Week 52. Ecuador. Arroz con menestra

Some stats to start off:

  • So far I have done 52 countries
  • It has taken 589 days
  • I average a blog every 11.3 days
  • I should therefore finish after 2208 days
  • 2208 days is 315 weeks
  • 315 weeks is 6.06 years
  • 6.06 years from the day I began is 19th June 2016
  • Save the date for the closing party!

It should be May 2011. I should have, ideally, cooked 52 dishes (one for every week) a year after this blog began. I’m way off, but so are my priorities.

I will never let this blog die, I will absolutely reach my goal and I will post most weeks. I won’t, however, care too much about the quality of my writing. It stressed me out somewhat at the beginning and I thought in depth what I needed to write about, how I could be interesting and or funny. I’m over that. I don’t really like writing – not a huge amount. I love cooking and I love seeing this blog grow and the list of countries to cook dwindle, but the actual writing – not so much. I envy people who can just spit out interesting articles day after day, week after week, but I do wonder how taxing it is to think about what to write. For those who do it easily – I salute you.

I’m off work today as we have a scan for baby number two. We decided not to find out this time the sex, which for someone as obsessive compulsive as I am was utter torture. I cannot stand the idea that someone knows something I don’t, when I could. We had the situation where the sonographer (bit grumpy, occasionally smiley, very attractive) asked “do you want to know the sex?”. Everything inside me screamed “of course I bloody do – you know and now you need to tell me”, but we had agreed we wouldn’t find out this time so I coughed out “nope”. Her next line was not what I expected. I thought she would just know and would not tell us, but instead she needed to write the type of genitalia on her screen, so asked us to turn our heads away. Both Des and I were looking as different screens which meant I then had the opportunity to easily cheat and just sneak a peek. The agony of not turning was like having my nails pulled out. It pulled at the depths of my self control. I succeeded and I suppose I am proud of myself, but it was horrible. Anyway – I saw no willies or anything close, so I’m pretty sure we are having a girl.

Due to the time off this afternoon I knew it was a day for a blog, so yesterday I drew Ecuador. I spent some time researching the country and was slightly confused what to do as I have done the national dish (Cervice) before, when I cooked Panama. This confusion ended the minute I stumbled across the food blog of Laylita. Ecuadorian food galore. Usually I spend time looking at loads of recipes, changing them, adding in my spin, the spin of others and creating a recipe from scratch. This week I didn’t bother. I just chose one of Laylitas. I invite you to look at her site. It’s colourful and full of great looking dishes. This is clearly someone I would get on with as she clearly loves her cooking.

The dish was fantastic. I rarely get suprised from looking at a recipe and then tasting the results, but this time I definitely was. I have cooked lentils in an Asian dhal form hundreds of times, but rarely have I altered the flavour completely. This did that. The lack of spice heat and the inclusion of saffron (I used instead of traditional achiote) and fresh coriander, made it taste deliciously fresh. The steak was predictably iron rich and buttery rare and this complemented the lentils beautifully. The rice was nutty with turmeric and I decided to add a fried egg as Laylita suggested this is what vegetarians had instead of meat. I had to have both!

It tasted like the innards of the poshest burrito ever made.

I’m not going to give you the recipe – It’s on http://www.laylita.com. I want you to go there and find it.



2 thoughts on “Week 52. Ecuador. Arroz con menestra

  1. Looks delicious. But then again, runny eggs and rare meat look SO GOOD right now! Plus you had to mention Ceviche too! Just making this pregnant foody want to cry!

    Great work on the will power. We don’t have will power but we do have ‘willy’ power! tee hee!


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