Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Bird's Eye View, Food and Drink

More pictures of our City...

Rich took these pics while he was visiting with friends one day.  A bird's eye view,
another perspective of our beautiful Cuenca.

San Francisco Market.

We've been doing pretty good with our walks to town.  Now we walk often during the week, not just on Sundays.  Sometimes we have company for the walks, sometimes we just get out there on our own and get 'er done!

Nancy and Barbara chatting and walking
(and watching their feet on the cobblestones).

One day, we walked again down Av. Bolivar.

Beautiful old, restored buildings. 

Love all the details.

Another pic of the New Cathedral.  We never tire of the blue/white domes and all the detail on this massive building.

Picture of the main square, across from the New Cathedral.  Someone turned on the fountain!  Pretty!

One day we sat on a bench at the Square, always something fun to see as the world passes by.

We guessed it was moving day for this young man.

Another street entertainer.

Another view of the lovely old buildings at the river.

The walking bridge across the river and those stairs!
Dancers in the Square one Sunday.

A few more tidbits to share...

Some of our cooking friends and family have been curious about how the chicken and cow feet broth experiences are coming along.  Nancy is happy to report that she's doing just fine!  Well, fine with the chicken feet, as she hasn't tried the cow feet experience again after the initial experiment.  Just too gaggy and stinky with the hooves.  But, the chicken feet cooking is becoming 'normal'! 
No gagging, not even rubber far we've come... 
She does skip adding the heads though. 
Chicken feet broth is really wonderful!  And, easy!
(For a recount of making both broths, do a search on this blog for previous entries.)

Some have asked more about the traditional food here...

Ecuadorian food is, generally, good. There are a wide variety of restaurants (Ecuadorian, Continental and US-style) with a whole range of prices. A true Ecuadorian meal will include rice and potatoes, both. There is also a soup, meat or fish serving and fresh fruit juice, and sometimes a little salad and dessert.

The other day we tried a new place, very Ecuadorian, for lunch. Our Ecuadorian friend told us this place was more of a 'working man's lunch' place, one of his favorites.  Menu included steamed fava beans, slices of cheese, a potato soup (with 'leather'...which turned out to be strips of pork fat and skin), grilled pork (a little salty for us) and a hominy/egg dish. The hot sauce was HOT and spicy! 
Lots of food for a very low price. We couldn't eat it all and we arrived hungry!

You can also find more gringo-type food here, but Ecuadorians aren't big on sandwiches. Lunch is the big meal of the day and usually high-carb, with fruit juice, rice and potatoes. In restaurants, look for the 'menu of the day' posted outside (about $2-3).  Yes, you can find a Burger King for a Whopper, but it will set you back with a high US price tag.  We love the french fries here!

One day, Rich stopped by the flower market, right across from the New Cathedral.  There is another church on the market square, with an adjoning building that houses cloistered nuns.  These nuns make a special flower drink.  2 kinds:  one is red and very sweet.  The other is clear, like water, less sweet.  Rich opted for the clear one.  Maybe it was the 'placebo effect', but he says he felt more calm and collected after drinking it!  An Ecuadorian friend says that that was the point...  Rich was surrounded by several Chola Cuencanas in line...

Our first trip to Cuenca in 2008 (seems like forever ago!),  our driver took us to see the nuns'  place of business.  Since the nuns are 'cloistered', meaning they do not see the public, there is a special, revolving door/wall to make the transactions.  You can go back in the blog to learn more.

Another favorite 'special drink' is at the old pharmacy near the Square.  Order a 'soda'.  It come in a very tall, pilsner-type glass.  The 'soda' is mixed up, just for you..  Lots of good stuff in it, vitamins, minerals, herbs and supplements.  And, lots of sugar.  A very fizzy, red, sweet drink.  Rich says the drink always makes him feel better.  He only drinks half of it, because of the sugar.  It's for digestion and 'well-being'.  There is always a line at the counter for a 'soda'.  The pharmacy is lovely...lots of wonderful old wood and old mystery bottles on the shelves.  A slice of history.

Another 'slice of history'!  Here are pictures from a January 2010 adventure at the pharmacy with the 2 Nancy's and Audrey:

Down the hatch!
Happy Birthday to our friend Chuck today!

1 comment:

  1. Nancy,

    Great photos. That street entertainer with the cables really makes the rounds. I've seen him in different blogs.

    I'm looking forward to trying the health drink. Looks yummy.

    One month and counting.