Friday, February 27, 2009
We went to the hotel restaurant "Bugambilias", which is a flower grown only in Acapulco. I ate like it was my last meal. Holy cow, they were lucky I didn't start eating the flower arrangements. I got to partake of my favourite dishes, not only is it my fave Mexican dish, but it probably ranks in the all time top 10 Phairhead's Favourite Things to Eat (like a piggy!), chilaquiles. Essentially it is day old tortillas soaked in water and then sauteed and served w/ either green or red sauce and generous amounts of Oaxan cheese. It's very hard to find queso mexicano here in the U.S. but from time to time I would purchase it from my grocery store in Claremont,NH.
SexyBeast wanted to get some nice sipping tequila so we trucked off to Mall-Wart. Another great thing about Mexican Mall-Warts, you can get Nexium over the counter. And oddly, they keep the sunglasses bolted down. SexyBeast was nervous about taking the bus by ourselves and counted on me to remember our stop. In Mexico, you have to hail a bus. And there is no occupancy limit. So sometimes, cute and clever red heads end up LITERALLY hanging out of the bus.
Then back to the beach. I started a new book, a collection of short stories by Roald Dahl. SexyBeast asked if I liked it. I'll summarize, if the main character doesn't end up dead, disgraced or dehumanized in some way, then it's not a Roald Dahl.
SexyBeast and I went out to dinner by ourselves. We ended up at Tio Alex (Uncle Alex), I had the enchiladas rojas (red enchiladas). Wowie wow! They were succulent and I nearly licked my plate. SexyBeast had surf and turf. We decided to look for a quiet bar to drink and talk. Good luck trying to find that kind place in Mexico. They just don't have good dive bars.
Hopefully, I'm not boring the pants off of everyone.....
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Our tour guide Toro ("Bull") met us outside and after a quick stop at the OXXO, the local Qwikee Mart, for a SexyBeast's coffee, we set sail mateys. We saw the sun rise over the Bay of Acapulco and I thanked my lucky stars.
After about 10 minutes, the ship crew, Alejandro and Domingo, put the bait in the sea and we waited sleepily for a bite. In a matter of minutes, SexyBeast and (step)Dad got 2 nice sized black tuna. Then a marlin got away. Sucky baseball team, sucky fish. Then Captain Ahab (SexyBeast) caught the white whale (a sailfish). He reeled an 8ft sailfish after 30 mins. And to round out the day, I got a teeny tiny tuna.
SexyBeast & I took turns taking naps. The sea grew choppy and the smell of gasoline was making me queasy. Thank the gods that SexyBeast bought me green iced tea, which combined w/ potato chips and peanuts soothed my yucky belly.
We ate our bounty on the beach w/ icy cold beer. For those of you not in the know, I am not a fish lover by any means. But freshly caught fish made simply w/ onion, garlic and hot sauce is pretty fucking amazing. I stopped after scarfing down 3 fish tacos.
Full of fish and still stinking of morning....... well stink, we decided to shower, nap and have late snack. We showered, I watched cheesy ass American Pie 2 while SexyBeast slept. Then he read while I slept. Then we slept w/ the lights on. SexyBeast's mom called to find out evening plans. Neither of us could carry on a decent conversation w/ her. Then we slept and housekeeping knocked at our door. We forgot to put the Do Not Disturb sign on the door. Oops! SexyBeast hastily put on a pair of shorts and grabbed our fresh towels.
Then we turned out the lights and slept some more.
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
So apparently, Karla was a model. Say what now? As SexyBeast so eloquently stated, "Yeah, most models are ugly in real life."
