I’m a sucker for food. Good food that is. Preferably homemade.

I have lived in different countries: Holland, France, Ukraine, Canada, Martinique… and food has always been some kind of passion. I haven’t always had a camera with me, so some regions will have no pictures.

Homemade food for me is the best. Restaurants always have access to some kind of “secrets” that nobody should know about. Prepared food always makes me think of TV-dinners and already makes me feel strange thinking of them. When you start reading the labels it gets worse. With all the chemicals you are supposed to swallow without knowing about them, it’s a miracle the stomach is still capable of extracting nourishment out of that mixture.

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No, for me, homemade food (and drinks) are the best.

Let’s start with the outdoor food. Simple, cooked/grilled on a wood fire, nothing can beat that. At least outdoors. A simple piece of chicken or fish, some marinade, wood and that’s it.

Outdoor pleasures Tasty fish

But of course, if you live in Ukraine you also have to provide drinks with this. Two options: buy it or make it.

The bought stuff, ok. Wine, beer, lemonade all no problem. But the men will want something stronger like vodka. You can buy this too of course, often just as expensive as a bottle of lemonade, but it’s more interesting to make it yourself.

 

The stills for this are often a bit “rustic” and certainly would not inspire any health inspector here in Canada… However, if well done, the quality of this stuff is far better than the bottled vodka from the stores.

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Old fashioned Modern Ukrainian still. Mash at the top on a wood fire, cooler in the middle, alcohol at the bottom ready for consumption. All the better advice applies here (drink moderately etc)

But of course we don’t eat always outside in Ukraine. Weather can be quite violent there, too.

So, when party time comes, well, you have to provide a good table full of interesting and tasty stuff. A birthday, a new contract, New Year, Christmas or any other reason may give you a reason to invite people at the table.

Unlike the outdoor activities, here the table is literally stacked with plates, recipients and other tableware.

New Year's table Office party

Most of the time, the tables are filled, people eat and then the second course is served… I gained a few pounds in Ukraine, useless to say. Whatever you see on these tables, it is mostly homemade and home grown, a part from the bottles and the caviar. Of course, at work (right picture) there may be some wine, but nothing stronger…

I’ll be writing more about food, in different times and places.