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eG Food Blog: Panaderia Canadiense (2011)

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#61 Katie Meadow

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 10:55 AM

Wow, Colada Morada puts our smoothies to shame. Would love to taste that. This blog is fascinating, all the way round--thank you so much.

There is a simpler version of corn-flour thickened drink in Mexico and parts Norte called Atole. I believe it is often flavored with cinnamon and sugar and thickened with yellow or blue corn meal masa. When I lived in New Mexico I was close to a family whose roots are in Santa Fe. My friend's father drank it every day for breakfast when he was growing up. I did a few minutes research and it seems that Atole is also very popular for Day of the Dead festivities.

About that black corn....can you eat it as corn? Or is it only used as flour? In all the years I lived in NM I never did see an ear of fresh blue corn, only the meal or flour.

#62 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 11:34 AM

Blue or Black corn can be eaten on the cob, but it's incredibly starchy and has little other flavour to recommend it - I've grown it and tried it, which is why I can even tell you that. That's why you rarely see it in fresh cobs, but rather in dried kernel or meal/flour forms.

Atole sounds like a drink we call Morocho, which is cinnamon and panela water thickened with ground flint corn.

Edited by Panaderia Canadiense, 02 November 2011 - 11:52 AM.

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#63 kalypso

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 11:52 AM

Atole is masa based and can be just about any flavor that the person making it desires. I've made Atole de Zarza (blackberry)which is quite delicious. Guava is also really good. And, of course, when you start adding chocolate in moves into champarado territory. It's an acquired taste for some, though.

PC this has been a fascinating blog so far. Really enjoyed the market tour. It was a nice opportunity to compare and contrast it with those that I am very familiar with in Mexico. IIRC, the currency in Ecuador is the American dollar, yes?

And as for pink guava...it's a great additive to margaritas. Steep a bottle of silver tequila with 5-8 cleaned chile de arbols, strain. Make your favorite maggie and add the guava juice to taste for a spicy guava margarita.

Okay, back to you PC and Ecuador and more of this yummy tour

#64 Dejah

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 03:56 PM

The food blogs are such an education for those of us who haven't ventured far beyond the N.A. continent!

I love how you showed the process of the Colada Morada and other exotic food porn, then, in total contrast, show us your roast chicken supper - something more familiar to most of us!

Bravo!
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#65 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 04:00 PM

Yup, we're on the USD. We'll see for how long....

I'm sorry I haven't given y'all a substantial update before now, folks. Today was occupied with the elaboration and selling of Guaguas de Pan, which are the second component of the traditional foods for Dia de los Difuntos. My breakfast consisted of "quality assurance" guaguas - the ones that had hemorrhaged filling in the baking process.

Continuing the dual tradition, the Guagua represents thanks for the grain harvest and wishes for a good season in the Incan tradition, and the Body of Christ in the Catholic tradition. This is made a bit more disturbing when you note that the traditional filling for Guaguas is either mora or guava jam, so when you bite into one, it bleeds. For the linguistically curious, "guagua" (pronounced wah-wah) is the Kichua word for "baby." The most traditional form of this filled bread is a masa of white corn and quinua flours, filled with guava sweet, and baked in Horno Leña (a wood-fired clay dome oven); hardly anybody makes that type anymore. White bread is now the standard, sadly.

I make 7-grain Guaguas with non-traditional fillings - this year's are cinnamon-chocolate-panela with walnuts, stevia peanut butter with raisins (for diabetics), and brandy black chocolate ganache. The most popular with eaters is the cinnamon-chocolate, so I'll be making more accordingly next year.

Photos later - the uploader isn't cooperating. :hmmm: That sucks, because I had a hot candied fig sandwich off a cart for lunch, and that's such a neat thing....
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#66 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 04:17 PM

Alrighty, let's try this again... Yes! We have uploader! I'm skipping the dough method for the Guaguas - it's the same as the bread I made on Sunday.

