Tag Archives: Cologne

Work in Progress


I’m very much in catch-up mode these days with shuttling back and forth from one city to the next. It seems like I have barely been home since late December. Black Forest-Munich-Paris-Normandy (region)-Zurich-Munich-Cologne-Zurich-Munich. Ugh. My team is in Cologne these days and the client in Zurich, so there is a lot of shuttling around. This week I have the luxury of being home ALL WEEK. So nice. Next week is the shuttle goes back to Zurich, but I have at least 9 uninterrupted days here. I ran yesterday afternoon, forcing myself out into the -10 degree cold, which I must admit, I really hate. But the view from the bridge I usually stop on on the Isar was beautiful. It looks like sunset, but it was around 3:30 or so…the sun was slowly beginning to go down, but there was a good 90 minutes to go to sunset.

Next weekend Chinese New Year begins. Do you know Meitu? It’s *the* popular photo app in China at the moment. Just upload your photo and it will change your photo into a New Year’s vision. Pretty funny. Where’s the rooster, though? It does a variety of images and montages.



Thankfully, it also just does a nice brush up of a regular photo too. All wrinkles, freckles, blemishes completely wiped away.


I have lots of cravings for Asian (chinese, japanese, korean) food these days. My fridge is finally full of Asian herbs and vegetables because of my 9-day stay here. But…I’m anxious to cook from my new cookbook as well. I got this one for Christmas/Hanukah at my request.


Most people are a bit surprised, thinking that the book must be full of heavy meat dishes, a cliché for Eastern Europe. But it’s instead full of beautiful variety, from noodles and dumplings, to surprising salads and soups. I was reminded again that I had it at home and it needs cooking out of when I was in Cologne last week. I stayed in an airbnb place (definitely recommended: owned by a Russian woman. Her kitchen was full of Russian and Bulgarian cookbooks, which I couldn’t help but flip through.

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Pages were bent down and little note cards stuck between pages. They immediately reminded me of my mother’s old cookbooks full of her notes and scribbles. I desperately wished I could read Russian. One of my teammates is Russian, although he grew up in Germany. But he can read it and I sent him a few pages. He looked through and told me that the language in the cookbooks is incredibly old fashioned. He can understand it, but just barely.

I saw this photo and immediately remembered a similar one in my Mamushka cookbook at home.


It must really be the same thing/recipe.


But now I have the recipe, in English. A Moldavian giant cheese twist.


It’s coming out of my oven in the next few days for sure.

Anyway, looking forward to a restful, non-traveling week before the havoc begins again. The havoc this week is merely in reading the news as Trump takes his place in office and begins to destroy what he can quickly. Very proud of my mother and my sisters who all marched on January 21, the day after the inauguration,  in Washington DC and Oakland, California.

Have a great week. More progress to be reported when I have a chance to cook a few new things.




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Posted by on January 23, 2017 in Uncategorized


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Under Pressure

But take the title of the post literally, not figuratively. The week did not end well health-wise.

The warm spot at the foot of the bed

What was supposed to be a fast day-trip to Cologne on Thursday ended up turning into an unplanned for overnighter.

I woke up feeling dizzy on Thursday, which has been an ongoing problem (yes, will see if I can get an appointment with a neurologist next week or an ear/nose/throat doctor…), but I wanted to make the trip for the internal handover of some client responsibilities (from my colleague to me)…and everything seemed reasonably ok until around noon, when it just wasn’t anymore.

Dizzyness got unbearable, no early flight home to be found, rushed to airport at around 4:30 through sheets of rain and buckets of hail in a revolting-smelling taxi that had no-smoking stickers all over the interior of the car but which reeked of cigarettes, only to be told that the flight wouldn’t leave because of storms until after 8 pm so…off to the hospital in Cologne (Lufthansa’s choice based on my illness/symptoms), where in the ER they could find little wrong with me. Anyway, enough details. Seems I just have the flu – terrible sinus pressure. I slept in an airport holiday inn and flew home yesterday morning.

So today I get to browse the web, read, watch movies, with two kitties warming my feet. (They don’t like to share the foot space…I hear whining and growling every few minutes.)

The warm spot at the foot of the bed

The warm spot at the foot of the bed

But…I will get a gift later today…a pressure cooker. Never had one and have been interested in them for quite awhile now. Debating if should buy one. My mother’s enthusiasm over hers finally convinced me. Perfect gift for today…to make some chicken soup as a first recipe. Maybe some matzo balls too…just saw a recipe for them over on the smitten kitchen blog that looks quite do-able…if I can find some matzos in this country…

WMF Perfect Pro Pressure Cooker

WMF Perfect Pro Pressure Cooker

So…pressure cooker reviews, recipes, experiences to come….meanwhile going to look for another movie to download or something.

Oh, and Happy Groundhog’s Day. 🙂


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