Saturday, June 23, 2012

Foodie Things

I would like to preface this post with: Don't judge me. Below are weeks worth of food photos (we didn't just eat this in one weekend.).

Tomas and I seem to make it our mission to try the newest, best & most different kinds of food in Buenos Aires. In the past few weeks, I've really taken an interest in trying new recipes and visiting restaurants we've never been to before. This week we were supposed to attend the Taste Buenos Aires event and try foods from over thirty different restaurants, but unfortunately we forgot to go. On the bright side, we're probably a few lbs. or kilos lighter. I am actually really hungry as I write this post (that's what I get for trying to eat a salad for lunch), and it is probably not the best idea to write about food now, but I am trying to be productive today and "one blog post" is on my punch list.

Now, feast your eyes on these:

Spicy Seafood Pasta
The spicy seafood pasta was pretty amazing. We picked up fresh pasta from the pasta store down the street, Al Buen Tallarin (The Good Noodle) and instead of using scallops like the recipe called for, we used clams (clams are much cheaper than scallops here). The nice thing about this pasta is that you can make it as spicy as you want. Obviously, Tomas and I added more spice than the recipe called for, chopping up some dried jalapeños from one of our three pepper plants. Unfortunately, all three plants are dead now, but we harvested enough peppers in the warmer weather to last us through the winter. This pasta is really easy to make & very hard to mess up. You can find the recipe for this pasta here (Blog: Crispy Bits & Burnt Ends).

Cinnamon Loaf
This baked delight was great while it lasted...Tomas and I ate half a loaf in one day, and the other half was later snagged by Tucu. This was really simple to make, as the ingredients were basic things you keep in your fridge or pantry. Really great as a breakfast or snack bread. You can find the recipe here (Blog: Food For a Hungry Soul). PS- The recipe says to bake for one hour, but my bread only took about 40 minutes, so be sure to check on it regularly.

Grilled Cheese & Pear Sandwich w/ Honey
This is one of my own creations. Can you tell? I used mozzarella cheese because that is what I had in the refrigerator, but this would probably also taste great with brie. The pears are thinly sliced, and the honey is added on top of the sandwich after it is cooked. This could be eaten for breakfast, lunch or dinner.

Banana Biscotti (for DOGS!)
While these biscotti cookies are made from completely edible ingredients, I wouldn't recommend eating them yourself because they lack flavor, according to Tomas. Yes, he tried them. Agatha loves banana so I figured these would be a hit. It is two weeks later now, and the biscotti cookies are long gone. My only complaint about these is that they turned out VERY hard. Not sure if this is on account of the recipe, or if I kept them in the oven for too long. You can find this recipe, along with a lot of other dog treat recipes at

Food made by other people/establishments:
Dulce de leche filled donut from Magic Donuts.
The donuts from Magic Donuts in Buenos Aires are the best in town, although it's not hard to win that title since they might be the only ones in town. These donuts are the closest I've seen to American donuts in Buenos Aires. They have lots to choose from including, sugar, glazed, icing, or filled. The filled ones are superior, including fillings of dulce de leche, chocolate, cream, raspberry, and lemon custard. I discovered this place when I first moved to Buenos Aires on one of my exploring walks, but at the time I didn't realize how close it was to our apartment. I now know that is it a breezy four blocks. They also offer iced coffee, which is an added bonus.

Lamb Brochette @ Sarkis.
There used to be a time when I didn't eat baby animals (i.e. lamb or veal). Then I moved to Buenos Aires and that went out the window. After hearing so many rave reviews about Sarkis, an Arabic/Armenian restaurant, Tomas and I decided to go one Saturday night. The place opens at 8pm, and if you don't get there by 8:05pm, be prepared to wait in an hour (or more) long line outside. We started out with small plates to share including hummus, roasted red peppers, stuffed grape leaves, some kind of bean dish and some kind of rice dish. I wish I knew the actual names of the dishes. Anyone have any knowledge of Arabic/Armenian food? I would love to learn what those plate are actually called. Also, I apologize for not having any pictures of those plates. They were just THAT appetizing that I couldn't wait to take photos and then eat. After the starters, we probably could've have called it a night. We were SO full. But, we powered through and shared the lamb brochette, which was nothing short of excellent. For five starter plates, an entree, a bottle of wine, and water: $180 pesos. You can't beat that. 

