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Posts tagged ‘Carmen Pelaez’

Catching Up in Winter

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It has been a long time since I’ve written one of these catch up posts. It’s probably only because we’re deep into the snow-globe months that I’m able to now.  Seeing the links I’ve flagged over the last few weeks, it’s clear that each one has been an escape from black and white (or blue) days: Read more

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Marathon Running

After completing the New York City marathon (my first) yesterday, I’ve given myself a few extra days to get through my runner’s fog.  In the meantime, I wanted to post a great New York Times article about the marathon written by Carmen Peláez, my sometimes contributor, oftentimes food taster, and every day sister.  Whether or not you’re a runner, it’s a lovely story about getting through the race.

Blanket Comfort

My sister Carmen has been asking me to make bistec empanizado for this blog  for awhile.  When I wrote about masitas de puerco, my favorite thing to order from Cuban menus, it seemed only fair to write about hers.  Mine came with black beans and hers didn’t, so I’d always pass her my frijoles negros.  This week we made a different deal – I’d finally make the bistec empanizado if she’d write the post.  Here it is and I’m sure you’ll agree it was well worth the beans.

When I was little, the center of the universe seemed to exist at Casablanca.  A bustling Cuban café on 8th street in the then sleepy little town of Miami.  When my grandfather took me for lunch, I loved sitting at the counter where the vinyl covered, revolving stools gave me a 360 degree view of the action.  When my parents took me at night, the same café was usually empty which gave my sister and I the odd run of the place.  We’d feed quarters into the jukebox and play Donna Summer songs as my father talked about what life would have been like/could be like for us in Cuba.  I don’t know exactly why I chose Donna Summer.  I wasn’t crazy about disco (I didn’t want to dress like a that when I grew up) but there was something about her voice that kept me coming back.  It was lonely and defiant.  It spoke of another world I couldn’t possibly understand at that age.  The boldness of it drew me in and it was endless.  Very much like the breaded steak on my plate that I always ordered for dinner. Read more