Feature of the Week-er: Nailin’ it


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Summer means exposed feet. It also means (hopefully) lots of schmoozing on rooftop bars with colorful cocktails in your hands. Your hands will be looked at no matter what you do and I am sure you’ve heard that clean hands/nails make a good impression (which means men can definitely get in on the action). Hell, it’s also just nice to have someone massaging your cuticles from time to time. But no one wants to spend a lot; and that’s where I come in.

You can stop by your local hair salon and cross your fingers that the person who does your nail doesn’t leave you with something worse (a little advice: nail rape via nail file in the hands of a very angry woman let me with claws…cringe). As prices currently stands (though not for long…THANKS INFLATION) My suggestion is seeking out some place that specializes. Prices usually run from AR 30+ for a manicure and 60+ for a pedicure, though some vary depending on the nail polish you choose.

Let me introduce you to my favorite, Avanceê in Recoleta. The nice thing about this place is that it specializes in nails, which means they have all the appropriate tools and furniture. The place is white and clean, though not sterile looking by any means. Chairs are comfortable and color choices are varied.

Prices are very fair—AR 35 for manicure and AR 70 for pedicure. Waxing is available.

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Some Tips:

Bring your own nail polish, ladies. They charge an extra AR 15 just to use the “good” stuff (Revlon). I’d rather bring my own anyway.

Call ahead to avoid having to wait, although you might have to anyway.

Study up on your lingo beforehand if you’re Spanish isn’t too strong. The ladies speak mostly Spanish although I already gave them a cheat sheet!nail3

Avanceê, Azcuénaga 1849 (in between Las Heras and the Cemetery)

4807-0032

Monday, 2 to 9 PM, Tuesday to Saturday, 10 AM to 9 PM, CLOSED Sundays

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The Good and the Bad: Sushi in Buenos Aires

sushi

I am still in the process of finding my favorite budget sushi in BA.

So this is Gastronomy Research Project numero 1 !! This list will get longer as I get fatter more knowledgeable about the BA sushi scene.

If you like Japanese food and have spent any extended period of time in Buenos Aires you may have noticed that it’s not often authentic. More often than not you will be faced with a very serious decision: whether or not to risk your tuna being a tuna fish roll (not even the cat would eat it…). Oh and did I mention the hunks of cream cheese?

I have gotten used to the sushi in Buenos Aires, despite the tendency for it to be smothered in cream cheese. Side story: the first time I ate sushi in Buenos Aires I ordered Sushi Pop with a friend and was so shocked and dissapointed that I didn’t order from anywhere for at least 5 months. Two and a half years later, after becoming friendly with BA sushi, my lovely boyfriend convinced me to try it again. I don’t know if the sushi has gotten better or if my palate has become a little more forgiving, but I LIKED IT. And I ate it all. However I still maintain that there is a rude amount of rice-to-fish ratio.

Barrio Chino Supermarket Sushi

Not good. I guess it sort of somewhat killed my craving, but not really. Way too much rice, way too little fish, and didn’t seem particularly fresh (also been sitting in a refrigerator for who knows how long…). I only tried the sushi at Casa China, but I really didn’t give me any desire to go back. On the upside (yup, there is one) it was incredibly cheap. Around 25-35 per roll but they are massive (again, because of the quantity of rice). I’d say this is only for the really desperate and broke.

Sushi Pop

The classic delivery. Pretty good, not great. It kills  the craving, but the rice-to-fish (RTF) ration is pretty terrible (see the picture above? that extra ring of rice makes me sad). Alaska (all salmon, AR 110 for 36 pieces) menu was good but I suggest chopping up the nigiri (the piece of fish lying on top of rice) and distributing among the other rolls. The Barcelona (salman and fresh tuna) is something I definitely want to try, but so far they have been “out of tuna”. Id rather them tell me that then give me tuna fish instead—which has happened. Gag. Huge, non-traditional selection with something for everyone. Rolls prices are a little higher, around 36-39, but they have 12 pieces. Combos start at 115 for 40 pieces.

Gako Sushi

Definitely better than Sushi Pop in terms of RTF, with interesting flavor combinations too. Particularly enjoyed the rolls with smoked salmon. The spicy mango roll was a nice idea, but lacked mango (??). First time delivery orders get four free pieces of sushi! It’s more expensive than sushi pop, but probably worth it.

