Koen and I decided this October to carve a pumpkin – only my 2nd while living in Antwerp (my 4th Halloween). I saw everyone’s pumpkin carving parties and felt the need to have my own private party with Koen. We weren’t sure what to carve, but then Koen found a lot of stencils from Adventure Time and we decided to carve one of our favorite characters – Lumpy Space Princess! We kept the jack-o-latern for 3 days and then realized why they’re kept outside in America; they really start to decay and smell awful!
I’ve decided to quit my new year’s resolution! Now that I’m back in school, I have less time to tryout recipes and make posts. That’s not to say I’m quitting trying new recipes, but I am relieving myself of personal pressure to try 2 new recipes a week (104 in a year). With that in mind, here is one of my favorite recent new recipes – Jalepeno Cheddar Cornbread and Green Beans with Carmalized Onions and Almonds. I was craving a taste of home when I decided to try making cornbread for the first time and a new green bean side dish. Yum!
Fall is here! Koen made the most delicious ginger-pumpkin soup with roasted pumpkin seeds recently. To accompany the soup, he also made grilled cheddar cheese sandwiches with granny smith apples and candied bacon – yum!
For my birthday, Koen bought special box tickets for Wagner’s Tristan und Isolde! Because it was opening weekend, there was also a 45 minute lecture before the opera began with dramaturge Luc Joosten, who went into detail explaining the history, development/inspiration, and theme. Koen and I both thoroughly enjoyed our afternoon and if you’re close to Antwerp or Ghent, you should definitely try to find tickets before it closes!
While Koen and I were in New York, we tried a lot of different multicultural food, including Venezuelen arepas. They are basically corn pancakes that you slice open and stuff with delicious ingredients. I decided to prepare a vegetarian version with black beans, grilled banana (I couldn’t find plantains), avocado, and goat cheese. While we were in New York at Arepera Guacuco, there were also a lot of different sauces to use with the arepas, so I found a recipe for a mango pepper arepa sauce. I was really proud of how the areaps turned out! It was a lot of work, but worth it!