What’s Cooking

Remember when we got a grocery store here in Picard last April?  It was AMAZING!  I have to remind myself of this when I go to buy some groceries for dinner and well… I leave with a bag of crackers instead, because I can’t find what I have a hankering for or what I need for something I was hoping to make.

Case in point:

I went to the grocery store today and the produce section looked like this:

  • strange root vegetables covered in bark that look way too difficult to deal with (I know the names of them, but I’m just being dramatic)
  • brown-spotted bananas
  • basket of onions with fruit flies flying around in it
  • soft potatoes
  • tons of cucumbers (I bought 3)
  • 3 bags of local lettuce past its prime
  • 3 Vidalia onions (weird)
  • 1 package of broccoli that was yellow/brown
  • 15EC ($5) bags of month-old carrots

When IGA has just gotten a shipment in, it can be like Christmas it’s so wonderful in there, but when it’s bare in there, oh man, is it bare!  Anyways – you get the drift – the grocery store situation is unpredictable!

This results in Caribbean Hoarding Syndrome.  When the grocery store was fully stocked over Christmas, I bought 3 cans of enchilada sauce because, well, who knows when they’ll have it again?

Last week, like the Caribbean Hoarder that I am, I bought 2 packages of this bacon.  It made me laugh:

“Hotel Brand… Sliced in the Tradition of Fine Hotels.”

What. are. you. talking. about?  So funny.


If you’re a good baker, ignore this next sentence, you’ll be absolutely horrified, but if you’re lazy, can’t bake, and like sweets, read on: yesterday morning, I made this deliciousness for Charlie and I for breakfast and it was the bomb.  Coffee cake, in a mug, that takes less than 5 minutes to throw together, coffee cake that you microwave in a mug.  Oh yes.  My kind of baking!


Today I scavenged and found some chicken and a leek, so I’m planning on making this Chicken and Dumplings recipe from Bon Appetit (minus the homemade gnocchi ricotta – I’m just using some packaged gnocchi)… I’ll let you know the verdict!


Belated Birthday Surprise!

Charlie celebrated his 29th birthday back in January while I was visiting my family in the states.  I was sad to miss Charlie’s birthday, but promised I’d make it up to him with a cake and belated birthday celebration.  What he didn’t know was that he’d have a little birthday surprise.

Let me just say that planning a birthday surprise (even a small one with a handful of friends) for a super-focused, stressed out med school student is no easy task.

I went over to a friend’s house to make fun cupcakes – yellow cake batter topped and filled with homemade chocolate frosting, decorated with chocolate shavings and Rastafarian colored M&M’s.  Plus the cupcake wrappers went with Charlie’s island nickname, Jungle Charlie, so perfect!  Making the treats was the easy part.

The tricky party was getting Charlie to go to his own surprise party.  I kept it small, since I knew a test was coming up and Charlie wouldn’t be able to hang out for too long, so I just invited a handful of close friends.  Normally, Charlie will study at school in the afternoons, come home for dinner around seven, and then study at home for the rest of the evening.  The plan was to have dinner at home and then go get some ice cream after dinner, where Charlie would discover his friends and cupcakes waiting for him.

Well, the evening of the party, Charlie come home for dinner, but was ready to head back to school immediately after, which left me stalling for forty-five minutes.  This meant reading aloud all the recent emails I could find from my mom and sisters; watching Caribbean music videos by Vibz Kartel and Demarco on You Tube; explaining the Sh*t Girls Say video phenomenon; listening to songs on iTunes; showing him things I liked on Pinterest; and honestly, I cannot even remember what else, but there was a lot of stalling.

Finally, Charlie was ready to go, standing outside on the porch with his backpack on, ready to head to the library  fifteen minutes before he was supposed to arrive at his party, which meant me pretending to look for shoes I couldn’t find and standing in the bathroom for at least five minutes with the water running, calling friends and asking them to call Charlie and stall him.  When his friend’s called to stall him, Charlie’s phone rang and he pressed “ignore” and put his phone back in his pocket… talk about focus!

Finally, when I couldn’t stall him any longer, we walked towards campus together, and at that point I was heading to the ice cream shop to eat ice cream alone since Charlie was adamant on getting back to the library.  Luckily, we walked by at the perfect time, just as our friends were walking up the street carrying the cupcakes.  Needless to say Charlie was very, very surprised, especially since his birthday was a few weeks past.  Everyone yelled surprise, and we had a good laugh about how difficult it was to get Charlie to his own surprise party.  We all hung out for thirty minutes or so and enjoyed the cupcakes, and then Charlie headed off to the library.

It was a good birthday, hilarious, and short but sweet!   Happy belated birthday Charlie!

Mustache Monday

So, I was just looking through some photos, and I realized that I am weird.  Like, really weird.  Case in point: I have a strange habit of taking unflattering photos of myself yelling at exceptionally large fruits…

{For the record, I think my intention is to look shocked at how large the fruits are, but the photos never turn out that way.  And that, friends, is how you end up with way too many photos of yourself verbally abusing large fruits.}

Being the genius that he is, Charlie suggesting adding speech bubbles to these gems.  AMAZING.  And being the nut that I am, I decided to bless these honkin’ fruits with some mustaches.  Also AMAZING.


10 Days In Dominica: Day 7

Day 7: What is the best meal you’ve had on the island?

There is only one answer to this… fresh, local fish!

The best meal I’ve had on the island was something I cooked one night, fresh tuna tacos with fish straight from this guy:

I think what made it so tasty was how fresh the tuna was, straight from the sea just a few hours before I cooked it.

Me with our dinner, so excited to have finally caught the fish guy on our street!