Juncal 2819

Haru

Don’t ask, just go. That’s right, don’t order—GO. Very nice place with a varied menu and really well done food. Half of the parties were Japanese, too ! Oh and cheap. Fried tofu with teriyaki served as a complimentary starter. Vegetable tempura is well done. Chicken teriyaki appetizer was delicious and smelled even better (opposite, I know). Rolls were very good: RTF ratio great (although they are smaller than your average argentine goliath sushi rolls) and fish and wasabi were very fresh. My only two complaints would be that the spicy sauce on one of our sushi rolls (probably just a poor choice anyway) covered up the flavor of the fish and that there could have been more of a variety available (no red tuna!). For the price, however, this place is hard to beat. For three people, AR 320 with wine for two and tip included. Oh, and we got a free dessert (I am going to say for being 3 beautiful women) which means that this place wins onda points.

Av. Rivadavia 3324, near corner of Aguero
sushiharu tempura

Benihana Buenos Aires

OK so I understand while you might scoff at this one. But pleaseee hear me out. This yanquilandia chain is, yes, a chain but it has a pretty great happy hour deal. From 4 PM to 8 PM everyday you can get half priced drinks (a list of some 10 fruity cocktails) for AR 25, which are good enough for the price. The sushi, although nothing stellar, is also dirt cheap at rolls for AR 25 with 10 pieces or a tamaki for AR 16 and is arguably the best sushi in the city at the happy hour price. They also have a pretty complete food menu including jalapeno poppers (??) if you feel like a TGIFridays special with your sushi…Perfect people watching outdoor seating too, but it fills up fast. The verdict? Totally worth it for the price.

Alto Palermo Mall, on the corner near Colonel Diaz and Arenales; or just look between TGIFridays and Starbucks
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Sushi Colors

Sushi 3

I recently decided to throw caution to the wind and try out Sushi Colors. These guys deliver fresh, well-portioned rolls to much of Buenos Aires (although they very inconveniently stop right before my neighborhood, las Cañitas). Combos are surprisingly plentiful and the RTF ratio was impressive. I didn’t even have to divvy up the fish from the nigiri to compensate for less than impressive filling, like I always do with Sushi Pop. Was it more expensive than its cheaper competitor? Yeah, a little. The AR 164 price tag on the 40 piece box cost us 38 more pesos than the all salmon Alaska box at Sushi Pop, but I would pay more for more fish any day.

Sushi 2 Sushi 1

Since we were two ladies and two gents, we sprung for three more rolls: the Tiger Roll, the Tino roll and the Boston roll. The Tiger and the Tino were fried sushi, which were unsurprisingly ordered by the Argentine gents. I can’t say I liked them that much, but that’s a personal preference against cooked (and fried) sushi. The smoked salmon Boston roll was good, although I think I preferred the basic sushi and avocado roll. All in all, GREAT price for quality. Our total price tag was about AR 320 with tip, split between 4 people. We also got a 10% discount because we ordered between 7 and 8 pm on a Friday. But we didn’t eat that early; we just asked them to bring it at 10 and it was EARLY. They do a 15% discount ordering between 7-8 Tuesday-Thursday.

Where do you get your affordable sushi in Buenos Aires?

Saving $$ With Your Iphone in Buenos Aires

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Use your Iphone in Buenos Aires. Seriously.

What  kind of cell phone are you using here? Is it that little Argentine brick that looks like the first Nokias (nicknamed the indestructible nokia for all of those who didn’t drown it in coke accidently…), the one with the nifty flash light at the top? If so, then you can say goodbye to the hand cramp that texting on that baby gives you because I may have a solution. Did you also bring your smartphone?  Because if you have recently arrived to Buenos Aires or are staying for some time you may want to consider using it.

Why? I use my iphone in Argentina, so let me make your pro/con list for you.

.Pro #1: you already have it (or another smartphone), so why buy another?

Pro #2: it will probably cost you close to the same amount to use a smartphone as it would to use the brick. You live your life texting here to avoid expensive calls. But when you have a smartphone, you have the added benefit of having whatsap, which has exploded here between people with smartphones and blackberrys. You get to join that club and just pay for internet (1 peso per day on pre-paid plans).

Pro #3: like with regular phones here, you pay as you go, so you control how much you use. You also get 1 free number to call !

Pro #4: you get to have internet at 1 peso per day. Which means you always have your 1) subte map, 2) app to find the bus you need, 3) camera, 4) spanish-english dictionary, and 5) skype if you are in a pickle.