Empanadas from our spot: El Imperio del Sabor
These are the best empanadas (canastita style) you will ever eat. And you never get tired of them. I know this from experience.

Are you sick of food by now? Thinking of skipping dinner? Or did I just make you more hungry, and want to come visit & eat with me in Buenos Aires?

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Bracelet Binge

Recently I've been browsing fashion blogs and doing some online "window" shopping, and can't help but notice all the fun jewelry that's out now. I keep forgetting that it's almost summer back in the US, while in Argentina, the cold weather keeps making me think that Christmas is on its way.

This past weekend I finally cracked, and went on a bit of a bracelet binge. First, I stopped at Avenida Santa Fe (the shopping area nearest to my apartment) and found these neon delights.

 The following day, Tomas and I went to Palermo to check out the Feria Puro Diseño. At this indoor expo you could find designers of all sorts, and everything from clothing to home decor. Some of the things were really interesting, while other seemed to be things that you could find at any mall, but here they were charging more money. My favorite part of the fair was the jewelry, where I picked up some more bracelets.
Peace, evil eyes, & a cross.

Wrap bracelet with charms.
These are very popular in Argentina now,
as are any bracelets adorned with fringe, pom poms or bows.

The peace sign and wrap bracelet are both from a store called Las Floridas.

A little more sophisticated...
This bracelet is from the designer Virginia Kuroski.
She also had some pretty amazing gigantic velvet bow headbands.

While I wouldn't say the $30 peso entrance fee to Puro Diseño was worth it (overall),  I did find the jewelry I was looking for.

In the cyber world, I've discovered two new jewelry sites:
Bauble Bar - Really cute accessories & affordable! They just introduced these "beach sets" which are themed (for example: Miami, Cape Cod, etc.) and for $80 you get a pair of alpargata shoes and three pieces of jewelry. 

Lowlita & you - I first saw these fun bracelets on the blog, Seams for a Desire. When I did some further research, I found that they only had a blog and a facebook page, and I didn't think it was possible to order any. Now (a few days later), they have just introduced their website! And, it looks like they will ship internationally!

Has anyone shopped these sites before? If you need a jewelry fix, I think these will do the trick!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Foodie Finde

Last week I saw a post on Facebook about the BA Underground Market. I didn't know exactly what it was, but I knew that I could expect to eat good food and discover interesting things (such as salsas, marmalades, and beer) to take home.

The Underground Market was only for one day, and we decided to go early since we had our nephew's birthday party in the evening. It took us a while to figure out where it was, as it was down a side street and inside an abandoned warehouse. If you did not know about the event in advance, you would have had no idea anything was going on inside the dark abandoned building. We even questioned if we were in the right place. The only proof was a small sign outside the door. Past the door was complete darkness.

To your average passer-by this is just an old warehouse...

But little does he know that through that doorway....
...up 3 flights of stairs...

...past old,

abandoned machinery...

...exists an oasis....

...full of people...

...who all share a love for food.
Smokey brisket and artesanal hot sauce from El Tejano.

Some more amazing hot sauce from our friends at Ya Ya Bean.

Lemon Verbena Lemonade
Don't judge a book by it's cover.
This tasted so delicious and so refreshing.

We then continued on to Simply Pickled where we had some
 yummy pickled chicken and vegetable sandwiches.
In case anyone was wondering, pickle in Spanish is still pickle
They just pronounce it as "peek-lay."

In pickle heaven.

Washing down my pickled chicken sandwich with a pickle martini.

Salsas and marmalades from El Palador.
We ended up taking home a jar of agridulce (sweet & sour).

Monopoly money really burns a whole in your pocket.
When we went back to buy more "Indy Bucks" there was a really
long line, so instead we went straight to the black market.
And with that...

....I was able to get dessert.
Mmm, Tres Leches Cake.

And finally, probably the best purchase of the day: La Milagrosa.
A spicy take on chimichurri sauce, with peppers imported from Mexico!

And now some photos of "the scene":

the band.

On our way out, there were even more peeps. I think the BA Underground
had a great turnout considering this is the first time.