All the cheftestants are in New Orleans for the finale and Fabio is looking faux-hawk fabulous. For the Quickfire, the cheftesants weren't cooking or even tasting. They just had to sweat it out while Jamie, Jeff and Leah duked it out to come back into the competition. How's that for a monkey wrench? Emeril Lagasse was guest judging for this epi. Ehhhh....... I just don't like Emeril. He's sooooo over the top and annoying. And I cannot stand the way he says the word gnocchi. Which incidentally will be the name of my next kitty. Anyways, the booted cheftestants have to make a dish using crawfish. It was close race blah blah blah yr all winners blah blah blah. And Jeff Dildo is back. Come again? Yup, that's right the dildo is back. Because Emeril liked his crawfish and grits w/ andouille. The hitch in the get along is Jeff has to win the Elimination Challenge in order to go onto the final finale.
For the Elimination Challenge, the cheftestants had to make 2 dishes and a drink for a Mardi Gras party and incorporate the flavours of New Orleans style cookin'. Good times, beads and masks. Whoot! And the winner was Karla. Again I say, huh? Really? I don't get it people. Karla made oyster stew (blech!), shrimp and andouille beignet (eh. not a shrimp fan) and a non-alcoholic cranberry spritzer. And going no further are 2 time loser Jeff Dildo and Fabio. Fabio had great personality but he was an uneven chef. Plus his bell pepper martini was not great and the judges were not impressed that he made muffuletta. Averiderci Fabio!
Next week, the winner!
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Feb 10th was a very important day for me. It was the full moon. I have always felt a strong affinity w/ the moon. Perhaps because I was born during a full moon, my email addie is firstname.lastname@example.org and luna is derived from the Latin from lunatic. Yup that pretty much me all over.
This particular day, SexyBeast and I checked out the pool because there was waaaaaaaaay too much garbage floating in the ocean. I was not disappointed by the chlorinated pool. I am much happier in water than on land.
As I have noted previously, SexyBeast's parents have been going to Acapulco for the past decade. As such, they have acquired many Mexican friends. For dinner that evening, we went out to an Italian place called Maretto's w/ the 'rents good friend Nacho. Italian is HUGE in Mexico. SexyBeast was joking around w/ me. "We flew 6 hours to go out for Italian?" Maretto's is owned by another friend of the 'rents Carlos. He was beautiful and he can cook. *sigh* So dreamy and bald : ) Anyways, the restaurant overlooked the bay of Acapulco, the night air was sweet and I had the full moon looking over my shoulder.
The downside was I almost didn't get my food. It's a fairly new place and Carlos has never owned a restaurant before so there's still alot of kinks to be worked out. Like the fact that he booked a large birthday party who brought a horrible mariachi band.
Bed at 12:45 and I was questioning whether I wanted to get up at 5:30 am to go fishing...
Monday, February 23, 2009
1) If you could eliminate (or lessen the effect of) one emotion from your life, which would you choose? This is a repeat from last week. As I said, it would be jealousy. It reinforces my feelings of inadequacy.
2) What is the nicest imperfection in your Significant Other? His steadfast refusal to give into my arguments. He never caves on anything.
3) If one thing you own were to become a religious relic, what would you pick? I'm not touching this one. I'd be Madonna's bra. So there
4) Show and Tell. What comes to mind first when you see this picture? Or, tell a story if it reminds you of one. Come out of yr ivory tower!
Sunday, February 22, 2009
With one critical exception, the tide turned and the ocean was FILTHY. I swear a dirty condom brushed up against my leg. Which prompted SexyBeast to sing the "Dirty Condom" song. The only line I can remember is "Dirty condom/Floatin' in the water...."
For supper that evening, we went to Jovito's. I find that name very strange. In the Spanish language, there is no apostrophe s. More acclimation to American and Canadian tourists I guess. SexyBeast's parents know the owner. He's a playboy gambler w/ a much younger Japanese girlfriend. Little known fact, there is a fast growing Japanese population in Mexico. SexyBeast, myself and (step)Dad had the Bricklayer, a yummy carne asada dish w/ peppers, onions, beans and rice.
