Thursday, February 27, 2014

The Markets Of Bangkok

A month since my last post! Oy vey. Grad school has officially taken over my life. :(
But i'm back and ready to talk!

So you've walked the streets, eaten the food and have seen the sights. Now what to do? 

Well go visit the floating markets of course! Which is basically a huge market that is on little boats in the water. You navigate the waters with your own boat going up and down "aisles" like on land! Its a crazy awesome experience. Just make sure you bring a lot of bug spray! Which I did not. I'd rather not relive that thank you. 

When floating along these canals you will be bombarded with people trying to sell you anything they can. Food and non food items alike. I am not one who is sold easily so I said a lot of No's :)

Chachkies everywhere!

Food wise there were a lot of fruits and vegetables being sold off of peoples little boats. It all looked fresh, they cut and serve it in a plastic bag for you, so I would definitely try it there. Can't go wrong with some fresh Thai mangoes! 
Or that red thing...fruit? Pepper? Who knows! Shes selling so you're buying!

There was also the questionable food items....

Any type of meat on a stick!! And when I say meat I don't mean chicken or fish. Try at your own risk! 

I am for sure not the most adventurous eater, I kind of like to play it safe. But when your tour guide/taxi driver decides to take you to the most authentic Thai soup spot in Bangkok you obviously say yes. Even though its about 150 degrees outside and the last thing you want to do is eat a hot soup on a boat with mosquitos everywhere with utensils washed in the river you are floating on....but I digress.

Thats our soup being prepared. With some water from the river. But you can't say no! Don't even try.

Hesitant? Me?

I dont want to talk about it.......

Just take me back to the hotel......

Friday, January 31, 2014


Thailand! A land so far far away that this girl, who is TERRIFIED of flying.... 

never thought she would reach! But when it came to my honeymoon I knew that I had to go to a place that was so tropical and exotic, it would only be right! Now this is a land where non adventurous eaters will run into some problems. i.e. ME. Now I am not a "picky" eater per se but Im also extremely cautious of what I eat :) Thank you very much 3 courses in food and sanitation!

Would you eat this?.....

 That my friends is chicken feet, on top of a hot soup (mind you it was 10000000 degrees out) made on a floating "house" on a river.

"Do I have to eat all of this?!"

So you must have an open mind! Try everything once! You've made it all that way! The cuisine of Thailand is very similar to what you would eat here in a Thai restaurant. Lots of noodles, vegetables, sautéed dishes, and SPICE. I repeat the food is SPICEY. Hello ulcer! So  come prepared with lots of tums and pepto!

If you are staying in a hotel, make sure that breakfast is included or is an option. Finding a place to eat breakfast in Thailand may be a problem. Luckily our hotels had amazing breakfast spreads. 

Lots of egg dishes, breads, dumplings! More savory dishes than sweet. 

Congee, or rice soup with meat in it. 

Chinese sticky buns, fried rice dishes and BBQ pork skewers.

And lots and lots of meat. Meat everywhere. 

It is definitely hard to stay away from all the breads and noodles in the morning. Luckily most hotels offer a Western style breakfast, so you can stick to fresh fruit, Omellets made from scratch, wheat breads with jam, and peanut butter, which was always on the breakfast table! If you do want to eat some noodles or dumplings now is the time to do it! 

Enjoying breakfast in Phuket

In my opinion it is best to eat your heavier carbs in the morning or early lunch time because you will have all day to burn it off.

And if you're lucky enough, your taxi driver will make a stop by a roadside stand selling fresh coconuts! Always a good idea before starting a tour in a hot hot city.

Next up, the floating river markets of Bangkok and street food!

Saturday, January 25, 2014

Dinner and Markets

Shalom! The sun is setting, its almost dinner time here in Israel and this girl is hungry (shocking) so lets get to it! 

Dinner is NOT a heavy meal. A typical meal would consist of Schnitzel, lots of side salads, hummus tahini and lots of different freshly baked breads.