Here's how a Guagua de Pan is formed (or at least one of the methods). I start with a 4 oz ball of dough, and roll it out into a rough oval about 1/8" thick. About 1/4 to 1/3 of this becomes the head, and the remainder is stripped for braiding.
BreadBaby-Open.jpg

Then the center strip of dough is brushed with butter and the granular filling added in - in this case, a mix of grated couberture semiamargo chocolate, cinnamon, chopped walnuts, and panela.
BreadBaby-Filled.jpg

Chocolate chips are pressed into the head by way of eyes. 4 oz babies made of 7-grain dough take 25 minutes to bake, with a light egg glaze.
BreadBabies-Cooling.jpg
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#67 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 04:25 PM

And here's the fig cart where I bought lunch. I was hoping that I wasn't too late in the season for this - figs normally disappear around mid to late October. What's going on here is an uniquely Ecuadorian take on them, too. The figs are scored and stewed in heavy panela and spice syrup in a big pot right on the cart (propane burner underneath), then scooped out hot into fresh bread with queso fresco, and a bit of sauce to make it nice and gooey-sticky.

A fig sandwich costs 60 cents, contains three large figs, and is absolutely amazing - unfortunately, I snarfed mine too fast to get a picture (selling Guaguas de Pan on the street is hungry work!), but here's the cart.
FigCart.jpg
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#68 kalypso

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 05:08 PM

I want one of those...NOW!!!

Sweet, salty, chewy, bready...yum, what's not to love :shock:

#69 kayb

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 05:17 PM

Photos later - the uploader isn't cooperating. :hmmm: That sucks, because I had a hot candied fig sandwich off a cart for lunch, and that's such a neat thing....


I was about to start looking for flights when I saw that gorgeous array from the sweets shop. But the prospect of a hot candied fig sandwich? I'm packing!

PanCan, this is MARVELOUS! You make Ecuador come alive!
Don't ask. Eat it.

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#70 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 05:51 PM

Kay, I'm not sure where you are, but you can fly to Ecuador from Newark return for about $600 on the national carrier of the Galapagos, AeroGal....
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#71 Shelby

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 07:12 PM

And here's the fig cart where I bought lunch. I was hoping that I wasn't too late in the season for this - figs normally disappear around mid to late October. What's going on here is an uniquely Ecuadorian take on them, too. The figs are scored and stewed in heavy panela and spice syrup in a big pot right on the cart (propane burner underneath), then scooped out hot into fresh bread with queso fresco, and a bit of sauce to make it nice and gooey-sticky.

A fig sandwich costs 60 cents, contains three large figs, and is absolutely amazing - unfortunately, I snarfed mine too fast to get a picture (selling Guaguas de Pan on the street is hungry work!), but here's the cart.
FigCart.jpg



OHHHHHH everyone that knows me here, knows that I have an obsession with fresh figs. I'm PEA GREEN with envy.

#72 nikkib

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Posted 02 November 2011 - 08:52 PM

I actually thought of you the other day Shelby, we had some guests from the Midwest in the restaurant and one of them was asking me if the raw dates we had were figs. I went to get one from the chefs for him and then got to enjoy the sight of them eating their first fig - easy to forget how lucky we are to have ready access to things we can often take for granted!
"Experience is something you gain just after you needed it" ....A Wise man

#73 Shelby

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 06:28 AM

I actually thought of you the other day Shelby, we had some guests from the Midwest in the restaurant and one of them was asking me if the raw dates we had were figs. I went to get one from the chefs for him and then got to enjoy the sight of them eating their first fig - easy to forget how lucky we are to have ready access to things we can often take for granted!


:cool:


That was so nice of you to do that for him. That's an experience he'll never forget. :smile:

#74 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 06:35 AM

Dinner last night was what we affectionately call "Lazy Bastard Tuna Casserole" - it's made in the cast-iron frypan on the stovetop, and as such takes much less time and we can control how tuna-y it tastes as well.

Starting ingredients:
Weds-Dinner-Ingredients.jpg

In the pan:
Weds-DinnerInPan.jpg

In bowls (with a nice green salad and some spicy pickled cabbage of my own design)
Weds-Dinner2.jpg

Weds-Dinner.jpg
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#75 StanSherman

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 06:36 AM

That brings back memories of my first fig.