SexyBeast's mom wanted to go shopping after dinner. I wanted to walk around the neighborhood. Mexican street merchants usually keep long hours. Perfect for the those late night bargains. SexyBeast and I decided we didn't feel like standing around in the street waiting on the 'rents, so we went to Barbaroja's (Red Beard's) for the 2 for 1 nightly drink specials. I didn't mention this before, but I started off this vacation w/ a head cold. For whatever reason, the thought of drinking any alcoholic beverage at was going to make me boot. So I stuck w/ soda and tried to ignore the horrible throbbing sensation on the left side of my head. Here's a tip, loud and annoying 1970's disco music does not help a pounding headache. At some point, SexyBeast's parents joined us and we sat for one more set of drinks before I crawled back to the hotel.
Sleeping w/ SexyBeast made me feel infinitely better.
Saturday, February 21, 2009
I started off the day by reading under the umbrella. I borrowed The Watchmen from my oldest brother Christofoe in preparation for the movie. I'll post more on that after I've seen the film. Then SexyBeast and I walked along the beach. Here's a tip, folks, beach walking time is best when the sun is not approaching it's zenith. It was hot and my too big flip flops were not conducive to leisure walking.
Vacation makes you lose all sense of time. Sometime after swimming in the ocean, I decided to drink a few pina coladas. It could have been at 11 am for all I knew.
We took a break from relaxing to go to Walmart to get money and drinks and cheap liquor. As many of you know, I AM NOT a proponent of Walmart in any way, shape or form. I did not go there by choice..... and neither do the Mexicans. Whilst I was living in Guadalajara in 1997, the big department store was Gigante. Gigante has since folded and has been taken over by Mall-Wart. That being said, it was clean, the food was fresh and delicious and the people working there knew what they were doing.
Then more swimming, relaxing and falling asleep beach side.
SexyBeast decided he wanted fish for dinner, so we all went to Paradise, another wonderful seaside restaurant. Great thing about this trip, SexyBeast's parents have been going to Acapulco for over a decade. They are in the know. SexyBeast had his red tail snapper (which incidentally is not in fact red) and I tucked into beef skewers.
That night we actually stayed up until 10:30. Woot!
Thursday, February 19, 2009
SexyBeast had a loooooooooong way to go to get to Acapulco. We started off taking the train from Rennselaer to Penn Station. We had a bit of wait at Penn and holy cow did I enjoy people watching. I saw a scary middle aged man hit on every woman sitting by herself. He told this one poor girl that she looked like Rachel Ray. "She's gorgeous and so are you!" Then he started in on his shoe fetish. The woman promptly got out her cell phone and scary guy left in pursuits of love from another. SexyBeast & I noticed that scary guy had no luggage or other gear w/ him. We concluded that he prowls the train stations looking for the ladies. Then there was the obligatory crazy guy yelling at no one. I didn't want to be so and I looked to see if he was plugged into a bluetooth. He wasn't. Sadly. And best of all, angry guy dissolving his marriage over the phone. Apparently, his wife has left him for another woman w/ 5 kids in Virginia. And, GODDAMMIT, never answers her phone!
Another great thing about Penn was the cheap and tasty pizza which I promptly dumped on my white shirt. Why do I even bother to wear white?
We boarded the train that brought us to Newark International airport. Being in Jersey, made me realize how much I don't like being Jersey. We were to take the air tram to P1 for all Continental flights. So it stops at the 1st stop and we get screamed at. "Get out! Get out!" Ummm... this isn't our stop. "It's being cleaned and the other tram is broken!" OK? So, how long do we have to wait for the next tram? "I don't know!"
So we finally get to Continental and it's about 12:30 am. No counters open, no airport people able to tell us when we could get our tickets. Nothing. We slept on and off until about 3:30. It's quite an experience to sleep in an airport chair.
