The Honey’s parents are American ex-pats living abroad in Tokyo, Japan, and while visiting them over the last seven or eight years, he’s collected dozens of favorite eateries throughout the city.
There’s the best izakaya in Kichijoji, serving up casual Japanese pub food, and countless kiten-zushi restaurants, where my English-speaking Honey can choose small plates of freshly-made sushi from a moving conveyor belt without having to order in Japanese.
He always makes sure to buy at least one Pocari Sweat from a vending machine (think Japanese gatorade), and of course, there’s his favorite ramen shop in Shinjuku, a tiny, crowded restaurant with a line out the door. Paintings of pigs adorn the walls, and big, steaming bowls of pork ramen are served to hungry patrons at a single bar counter.
Do you have plans for Cinco de Mayo? With the Honey still out of town, it’s looking like a fiesta for one at the Swoon homestead this year. Perhaps I’ll dress the pup in a sombrero and make it a date!
As a native of Southern California, I grew up eating a lot of authentic Mexican food. Those dishes remain a big inspiration in the Swoon Kitchen, and I almost never need an excuse to whip up a spicy south-of-the-border-inspired recipe. I kicked off the Cinco de Mayo festivities early with these little veggie tostadas. Smokey, chile-spiced sweet potatoes combine with black beans and fresh chilies atop a crispy corn tortilla for a delicious vegetarian dish that’s perfect for one – or a party.
Check back this week for more Cinco de Mayo recipes and inspiration!
We live a bit outside of town, where farmland regularly intersects with a scattering of houses and small neighborhoods. It’s peaceful here. Open. Quiet. Plenty of land to meander through with the pup. This winter, it’s been especially still, with occasional falling snow and misty, foggy days.
When the weather grows chilly, I turn to a handful of my favorite comfort recipes; tried-and-true soups and stews, warming roasts and a few other cozy dishes, including this hearty Turkey Chili. Not only is this flavorful chili a perfect cold-weather antidote, I love that it mostly cooks itself, simmering away all day in the Slow Cooker, awaiting our return from a late-afternoon walk in the fields.