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This lj is mostly friends-only. But I am interested in making new lj friends. Feel free to add me & I will probably add you back. Also, feel free to delete me if you decide my LJ is drab or for whatever other reason, I will do the same for LJs I just don't end up reading- no hard feelings.

For Sale Post

I need these gone asap!!!! I have a surplus of diapers or my LO has grown out of them! I have sold once before, you can see afeedback here! Everything ppd but please add a $1 if you want dc. All reasonable offers considered! Thanks for looking :)

NB PUL covers, SM wool covers, GMs, almost FFS fittedsCollapse )

First LJ Recipe Post: India's Rajma

I need a place to put my recipes, so why not here on LJ? Here's the first of what I hope to be many!

Rajma (Kidney beans with spinich in spicy tomatoe-yogurt sauce)

I have to thank KK for this recipe- through whom I am living the Indian culinary experience vicariously. When we talk on the phone or by IM I always ask her what she is eating. Then I usually foodblogsearch.com it and see if it seems like something I could make or would be interested in making.
I have to say, cooking Indian has been a process- a lot of times it just doesn't come out with that authentic taste- and by authentic, I mean it doesn't taste anything like it does in Indian restaurants in the U.S. But it sure does beat Egyptians take on Indian food- blech. I think they think that spices must be haram because there weren't any in my dish. I'm still looking for a good Egyptian koshari dish in any of you out there in LJ land know of one. That was good!
O.k. on to the Rajma.
I used http://www.monsoonspice.com/2008/01/pleasure-of-slow-cooking-with-rajma.htmla as my blue print but only mostly followed it.

1 can Kidney Beans
1 large Onion, chopped
4 roma tomatoes, diced
1 inch Ginger, peeled and sliced
1 clove garlic, peeled and sliced
2 tbsp cilantro, finely chopped
5 fresh chiles de arbol, sliced thin (add or reduce for heat)
A pinch of pomegranate powder
1 tbsp of fenugreek seeds
1 inch Cinnamon (or a big pinch of powder)
3 pinches cardomom seeds
2 dashes of crushed clove
½ + ½ tbsp Oil
1 tsp Jeera/Cumin Seeds
¼ tsp Hing/Asafetida
Salt to taste
A cup of spinach
A cup of yogurt

Saute the ginger, onion and garlic together. Add the chopped tomatoes & chiles. Saute for another 2 minutes. Let it cool a bit to let the flavors mix. Then puree the mix in a blender or food processor with the cardomom, cinnamon & cloves. I also threw a pinch of fenugreek in here as well as curry powder & chana masala powder.. I figured it could only taste more Indian that way...
Heat a little oil and put in the cumin seeds, asafetida, and the other half of the fenugreek seeds. When the cumin seeds begin to pop add the spicy tomatoe sauce mixture. Let cook for a few minutes.
Then add the beans and spinach. & pomegranite powder if you have it on hand. Once hot, add some water as you are going to let it simmer for 20 minutes. The last couple of minutes, add the yogurt, it makes it nice and creamy! But not necessary.
I also added a bunch of turmeric at the last minute as my ditch attempt to make my rajma the same as in the picture at the aforementioned website. I am not sure what made hers yellow and mine not.. her recipe doesnt even call for turmeric. Maybe it's the fenugreek LEAVES.. I didnt have leaves so I used the seeds. But still. Weird. I served it on a bed of cilantro basmati rice with papaya water.

I would say this recipe is a success. It really tasted like Indian food! Tonight I made enchiladas in mole poblano- & even though I bought the mole pre-made I still havent got that street vendor taste to it :( It'll come though, it took awhile to get the Indian down.

It's the best time of the year!

Yay! It's my most favorite time of the year! Halloween! And it is even better here in Mexico where people don't have religious sticks up their anal retentive anuses.. or would that be anii? Either way.
And even better that Halloween is ajacent to Dia de los Muertos. Woo. And I promised myself not to be lazy- that we would celebrate. So I had to make the effort to go to the market twice to buy what I would need and set things up earlier on rather than late. I would hate to be at the market today fighting the crowds. It also insured that I got a costume for Dominic. And that I got our costumes at a decent price, no doubt they cost double today and there are probably now no cute costumes to come by for babies less than 6 months. But I got a "cute" one. Dominic is going to be a calavera... a skeleton. And so am I. And so is Iajia. We are going as a family of skeletons. Again, people in the U.S. can be so anal rententive... a baby, going as death? Yup. Get over it.
So we got our costumes. And we have many activities as well. Tonight, there is an event at the mosque. Tomorrow we will be with the family in the day time, and then I hope that we go to the cemetary at dusk and picnic there. The cemetary will be filled with candles and people celebrating and eating with the dead. On Monday, I hope we go to Xochimilco where they have canals like in Venice and we take a boat to see the show about the Legend of the Llorona.  And there you have it. We also have photos of the ofrenda we set up. So I will include that. It is still missing food and pictures of lost loved ones. Here is what we did so far.. and disclaimer: this is my first ofrenda ever, better ones to come I hope!