Then all of sudden the airport comes alive! We find someone who sorta knows what their talkin' about. And we're walking along, when this woman screeches at me, "WHERE ARE YOU GOING?" Please bear in mind, I'm tired, delirious, unshowered and more than a little cranky. So I didn't answer right away. "WELL?" SexyBeast tells her Mexico. "YOU HAVE TO GET IN LINE HERE!!!!" Then sarcastic bitchy me kicks in. "Thanks. Have a nice day, ma'am." Smirky smirkyton. "I'M BEING NICE AND TRYING TO HELP YOU!!!!! AND YR STARING ME AT LIKE I HAVE 2 HEADS!" "Yup, I'll be sure to have a nice flight." Then not 2 seconds later she started screeching at a middle aged couple who dared to move the velvet rope so they could better maneuver their large suitcases. "SIR!!! YOU CANNOT TOUCH THAT! YOU HAVE TO WALK AROUND LIKE EVERYONE ELSE!!!!!"
tee hee : ) So we finally get to our gate and decide to have some eats at Au Bon Pain. I had an egg sandwich on ciabatta. 6.50! No drink either, peeps. SexyBeast had a sesame bagel w/ cream cheese. When he asked for it to be toasted, he was refused as all of Au Bon's toasters were broken. Lame.
Relatively quiet flight from Newark to Houston. And what a world of difference, the people in Houston were soooooooo polite and friendly. Because of the time change and weird hours we had been keeping, SexyBeast & I went for lunch at 9 am at this little diner place. I had a BLT salad and mojito. SexyBeast had a burger and whiskey.
Unfortunately, we were not sitting together for the ride to Acapulco. Bummer.
We landed in Acapulco, got through customs no problem. And were met w/ by SexyBeast's (step)father and his sign "Gringo Estupido". FYI, estupido is a really huge insult in Mexico. If you need to, use the word tonto/a.
Then it hit me, I was back in Mexico. I spent a semester abroad in Guadalajara almost 12 years ago. And I've been itching to get back. I was beyond happy. And also, really fucking hot. Holy cow, I forgot how humid it can get there!
We get to our hotel, El Presidente, right on the main strip of "old" Acapulco. It's kinda like the difference between "new" Vegas and "old" Vegas. Point of fact, snobby people want to vacation in Mexico but they don't want to be near any actual Mexicans. Our room had 2 double beds, big shower and an A/C that worked really well. Best of all, THE VIEW. We were literally feet from the ocean.
SexyBeast & I both hopped in the shower (not like that! his parents were waiting) to rinse the stink off. Then we hit the beach. Or rather, the lounge chairs under the umbrella in front of the beach.
After 15 minutes of sweating, we hit the water. Ouch, hot sand! Whoa, strong tide! Eep, don't stick yr face in the ocean, very very salty. And then, hey I'm in paradise, in the blue water under the clear sky. Keep on swimming, little guppy.
We got out of the water to enjoy guacamole, real salsa and a few beers. Heaven! Just as the sun was dipping down, 'round 6ish, we reshowered and headed out to eat at Tacos N' Beer. Guess what they served? I liked it alot. Low key, quiet and overlooking the beach. I had chorizo (my fave!), steak and cheese tacos. So simple and so tasty. And of course, beer. I had one Coronita, an 8 oz Corona.
Then it hit me, holy fuck! I'm exhausted. Somehow I ambled back to our room and fell asleep in SexyBeast's arms.
For the Quickfire Challenge, the cheftestants had to prepare eggs for guest judge and molecular gastronomist Wylie Dufresne. He's a kookster avant garde chef but really likes him some breakfast. Bottom of pile were Fabio and his quail egg on mini buckwheat pancake and coconut panna cotta with mango puree made to look like a sunny side up egg. Plus lychee soup served in a hollowed out egg shell. BLECHY! And also he didn't use any, ya know, EGGS, since that what was the point of this challenge. And my girly Leah with her quail egg in potato with caviar and brioche w/ ricotta and bacon Hollandaise. I would eat around the caviar. However, the potato was too heavy and greasy. Awww : ( The winner was Carla her "green" eggs and ham, fried eggs with spinach in the whites to make them green and green tomato salsa w/ jalapeno. Meh. But Wylie liked the less is more approach. Carla was the only cheftesant to only make a one component dish. Carla wins a advantage for the Elimination Challenge.