#76 Zeemanb

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 07:28 AM

Blue or Black corn can be eaten on the cob, but it's incredibly starchy and has little other flavour to recommend it - I've grown it and tried it, which is why I can even tell you that. That's why you rarely see it in fresh cobs, but rather in dried kernel or meal/flour forms.


Definitely an acquired taste! When I was working for a tiny church in northeastern Arizona, the pastor and his wife had a huge garden and one thing they grew a lot of was the multi-colored corn. They would prepare it just like regular corn on the cob, and it did take some getting used to. Amazingly heavy and starchy....a good sized ear was about as filling as an entree. It was considered good luck to find and eat a solid blue or black ear...for what reason I have no idea. I got to a point where I preferred it over sweet corn, and it is VERY hard to find fresh back here in midwestern corn country. At the market a corn farmer will look at me like I'm insane when I ask about it. I'm very curious to try it again 20 years later and see what I think of it...back then we ate it because it was filling and piecing together enough food for a meal was often a challenge.

Anyway, enjoying the blog even though it is salt on a big wound....last weekend was the final week of the season for my local Farmer's Market! :smile:

#77 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 08:45 AM

Breakfast today was Colada and a Guagua, the way they're meant to be eaten - in a leisurely manner, and together. This is one of the exploded black chocolate truffle with walnut Guaguas.
Thrus-Breakfast.jpg

Today's adventures will include searching for a tasty Cuy downtown, shopping for nuts and spices, and a visit to the city's oldest and best cafe and heladeria - The Oasis.
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#78 Darienne

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 08:58 AM

One the side benefits of working with chocolate and other goodies...you get to eat the 'seconds'. :biggrin:
Darienne


learn, learn, learn...

Cheers & Chocolates

#79 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 08:59 AM

Yeah, but with a bakery specializing in the use of real butter, it's a wonder I'm able to maintain my girlish figure! :laugh:
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#80 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 12:44 PM

Success! Lunch today was the (sometimes epic) search for a good plate of Cuy for me, and a plate of Conejo (Rabbit) for Mom. Happily, Asadero Los Cuyes downtown was open.
LosCuyes.jpg

For those who don't know, a Cuy (Coo-ee) is known to the English-speaking world as a Guinea Pig (though why I'm not entirely sure - they're not native to Guinea or to the Guayanas). It's the traditional protein animal of the Andean nations, and there are specialized breeders here that are dedicated to producing large, meaty Cuyes for the restaurant trade. The normal way to cook a Cuy is to roast it over hot charcoal - this can be done with a Cuy on a stick (most common in rural areas) or in large rotisseries designed specifically for this purpose. Asadero Los Cuyes uses their rotisserie for Cuy, Conejo and chickens - the typical load is 4 rabbits, 6 cuyes, and 10 chickens. The smoke is vented to the street, where its scent entices diners. We took the last available table in the restaurant, which was right across from the rotisserie. This meant that we got a bit of ash blown towards us when busses passed outside, but it also made for some great pictures!
LosCuyes-Roaster1.jpg
LosCuyes-Roaster2.jpg

Finished spits are stored next to the rotisserie; as the meat is ordered, it's reheated on a small grill over the coals.
LosCuyes-Spits.jpg

Although Sopa de Legumbras (rich vegetable soup) was the starter of the day, we opted to skip the soup (for reasons that will become obvious in a moment) and go straight to the main course, 1/4 beastie with creamy peanut-sauce potatoes (the traditional accompaniment) and salad. Here's my Cuy (it came with its little paw still attached, but happily this time not its head, which kind of creeps me out.) Cuy has a mildly gamey taste similar to wild rabbit, is very rich (think of a fat level comparable to goose), and once you get past the North American feeling that it's a pet, it's delicious.
LosCuyes-Cuy.jpg

And here's Mom's rabbit - it looks like her quarter was the portion just before the haunch. It was incredibly meaty.
LosCuyes-Bunny.jpg

Aji at this restaurant was fiercely spicy to offset the richness of the Cuy.
LosCuyes-Aji.jpg

Not pictured is the fresh white-pineapple juice that came with the plates. For two people, this portion of lunch came to $8.50.