This my friends is a schnitzel

Deep fried chicken breast. Oh yes. Its greasy, its hot and it will shoot your cholesterol through the roof. But oh is it delicious! 

I would definitely suggest trying a bite or two just to say you've had it but other than that I wouldn't order it all for myself :) 

Stick to the nutritious and delicious cuisine of the Mediterranean! Fresh vegetables, salads, dairy, some whole wheat breads, grilled fish fresh from the sea!

My hubby enjoying some just caught fish, simply grilled

This is a typical dinner out, all these salads are given to you when you order your main meal.

You will notice a carrot salad, beet salad, hummus, pickles (they love their pickles) and fresh vegetable salads as well. It really is a healthy eaters paradise.....please don't mind the vodka, my family is Russian and we never leave home with out it! ;)

Here is another night out in Israel. The salads are typical to most restaurants.

Bottom line, eating out in Israel is not that much of a dieters downfall. There are plenty of options both healthy and unhealthy, you can always find something to eat whether you are a meat eater, vegetarian (hello falafel balls!) or vegan. The food is flavorful, fresh and abundant.

A must on any middle eastern journey is a trip to the market. Food and goods are sold in outside air markets and it is a must whenever you travel here. You will find things like meat, fish, dairy, breads, fresh fruits and vegetables.....

Challah challah!

Lots of candy and oh so many spices!

Just about anything a person would need! Brad? Is that you? 

You think he's collecting royalties?

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Israel pt 2

So breakfast is covered. Lets continue with lunch. As in most countries around the middle east, many people do not eat out of the home as much as say Americans would. The meals are eaten at home and money is saved for more important things. Like clubbing in Tel Aiv on a Saturday night :)

Yala red bull vodka!! (My Israelis should understand)

So lunch would probably be on the lighter side. Something quick to eat, most likely it will be a burekas. Which is a flaky pastry filled with potato or cheese. Served with lots of pickles and eggs on the side.

Now this my friends is NOT I repeat, NOT a health food.

Although quite tasty, it is dripping with butter due to the pastry dough. You see how they cut it up into pieces? My advice it so share this with 2 or 3 (yes 3!) people, grab a chunk or 3 with some hard boiled eggs and pickles and you got yourself a tasty lunch! I never said you couldn't eat it, its all about moderation! Why deprive yourself of this delicious creation!? 

People also usually eat this after a night of clubbing, can you say the perfect drunk food?

The number one thing you must eat in Israel is a pita filled with Falafel or shawarma meat. Shawrma is meat roasted on a long spit, usually made of chicken or lamb, and then shaved off into slices. Since this is Israel where the majority eat Kosher or Halal, you will never find pork. 
Falafel are balls made of  ground up chickpeas and spices that are then deep-fried.This is then stuffed in a soft pita with hummus, lettuce, tomato, onions, pickles and tahini sauce.

(Ive used this picture already but really who cares, you need to see this again)

My advice? Keep the pita, easy on the hummus, fill it half way with veggies, add chicken shawarma, throw in 1 falafel ball, no tahini sauce and viola! You've got yourself a healthy filling lunch covering all the food groups. 

My feelings when eating on vacation are, moderation is key. You should never deprive yourself of foods that are once in a lifetime. Eating the food is part of the experience and how you really immerse yourself in the culture. I believe that you can have something "bad" as long as its balanced with something healthy on the side. Because come on, what do you remember most, "that mango that was cut in front of you in the markets of Tel Aviv with your husband", or that "painting in a museum"? :P

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

The Land of Milk and Honey

Ok lets start with a few things. I am a graduate of Nutrition awaiting the day I will receive a dietetic internship and get my darn RD certification. (Its only been 3 years its ok) But that's another story for another day for another post. All I'm sayin is that I have some knowledge of what I'm talking about...but only some :)

I thought for my first country I would start with the first place I have ever visited. Israel. 

                                                           The beautiful Bahia Gardens

Since my family is from there, I have probably been there close to 13 times. The culture is diverse with Jews, Christians and Muslims all living together just to name a few. So clearly the cuisine is diverse and there is a lot to chose from.The great thing about a country like Israel is that the diet is a Mediterranean one. The food is fresh, centered on fruits and vegetables, fish and dairy. 