And for the Elimination Challenge, the cheftesants picked knives from the knife block o' doom. MUHAHAHAHAHA!!! Each cheftestant choose a prominent name from the culinary world and had to cook them their "last" meal. My fave concept so far this competition! Immediately, I thought of what I would want to eat for the last time. After careful consideration, I would go w/ medium rare fillet mignon w/ bleu cheese and caramelized onions, garlic mashed potatoes, lima beans, a black and white cookie and a large chai. As Quickfire winner Carla had the ability to take someone's person. But she stuck w/ Jacques Pepin and his roast squab w/ peas. I love Jacques too! Great chef and fun to watch on PBS. PBS is good for you, children.
And finally winning was Signore Fabio and his roast chicken, roast potatoes and spinach salad for Lidia Bastianich, the Italian chef lady on another PBS program. I have to say, I was happy for the Fabio. He had to carve a chicken w/ a broken finger. Congrats. And going home was *SOB SOB* Leah for making Wylie Dufresne unhappy again with another bad egg dish. I'm sorry to see her go : (
Onto the finale, go Hosea!
For the Quickfire Challenge, the chefs had last man standing fish filleting competition. First came sardines. Sheesh, those itty bitty stinkers that come in cans? Glad I'm not a chef. And Jamie and Carla are out. Next was Artic Char, not sure what it is but it looks about the same size of a trout. And then my home girl Leah gives up half way through! What? Get yr head in the game, girl! Needless to say, she and Fabio were called out. And finally, eel. Which Stefan quickly and expertly fillets in about 2.2 nanoseconds, thereby making him the winner. And as you folks know by now, Stefan will not have immunity but will be compensated in a major way for the Elimination Challenge.
Speaking of which (nice segue way Sue), for the Elimination Challenge the cheftestants dined at Le Bernadin and to recreate one of chef Eric Ripert's fish dishes. And as an aside Eric Ripert seems like such a nice guy. Anyways, as Stefan won the Quickfire, he chose whatever fish dish he wanted while the rest of the cheftestants had to choose from the knife block o' doom.
At the Judges' Table, Stefan was chosen as the winner w/ his interpretation of baked lobster w/ asparagus and Hollandaise sauce. To be fair, it was one of the easier dishes to replicate. But I still like that arrogant prick Stefan. And packing their knives and going home is Jamie. Really? I'm surprized it wasn't Leah. But Jamie sucked and she over salted her celery. And she was really annoying anyways. She was bored and uninspired by the food at Le Bernadin. Asshole! And apparently she hates celery. Why? You burn calories as you eat it. Plus it tastes fucking awesome w/ cream cheese and walnuts. Come back when you can't stay so long, Jamie
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Monday, February 16, 2009
1) If you could eliminate (or lessen the effect of) one emotion from your life, which would you choose? Jealousy definitely. Which relates back to my feelings of inadequacy. Someone else is always more intelligent, more beautiful, more eloquent than I. It's eating me from the inside out.
2) What one thing would you find the hardest about being in prison? Trying not to get raped.
3) Who has surprised you most with their faith? My friend Rachele. Check out her blog http://theallones.blogspot.com.
4) Show and Tell. What comes to mind first when you see this picture? Or, tell a story if it reminds you of one. Feels like the first time we fucked.
Friday, February 6, 2009
Thursday, February 5, 2009
However, I didn't know what the hell he gave me! Apparently, Pablo and Tamantha (my sister-in-law) we're inspired by a feature on "Sunday Morning", The Best Music of '08 that you've Never Heard of.
Pablo took a chance and it paid off. I love "The Mande Variations" by Toumani Diabate, a Malinese man that plays the kora. It's beautiful chill out music for Sunday reading the paper and drinking White Russians until you pass out on the couch. It's complex and sad and lovely.
