Friday, July 6, 2018

Egyptian lemon mint drink for a hot day

Some of you might recall that back in February I went to Alexandria in Egypt for the day. The day was quite hot, even in February and at lunch time I had a specialty of Egypt, the lemon mint drink. It was so good that I had another just to make sure.

I finally got around to buying some lemons and a mint plant so that I could make my version. Here I have two smallish lemons. A large lemon would probably be enough. In between is the yellow doo-dad that makes peeling a lemon or orange easy.

10 mint leaves from the plant. Chop the lemon into quarters.

Chuck into the blender. Add a bit over 1/2 cup of sugar depending on how sweet or sour you want the drink to be. Some recipes talk about adding sugar syrup, but this is much simpler.

Dump in a tray of ice cubes (American style tray).

Add cold water.


Froth on top.

Two glasses of refreshing frothy cold drink. The pith from the lemon gives it a bit of body. I am usually not overly keen on mint, but in this drink it goes very well. Try it.

Here is the photo of my drink in Egypt. I reckon mine looks better and the taste is similar as far as I can remember.

Sunday, June 17, 2018


My sister and brother-in-law are visiting for a few days so we decided to take them for an outing to the new Lidl supermarket in nearby Middletown, Delaware. We decided to do a side trip to Chestertown.

It's a pleasant drive down to Chestertown through what is known locally as the 'Eastern Shore'.

The local courthouse.

We managed to get a park near the center of the old town. Yes, that is our new Honda Fit which we are pleased with. It is not as sporty as the Mini, but we are getting 38.5 mpg so far. The insides are quite spacious with plenty of leg room in the back seat. It is quite easy to spot in a parking lot.

There was a market taking place in the town square.

Wool for sale.

Apparently there is a study taking place to decide the location of a new bridge over the Chesapeake Bay. Some of the locals are worried that the peace and quiet of the county will be destroyed.

Pre-selection contests are taking place soon for the November elections later this year. This was the Republican tent and there was a similar tent for the Democrats.

The central square is very pleasant with lots of trees and shade.

Main crossroads in the town.

The Hoon family would never be able to move to Australia. Ima Hoon would definitely produce a giggle or two.

We have lived in our house for over thirty years but have never been in the Chestertown downtown area. I was a very pleasant surprise and it is a lovely town.

Most of the shops were occupied. 

Clare can be quite patient when it comes to ice-cream. Or impatient.

It was a lovely day to walk around with dark shadows and bright blue sky.

We wandered down to the nearby Chester River where a boat was playing Johnny Dodds. His sound on the clarinet is unmistakable.

Five months after the Boston Tea Party in 1774, the citizens of Chestertown held their own version. There is a re-enactment each year on Memorial day, presumably here at the river.

A very grand looking house overlooking the river.

One house had opened its garden to visitors so we wandered in to take a look. It was cooling and restful.

It was a beautiful garden but presumably a lot of work. 

We really enjoyed our visit to the town and it's a pity we had not explored it before. By the way, the town is home to Washington College, the 10th oldest University in the USA.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Bad and good dinners

You probably think that we dine magnificently every night but occasionally some dinners just are not up to the same level as others.

There is an inexpensive restaurant across the street from our bnb which appeared to be well patronized so we decided to try it. Marianne ordered cabbage rolls and this was it. They were very bland and the sauce was no better.

I ordered the bigos which should be a mix of meats and sausage in sauerkraut. Somehow this restaurant mostly forgot the mix of meats and sausage. Very disappointing.

We made up for that crappy meal the next night at Wisniowy Sad which is an old fashioned restaurant somewhat on the faded opulence side. We were probably the youngest diners when we arrived.

You can see the menu here.

We both ordered beer and since the menu suggested a tomato and cucumber salad to go with the beer, I ordered one to share. There was no cucumber available so they substituted cabbage. It was vinegary, spicy, refreshing and really good. It cost about $4.

Marianne ordered Georgian Perogies filled with beef and a special Tkemali sauce that is plum based. She enjoyed them.

Since my faith in bigos had been shattered the night before, I tried this restaurant's version and my faith was restored. As you might expect, the roasted potatoes went very well with the meat and sauerkraut mix which had intense flavours.

Cost for the meal and beer was $30.

For our last dinner in Krakow we found this place which we had walked past earlier in the day.

It is called Czerwone Korale and their website does not show a menu.

However it specializes in Polish food and Marianne had a mushroom soup as a starter. There were all sorts of different mushrooms and some of them were large pieces. She was very pleased with it.

For her main course she had some relatively plain pierogi. They were good but not quite the equal of those in Gdansk. By the way, apparently you can eat one pierog or several pierogi.

I had a beef stew in a bread bowl which arrived with its little lid.

Lid removed.

Contents removed. Along with a bottle of red Sicilian wine it was perfect for a cold rainy evening.

The meal cost $35 including the wine. It was a great meal to end the trip and we spoke of how much we had enjoyed it all.

Soon after we arrived in Krakow we went to a supermarket and I bought this small bottle of some sort of plum brandy. It's not as strong as brandy but I am planning to buy a larger bottle to take back to the USA so that I can use it to help marinate the fruit for the Xmas pudding and cakes. It's quite delicious.