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The Hungry Nomad: 11/01/2011 - 12/01/2011

November 27, 2011

Sunday at Monasteraki Square (Athens, Greece)

getting ready for the Christmas season..

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November 26, 2011

La Bodeguita del Medio Cuba (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)

Cuban food in Mexico! La Bodeguita is a really charming restaurant located in Playa del Carmen- removed from the touristy strip of 5th avenue. Live salsa music, dancing, tasty ropa veja and other Cuban delicacies are served at La Bodeguita. Don't forget to try the amazing mint mojito and dance the night away. 

Customer's signatures on the walls

The Count making a tough drink decision

Mint Mojito

Ropa veja...delicious Cuban beef stew served with rice, black beans and plantains

Strawberry mojito

5th Avenue between Calle 34 & Calle 38
Playa del Carmen
Office: +52 984-803-3950

November 24, 2011

Mahekal Beach Resort (Playa del Carmen, Mexico)

I have contemplated writing about this resort- I loved it so much that I almost didn't want to let out the secret. But here it is folks- if you are planning a trip to Playa del Carmen and want something laid back and different than your cancun style hotel strip then I highly recommend Mahekal Beach Resort

This Mayan paradise is located in Playa del Carmen, nestled between lush tropical gardens and a long strip of pristine white sand beach. Whats more special is that it is located steps away from the wonderful shops and restaurants of 5th avenue, or La Quinta as it is locally known. 

If you want luxury, trendy and modernity then don't stay here. But if you want to be at one with nature, stay in a Palapas style hut steps away from the beach you will love this place as much as we did. 

The Resort does have its flaws and is a bit outdated (was purchased from Shangri La Caribe a few years back) but the service, amazing layout, location, food and friendliness of all staff really made up for its shortcomings. 

The Lobby

Happy Hour 5-7 swings, ping pong and pool tables all in the center of the resort

The Garden Resort area tucked away in the back of the resort away from the beach

Restaurant- breakfast and lunch or dinner included 
Pool and Jacuzzi overlooking the turquoise waters of the Caribbean sea

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November 22, 2011

Tah Cin (Baked Persian Saffron Rice, Chicken and Yogurt)

Tahchin is a great dish yet difficult and timely to make. Therefore, after one failed attempt I had given up until very recently. The trademark of this dish is the delicious crispy mixture of yogurt, rice and lots and lots of saffron baked in the oven.

Ingredients: (4 servings)

  • chicken, 1 kg
  • basmati or long grain rice, 500 grams
  • yogurt (Greek if possible), 300 grams
  • ground saffron, 1/2 teaspoon dissolved in 4 tbs of hot water
  • large onions, two
  • 3 eggs (yolks only)
  • cooking oil/butter (necessary to allow tag-dig to form without burning)
  • salt
  • black pepper

*Required: Pirex baking dish unless made in a pot on an oven. Baked version is always more delicious. 


  1. Start by washing rice and soaking it in warm water (with added salt) for 2 hours. Then filter out the water.
  2. Chop onions into thin slices and fry in oil until slightly golden. 
  3. Wash and cut chicken, remove skin, and fry in onions until color changes. Add some water and bring to boil. Turn heat down and let boil slowly until cooked, adding more water if needed. Remove the bones.
  4. While chicken is cooking, beat the yogurt until it is smooth. Dissolve saffron in half a cup of hot water. Add saffron, salt, pepper and egg-yolks to the yogurt and mix very well.
  5. Pour a few glasses of water in a large pot and bring to boil. Pour in rice and cook while stirring occasionally until rice grows longer and slightly softens (Take care not to overcook the rice. It should still be too hard for eating). Again filter out the water.
  6. Pour several spoons of oil and several spoons of the yogurt mix into a non-stick pot. Add a thin layer of rice and flatten using the back of a spoon. Add a layer of chicken on top followed by another layer of rice. Again flatten the rice. Spread several more spoons of the yogurt mix on the rice. Continue in this fashion until chicken, rice and the yogurt mix have been used up. Add some more oil on top. Put the lid on and cook for about 5 minutes over medium heat.
  7. Place the mixture into a pirex baking dish and place in an oven (preheated to 250 F) and cook for 1.5 to 2 hours. Note that the longer Tah-Chin is cooked, the thicker the Tah-Dig (delicious crispy layer of rice at the bottom) will be. When cooked, remove the lid and let cool for a few minutes.
  8. Place an inverted large dish over the dish and turn it over. Tap the dish in order to loosen the contents inside. The contents should fall on the dish in one piece with the Tah-Dig on the outside.