And CD #2 is The Hold Steady and "Stay Positive". HOLY GOD!!! The first track, "Constructive Summer", sounds like "Jail Guitar Doors" by the orgasmically wonderful The Clash. Oh, wait! What did Craig Finn just sing? "Raise a toast to Saint Joe Strummer..." My love for The Hold Steady knows no bounds. They're gruff and dirty and honest. If Toumani Diabate is Sunday, then The Hold Steady is a muggy Friday night in June, hanging out in dive bars and slamming shots of Jagermeister.
Now, you must immediately purchase this fine music. Go. Now.
Wednesday, February 4, 2009
This epi was all about the Superbowl shtick, me personally I could really care less about football but I digress. For the Quickfire Challenge, the cheftestants picked a square that corresponded w/ a food "group" and a mystery ingredient. But hee hee, joke's on the cheftestants, 'cause the mystery ingredient was the same for everyone, OATS. Hee, isn't that fun?And apparently Fabio hates veggies. Bottom o' the barrel were Leah (aww man) for over cooked fish that clashedwith bacon, Fabio for being too heavy handed w/ the oat crust and Jeff for more heavy handedness. And the big time winner was Stefan and his dairy oat of banana mousseand oat petit 4. Ehh I dunna know, sounds a bit too desserty but what the heck do I know, I could eat a mountain of Kraft Mac n' Cheese.
The Elimination Challenge had the chefs going head to head w/ "all stars" from previous Top Chef seasons making regional cuisine from a football city in 20 minutes in front of culinary students. Piece of torte! As Stefan won the Quickfire, he had a choice of which city he wanted and which former cheftestant he wanted to chef against : ) And hey, looks who's in the audience, it the eliminated chefs from this season. Ugh Daniel/Danny looks terrible w/out the weird beard. Not only were the judges judging but the audience members were too, adding to the pointage for each cheftesant.
Scoring a touchdown was crazy bug eyed Carla and her gumbo representing a taste of New Orleans, she bested my cutie Andrew from Top Chef season 4. I predict this will be her last win and she will be eliminated in the next epi. And packing their knives and going is pretty boy Jeff for screwing up Miami style ceviche, he lost to Josie and her hot ceviche. Good riddance, now he can go back to home to work at Club Dildo (actually it's Dildio but dildo is such a funny word).
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
My lovely and talented blogger friend Albany Jane, of www.albanyeats.blogspot.com, has also made mention of this truly hallowed grocery chain. Please be sure to check out her post.
I love love love their produce, their breads and cereals, the infamous 2 Buck Chuck (nationally rated wine that only costs $2.65). Of course, I have a few staples that I must always purchase: chicken taquitos, placed in a toaster oven for a mere 12 minutes and you'll swear yr in Mexico, Sweet N' Savory trail mix bars, sweet fruit and slightly salted nuts, what's not to love? And last but certainly not least, Nuts about Raspberries and Chocolate trail mix. HOLY GOD!!!! Dehydrated morsels of ripen red raspberries mixed with almonds (great for lowering cholesterol!) and peanuts (no salt added to either nut!) and chocolates chips. So yummylicious. I got a big ol' basket of groceries all for 25 bucks and some change.
Sadly, there are no local Trader Joe's in the Capital District. There's a rumour floating around the reason we are being deprived of the luxury of Trader Joe's is 'cause Trader Joe's and Aldi's are owned by the same company. And this Aldi's country. ARGH. You cannot compare Aldi's w/ Trader Joe's, blah.
Still, I have put my name down on the "Bring Trader Joe's to Albany" petition. I urge you all to do the same.
Monday, February 2, 2009
1) Who is the least generous friend you have? Everyone I consider a good friend has never been stingy w/ anything. I wouldn't associate myself w/ people who weren't generous in some way.
2) If you could change one thing about your typical day, what would you change? Going to work. Just send me the money from home, thanks.
3) What has been the most profound experience of your life so far? It's a common cliche that travel broadens the mind. Gonna have to agree w/ that. Any of my travel adventures has a effected in in very significant ways.
5) Show and Tell. What comes to mind first when you see this picture? Or, tell a story if it reminds you of one. I want to go back to Portsmouth, NH and live on the beach.