around the world project

56. Dominican Republic: Asopao de Mariscos

Posted on Updated on

Dominican Republic, we know it’s in the Caribbean somewhere and they speak Spanish right? Sharing an island with Haïti, the Dominican Republic has seen it’s fair share of good times and bad times. Most vacationers know the Dominican Republic simply as an island of pristine white beaches, all-inclusive resorts, tropical cocktails and ice cold beers. The capital Santo Domingo is the oldest European style city in the America’, with grand cathedrals and old fort walls. But know T-shirt shops or fast food restaurants in sight. No, the Dominicans know what’s good for them, they have their own food.

Schermafbeelding 2015-05-27 om 10.27.03

Things you don’t know about Dominican Republic:

  • Dominicans love baseball, it’s their number 1 sport! Almost 40% of US baseball players are actually Dominican.
  • The Dominican Republic is the only place in the world where the blue, semi-precious stone called larimar is found. It most closely resembles turquoise.
  • The capital city, Santo Domingo, has a rich history. Founded in 1496, it’s the oldest European settlement in the Americas.
  • The Dominican Republic is the only country in the world to have a bible simble on it’s flag
  • The only place where 5000 humpback whales travel each year to mate

This dish is so delicious, it’s a little bit like a Caribbean style paella. And I love paella! Definitely one I will make again to impress someone :D. It’s so easy and has just the right amount of spice! And the fact that you can eat it out of bowl makes me happy. I don’t know what it is with food in bowl but somehow it always gives me a very warm feeling when I eat food out of a bowl.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
Asopao De Mariscos

Read the rest of this entry »

43. China part 4: Beijing: Peking Duck Breast with Clementine & Spices

Posted on

Aaaah the capital of China, Beijing oh noo wait,… Peking? In fact they are both the same thing. But why does this city have 2 names? Here’s the thing, the Chinese government gets quite cross about English-speakers using the name Peking for their capital city, insisting on the more modern transliteration Beijing. Since Mandarin is the first language in China (Beijing is Mandarin) and Cantonese is the only the second language in China (Peking is Beijing in Cantonese). So both 100% correct and everyone will exactly know what you mean, but you’d better use Beijing.

Beijng

Here are some things you didn’t know about Beijing:

  • If you’re offered a gift, refuse to take it! At least a couple of times. Why? Because it’s considered polite in China. It shows humility and being grateful. Also, refuse compliments – always! Don’t even say, “Thank you” You just end up looking vain.

  • Beijing is the oldest City in the World – Before you discount this fact, here me out…The Peking Man lived in Dragon Bone Hill near the village of Zhoukoudian in Fangshan District about 230,000-250,000 years ago. This makes it the city with the oldest remains of human habitation.
  • The Asian girl approaching you with a camera wants to take her picture with you. They call this “making hello”. This is not a scam. Caucasians and other non-Orientals are still uncommon enough in most Beijing neighborhoods that the locals are curious.

Last Chinese recipe people!!! This is a fancy one. Since duck breast is pretty expensive. But the rest of the ingredients are quite cheap. Still it isn’t a really complicated recipe! Something to impress your parents, boyfriend, girlfriend, crush and friends 😉

Clementine peking duckbreast

Ingredients: 2 duck breasts, 5 clementines, 1 tbsp. wine vinegar, 3 tbsp. honey, 1 cinnamon stick, 2 anise stars, 3 black peppercorns

Slightly cut the duck breasts skin side with a sharp knife, without cutting the meat.

Place the duck breasts, skin underneath in a cold pan and place over medium heat.

Cook until the excess fat have melted (if needed discard fat during cooking) and the skin is golden brown and crispy.

Turn the duck breasts and cook for 2 minutes on the other side. Keep warm.

Press 4 clementines, get the zest of the fifth and then peel it and separate the wedges.

Deglaze the pan with clementine juice, add the vinegar and spices, clementine wedges and honey. Simmer over low heat until reduces by half, the sauce should not boil.

Serve the meat sliced and topped with the sauce and clementine wedges.

 

23. Bhutan: Cucumbersalad

Posted on Updated on

Bhutan, a country surrounded by the enormous mountains of the Himalaya. Bhutan has always fascinated me, because it’s kind of closed off country, only a certain amount of tourists can visit Bhutan. They are the definition of a green country, they try so hard to keep the nature intact! For instance: Bhutan is the first country in the world with specific constitutional obligations on its people to protect the environment. Among its requirements: At least 60 percent of the nation must remain under forest cover at all times. I think they are the perfect example to the rest of the world, we should all care more about the environment. I’m not saying that every country should implement a law like this, but we are not doing our utmost best to stop global warming.

cropped-bhutan1.png

So here you go some more fun facts about Bhutan:

  • The capital of Bhutan is Thimphu. It is the only capital city in the world without traffic lights! When a test set was put in place residents complained because they were too impersonal; within days they were taken down and the traditional method – men in white gloves at either end of the main street – was reinstated.
  • In Bhutan, all citizens officially become one year older on New Year’s Day.
  • Bhutan is the only country in the world that absorbs more CO2 than it gives out. It is also the only country whose largest export is renewable energy, which is hydroelectric power.
  • Healthcare and education is free in Bhutan for both residents and visitors, despite it’s poverty.
  • Television and internet was banned in Bhutan until 1999. The internet was a gift to his subjects from King Jigme Singye to celebrate his Silver Jubilee in 2000.
  • All tourists have to travel with a tour operator and pay a minimum fee of $250 per day to visit Bhutan, making it both expensive and a giant pain for backpackers to visit.

This is such an odd yet amazing country! Off course some things are ridiculous, but free healthcare and education for EVERYONE! That is just amazing and admirable! As I said I think the rest of the world can learn a lot from Bhutan! And this not even half of the amazing things I found about Bhutan! Seriously there is so much more but I can’t write down everything because that would make this post crazy long and a bit unfair to the other countries! This recipe is super simple and is mainly used as side dish next to spicy stuff.

IMG_2536

Ingredients: 1 Cucumber, 1 green chili, 1 red onion, feta cheese, cilantro

Dice the onion, cucumber and feta. Take the seeds out of the chili and chop it fine as you can.  Sprinkle over cilantro. That’s it! Super healthy!