We were in Costa Rica over a year ago. The most memorable and delicious meal was one that we had in Puerto Viejo, which is on the Caribbean side of the island. We left our hostel and walked down a very dark road, heading for a place to eat that ended up being closed. We gave up and went straight back to our hotel. The speeding cars, motorbikes, and howler monkeys were freaking us out in the dark. We went to a small restaurant right across from our hostel, on the beach. At that point, we had been in Costa Rica for about ten days and I wanted anything that didn’t come with rice and beans. So, I went for a seafood soup called “rondon” that sounded pretty good. It ended up being great.
When I’m trying to get out of a cooking rut and make something different, the most helpful thing for me to do is try and think of a cuisine that I am not used to cooking. The other week, we bought some fish with the intention of making fish curry, which I never got in the mood for. Luckily, I thought that moroccan style fish, with a hearty quinoa salad sounded absolutely delicious instead. I hardly ever eat or cook moroccan food. I am not sure why because the flavours are definitely something that I am attracted to. To be honest, I didn’t really have a clear picture of what moroccan food was before I went there a couple of years ago.
This used to be the meal that we reserved for the most special of occasions. Not only is it absolutely delicious but it’s chock-full of seafood, making it feel extra-special. In fact, if you go to the about page on this website, you will see the last time (until today) that I got to enjoy this meal (look how happy I am!). You may be asking yourself: Sami, why haven’t you made this for a whole year if it is so utterly tasty? Haven’t there been occasions that need celebrating? Of course! The reason that it is no longer on our rotation at home is a result of… the incident.
We only go to our big Asian supermarket every couple of months to stock up on essentials, but it’s always quite the outing for us. Not only is the place HUGE, but I tend to slowly make my way through every aisle, trying to decipher what lurks within the cans and bottles of products (because the packaging and signage is usually in Chinese or Japanese etc and unfortunately, I am not fluent in either). The most frustrating thing is when I am looking for something specific, and I know it has to be somewhere amongst all of those aisles, if only I could just find it. That’s what happened with the great search for preserved black beans.