In the third picture, there is a family of skeletons. The female skeleton is baby wearing! They represent the 3 of us. The male skeleton Iajia made, actually. I wanted to buy a male, but they were fresh out of good male specimens, figures huh? But Iajia made himself! =)

Hopefully more pictures to come of us to come dressed as calaberas :D
Iajia is changing a poopy diaper, I am lurking on LJ while the T.V. is broadcasting the soccer game between Mexico and El Salvador.
Suddenly applause and whooping erupts from the t.v. Was there a goal? 
Iajia comes in (with baby in hand).

I: What just happened.
Me: Uh, I don't know. The guy kicked the ball.... it went in.
I: Oh, and let me guess, the goalie couldn't stop it.
Me (with feigned indignance): Well if you already knew, why'd you ask?

Last night, something happened here in Mexico that I thought only happened in the U.S. A man opens fire in a crowd of people on a busy dowtown subway train, killing them, for who knows what reason. He shot and killed a police officer and then another man who was trying to stop him. The Mexican nightly news showed the footage from the security camera. Really brutal. But they did not tell us what we really wanted to know, why? The police caught up with him and detained him so I was thinking this afternoon surely they will say or it will be in the paper. But it wasn't. So I checked foreign news sources instead. And there it was... 

"One witness, Mauricio Perez, said a subway train had just rolled into the station when gunfire broke out.

Perez said that while the gunman was firing his pistol he yelled that the attack was against the government.

"The shooting began right after the train got to the station ... this man began yelling: 'I have nothing against you, this is against the government,"' Perez said.

I didn't think too much into the reasoning, I was just glad to finally answer the "why". Iajia said, "That's why the 'why' isn't in the news. It was censored for it's negative conontations towards the government." And he is very right. And this is the third time I have come acrosss this B.S. and I have complained about it before. The last time was about a plane that crashed on one of the main drags of the city during rush hour and the news had the audacity to say no one died as they flashed images of cars absolutely charred to bone. And there never seem to be any witnesses either, ever! Instead they interview someone in a building blocks over whose windows rattled a wee bit!
And then there was the fire at the government daycare in Sonora. Heaven forbid they dare to question how the death of over 40 toddlers could have been prevented. Were there fire extinguishers? Fire alarms? Emergency exits? A plan for emergencies overviewed and understood by the staff? Perhaps even rehearsed at least once? Were there enough caregivers to care for so many children? Unfortunately, I would think probably not.

And just to show I am not bias... what is up with the U.S news porkarias? It's a dog and pony show only. Fighting for ratings and manipulating public opinion and causing paranoia as much as possible.

Writer's Block: Proven by Science

Do you believe everything has a scientific explanation?
Yes, actually I do. But I also believe that none of it contadicts the existence of something seemingly "mystical". We have two major misconceptions going on here. The first is that we think we are at the hieght of science. We arent even close.... a 100 years from now they're gonna look at us like we're living in the dark age. So we don't even have or fathom to have the kind of tools necessary to figure out the mysteries of the universe.
Second misconception is of god- most people that either believe in it/him or dont do so based on their conception of it. They're conception is very limited. Even though all religious scripture says god can't be fathomed.. people try to anyway and use it to say, ok I believe or I do'nt believe.
I think that a higher being of sorts and science are in harmony... it's our religious and scientific beliefs that are not.

