Having some bridge work done

The work on Regensburg’s iconic Stone Bridge (“die steinerne Brücke”) trudges on. They must have made some major progress while we were out of the country, waiting out the winter. Now the auxiliary pedestrian bridge has been extended significantly and there’s another section of the old bridge closed off for work. I spotted this machine Continue reading Having some bridge work done

Two MORE great tastes that taste great together

My awesome wife raided the freezer to pull out our last remaining tub of frozen rhubarb compote and apply it as a topping to a lemon mascarpone gelato she found and executed last week. The gelato was pretty good at the time, but five days later, the flavors intensified pleasantly.

It can’t be long now, before rhubarb starts dominating the farmer’s market scene. Please, don’t let it be long now. Our frozen little tubs of compote have lasted almost the whole year, providing us with toppings for our crêpes and the tangy flavor in the batter of Rhubarb Sour Cream Cake.

We need fresh stocks stalks to sound the death knell of this winter.

St. John’s Terrace

Center map
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St. John’s Terrace
http://www.stjterrace.it/
street: Via Gabi 7, Appio Latino, 00183 Rome
email: info @ stjterrace.it
phone: +39 335 63 96 671

View from St. John's TerraceWe were in Rome for the first time last month and it left quite an impression. Actually, it started leaving an impression before we even got there – shopping for accommodations took my breath away. I knew that it would be expensive, but the types of places that I usually look for were well beyond what I will spend per night. It quickly became clear that hotels were out of the question, so I started sifting through B&Bs and vacation rentals. That’s how I found St. John’s Terrace. Continue reading St. John’s Terrace

Nearly Every Evening

Puerto Vallarta Bahia de Banderas

Puerto Vallarta Bahia de Banderas

Chilling Out in Puerto Vallarta Bahia de Banderas

check it out bro

ahh

…looks like this. Including the goofy guy experimenting with his flash bouncing around the balcony.

We haven’t done much outside the condo complex yet, aside from a couple grocery runs and a trip downtown for lunch and trinket shopping on one of the overcast afternoons. Apparently it’s been cooler and cloudier here than normal; next-door neighbors here since November asked if we brought that weather with us from Germany. I hate to think so!

Soon my parents will be arriving and I’m sure we’ll find some less lazy ways to spend our remaining time here. But the lazy feels awfully nice, too.

Bean Stew with Red Wine Syrup

Got it from here originally, but we’ve adapted it slightly for our locale while on vacation in Mexico. Plan ahead — starting with dry beans means an overnight soak before you can get started in earnest.

Want to make it meatless? Be careful. The bacon provides salt, smoke flavor, and fat to keep the beans from going chalky on you. So if you’re going vegetarian here, you might consider adding pimenton (smoked Spanish paprika) or even liquid smoke flavoring, salt, and plenty of olive oil to compensate.

Ingredients

1/2 pound bacon, diced or in postage-stamp-sized slices
1 large onion, peeled and diced
2 celery stalks, diced
2 medium carrots, peeled and diced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and coarsely chopped or smashed
1 pound dried pinto beans, soaked overnight
1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt, more to taste
2 cups dry red wine
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Shredded cotija cheese, for serving (optional)
generous bunch cilantro leaves, coarsely chopped

Instructions

1. In the bottom of a large pot over medium-high heat, brown bacon until golden, about 5 minutes. Stir in onion, celery, carrots, garlic and rosemary. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, 5 to 7 minutes.

2. Drain beans and add to pot along with 1 tablespoon salt. Pour in enough water to just cover the beans (about 7 to 8 cups). Bring liquid to a boil; reduce heat and simmer gently until beans are just tender, 45 minutes to 1 hour.

3. Meanwhile, in a small pot over medium heat, simmer wine until it is reduced to 2/3 cup, 20 to 30 minutes.

4. Pour wine into beans, mix in the cumin and chili powder, and bring to a simmer. Cook for 10 to 20 minutes longer to meld flavors and thicken broth to taste. Sprinkle with cotija cheese and chopped cilantro.