Saturday, July 24, 2010

Keep calm and… buy it all!

I’m pretty sure you’ve seen this poster in very chic and hip décor stores. I found it kind of profound and very decorative. They usually carry it in different colours that will match perfectly any house scheme and style. In fact, I’m looking for a yellow or a green one for my own place.

But this doesn’t stop here. I’d be surprised if you haven’t seen notebooks, mugs, t-shirts, greeting cards, shopping bags, etc. with the same theme. You can find them in small gift shops, online and even Chapters bookstore have some of these available in their gift area.

The most important questions are: What is the buzz about this poster? What does it represent or who designed it? Well, everything started in 1939 when the British government produced it to raise the morale of the British public in case of an invasion during World War II. The funny thing is that not only the designer of the poster is totally unknown but it was NEVER used! In 2000 this poster was rediscovered in Barter Books, one of the largest second-hand bookstores in Europe which is located in the North East of England.

Since Crown Copyright expires on artistic works created by the UK government after 50 years, the image is now in the public domain. So the owners of Barter Books decided to reprint copies for customers and the frenzy started!

It has become such an interesting phenomenon that parodies of the poster with similar type but different phrases or logos have gone viral! So if you are a décor junkie like me or you just like curious things this might be one little perfect gift for you or perhaps someone else.

Choose from all the fun combinations “Keep calm and…”: “Eat Cupcakes”, “Drink Wine”, “Love Doxies”, “Ride Bikes”, “Love Knitting”, “Love Goldens” or just stick to the famous and timeless “Carry On”.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Italians do it better...

Madonna has always said “Italians do it better” but when it comes to chilies I never really thought they would. I have become a fan of these extremely spicy and “deliziosi” chilies called Peperoncini Piccanti that I tried in my favourite Italian restaurant called Terroni.

Apparently, they are a variety of the species “Capsicum annuum” just like the bell pepper and they are also known as Tuscan peppers. The term peperoncini is moslty used for hotter varieties and they are the key ingredient for dishes like Pasta alla Puttanesca, Bolognese and Salsa alla Diavola.

They are the “tocco perfetto” for a pizza or pasta. Adding a little bit of these chilies wouldn’t let you stop eating. As a Mexican, I have to say that not only I’m really used to spicy food but I also love it! I’ve tried different types of spiciness like Thai and Indian which are totally different than Mexican. With Thai chilies you will feel the heat at the back of your throat, Indian on your tongue and Mexican on your lips. And let me give you a tip, drinking water after eating a lot of hot food will not put out the fire on your mouth or stomach. The only thing that will is some sour cream, yogurt or milk. Why? I don’t really know, it’s just a “nonna’s” remedy and it works pretty well!

The best part of this is that you don’t have to wait to go and eat at Terroni to enjoy this delight, for as little as $10 CAD you can buy them in their retail area and enjoy them at home with any type of food (they are really good on sandwiches, pitas and even quesadillas!).

They are homemade and since they come preserved in olive oil, they’ll stay fresh for a long time. They are so good that I think you’ll eat them all before they go bad! Godere (enjoy in Italian)!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

I’m back and reloaded!

It’s been five months since I last wrote on my blog. Many things have happened during this time, the most significant one: selling my business. A couple of weeks ago I ended one of the most important chapters of my life. Owning a restaurant was not only one of my biggest challenges, it was a life changing experience that brought incredible professional and personal growth. There is definitely a V before and after. I feel happy and blessed to have had an opportunity like that.

The good news is that I feel it’s time to fly to new horizons, share all what I learned and most importantly, keep learning from life and others!

So I’m back and reloaded, ready to keep dreaming and of course BLOGGING!