Jul. 9th, 2009

Well I really don't have anything that pressing to say! I guess I'll update on the vegetarian kick Iajia is going on. At first, it was hard to figure out what I would cook... because I wanted it to be Mexican food... and that left me at a loss. We'll still need to find a bookstore to buy a Vegetarian Mexican recipe book. I am sure one here in Mexico will do... the ones in the U.S.. it's just not real Mexican food at all!!! Maybe border food... but it doesn't reflect at all the rest of Mexico. Iajia is being what I consider, a convenient veggie. That is he will prefer a veggie meal over one with meat... but if a meal with meat looks more appetizing he'll go with that. It is an honest place to start.. and honestly...probably the only way to start here in Mexico unless you start packing a lunch, which he is not interested in doing. As for me, I am going to continue with meat when I have the opportunity, because I am pregnant and too lazy and into my routine now to make sure to find sufficient veggie sources of protien for the health of Nuri. 
I have given up on attempting to make Mexican veggie food and have reverted to my old veggie ways... Indian and Italian. Monday I just made pasta.. but I spiced up the sauce with some red chili's and threw in mushrooms (we both love mushrooms) and zucchini (because it really needed to get used) I would have made a recipe for zucchini balls, but I just didn't have time.
Tuesday we had Indian style tomatoe soup and mozarella grilled cheese sandwiches. They came out pretty good.
Last night, we had Mexican lentil soup. It also came out pretty good as well. I must tweek the recipe still.
Today I will make mutter paneer. (Peas and cheese in spicy tomatoe sauce)I am really excited about this. It is my favorite dish ever! & I've never made it because I've never been able to get my hands on the right kind of cheese for it (you can, but it's pricey). Tofu could perhaps be a decent substitute... but only for people who like tofu... I don't. But here in Mexico, there is a a soft cheese called "panela" that holds up well enough during cooking and it seems to have more or less the right consistency.. and for $1.50 I could buy a half pound of it. Soooo, happiness. It should turn out well, insha Allah.
& I better go make it quick, because I have plans to go see this Pakistani woman and her really sweet daughter. They are selling traditional Pakistani clothing and because they are leaving soon, they have lowered their prices by a lot. I am hesitant to go, because I really don't think we are in a place right now to buy anthing non-essential, let alone a dress that will cost $50 (that is if I can knock it down to that from $70) but I am gonna go and put on my superhard negotiation face. & use my mad Egyptian negation skillz... *thinks back to Egypt hookah buying negotiation.. seller in response to my counter offer: what???!! do you want me to slit my mother's throat? me, playing along: well do you want me to take food out of the mouths of my children to pay for an overpriced hookah??!!! 
And some other time today I need to prep my cloth diapers and then go to the mosque for zhikr.

Picture Update First Edition

We are getting situated pretty nicely in our new apartment. It is such a relief! I don't even know where to start with everything! I got my fridge, and a washer. We are buying a T.V. today. And the couches come on Tuesday. We have the dining room table, that's nice. And one dresser. We still have a lot of clothes and papers and books that just don't have a home yet, it's pretty annoying... but I hope this weekend we will toss quite a bit of unused clothes and unnecessary papers and make a home for everything else.
Overall, I think we are both happy. I've been feeling that "boredom" feeling that notoriously accompanies housewifery. I want to take sewing classes or do some private English tutoring part time... and that may come about, but with the upcoming baby I just don't know what all is feasable.
I am thoroughly enjoying this neighborhood however! It is so clean and peaceful. It is right next to metro stop and a Wal-mart (sorry guys, but it is convenient and cheap, and I DO buy my meat and produce elsewhere & attempt to buy other goods at the local markets first SO THERE) Iajia has shaved a good hour off of his commute and now he doesn't even have to make any transboarding of metro lines nor take any buses. Just on then off the metro. Same line. Couple blocks. Greatness.
And on Wednesday morning we woke up to the chirping of birds, the morning traffic... and poles clanking on the street below. What was it? It's the the tiangis!!!!!! It looks like we have a street market right on my street every Weds! Oh, that is sooo exciting! Here are some pics: 
Pics behind the cut, just in case Collapse )

So that concludes my first picture update ever. I hope to have more that follow!!! I need to do a Nuri-themed one, a sufi wedding one, and an apartment one. In time though.

Writer's Block: You Ate What?

What's the weirdest thing you've ever eaten? Would you eat it again?
I like it when this question pops up, because I have decent answer... escamole. Or rather, ant eggs. I had them in a taco. They weren't bad, I don't think they had much of a taste. I wouldn't eat them again because of the price. If someone gave me one I might eat it. They sell dried, barbecued crickets/grasshoppers down here... Iajia eats those... he has yet to convince me to try one. We also ate some bugs in Belize... off a tree. . . Ill have to look up what they are called later, but they tasted just like cooked baby carrots....