Tag Archives: diet

Is Food an Anchor, or a mode of Transportation?

As I mentioned in a previous post, Millennials are the most global generation in history thus far. Many of us live far away from where we were born, many of us have an insatiable hunger to get to know the world that surrounds us; and for the times we can’t physically travel to a location, there is something we can use in order to take an instantaneous journey: food.

As I’m sure travelers from all generations will agree, food can be perennial to a location or a particular culture, it really doesn’t matter where one takes that bite; you can instantly be transported to wherever you associate the meal to be from originally. There is nothing quite like food to get your senses to transport your mind to another culture, or place. Especially if taken the time to enjoy and flavor Every. Single. Bite.

Close your eyes and have a slice of the best pizza in town. Let your imagination transport you to the streets of Naples. Overlook the navy blue water at the Mare Lungo while you are there. Have a bite of crepe with a touch of sugar and a cafe au lait; and imagine yourself in a street side cafe in Paris, just about to go for a walk in the Champs-Élysées.

Just as it can transport you, food can also be a delicious reminder of your roots. An anchor in the best sense of the word.

My anchor keeps me from straying too far from my home. An anchor that with every bite, reminds me of a simpler and more carefree time where I would jump out of bed to run to the breakfast table to have a meal with my family.

My anchor is the arepa, what Venezuelans call home; and with every bite, no matter my location, I suddenly find myself back in Caracas, having breakfast, overlooking the hills of the Avila mountain, and feeling that warm caribbean breeze.

What food transports you to a different place? Would love to know! Comment below, or contact me!

Cheers,

Why Eating Pizza in Napoli Changed My Perspective on Food

After an hour on the “Frecciarossa” (Italy’s express train), I was already savoring what would come next. The world famous Neapolitan pizza. I stepped out of the train on a Saturday morning in the middle of October to find a sort of beautiful chaos ruling the southern city of Naples. There were pedestrians challenging the cars and walking among them. Vehicles taking the traffic signals (if there were any) for granted; resulting in a disarray of cars, vespas, and taxis going in all (and unclear) directions. This was a day trip. a discovery trip; I wanted to rediscover pizza.

A few days earlier I was in Rome and I had called my friend Tiziana to ask her if she would meet me in Naples for some pizza. Tiziana lives in Salerno (to the south of Naples), and there was no better friend to guide me through the not-so-orderly south of Italy. She very clearly told me to stay in “Napoli Centrale” (Napoli’s train station) and wait for her before exploring on my own. Titi (as I call her), was among the many voices to tell me that Naples would be too chaotic for me to venture out on my own. Don’t get me wrong, I loved the chaos, the anarchy. It was exhilarating and full of life. Who wants calm and order all the time? I mean, after all, this was an investigation in the name of pizza; which is basically the meaning of life. What better sort of food is worth getting lost over?

We zigzag the neapolitan streets, passing what seemed like an endless amount of leather shoe stores. We walk through small cobblestone alleyways that showcase other Naples delicacies, like the babá and the sfogliatella. I want to try it all; but I keep my eye on the prize – just as I keep an empty stomach to prepare it for a feast. As I mentioned, like any self-respecting pizza lover should know: Naples is the birthplace of pizza. Naturally I had to pay this place a visit and try it. Titi and I reach the Lungomare, the seafront promenade in the bay of Naples. A beautiful sight of Mount Vesuvius and the mediterranean sea. Along the Lungomare there is an alluring amount of restaurants and bars to enjoy an aperitivo, or a pizza, while enjoying the light sea breeze. We almost sit down for our meal, but we opt to go a bit deeper, a bit more local.