November 20, 2011

Sunday Souvlaki (Athens, Greece)

veggie souvlaki with tzatziki, fries, tomatoes, red onions & herbs: yum!

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November 16, 2011

Suika- Japanese Izakaya (Vancouver, Canada)

We are so spoiled in Vancouver...on many fronts but particularly on the food front. Thanks to the various immigrant groups that have made this city as colorful as it is today you can have any type of food your little heart desires any time of day and night. I've searched the world through and through (excluding Japan) and can hands down guarantee that we have some of the best Japanese Izakayas in the world. This confidence was bolstered by my last visit to a new Izakaya (its been around for 1 year now): Suika Izakaya.

This place was recommended by fellow bloggers. Wanting to try something outside of the downtown core we headed over the bridge (5 minutes over the bridge) to Suika- located on Broadway and Burrard.  It is a great Izakaya place: good food, great service and great ambiance. The decor is really well done. I especially loved the empty sake bottles hanging chandelier.

Tuna Tataki

Lotus Roots- Delicious

You all know by now that I love everything Japanese so its no surprise to hear that I loved this restaurant from the food, decor and our super sweet Japanese server. We will be back soon Suika (don't let Guu know okay? It will be our little secret!)

Suika on Urbanspoon

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November 15, 2011

Shizen Ya (Vancouver, Canada)

Shizen Ya is a great little spot for a quick work lunch located on Hornby street directly across from the courthouse. If you like all organic products, vegetarian and vegan Japanese dishes you will love Shizen Ya. The quality of the food is really above many other downtown sushi locations and there is no doubt that all ingredients down to the brown rice and wasabi are organic. Given that it is all organic it tends to be a little pricier than other sushi spots but then again you are paying a bit extra for the quality. It was so healthy that I did indeed feel a bit hungry not so long after (but then again that's just me on an average day). Try for yourself and let me know what you think.

Shizen Ya on Urbanspoon

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November 13, 2011

Sunday in my Home Town (Deventer, The Netherlands)

 Handy bicycles and homely Dutch houses

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November 9, 2011

Mercat de la Boqueria (Barcelona, Spain)

Oh, pure happiness! I absolutely adore markets, with all their sorts of produce, colors and smells. The Mercat de la Boqueria just off the famous La Rambla in Barcelona offers you just about anything you might desire in terms of fresh foods and much more. Fruits, cheeses, ham, seafood, eggs, sweets, spices... And when you're tired from all this hard food shopping you can choose to sit down at one of the busy little bars for a little snack and a drink. I absolutely enjoyed this market and would definitely recommend to visit at a rainy day in fall! 

Grab a little 'pincho' to nibble on while browsing the stands

They sure do know how to make some good ham here!

All kinds of delicious mushrooms!

And all kinds of delicious seafood as well!

little bar inside the market

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November 8, 2011

The American Cheesesteak Co. (Vancouver, Canada)

Who would have thought a Philly Cheese steak would have tasted so good?  I've been anxiously waiting to try this new addition to the VanCity food circle since its opening a few weeks ago. There has been a lot of buzz around town ever since Anthony Sedlak opened this restaurant dedicated to Philadelphia's Philly Cheese steak. I admit that before entering the American CheeseSteak Co. I had never had a proper cheese steak sandwich (unless you include Subway) nor have I been to Philadelphia (unless you include growing up on the Fresh Prince's lyrics). I assumed it would be a lot of greasy meat served on a soggy bun with lots of fried onions and cheese. Well I was very pleasantly surprised when my order arrived and the bread was perfectly crispy yet soft, the meat was in perfect proportion and I did not get the sense that I was over-indulging in grease. Although I did order a side of the A.C.C fries which were deliciously greasy and garlicy. This is a perfect addition to the downtown core and definitely a first. I'll be going back to try the other sandwiches.


The American CheeseSteak Co. on Urbanspoon