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4 reasons why new food is awesome

3 Aug

1) New food is a hot commodity

You can’t get new food anywhere. I mean, c’mon, I’ve had a lot of food in my life. It’s not every day I can get my hands on something I’ve never tasted!

2) It’s exciting and mysterious

I love surprises. I love not knowing what something will taste like, or even what’s all in it. The thrill of experiencing the hustle and bustle of a new city is on par to tasting that city’s specialty dish (mmm!).

The meal on my flight to Japan might have been more mysterious than exciting…

3) You can more fully experience small details

Think of meeting a someone new. You say hello, shake hands, maybe ask a few general questions. Five minutes into your conversation, you’ve judged whether or not you like them. If you do, you talk longer and discover a smidgen of their past, their favorite places to hang out and other details that make them unique. Accordingly, when you spy a new food, you scope it out. Give it a cautious sniff and inspect its ingredients. Then you take a bite. If you like it, you eat more, and as you do, you experience its notes of flavor fully and form adjectives for certain characteristics of it in your mind. Granted, you might learn more about a food each time you eat it, but that first bite has your total attention, allowing you to fully enjoy the details.

4) It tells about a country’s identity

In nearly every culture, meals are a time for community. What get-together doesn’t have food in the mix? A lame one, believe you me. If you want to call up that friend you haven’t seen awhile, you ask her to meet you for coffee or at a deli. Why? Food lightens the mood. We’ve been trained to associate food with good feelings (aka, coffee and friendship). Since food is such an important part of everyones’ lives, the things a person eats tells you a bit about them.

I’m not sure what this snack says about me…

Why do you enjoy new food?


Beating the heat through agua fresca

29 Jun

It’s 108 degrees in Nashville. Everyone is either on the verge of fainting or shriveling up and crying the few tears their dehydrated bodies will allow. So how better to celebrate the intense June heat than staying in the air-conditioned house to make a refeshing and fruity Mexican drink?

I think Mexicans, who live in the “Land of the Burning Sun,” should know how best to beat the heat. This traditional Mexican drink, called agua fresca, literally translates to fresh water. So naturally, it must be the second best thing to drink besides water! It’s ridiculously simple and tasty. Just slice, blend and drink! Well, and if you’re a pansy, you’ll want to strain it so as not to drink the pulp of whatever fruit you’re using.

My manly and pulpy strawberry-lime agua fresca

During the spring and summer months, you can find agua fresca at street stands all over Mexico. They use whatever fruit is cheap or in season. I have to admit that grabbing a glass of agua fresca sounds so much healthier and more invigorating than my usual smoothie or  ice cream!

Although at the moment, Antartica sounds more welcoming than Mexico, I’ve always wanted to venture south of the border. It’s really a shame that I haven’t been yet, seeing as it’s closer to Tennessee than any other country in the world! Or, well…Canada…? Anyways. I want to go.

For now, though, I’ll sip my agua fresca and watch the heat waves radiate from the pavement outside. And dream of visiting Mexico in the wintertime!