We find a small ristorante in the heart of Naples. A place called “Sorbillo,” very much known to the native Neapolitan. This is the kind of place filled with locals and bustling with provincial vibes. A restaurant which mostly serves pizza. We are lucky. On that particular day, we don’t have to wait long to be seated. We are lead upstairs while we ogle the other costumers’ cheesy pies. We can’t wait, so the story goes… we both order the original pizza Margherita. Originally made for Queen Margherita de Savoy after her visit to the city in the 19th century. Let us take in the fact that the emblematic pizza Margherita was made for royalty; and before it acquired its fame, it used to be a dish for the poor. This only goes to show the revolution of history and of food. How a dish can transform cultures and societies; and no, this is not an overstatement.

The pizza Margherita (my favorite btw), is topped with San Marzano tomatoes. – which naturally grow in the volcanic plains south of Mount Vesuvius, – and with Mozzarella di Bufala di Campania, which is made by the milk of water buffalos strictly raised in Lazio or Campania. The flour used in its purest form is what Italians refer to as “00.” Neapolitan pizza has to adhere to guidelines of authenticity! So you can imagine the purity and delight. The pizza is a success. Of course, the supposed “anarchy” of the city does not put a damper on my trip, nor should it. It gives a city character, life, oh and you will likely get a good story out of it. 

In short, food is partly about the taste, but to truly enjoy the marvels of food, make a real experience out of it. Cheers!

I would love to hear your thought! Comment, contact me, or share!

Un bacio!

Darling… It’s not just about the Food

Photo by: Steph Hansman

Photo by: Steph Hansman

I like to think we are all students of life. Some students take a more active role than others I would say. Sometimes you don’t even know if you are doing it right. 

Are other people doing this thing called life better than me?! I don’t know, you might wonder. I have definitely wondered. 

Others just kind of absentmindedly go through. Doing the bare minimum just to get through the day. Just to pass the class. 

I mean you could really always make analogies about academic life and dating life. I picked academic today. 

Anyway, today I read something that struck a cord: Health is not only about what you eat, but also about what you say. 

Dang. 

I mean, how many times do people criticize and berate themselves while they are eating a healthy diet (or trying to). They insult their physical appearance because they don’t look the way they want to look – and therefore they do not feel good. 

Photo by: Elizabeth Otaola

Photo by: Elizabeth Otaola

How does anyone expect to feel good and healthy if they are always feeding themselves negative thoughts? 

Yeah they say health is 70% diet and 20% exercise. That won’t matter at all if your head is not in the right place. 

#justsaying 

This obviously goes beyond dieting but that was the most straightforward way to explain it to my fellow students. 

Hey! Btw, if you are also wondering how you are doing with life. Good for you! At least you are trying. But no comparisons people! Seriously. Everyone is going through a different path. 

Alright, I will end this post with this photograph so it’s not too cheesy 😉 

Artist: Sake

Artist: Sake

Cheers!

Go ahead… Eat those FRIESSS

Hey you! Yes, you darling. The one who tries to eat healthy all the time. You eat your fruits, your veggies, your complex carbs, maybe even drink your tea every day and know what drinking kombucha does for your body. 

Occasionally you are tempted, you are human after all. Look at all your friends eating slices of pizza or bars of snickers. Sigh. Maybe your friends are all holistic eaters, and/or vegans. If not, well, your job to keep a healthy lifestyle is just tougher. 

Amiright?

Probs. 

Anyway, I just wanted to tell you: eat those friggin’ french fries. You know you want them. 

You are out to lunch with your friends, you know you’ve been eating healthy all week. Then your friend Patricia orders eggs Benedict with a side of fries. She’s all like: “Have as many as you want!”

You start feeling all this guilt after you do. DON’T

You’ve probably heard this before but life is all about balance. Keep your healthy habits. You go! 

Occasionally you will be tempted. Occasionally have the friggin’ chocolate, or ice cream, or friessss. Those fries though. 

Now don’t go eating the fries every day and then come blaming me. Nah. Keep your body in balance. Don’t restrict yourself too much or you’ll drive yourself crazy. 

Alright, good talk. Now i’ve got to go I have a salad to finish. 

Cheers!