight boarding school in Sweden I used to bore my friends by playing Manu Chau and Shakira on repeat (I know Manu Chau is not even Latin…but his music coincided with my fantasy of what Latin America would be like!) and dream about living in South America. This was also the time, my biggest aspiration was to live on a beach, work in a bar and date a surfer….oh how things have changed…

Or have they? Have you heard the theory of Positive Thinking? That if you think about something you want hard enough, long enough, honestly enough..it will happen? Well I think I am about to be a believer. Here I am 10 years later and I am living in Mexico, marrying a Peruvian and about to move to Brasilia….I tell you, careful for what you wish for :)

Worryingly however, is the lack of information that I can found on line regarding Brasilia, and the little I can, does not seem that exciting: In summary Brasilia is a man-made city with interesting architecture, cut out of the middle of the rain forest and is shaped like a plane….riiigghht. Not quite the South American ideal I was dreaming of as a teen…

Do you see the plane?
Do you see the plane?

When I have told friends and colleagues where our next post is, I cannot begin to tell you how many women have told me – its a great place to make babies! REALLY? that is what my future is destined for- 3 to 4 years of baby making? There must be more to this city than meets the eye, and I promise you I will find it! :)

Although I am excited about our move to Brazil – I must admit, it makes me very sad as well. We have made so many good friends here in Mexico, have such a good life here that it will be sad to leave. Also, leaving in 6 months has seriously disrupted my plans! Now everything I wanted to do before we left has to be all crammed into the next 6 months, not to mention we will be in Peru nearly all of March for the wedding (EEEK our wedding is tomorrow in a month!)

So I have decided that I need to seriously get blogging on all the amazing things there is to see and do here – be prepared for a whole barrage of ‘all things Mexico’ in the upcoming months!

Until next time – Ciao!

Combatting Stress – Hot Yoga Style!

Today I had my first fitting for my wedding dress – I was slightly nervous before hand as I bought my dress months ago, and was worried that it may not look as good as I had remembered it to be. However, I was proved wrong, in fact very wrong! I still love it as much as I did back in April, and apart from a few tweaks needed on the shoulders, it fit like a glove….and damn I look good! :)

When I was standing in the dressing room looking at myself in the mirror, all my wedding worries washed away. I forgot about all those small nagging details, and the only thought that was going through my mind, was that I can’t wait until ‘C’ see’s me in this, and I can’t wait to celebrate this fantastic day with him and our friends and family. That is what a wedding is all about, not what colour flowers my bouquet is going to be, or  stressing over what we should ‘name’ our tables because God forbid numbering them is just so boring – who cares? Keep Reading

Wedding Madness

Do you ever feel as though you have the weight of the world on your shoulders? And you feel as though you are just kicking and kicking to be able to keep your head above the water?

When I woke up on January 2nd – that is exactly how I felt. Suddenly all the excitement and distraction of Christmas and New Years were over, and I realised that in just over 2 months C and I have our wedding! I felt physically ill – there are just soo many loose ends still and so many little details that are not quite pinned down yet. Why oh Why…did we decide to have a destination wedding?! Keep Reading

(Swedish) Meatballs

FYI Swedes just call them meatballs!

Swedish Meatballs
Swedish Meatballs

So – I can tick off one item from my Julbord preparations today and I am on schedule :)

A quick summary for those of ou who did not read my last post: I am making a traditional Swedish Julbord for Christmas this year, which basically is a buffet with Swedish food. And what Swedish Julbord would be complete without meatballs? As I am serving 15 people I need to be organised, so I decided to make the meatballs a week ahead and freeze them in so that I would not be completely swamped on the morning of the 24th. Now all I have to do is defrost them and warm them up – one less item to worry about! For the full Christmas menu – click here!

Keep Reading

Tamales

I went on an adventure last week – a little foodie adventure in Mexico City.

It all started with a conversation with my colleague Laura the week before, who was explaining to me what the difference of a Texan tamale is compared to the tamale we get in Mexico City. Apparently the tamales in Texas are smaller but with more filling and something you only have on special occasions or for Christmas.

Now for those of you who don’t know what a tamale is (I had no idea before I moved to Mexico) it is a Mesoamerican dish that is made of a starchy dough called masa which is usually corn based, and has a filling of one kind or the other. The masa is then wrapped up in some form of leaf wrapper and steamed until it is firm. In Mexico City they use corn husks, but in the more tropical parts of Mexico and Latin America it is common to use banana leaves. Keep Reading

Dia de los Muertos

Last week, on November 2nd was Dia de Los Muertos or Day of the Dead – which is one of Mexico’s most vibrant and fascinating holidays. It’s an amalgamation of pre-hispanic beliefs, merged with Catholic traditions, but ultimately it is a time to celebrate and remember the life of your deceased loved ones. Last year C and I went to San Angel during Dia de Los Muertos, and saw some fantastic alters – you can see the post and pictures here.

Keep Reading

Lomo Saltado – Come Back

I have received far too many complaints that its been awfully quite  here on the Travelling Chopsticks for a number of months, and I apologise. Although I’m not going to go into any details (as that would just be far too boring and tedious) but it was a combination of travelling, wedding planning, lack of inspiration and general funk that I did not managed to bring fingertips to key board for several months.

However that is all about to change and what better comeback recipe than Lomo Saltado. Lomo Saltado is a classic Peruvian dish, which for me is the perfect example of Peruvian cuisine and its diversity.  An absolute testament  to Peru’s Asian influence which so surprised me when I first got to know C. Essentially it’s a stir fry with strips of beef, onion, tomato, soy, vinegar and potatoes giving this dish a wonderful aromatic flavour yet a punchy kick with the aji (Peruvian chili) and vinegar. Keen on reading

Care Package from Home!

We all know how comforting food from home is – and every so often, no matter what exciting country you find yourself in, or what stage of your life you are in, you will at some point or the other feel immense nostalgia for the food of your childhood. Maybe it’s not so much for the flavours (although that is a very large part of it), but for all the memories that comes hand in hand with those flavours.

A couple of months ago, C and I were watching old seasons of Top Chef where the finale was in Singapore.  I was so incredibly excited about seeing those final two episodes and sharing the moment with C who has not yet been to Singapore, that I could barely sit still on the sofa. I found myself shouting and pointing at the telly with every new screen shot: “oh my goodness that is Seetoh!”, “there is lau pau sat” or “clark quay” or in a rather condescending way “what?! you guys don’t know what a rambutan is?”

I think I worked myself up into quite an emotional state, as when the show was over – I felt this incredibly emptiness and for the first time since I left Singapore almost 2 years ago I real sense of homesickness. Although I know without a doubt that moving to Mexico was the best decision I have ever made, I cannot help but be nostalgic about my old life and remember all my good friends that I left behind, and of course my parents who still live there – and the amazing life style that Singapore has to offer. I find myself with this lingering question in my head of will I ever move back?

That night, I posted something on facebook about missing Singapore, and a couple of weeks later look what I received:

A packet-and with the beautiful and familiar slogan of Singapore Post!

What a fantastic feeling and better yet when I opened it, it had these brilliant gems inside..box after box of my favourite mixes of these Singaporean dishes: Hainanese Chicken Rice; Laksa; Bak ku te; Mee Goreng; Prawn Mee; Chili Crab; Singaporean Curry – I could of cried.

Two of my very good friends back in Singapore saw my little distressed facebook post, and decided to send me a care package from home. Justine and Michelle it meant the world to me! I have all the boxes neatly lined up in my larder and every time I walk past them I am not only reminded about home, but the amazing friends that I have!

Thank you with all my heart!

XXXX