Pro #5: you can stay in contact with people in your home country/town!

And now for the con list:

Con #1: you may get it stolen. We all know pick-pocketers can be pretty genius here (did you hear about the time that Barbara Bush, daughter of the ex-Prez, had her purse stolen in San Telmo when surrounded by secret service?). So if you tend to get things stole maybe this isn’t the advice for you. 

Con #2: 3g network isn’t thaaat good, but at 1 peso a day who really cares? I turn my phone off and on again and it works just fine.

Con #3: this scheme only works with phones that have sim chips, so if yours doesn’t (sorry to some of you Verizon users in the U.S.), you’ll have to think of something else.

Con #4:  you have to go through the process of unlocking your phone if you haven’t done it already. For ATT users its easy (this page lets you send in a request to unlock your iphone and it was eaaasy), for others I’m not sure. In the past I called and they unlocked it for me, but I have heard of some carriers making you pay.

So yeah. There are some cons, but mostly it’s just the getting it stolen one that’s of real concern as long as you have the other elements in order (sim chip, unlock).

On the Argentina side, getting a sim chip/plan is just as easy as getting a sim chip for any phone. In Personal mine cost AR 30 and worked almost immediately. I put on about 30 pesos every 12-15 days and it lasts. I definitely use less credit this way; totally frugal approved.

So if you are looking for a way to use your iphone/smartphone in Buenos Aires, it’s actually much simpler than you thought. Or as our Argie friends would say, es un boludez !

Feature of the Week-er: Dreams of Real French Pastries in Buenos Aires

NOTE: there is some serious food porn in here. If you are offended…go read a cookbook with out pictures. 

I found something akin to a real French bakery in Buenos Aires.

SO PUT DOWN THE MEDIALUNA. I am sure its delicious with its almibar coating and strangely yellow-ish tint, but that is not what I am here to discuss so please clear your mind of such thoughts (and your plate) !

We are here to talk french pastries. Flaky, buttery, fresh and ideally recently taken out of the oven. That is exactly what I found on a recent morning while walking to work. You know in movies when people literally stop in their tracks after being hit by the smell of fresh-baked whatever wafting out of a bakery? I did that lurch-to-a-halt move before deciding that I couldn’t take another step without a very important taste test.

That morning I was lucky enough to stumble onto La Patisserie Francaise.

And after being faced with this…

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I bought this…(for ARS 3.50)

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And I died. And dubbed this place the “Next Best Thing to a Ticket to Paris” (at least until I own my own airline…ha ha).

I, the queen of shovelling food into my mouth at a steady stream, actually ate this slowly. It was perfect–at least as far as my standards go. My French experience is relatively basic (a total of three weeks) but I made sure to make my French collegue try it. She said it was up to par. I say it goddamn SURPASSED it.

And so I went back and ate this…

At ARS 3.50 its a full peso more than the average factura (Argentine version) so I don’t know if you can spare it.

I AM SO KIDDING. You would be missing out on a daily weekly trip to France by not trying these babies. Did I mention that the French Embassy apparently orders from here? And anyway, lets SAY that the ARS 6.27 pesos per euro was accurate (hem, inflation makes it more like ARS 7.75), then your French style pastry here would be at least half the price than the real thing. Now thats my kind of deal.

Oh, and this is what I saw when I finally turned away from the pastries…

For more details check out 2XTango’s review.

La Pâtisserie Française

Malabia 2355, between Charcas and Guemes (Palermo Soho)
Update: The croissant is good, but its not great. Definitely less medialuna (none of the sweetness, in fact) but not all the way buttery croissant. I still have high hopes for the one with pastry cream in it…and the caracol with raisins is 100% worth it.

Free Pumpkin Pie (Recipe) !!

Making (and Eating) Pumpkin Pie in Buenos Aires has sort of become a tradition.

I realize that this post is geared to a certain group of people (the fatties of the USA!). But I couldn’t help myself because today is one of my favorite holidays !

Its Turkey Day, baby. 

I love that there is an actual holiday that is entirely organized around what and when you are going to eat. None of the usual holiday shenanigans–just food.

But living in Buenos Aires complicates this holiday. First, I am not with my family and missing a meal cooked by my mother is practically sacrilegious. And second, Argentina does not  celebrate the wonderful day when the pilgrims and the native (north)americans sat down at a lovely long table filled with gourds as decoration in order to share a meticulously thought out, warm meal and go around the table saying what they were thankful for (pilgrims mostly, because they didn’t die from hypothermia and instead got pumpkin pie). Believe me, this is all factual and accurate.

