Green bananas

Before telling you the story of the green bananas let me accentuate that I had a very happy childhood. My parents loved me very much and even we didn’t have options, I grew up a beautiful person.

Being under communism my first 12 years, I learned to deal with 2 or 3 options. Food, drinks, sports, traveling, etc. had only 2 or 3 options.

In the winter was skiing and in the summer was hiking.

Food was missing. Here are some photos of long lines to buy cheese or fruits or bread.

Images before 1989

We had a revolution in 1989 and things started to get better. We start having lots of choices, but some of them very expensive.

Let’s go back to my green bananas story.

One day, my mom came from work and told my dad that they got bananas at the sweetshop. My dad said he will not go and stay in line because there are just a few cases and will not get any. We (the children) decided to go and wait in line. We wait for 2 hours and when we had 20 people in front of us the bananas finished.  We came home crying our eyes out and we were so disappointed and mad. But that was our life. After a few hours a guy came to my dad with a small package. Inside there were 6 green bananas. It was the first time seeing a banana. I think I was around 10 years old.

My parents explain to us that we had to leave them in the closet in the dark to turn them yellow, but we were so impatient to eat that we couldn’t wait no more. So, I ate one green banana. It tasted so bad. But a green banana is still a banana and I needed that victory. Waiting in line for 2 hours for a 10 year kid to get a banana (my brother was 6) is not something I wish to anyone.

I remember, my uncle waking up at 4 am and wait in line with a small chair for milk every morning. The shop will open at 7 am. Bread, flour, oil and other food were on a ration book. At my grandparents in countryside, there were fresh fruits and vegetables in the garden, fresh eggs, milk, because people had lots of animals and birds around the house. So, spending my summer vacation there was like a dream. Food, freedom, play, nature and clean air. We use to eat in the morning, leave the house to play with other kids and comeback late in the evening starving to death. That was some great summer vacation!

Today, some wait in line for phones, some still wait in lines for food or water.

So, respect the food, respect the choices because some people don’t have any. Be tolerant, don’t waste food, and help others.

Even now, at almost 40 years old, I have fruits and vegetables I never tried. Don’t judge me if I still eat meat. I do it rarely, but I want to try as many different food as I can. Those years at the beginning of my life pushed me to travel around the world to meet people and see places, to discover food and sports that I never dreamed to discover when I was a child.

So enjoy life, food, drinks etc. Leave the moment and teach your kids to do the same.

 

Spicy Pickled Broccoli

spicy pickled broccoli

My first encounter with broccoli was around 25 years old and I wasn’t very happy about it. I am still not in love with this vegetable, but I tolerate it because is so good for us. Over the years I tried to cook it in many ways so I could start like it.

A few days ago I saw a recipe on the web and I liked the sound of it: Pickled broccoli.

So I gave it a try with more chili in it because I love spicy pickles.

Ingredients:

  • ½ broccoli
  • 400 ml water
  • 100 ml apple vinegar
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoon chili peppers
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dry parsley
  • 4 minced garlic cloves
  • 1 teaspoon fresh pepper

Directions:

Fill a large bowl with ice water and set aside. Cut the broccoli into uniform spears.  Rinse, dry, add them to a large bowl and set aside. Steam the broccoli just until is tender, about 4 minutes.

Drain the broccoli and immediately add it to the bowl of ice water. Leave it for about 5 minutes, drain again and set aside to dry.

In a medium-sized mixing bowl, whisk the vinegar with water, sea salt, peppers, chili peppers, cumin, garlic, parsley and bay leaves. Pour this mixture into a jar and add the broccoli.  Put the jar in the fridge. Let the broccoli marinate for about 1 hour, drain and serve. Or, you can leave it in the fridge for more than 1 week and serve it when you like it.

 

spicy pickled broccoli

Food, friends and nature

pork ribs

Things you need in the nature for a great time:

  • great food : meat (pork ribs and lamb), cheese , bread and vegetable (green onion, tomatoes, cucumbers)
  • lots of drinks (beer, whiskey and water)
  • a tent
  • good friends (best with driving license )
  • a barbecue
  • an amazing place near the water

gab_0315_res_mixgab_0348_res_mixgab_0253_res_mixcamping food nature gab_0312_res_mx

Our rules for camping:

  • Carry out what you carry in. We practice “leave no trace” camping and hiking.
  • We observe and enjoy wildlife and plants but leave them undisturbed.
  • We build the fire in a fire pit made of stones and use only dead and down wood for fire. We don’t cut standing trees. We extinguish the fire with water and stir ashes until they are cold to the touch.
  • We use pit privies if available. If not, we dispose human waste by digging a hole far away from the water and cover with leaves and soil.
  • We do not use soap to wash our self, clothing or dishes.