Edited by Panaderia Canadiense, 03 November 2011 - 12:50 PM.

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#81 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 01:08 PM

After the Cuy, we decided to head to the Mercado Modelo, a few blocks away, for some Llapingachos. First, a bit about the market, and then a bit more about the Llapingachos.

The Mercado Modelo is one of about 6 permanent daily farmer's markets in Ambato; it serves the northern portion of the downtown core. Unlike the Gran Feria Libre that I shop at on Mondays, the permanent markets are open seven days a week. However, the prices here are a bit higher, and you're definitely buying from middlemen. This said, when you run out of something midweek, this is where to come to buy more. The Modelo has two floors - the bottom is produce, meat, and dry goods, and upstairs is small eateries and clothing.
Modelo1.jpg
Modelo2.jpg

The Modelo is unique among the markets for separating the meat sellers from the sellers of lard, achiote-lard, and prepared pig products.
Modelo-LibrilloLard.jpg

The main floor is also home to the Zumadores - juicers who use whole fruits in western-style juicing machines. They're who you visit when you have a craving for celery and carrot juices.
Modelo-FloorJuicers.jpg

However, we were here for Llapingachos (ya-pin-GA-chos), a type of fried potato pancake that's part of Ambato's signature dishes. There are a number of sellers of this delicacy up on the second floor; we chose Doña Carmita's because they looked and smelled fantastic, and because we've eaten here before.
Modelo-Llaping1.jpg

Llapingachos are cooked on a plancha in achiote oil and the fat from chunks of chorizo (which are part of the full Llapingacho platter)
Modelo-LlapinGrill.jpg

The full plate, modeled here by Doña Carmita herself, includes four Llapingachos, half an avocado, some salad, chorizo, chunks of lechon horneado (roast suckling pig) and a fried egg.
Modelo-LlapinPlate.jpg

However, since we were already full of Cuy and Conejo, we opted for a simpler plate of just four Llapingachos.
Modelo-Llapingachos.jpg

After that, it was obviously time for more fresh juice! We headed over to the upstairs juice bank.
Modelo-UpperJuiceCounter.jpg

Here, we decided on fresh coconut juice, which was blended up before our eyes. The jar in the background contains Com'y Bebe (eat 'n drink), a sort of fruit-salad in juice. Of course, after we were halfway into our 75 cent giant glass of juice, we recalled that at juice counters you can order blends. Duh. Coconut and Mora is one of Mom's favourites, and the girls behind the counter will blend to whatever proportions you wish.
Modelo-Juice.jpg
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#82 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 01:54 PM

Now completely stuffed, it was time for a bit of shopping before dessert. Spice Bazaar, run by Elsa, is where we buy nutmeg with the mace still on it, dried fruits, sunflower seeds, and macadamia nuts.
Elsa-Longshot.jpg
Elsa-Closeup.jpg

After that, it was time to head for Oasis, which is Ambato's longest-running Heladeria and Cafeteria (here, the word "Cafeteria" is equal to a Cafe or Coffeeshop in North American terms.) It's been in the same spot for more than 50 years, and serves some of the best Helado de Paila available indoors. It's also one of the few spots in Ambato where one can get Cafe Esencia - distilled essence of coffee with hot milk.
Oasis-Outside.jpg

The Helado counter. Oasis boasts 24 permanent flavours and up to 10 seasonal ones. There are the standbys - chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry, but also exotics like Taxo (banana passionfruit), Mango, Mandarine, Chirimoya, and Guayabana (soursop). There's also usually Tiramisu, Cappuccino, and Crema (straight cream). All of these are handmade Helado de Paila.
Oasis-IceCream1.jpg
Oasis-IceCream2.jpg

Oasis also offers desserts - including their signature Tres Leches.
Oasis-Desserts.jpg

However, since we were already stuffed, Mom went for Cafe con Leche (the Cafe Esencia mentioned above), and I had the Copa Ambato, which is two flavours of ice cream over warm chocolate cake crumbles, with cream, mora syrup, oreo cookies, and cookie flutes. The two flavours I chose were Durazno en Almibar (peaches in syrup) and Nuez (walnut).
Oasis-Sundae.jpg
Oasis-CafeLeche.jpg
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#83 LindaK

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 07:18 PM

That's lot of eating for an afternoon, thanks for sacrificing so we may enjoy vicariously.