My first Thanksgiving here was actually a great success. It may have been because I was surrounded by people just as enthusiastic about this holiday as I am, but nonetheless it all worked! We even took a door off of its hinges to make an extra long table. It was glorious.

However, although fun and delicious, it was not easy. There are so many T-giving supplies you can’t get here for obvious reasons. We even had a visitor smuggle in bags of marshmellows and cans of cranberry sauce in his suitcase !

And I was determined to make a pumpkin pie even if it too me weeks. I started my quest two weeks in advance, researching recipes and looking for ingredients. I realized a couple of key things:

1) pumpkin puree in a can is uncommon and, if it even exsits, almost impossible to get a hold of.

2) evaporated milk is also uncommon and, though available, expensive (17 pesos for a can?!).

3) food processors make your life so much easier in pumpkin pie endevors.

Taking all of these things into account I patched together this “pumpkin” pie recipe that is actually incredibly good. It tasted like a traditional pumpkin pie, and a damn good one at that.

So in honor of this very, very special day and of not spending god knows how much on importing or actually buying the smuggled-in ingredients to take the easy route, I am giving you my special Argentina pumpkin pie recipe, dubbed “Pumpkin Pie Remix”. Take good care of it!

Pumpkin Pie Remix Recipe

Ingredients:

Pie Crust, makes top/bottom or two pies (from Smitten Kitchen):
315 grams (2 1/2 cups) All-purpose flour
225 grams (1 cup) butter (cut into 1/2 inch slices and left to chill in the fridge at least 15 minutes, up to an hour)
1 tsp salt, if your butter is unsalted, otherwise forget it (use a real teaspoon)
1 Tbsp sugar (again, use a real tablespoon)
6-8 Tbsp ice water (ditto)

Filling:
15 ounces (2-2.5 cups) fresh Butternut Squash, peeled and cubed
120 grams (little over 1/2 cup packed Brown Sugar or 3/4 cup White Sugar)
1 Tbsp (15 grams) Corn starch
1 egg
8 ounces evaporated milk (ie. 145 grams (a little less than a cup) dry milk and 170 grams of water)
Pumpkin pie spices (1 tsp. cinnamon, pinch each of allspice, nutmeg, clove, and ginger. Or just do cinnamon and grate some nutmeg; that should do it)

Crust:
1. In a food processor combine flour, (salt), and sugar. Pulse to mix. Add butter and pulse 6 to 8 times (until pea sized). Add ice water 1 Tbsp. at a time, pulsing until mixture just begins to clump into fine sand like bits. Dump into plastic bag and squish into a ball in one or two movements. Do not over kead! Place in fridge for at least an hour and up to two days.

   If doing by hand, mix dry ingredients first and then use a force or fingers to work the finly chopped, cold butter  in until pea sized bits. Mix in 5 Tbsp ice water with a spatula until big lumps are formed and then quickly knead (no more than 3-4 times) into a ball. Do not over knead! Place in fridge for at least an hour and up to two days.

3. When ready to make the pie, cut the dough in half (recipe makes two pies or a top and bottom if you want to get fancy with a lattice) and begin to roll out. DO NOT OVER ROLL or the dough will be tough. Roll into a round-ish shape (no need to make it perfect) and lift carefully over the pie tin. Gently press into tin and cut off over-hanging edges with a knife. Fill a small bowl with cold water, dip a fork into the water, and press the edges of the dough onto the edge of the pan lightly.

Filling:
1. Either boil the cubed squash in a pot or bake at 200C (400F), either way until tender. Cool. If you do not have a food processor, mash by hand until it is a very fine puree.
2. Preheat oven to 175C (350F).
3. Combine water and powdered milk by sprinkling a little powder into the water and whisking and repeating until incorporated without clumps. Whisk egg in a separate bowl.
4. In the food processor or large bowl combine squash, brown sugar, cornstarch, egg, milk, and spices. Process or stir until smooth. Pour into pie crust.
5. Bake for 50 minutes (or 40 minutes and 20 minutes at a lower temperature to avoid a burnt crust). (Watch this part! My oven was so hot it probably took a combined 40 minutes to cook, and all at the same around “350F” temperature. I also left it in the turned off oven for another 10 minutes for good measure).

