Happy New Year everyone! Between work, nurition school, and culinary school, 2009 just flew by! I hope 2010 is a great year for everyone and I’m very excited for it. As you guys probably know, the 2010 Olympics are being held in Vancouver/Whistler, so I am thrilled at the thought of spending a couple weeks in this BUSY city during that time. I can also look forward to graduating from culinary school and also getting my Registered Holistic Nutritionist (RHN) diploma in 2010! Aside from that, I have no plans so far- I’m just going to let life happen!

I hope you all had great holidays this December. I actually spent my Christmas in Mexico which was VERY different from what I am used to. I must admit that spending everyday on a white sand beach was probably just what I needed after a few months of stress. I took lots of pictures and I’m going to share some with you- especially the food!!

Something I was really excited to find in Mexico was Mayan Drinking Chocolate. I had just read about traditional drinking chocolate in a local organic magazine that my Dad sometimes picks up for me. I haven’t had the popular powdered hot chocolate in quite awhile, though it is something I miss having. When I read about how drinking chocolate used to be, I really wanted to try it and a few days later I am in Mexico and I find it! There was a sweet option available that was only 40% cacao, but I chose the bitter option with 70% cacao. I simply mixed about 1.5 of the chocolate tablets I purchased with 1/3  litre of hot almond milk. Of course, you could use regular milk or cream or soy milk or even water. You can also add a bit of sugar/agave/honey/etc. if you feel the need for some added sweetness, but I didn’t find it necessary at all! Of course if you can’t find Mexican Chocolate, you can use some regular good quality bittersweet chocolate.

And now onto some photos from the trip!

Christmas Eve was a big deal and we enjoyed a massive and beautiful buffet that included one of my favourites…LOBSTER!

We were greeted by some amazing ice sculptures!

Also a fat sculpture and an artistic lobster display!

I thought the vegetable and meat terrines looked really neat, and also these Lobster “Buena Vista”.

The bread station, and a piggy made from proscuitto!

This was a beautiful little pumpkin creme brulee that I had at the Mexican a la carte restaurant, and it was SOO good. Mmm…

And my plate from the Christmas Eve buffet- grilled lobster, couscous, mushroom mashed potatoes, coconut and pineapple shrimp, grilled vegetables, and a smoked salmon toast- whew!

The obligatory beach shot.

And my family enjoying some Mexican food on Christmas day.

I must add a little something special here. For the last several years, our neighbours (who are Dutch) have brought us Oliebollen each New Year’s Eve. I did a bit of research and Oliebollen is basically a fried dough that contains sultanas/currents/raisins and sometimes apple pieces. It’s absolutely delicious!