Friday, February 24, 2017

Where does time fly? and one more Edamame dip

Two whole months into the new year - really where does time fly? It has been good times in our Portland kitchen.
We ended the year with a trip to Guatemala. Beautiful and diverse country, great food, great weather and; I so wish I hadn't come back. We mainly stuck to the tourist circuit: Tikal, Antigua and Panajachel.  Tikal was by far my favorite. The forests were lush and to see the Mayan ruins poking through was quite something else. We splurged on tours with an archaeologist who is also a great storyteller and it was fascinating to listen to the story of the rise and the fall of the Maya and their understanding of  Astronomy and science. We toured Tikal and Yaxha and got drenched in the glorious tropical rain. Three days was too short; I could have stayed a few more and toured more sites.
Ruins at Tikal

Anitgua was  all cobblestone streets, colonial buildings and a festive atmosphere for Christmas. We took in colorful parades, beautifully decorated altars and great music. Christmas Eve was a partye! We went to a beautiful  late night service at the church. And then had to walk around, waiting for our host family to get back because we couldn't figure out how to operate the lock to our apartment. Long day, we decide to hit the sack and they tell us we HAVE to join them for the fireworks. What a sight it was! Antigua is in a canyon. The night sky was ablaze with fireworks, from the surrounding towns on the hill. Then we were ready to hit the sack, but we were asked to join the family for fruit punch and tamales..
Moral of the story: try to stay with a family  when visiting new country
Church in Jocotenango

Christmas Eve procession

Altar in Guatemala City

Christmas Day procession
Restaurant where we (and Bill Clinton) ate Pepian


Panajachel is the kind of place where you go to do nothing. The lake and the mountains are beautiful. The streets are crowded with vendors. There are coffee shops where one can sit and play chess.



The beginning of the year started with a massive parcel of food from my parents, followed by more food from my aunt and then followed by even more food that my cousin couldn't finish on his own!
I feel very lucky!

I do have a recipe to share. It is an easy flavorful edamame dip- sandwich spread, thin it use it as a pasta sauce, layer it between 2 tortillas and make an un- quesadilla..


Edamame and roasted Poblano dip

(fills 2 8 oz mason jars, can be frozen)

3 Poblano peppers
1/2 bag  frozen shelled  edamame(the standard is a 12 oz bag)
1 clove garlic peeled
1/2 a bunch of cilantro stem and leaves
juice of a lime (add to taste)
salt to taste
1-2 tsps of olive oil
water to thin

Roast the Poblanos directly on a gas flame, rotating until the skin is charred all over. If you don't have a gas stove, put it under the broiler for 3 to 5 minutes and turn to blacken all over. Put the poblanos in a bowl and cover with a lid and allow to steam. While you are waiting for the Poblanos to cool, cook the Edamame and the garlic in a tiny bit of water( stove top or microwave).
Once the Poblanos are cool enough to handle, peel off the skin.
De- stem the Poblanos and add it along with the cooked Edamame to the blender/food processor. Add the Cilantro, lime juice and salt and pulse/blend till you have a mostly smooth paste with some chunks. Add water to thin (if needed) and blend again.
Transfer to a container and top with the Olive oil.

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