I totally failed. I made a pretty great breakfast and completely forgot about the photos. We had guests, though, and I made about 6 different dishes, so I do have a good excuse, right? Will you accept pictures of the dirty dishes that Nathan was kind enough to do after breakfast?
I know, not good enough. Well, imagine, if you will... cumin garlic breakfast potatoes, chipotle lime beans (I used some of our precious stash of black beans from the States, as for some reason you can buy 30 different types of beans here, none of them black beans), seasoned scrambled eggs, guacamole (delish! Avocado, tomato, garlic, a hint of red onion, cilantro, and lime), sauteed veggies (zucchini and pumpkin), and banana pecan muffins. I made ricotta cheese last night and topped the beans with homemade cheese.
Our guests seemed to love it, and the gluten-free girl was stoked! The guacamole was a hit, and the muffins went fast... the picture below is the only breakfast picture I managed to snap!
I found this fantastic Mark Bittman muffin recipe a few months ago and absolutely love it. I've tried all sorts of flavor combos: banana cardamom pecan, mango almond, strawberry flaxseed, pumpkin walnut, and applesauce--and probably more that I'm forgetting! Every combination has turned out well- the muffins are really moist despite the 2.5 cups of whole wheat. Nathan loves them and requests them once or twice a week. It's a great recipe and takes only 5 minutes or so to make. (It does call for buttermilk, which I can't find here but should probably learn how to make. I use milk instead, sometimes with a squirt of lime, and it works well.)
This was my lunch: Two slices of Art Caffe bread (whole grain) with sliced banana, cinnamon, and honey.
I'm really particular about bananas. After living in Samoa for two years and getting incredibly delicious and fresh misiluki bananas, I got spoiled. I also did some reading on the banana industry and saw a documentary (BANANAS!) and decided that I would save my banana-eating for when I was living in or traveling in a country that actually grows bananas. Luckily for me, Kenya has bananas. I've happily reincorporated them into my diet, and rather than being a commonplace snack (like they are for many people in the States), they've become a treat- even more so now that I'm eating very fresh bananas!
Interesting fact: Most Americans hadn't eaten a banana before the 1910's, but Dole and United Fruit began campaigning to get pictures of bananas in children's books (A for Apple, B for Banana, C for Cherry, etc) in order to popularize the then-unfamiliar fruit. Along with other tactics, the banana industry was able to introduce bananas into nearly every American's diet by importing massive quantities of the fruit, while decimating large swaths of Central America's forests and treating their labor force horribly. Bananas became cheap and readily available. The land continues to be decimated and the labor force is still treated horribly. But, Americans now consider them an inexpensive staple item.
If you, too, consider them a staple, I highly recommend at least purchasing fair trade bananas from a place like Whole Foods.
Ok. Moving along to dinner...
I've mentioned my deep passion for sukuma wiki (collard greens) on this blog before, and here it is. We like to buy it from our favorite Kenyan mama, who pre-shreds it and bags it. It's super convenient: empty the bag onto a frying pan with a kersplash of olive oil, a couple pressed garlic cloves, and some squeezes of lime juice. We can easily down this much sukuma in one meal (it shrinks down a lot.)
I also made a creamy tomato-mushroom-sundried tomato sauce (low-fat milk, butter, flour, mushrooms, tarragon (my new favorite herb!), diced fresh tomatoes, sundried tomatoes, and lots of garlic). I wish I'd added some caramelized onion to add more depth and smokiness to the sauce. Next time. I tossed homemade ravioli (filled with homemade ricotta, sundried tomatoes and herbs) in the sauce, and topped it with more homemade ricotta.
Highlight of the past week? It might have been when Nathan installed our new hammock in the yard! It overlooks the city and is underneath a giant peppercorn tree. It's perfect for relaxing in and reading a book. All five of the dogs like to lay underneath or near it when I'm laying in it, which makes it a very cosy spot. (I'll try to remember to post a picture tomorrow.)