Tag Archives: china
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A New Team Member

14 Oct

A New Team Member

I wanted to take some time off to focus on one very important thing: MY BABY!!
After years of being solo travelers, my husband and I decided it was time for us to add another member to our team. A girl to be precise πŸ™‚
I’m sure it’ll be quite an adventure since we are planning on having our baby girl here in China!
But, then again, life itself is an adventure, right?!
Have a great one, everyone!

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Dance For Us

14 Jun

It’s been a pretty hectic week, but we’ve made it!

I was in Shanghai for a couple of days and came back just in time for our very first Chinese wedding in Yuhuan. Both my husband and I felt honored to be invited to such an intimate event. We had lots of fun and we ate like there was no tomorrow! Everything was going well until the MC called us to come to the stage to perform some kind of dance in honor of the new couple… how can you refuse when they are all expecting you to do it IN HONOR of the newly married couple! Long story short, we ended up dancing to Psy’s Oppa Gangnam Style. Epic Fail!

fail

Anyways, the wedding was beautiful and the bride and groom looked very happy.

alice and neyo

Have a great one!

Dumpling Obsession

31 May

There are several foods that I just can’t live without. One if them being Guacamole, which you probably know by now since I mention it in every other post!
But now I’m adding a new entry to my list: dumplings.

dumpling collage
I still haven’t figured out what makes them so irresistible to my taste buds. I guess it’s the combination of different flavors without ever being overwhelming.

This obsession of mine took me to a restaurant in Shanghai that everyone praised for having the best dumplings in the city: Din Tai Fung.

dumplings in shanghai
Din Tai Fung is a Chinese/Taiwanese restaurant chain with several restaurants around the world, including the US and Australia. According to their website “The New York Times selected Din Tai Fung as one of the top ten restaurants in the world

They have several locations in Shanghai, but I visited the one in Xintiandi.

spicy dumplings

Although I’m no expert, I can humbly say that these dumplings really live up to their hype. They are light and full of flavor, never overwhelming. It’s like a subtle explosion of flavors.

shrimp dumpling

Tapas on a Hot Shanghainese Night

28 May

Last Wednesday my husband and I were craving some serious Jamon Serrano (Spanish Ham) and Pinchos (a kind of tapas). We have some beautiful and fun memories from all our trips to Spain, but my favorite ones usually involve some kind of gastronomic action πŸ˜‰

Jamon y queso

Well, since we were in Shanghai for a couple of days, we wanted to eat as much good food as our bodies could handle before coming back to Taizhou and resuming our rice and vegetables diet. It was a painful task but one that had to be done if we wanted to survive until our next visit to Shanghai πŸ˜‰ The result 4 lbs. of extra baggage (not in the right places, as usual!) and a very happy tummy.

tortilla

There are several Spanish restaurants in Shanghai, but I’ve only been to a couple of them: El Willy and La Finca.

El Willy is more of an upscale tapas restaurant, although their website’s “feel” suggests differently (it’s a pretty cool website). It’s located on the Bund, and has a spectacular view of the skyscrapers in Pudong and the Huangpu river. The food is good, especially all the seafood dishes and their amazing black rice paella. The only tapa I didn’t enjoy much was their Patatas Bravas, for they had too much cream/mayo (not sure what it was). I prefer my Patatas Bravas very bravas ;). Overall, El Willy delivers delicious traditional dishes with a twist.

La Finca one the other hand, is a more simple restaurant, nothing too opulent. I honestly wasn’t expecting too much from this restaurant in Xintiandi, but their simple Tortilla EspaΓ±ola and shrimps with garlic and spicy sauce were delicious. We also ordered some Jamon, but it wasn’t quite what we were expecting, for the meat was a bit tasteless. Their terrace is small but quite welcoming, especially during these hot Shanghai nights!

Camarones

taizhou

Have a great one!

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My Recent Craving

10 Apr

My Recent Craving

About a month ago we went to one of my favorite restaurants in Shanghai: Maya.

Maya is one of the three Mexican restaurants I usually go to whenever I crave guacamole and chips (which is ALWAYS!). The other 2 restaurants serve really good authentic Mexican food, but their guacamole isn’t as good as Maya’s.

I grew up in a house where fresh Mexican food was prepared every day (don’t hate me for this πŸ˜‰ ) so I know what Mexican food tastes like. Maya’s dishes are very delicious, but I consider them more like “fusion” food/cuisine. They alter the core dishes in Mexican cuisine and add their own personal touch.

Since I haven’t been to Shanghai in a while, I’ve been deprived of my favorite food for almost a month now. Unfortunately, I haven’t found any avocados in town, so I can’t prepare any guacamole :(. But one of the wonderful things about Mexican cuisine is that you can create so many dishes starting from the same basic ingredients: tomatoes, chile serrano, onions, garlic, pepper, coriander, etc.

Another good thing is that I can find all the above in most local markets here in Taizhou. I think I’ll try to do my own homemade Mexican food and see if I can finally satisfy my cravings πŸ™‚

PS.: in case you’re interested in learning more about the restaurants I was talking about, here are the links to:
MAYA
http://www.maya-shanghai.com/
MI TIERRA
http://www.mitierrarestaurant.com.cn/
TEOTIHUACAN apparently doesn’t have an active website 😦

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Hold It Together, You Bamboo!

9 Apr

Hold It Together, You Bamboo!

Bamboo is a very versatile plant, indeed. I’ve always liked bamboo as a decorative plant, for it always looks graceful, elegant and green! (plants in my house don’t stay green for too long 😦 )
But it wasn’t until I moved to China that I actually started seeing how this simple plant can tranform into something very useful: furniture, cooking utensils, food (bamboo shoot is very popular here), and can even be used as building material.
The best part is that bamboos are one the fastest growing plants in the world. This is specially important because as you may know, bamboos are very widely used in Asian countries, both as a food source and raw material.
PS. Bamboo is also used in Feng Shui practices. As I said, bamboo is a very versatile plant, indeed.

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Mandarin Headaches

6 Apr

Mandarin Headaches

I’ve been studying Mandarin for a while now, and I still find it very difficult to grasp certain concepts. I can only read about 5 characters and can only speak and write through the help of pinyin. So, you can say I’m pretty much an illiterate here in China 😦
I speak English, Spanish and Italian. Italian came pretty easy because the structure and grammar are very similar to Spanish, but there’s nothing between Mandarin and these languages that can allow my brain to make some sort of connection.
I keep trying, though. Hard work never hurt nobody πŸ˜‰

“hao hao xue xi, tian tian xiang shang”
“study hard, make progress every day”