Tiburón -Shark- Žralok

Tiburón -Shark- Žralok: Writing Cooking Traveling

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Soup & Sandwich

Lunchtime in Puerto Rico sounds like this:

“Me das una medianoche.” (“I’ll have a midnight.”)

“Un Cubano, para llevar.” (“A Cuban to go.”)

“Nada, un bocadillo y un café.” (Eh, just a little bite and some coffe.”)

Like most things, when translated literally the above phrases become almost comical but if you’re a resident of Puerto Rico you’re probably really hungry after reading that list.

The rest of your order might sound like:

“También me das un Mondongo.”

“¿Tienen Caldo Gallego?”

“Y un sancochito.”

Mondongo, Caldo Gallego, and sancocho are Puerto Rico’s answer to broccoli cheddar, chicken noodle, and clam chowder. Except there’s nothing light about having a soup and sandwich for lunch in Puerto Rico.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Block Island, RI

“I love Block Island!” bellowed a half-drunken hillbilly wearing brightly colored shorts, a cowboy hat, and sunglasses. Crowds of people flowing onto the dock cheered back their consensus as the locals snickered and rolled their eyes. It was noon and the tourists were already drunk while everyone else was just relieved to finally be “on the island.”

Block Island, that is. On Memorial Day weekend I stepped off the New London ferry onto Rhode Island’s answer to my island’s Culebra. BI is where New Englanders go to drink and eat by the beach, but for many Rhode Islanders—the “locals”—this is their second home, where they come eat and drink by their houses and occasionally the beach. My friend Willis’ family had very graciously invited me up for the weekend and I’d jumped at the opportunity. Despite this being my first time here, Willis assured me, “Don’t worry, you’re a local.”

That’s lesson number one when visiting an island, any island (mine included): you always want to be a local.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Things Change

Things change, and one thing that seems to change consistently is the name of this blog. And I’m not going to apologize for that. Currently its taking on its third and probably most drastic transformation, which only makes sense since 2010 has so far, for its author, been a year of drastic transformations.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Cheat Sheet: Spanish Bakeries

Medianoche: pork, ham, swiss cheese with mustard and pickle on yellow egg bread. (Light)
Cubano: pork, leg ham (some places serve it with sweet ham, Altamira included), swiss cheese, mustard, pickles, sometimes shredded lettuce and sliced tomato on pan criollo (soft, baguette-like bread).
Choripan: Spanish chorizo, sweet ham, swiss cheese, on pan criollo.
Caldo Gallego: a Spanish stew consisting of shredded cabbage, diced ham, chorizo sausage, white beans, potatoes, and greens.
Mondongo: tripe soup.
Sancocho: a Puerto Rican stew with lots of root vegetables, shredded chicken, and ham.
Croquetas: Deep-fried, cylindrical pieces of heaven made with a seasoned flour batter and stuffed with either ham, chicken or fish.
Quesitos: Sweet puff pastry full of sweet cream cheese and glazes with sugar. [see picture]
Pastelillos de carne: Savory puff pastry stuffed with picadillo—seasoned ground beef.
Pan Sobao: a very soft, sweet white bread.
Pan de Agua: a soft, baguette-style bread
Café: generally means coffee with hot milk, if you want it black then ask for a Café Negro, if you want it with cold milk, then you’re in the wrong place.