Sunday, August 28, 2011

Seasons of My Heart

Oaxaca, Mexico

Seasons of My Heart is an incredible Oaxacan cooking class and experience. The day we gathered, we were 12: San Francisco, New York, England, Italy, Colombia and a group of chefs from Morelia, Mexico. You explore market day at Etla (30 mins from Oaxaca) where farmers, butchers, cheese makers, women and men alike gather to sell, trade and even barter their goods. Equipped with 3-inch yellow spoons, you then nibble and smack lips on various fruits, local delicacies, handmade flavors on taste buds. The market is small so you find yourself mixing with local people, skin on skin, squeezing tightly in corners and passages along the stalls. The voice of a boy and his guitar plays music to wet your appetite. It's time for lunch (enchilada con mole coloradito) and a rejuvenating cup of chocolate con agua.

enchilada con mole coloradito

Then off you go to a beautiful kitchen surrounded by idyllic pastures, a stream, a brown horse... recipes, ingredients, pre-columbian history deciphered by world renown chef and author, Susana Trilling. Inspired, you don aprons, pair off and peel, chop, roast and sautee away. 3 hours later, you sit at a large communal table and enjoy the labor of love, 5 dishes you've just magically created. Each dish, a story, each spoonful, a celebration.

The day is golden, rays of sun peaking between trees. 

My belly and spirit are eternally grateful for Susana and the lovely people on the tour. Highly recommend this once and a life time experience when in Oxaca. Enjoy all the Seasons of My Heart photos (there's a ton, so please check them out). Find some favorites below.

naked cocoa beans
what makes the the chilhuacle negro so special?
 - it is the prized chili in Oaxaca (1 kilo ~ $60)
limestone cutter - did you know, the 
essential ingredient for tortillas?
inconceivably colorful 
adore the color of this sweet tamale.
Guess what's inside?...cinnamon sticks and raisins :)
Dull knife? I know just the place...
guaje beans, tastes like peas
baby roosters while they're stlll cute
frothy chocolate con agua
Susana showing the lovely vines of the
calabaza squash for the first course soup
tomatoes and chilies for the mole chichilo

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