Cooking fails

We all enter in the kitchen with high hopes, but sometimes our hopes are crushed at the end of the cooking session. Last evening fail in the kitchen inspired me to write this post for all us. Maybe this happens often, maybe only once in a while. Still, when it happens I feel so nervous and mad not about the fail, but about the food waste.

I have no photos, because I don’t know how to take photos of something that doesn’t look good or taste bad. But, we all learn from our mistakes or others.

Last evening I intended to do a Romanian dish which is something like a ratatouille. I found the recipe on the internet, but I realized that it needed more time in the oven than it was on the site. This is a good fail, because I can leave the dish more in the oven or change it in something else. I already got 2 ideas. But, sometimes you just waste food because the recipe is no good or you did not respect the recipe, or in my case my stove is so old that I don’t have too much control of it.

Anyway, get in the kitchen and do it again. Learn something from the experience and move on or you will be stuck. Even the best chefs screw up in the kitchen once in a while.

You control your kitchen, not the other way around.

Good luck!

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” – Winston Churchill

How to Increase Your Blog Traffic

I start blogging in September 2012 and my traffic for 2013 and 2014 was not good at all, as you can see in the image.

traffic blog

I had a few followers and few people saw my posts.  After reading about traffic and visitors I manage to get more people reading my blog with just a few steps. So here is something to help you gain more traffic without paying anything:

  1. Write short posts because people don’t like to get lost in the story. Most of us don’t have time to read thousands of words.
  2. Read every day other people blogs.
  3. Try to answer to all your visitors.
  4. Use links to other posts when is necessary.
  5. Use Facebook, Pinterest and other social sharing sites to promote your posts.
  6. Tell beautiful stories.
  7. Write guest posts for other blogs and have guest posts.
  8. Try to write a post once a week.
  9. Use beautiful photos and have an attractive title.
  10. Create better content and use appropriate tags.

 

 

Most of my time spent on internet is used reading other blogs. I love to read about food, recipes, photography, travelling, sports, health, etc. I appreciate with a like or a comment if I like something in that post: a photo, a story, a presentation, a recipe, etc. But, the most important thing is helping other bloggers. I am so happy when people tell me that I really helped them with a post and they are happy they found my blog.  That means that I manage to help someone.

White sugar

white and brown sugar

It’s been 2 months since I stopped eating white sugar. For me is a miracle. I am the person who eats 1 box of chocolate every day or 2-3 pieces of a chocolate cake. Why I stopped? Because I start feeling so bad.

We need sugar, but consuming white sugar in excess is so bad for us. So now, I take my sugar from fruits and I am feeling so good now, lots of energy to play around with my boy.

Naturally occurring sugar—which gives fruit, some veggies, and milk their sweet taste—is perfectly healthy. It is added sugar that we need to not OD on.

It’s not just sugary foods like candy and cookies either, but sugar has made its way into practically EVERYTHING we eat.

When you consume sugar, your body has two options on how to deal with it:

  • Burn it for energy.
  • Convert to fat and store it in your fat cells.

Depending on your genetic predisposition, your body might be better equipped to process sugar as energy, or you might be more likely to store it as fat.

Effects of Consuming Too Much Sugar:

  • It overloads and damages your liver
  • It affects your insulin and leptin signaling.
  • It causes metabolic dysfunction.
  • It increases your uric acid levels.

10 Ways Sugar Harms Your Health

  • Increases stress.
  • Increases the risk of obesity, diabetes and heart disease.
  • Causes blood glucose to spike and plummet.
  • Affects behavior and cognition in children.
  • Can cause gum disease, which can lead to heart disease.
  • Causes tooth decay.
  • Accelerates aging.
  • A high-sugar diet often results in chromium deficiency.
  • Interferes with immune function.
  • Is highly addictive (6 more times than cocaine)