I've never heard of "distilled essence of coffee" before. Unless it's like instant coffee. Any other uses for it, besides adding to milk, such as baking?


 


#84 heidih

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 07:23 PM

The ice cream combo is quite an amazing juxtaposition of flavors. Do you find the cuisine there favors lots of contrast? Right up my alley :smile:

#85 Katie Meadow

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 07:31 PM

You lost me with the guinea pigs, but reeled me back in with the potato pancakes, white pineapple juice and the lovely coffee service. Have you ever made llapingachos? They look totally yummy. I'm on an achiote kick, so anything that uses it gets my attention. About that coffee....what exactly is essence of coffee? It looks like espresso. Do you add the milk to the coffee or vice versa?

#86 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 07:31 PM

That's lot of eating for an afternoon, thanks for sacrificing so we may enjoy vicariously.I've never heard of "distilled essence of coffee" before. Unless it's like instant coffee. Any other uses for it, besides adding to milk, such as baking?


Distilled essence of coffee is what happens when you brew 1 lb of beans in 2 L of water, then reduce over very low flame (they sell special alembic setups for it here) until it's a light syrup. It's meant to be drunk, but is also used in some recipes - most notably as a bass note in the candied figs.


The ice cream combo is quite an amazing juxtaposition of flavors. Do you find the cuisine there favors lots of contrast? Right up my alley :smile:


Cuisine here is a study in contrasts - and I chose the ice-cream flavours for that sundae out of the 28 available today. Peaches in syrup is a very sweet flavour and the peach in it is very up-front, and walnut is incredibly subtle, but together with the chocolate cake (which is also a very different texture) they marry quite well.

I should mention that all that lunching gave Mom and I what we refer to as "food baby" - we were so stuffed that we looked vaguely pregnant... :biggrin:

Edited by Panaderia Canadiense, 03 November 2011 - 07:32 PM.

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#87 Panaderia Canadiense

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 07:35 PM

You lost me with the guinea pigs, but reeled me back in with the potato pancakes, white pineapple juice and the lovely coffee service. Have you ever made llapingachos? They look totally yummy. I'm on an achiote kick, so anything that uses it gets my attention. About that coffee....what exactly is essence of coffee? It looks like espresso. Do you add the milk to the coffee or vice versa?


I do make llapingachos when I've got leftover mashed potatoes, but mine never quite measure up to the ones at the Modelo - I think I might be using a different kind of potato. There are about 15 varieties at the market on any given day, so it's entirely possible.

Essence of coffee is added to the milk until the beverage is the right colour for you (if you drink coffee with milk, you know what I'm talking about.) It's extremely strong and a little goes a long way.
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#88 Hassouni

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Posted 03 November 2011 - 09:31 PM

Distilled essence of coffee is what happens when you brew 1 lb of beans in 2 L of water, then reduce over very low flame (they sell special alembic setups for it here) until it's a light syrup. It's meant to be drunk, but is also used in some recipes - most notably as a bass note in the candied figs.


Wow, that sounds pretty similar to what the Syrians and Lebanese call "Arabic coffee" as sold by street vendors

#89 YSL

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 01:47 AM

Just want to add my love and appreciation for this blog - Have learned more about Ecuador this past week than ever!
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#90 SylviaLovegren

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Posted 04 November 2011 - 04:59 AM

The juice vendors are amazing.

The guinea pig... There's a market in Clifton, NJ, (huge market) that sells frozen guinea pigs with the heads and feet still on. They look just like the pets except skinned (and dead). Never could manage to try one. I recognize this as cultural prejudice, of course.

This whole blog is just wonderful.





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