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Bon appétit

Savor the world

manuelita otero

There are cities that have a certain something that makes everything you do there extra special.  New York is one of those cities. And during a visit some weeks ago I was able to enjoy it even more because I decided to experience it at a slow pace instead of rushing, trying to see everything. I knew that the few days we were visiting wouldn’t be enough to do all that I wanted, but I had accepted it ahead of time and decided instead that on this trip I would absorb, enjoy, and go with the flow.

Having no plan ended up being the perfect plan because as I got lost walking through the streets (I refused to use a map or an app and look like a tourist) I had the opportunity to simply savor the city.  One of my favorite things was the fact that there was food in every corner, delicious food from all over the world. As I walked past the food trucks and small neighborhoods I loved  how food in each area changed just by walking some blocks. It reminded me how much I love food from all over the world.

These long walks awakened in me something I had wanted to do for some time: Learn more about dishes from different countries.  Food tells a story and it’s so gratifying to eat a meal and be able to appreciate its roots, the reason it is the way it is and to think that maybe that recipe  had been passed through generations keeping traditions alive. Here are some ideas I’m gathering to be able to do this:  

- Cooking recipes that are out of my comfort zone using ingredients that I may not be too familiar with.

- Trying different foods, different restaurants, and different dishes. Trying something new. Starting with my own country and learning about food from different areas.

- Teaching children close to me to eat different foods from a young age. They will appreciate it in the future.

- Watching cooking programs and documentaries to inspire me.

- Sitting down with friends and family to eat. Sitting down alone... just sitting down without distractions to enjoy a meal.

- Respecting differences. Something I may not like could be someone's favorite dish.

- Avoiding stereotypes, not all Asian food is Chinese, not all British food is bad, and not all Indian food is spicy.

- Asking my friends from other countries about their traditional dishes and cooking with them once in awhile.

- Visiting international grocery stores to see interesting fruits and vegetables.

- When planning a trip, reading about the food of the place I am visiting.

We can’t allow the daily rush to get in the way of the art of enjoying a meal.  We have access to so much information now making it easier to know more about the story behind the delicious dish in front of you.  

If you would like to know a little more about the food My daughter Nikka and I ate in New York visit this link with a blog she wrote   

Are you ready to taste the world? Enjoy the journey!

Manuelita   @manuelitaotero