Tomas and I had a BLAST at the BA Underground Food Market! We can't wait until the next one in September. Actually, we had such a great time that when we got home we googled "food markets in buenos aires" to see if there were any other food fests that we were missing. We could easily go to a food market every weekend, and not get tired of it. Well, we DID have success and found Taste, a FREE food event in Buenos Aires which lets you try food from over 30 different restaurants. We already reserved our tickets and will be going next week. Stay tuned!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Canine Creations

When I was back in the US over the holidays, my gave me some canine themed cookie cutters (dog, bone, paw and doghouse), in case I ever wanted to make homemade treats for Agatha. Well, I finally got a chance to make them. It took a while for me to decide on a recipe, but in the end I went with: Italian-Style Dog Biscuits. I chose this recipe because the ingredients are easy to find and because Agatha loves cheese.

Here's what you'll need:
Water, white flour, whole wheat flour, tomato paste,
egg, basil, parmesan cheese & mozzarella cheese.
Most of these ingredients you probably already have in your house.

My canine cookie cutters.
Be prepared to get your hands a little messy.

Ready for the oven!

All finished!

Time for the taste-testers approval

Every time I feed Tucu a treat, I risk getting my fingers bit off.

The Aggy Waggy

The Tucu Monster

"Mmmm... that was delicious!
Now where are the rest of the treats?"

Monsters' Inc. begging for more.

I put the rest in this container to preserve them throughout the week.
The treats are quickly disappearing.

For my next canine creation, I think I will switch over from savory to sweet. Agatha is bananas for bananas. Until next time...

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Barrio Chino

Barrio Chino is the Spanish translation of "Chinatown." I think Barrio Chino is probably my favorite part of Buenos Aires. Maybe I should just move to China......just kidding.

Entrance to Barrio Chino

Last weekend Tomas and I went to Barrio Chino to do some shopping and try out a new place for dinner. Every time we go to Barrio Chino we go to a different restaurant. I'd like to try them all by the end of the year. What can I say? I am a foodie. At least I have goals.

Before dinner, we shopped the bazaars and went to this great supermarket, Ichiban. Finding special or imported food products in Buenos Aires can be almost impossible if you don't know about Barrio Chino. We stocked up on interesting spices, teas, unique juices (I got coconut water and lychee juice), and of course, peanut butter. Yes, I have to go to the Chinatown of Buenos Aires to get peanut butter.
A lovely tea of verbena, chamomile, & clementine tea.

Take note of the last line:
"Especially calming after yoga or when writing peaceful thoughts."
I guess I should be drinking this while I write this blog.

 After a successful supermarket sweep, we stopped in some bazaars. I picked up some necessary (well, maybe not necessary) items for the table, some funny cat earrings, and nail art. About a month ago, I learned of this nail artist, Naomi Yasuda. She does some really interesting nail art that has recently gotten the attention of celebrities. On her website I saw this one design that I stay tuned for my attempt at it.
My nails are obviously not going to look as good,
so don't get your hopes up for the final result.

Some sushi & tea accessories for when we order delivery.
I think all of this cost $13. Can't beat that.

After shopping we decided to have a little street appetizer before going to dinner. We stopped at one of the Vietnamese kiosks that sells food on sticks. Basically you can get a kebab of chicken, seafood, beef, or pork and then they slather it in the sauce of your liking. 

I got the chicken w/ sweet & sour.

Tomas got seafood with hot sauce.
Definitely not the best combo.

Afterwards we went to a restaurant called Palitos which means "chopsticks" in Spanish. The ambience was great and service was pretty fast.

The place was packed on this Saturday night.

We sat next to a table of Chinese people.
I think that's a good sign.

For dinner we ordered a typical pork and fried rice dish and a gigantic bowl of Vietnamese soup. What makes it Vietnamese? I don't know, but it was spicy and consisted of pork & noodles. They also bring you a plate of fresh chopped carrots, cabbage, and peppers to add to your soup. And, as a final touch you are supposed to squeeze lemon on top. Delicious. Actually, Tomas and I loved it so much that we decided to recreate it at home the next day!

Before adding the veggies.

And after.

Looking at these pictures of the soup are making me hungry! We need to go back ASAP.