Food

Rita and I recently returned to our home in Salinas on the southern Pacific Coast of Ecuador after our longest time away in the last five years. Between taking care of some business in the States, attending the International Living Boot Camp Conference in Santa Fe, and enjoying Thanksgiving with family, we were away from home for nearly four months. Once we returned to Ecuador, it didn’t take us long to remember the number one reason why we chose to...

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I could feel the urge building over the last few weeks, and then this Sunday, it finally happened. I woke up with a raging gumbo-ner. I just had to make my favorite New Orleans meal. Gumbo is not something to be taken casually. It is not one of those "one pot" dinners that you can "whip up". To do it up right, you really need to dedicate the whole day to preparing one meal. Sure, there are "quick and easy...

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We did much more during our six weeks of travel in August and September of 2017 than hike the Inca Trail. I've written about part of our time in the Quito area and in Cusco and the Sacred Valley before the hike, but we also spent some time in Cusco and Lima afterwards, before heading on to Uruguay. We really enjoyed our time in Perú, so I wanted to go back and spend a little time re-visiting each stop.  Before...

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When you live in the most popular beach resort in Ecuador, one thing you can always find is a restaurant. Here on the southern Pacific coast, there is no shortage of places serving fresh seafood, traditional Ecuadorian, and even familiar fare like pizza, hot dogs and hamburgers. Heck, the Salinas area even has two French restaurants now. But like every tourist area, there are the “tourist trap” restaurants, and then there are the one’s where us locals like to eat....

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Living in Ecuador, we have a big money problem. Or rather, we have a problem with big money. The sad truth is that the cost of things like cabs, buses, fresh produce, lunches, haircuts, and so on are so low, that no one likes to break large bills. Taxis frown at anything over a $5 bill, and trying to use anything larger than a $20 anywhere but a major chain store or restaurant is almost impossible. So here in our...

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I've got some good personal news to report, and another important milestone in our quest to prepare to hike the Inca Trail - now just 53 days away. As I was able to announce to the attendees at International Living's Quito conference, "Hooray - I'm Fat!" Constant Readers among you may remember that back on October 11 of 2016, I was able to announce that I had cracked the 35 BMI barrier, and was then considered "obese" rather than "morbidly...

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It is true that there are some unusual things to get used to when you choose to live in another country. Speaking a different language is something that is high on most people’s list in this regard, but I have found myself noticing some of the more subtle and interesting differences. Here in Ecuador for example, consider something as basic as food. Of course there is an adjustment to be made in the types of food available here, and this...

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I have to confess, I am a foodie. Although not a chef by any means, I love to cook, and I love to sample local dishes whenever we travel. So Ecuador is a perfect place for me to indulge in this weakness. Not only do I have access to incredibly fresh and healthy produce, meats, and seafood to use in my own kitchen, but there is also a wealth of local and traditional meals to experience. Best of all, even...

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I know it is not news you expect to see someone pleased about, but I am happy to be obese. The thing is, I've entered obesity from the other end - I'm no longer "morbidly obese". As you can see from the ever-so-cute Mii in the picture above, my needle is no longer pinned up off the chart. I've dropped below 35 on the BMI scale, and have therefor officially entered that land that 70% of Americans occupy. In order to...

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If you have never been truly fat, you cannot appreciate the thrill and the power of 10's. To fully experience it, you must be at least obese - morbidly obese is even better. Let me explain. In January of 2009, shortly after my wife Carolyn died, I was in that morbidly obese category at 319 pounds. "Morbid obesity" is defined as being 100 pounds over your ideal weight (check) and having a BMI of 40 or more (double-check). There's a long...

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