So lets start with breakfast. Israelis love breakfast, unlike most of Europe where breakfast is usually something small Israelis like to eat well.  Definitely a coffee with toast, some kind of dairy whether is be yogurt or some kind of cheese. They love their dairy! I mean this is the land of milk and honey.

A typical breakfast

 Also eggs. They love eggs. With breakfast is always some sort of salad. Usually consisting of tomatoes, cucumbers and onions drizzled in olive oil. So clearly its very easy to eat a well balanced healthy meal for breakfast. I mean every where you go this is what breakfast will most likely look like.
The most well known breakfast dish aside from the above. Is shakshuka, a spicy egg dish cooked low and slow in a pan with peppers and onions. 

Doesn't that look so good?!

Its easy to stay on track for breakfast. First, chose your protein, most likely an egg dish of some kind.  Then add some dairy, it can be yogurt (most likely a Greek style yogurt) feta cheese, etc. Add in some Israeli salad and some freshly baked whole wheat bread and you have a complete meal hitting all the major food groups. If you like a sweeter breakfast they mostly eat toasted bread with jam. Not really a pancake kind of place. :)

Next post....lunch and dinner!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Ok....I'll admit. Writing this thing is scary and intimidating. Hence the reason it took me over a year to write a second blog post. But seeing as its a new year and all I figured why not give this another go.

Food is my whole life.(Just don't tell my husband) I am a person whose whole day is spent on thinking about what to eat, when to eat, where to buy it and what fun new restaurants to try this weekend. 

The problem Ive had since I was young (as most people I assume do) is finding the balance between eating what I want and not gaining 20lbs while doing so :). I strive to be able to enjoy myself while still consciously making the right choices. Throughout my life my weight has been up and down and it wasn't until I really truly let myself "live" was I able to lose the weight and finally feel good about myself. Its all about that balance people!

Ok, so traveling. That is what I want this blog to really focus on. After food I would have to say that traveling is definitely my number 2 biggest passion. I mean come on we all dream about it. Different cultures, beautiful scenery, spending your days doing whatever you want, and eating all the delicacies that country has to offer! I mean who can resist this!? 

So If you are interested hook line and sinker I will make each post about visiting a specific country, city, restaurant etc. and give you my take on what to eat, what are the right choices to make and what to stay away from. Because life should be enjoyed!

Monday, July 23, 2012


Most people can relate to this statement, "When I get home I am going on a serious diet!" This is most often said when on vacation, after consuming an extremely filling meal. Vacations usually come with the intentions of letting loose, eating things that you wouldn't normally eat at home, and perhaps taking one too many plates back from the buffet breakfast. And the last thing you want to do is hold back when eating abroad!
I mean come on, how can you resist this spread?! 

You can't, and that's why when you come home you have one mission: to lose that vacation weight! I've been there! I know! And its not fun. The last thing you want to do is worry about weight and eating when you are on any vacation, let alone your honeymoon!

Which is why I'm here. I just came home from a magical honeymoon in Thailand, Bali and Hong Kong. While there I ate the a lot of the local cuisine, which consisted of two dieters nightmares, noodles and rice! I ate it for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and although I enjoyed myself I couldn't help but feel regret after every meal. By the last day I was miserable, I wanted to go home, eat healthy and hit the gym because i knew 100% that I had gained at least 5 pounds. 

But guess what, all anyone kept telling me was how great I looked, and when I stepped on the scale it was the same! And then I felt regret. Regret for all those fat thoughts that were ruining my amazing honeymoon in such a beautiful place. 
As a nutrition graduate I know a lot about what are the right things to eat when abroad, what are good combinations of foods to keep you fuller longer and insights into what you are actually eating! I love international cuisine and truly believe that anyone can go away on vacation, eat well and still get to enjoy the food. Because come on, every one knows that the #1 reason to travel is to eat the amazing food. :)