Get Outside: Buenos Aires Jazz Festival 2012

Free Jazz Festival in Buenos Aires 2012

Buenos Aires is arguably one of the best cities in the world for free cultural events. Its nearly impossible to attend every free concert, festival, museum opening, class etc. that you can find on a weekly basis. But that doesn’t mean you can’t try ! So I found another one for you, and I hope  that I can get to it myself (with Thanksgiving coming up I can’t help becoming a slave to my pumpkin pie recipe).

Jazz Festival BA 2012

The international jazz festival kicks off tomorrow with concerts all over the city. Ticket prices and locations vary…but that doesn’t concern me!

The best deal is the free concert series on the terrace of the Centro Cultural de Recoleta and in the amphitheater in the Park Centenario in Almagro. They will be hosting (mostly) Argentine jazz artists for free outdoor concerts starting Wednesday, November 21st.

Sounds like the perfect excuse to down a quilmes–and don’t forget your envase (empty beer bottle) for the cheaper price!

Don’t you love spring in Buenos Aires?

Feria Masticar: Massive BA Food Party

feriamasticar

Not that you needed an excuse, but here is one to get out this weekend…to eat. And maybe shop for lovely produce and artisanal products (I’ve still never really been able to figure that word out) blah blah blah. But really its the eating that should always be center stage.

Which brings me to Feria Masticar, the new Buenos Aires festival dedicated to food and cooking and organized by the Argentine gastronomy elite. Its happening this weekend !

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Members of the group ACELGA (Asociación de Cocineros y Empresarios ligados a la Gastronomía Argentina and paradoxically sharing a name with a relatively unappetizing vegetable)  have joined forces to create a weekend of heaven on earth gastronomic delight including a market, food stands, cooking classes, and wine and possibly beer tastings. Even Narda Lepes (think young, hip Rachel Ray/Martha Stewart with an amazing BA grocery shopping guide) is going to be there teaching cooking classes.

The details that make me want to go NOW:

1. Narda Lepes, Francis Mallman, and Maru Bottana

2. One Stop Shopping: So many amazing products in one place at one time (L’epi bread, national sea salt, olive oil, micro greens…!!!)

3. A cocktail stand among the food stands brought to you by Bar 878!

4. Variety and reasonable prices at food stands, somewhere between $20-35 for meals (although who knows about sizes)

5. Wine tasting “tunnel” (anyone heard of Club Amerika’s touch tunnel? *shudder*)

6. Cooking classes and talks

At ARS $30 pesos this Feria is bound to be cheaper than a lunch out and, of course, is your activity for the day. Tack on a $25-35 peso sandwich and you’re still doing pretty well. Oh hell, how often to you get to go to a food festival for less than USD 6-4.50 (depending on exchange rate you work in) anyway? And if you were planning on paying that USD 60+ for the class to make empanadas and drink a glass of wine, please spare yourself. ITS NARDA LEPES FOR fu… FOODS SAKE.

So be there. Period.

Feria Masticar, “El Dorrego” at Zapiola 50, Colegiales (see google map here)

November 16, 17, 18

Friday & Saturday: 12 PM to 11 PM

Sunday: 12 PM to 10 PM

Feature of the Week-er: Rapanui Ice Cream

My Buenos Aires ice cream place is better than yours.

(I dare you to disagree)

Buenos Aires is known for its ice cream. It feels like there is a shop on every corner just waiting for you to ask them to trot over to your doorstep with some of the cold stuff in a freezer bowl  (shout out to badelivery!!). There is even an (popular AND expensive) Argentine ice cream joint, Dolcezza, in my native Washington, DC that really does know what it’s doing. Their salted caramel ice cream is ohmyfkwqkba.

So my second Feature of the Week-er is dedicated to Rapanui. It wins the prize for the “Place you Want to Live Next to but Shouldn’t” spot in the city.

In definite Pick Up the Fork  style, I played my own game of “This Why You’re Fat” and enjoyed a 1/4 kilo with a friend on a recent Saturday afternoon. (Don’t expect Rapanui to deliver to your house; they are too classy for that). The flavors I generally salivate over (of the ones I can remember) are maracuya (passion fruit) and kiwi sorbet, lemon pie with meringue (which tastes soo much like key lime pie it hurts), any of the ddl ones, one that tastes like nutella, and the raspberry sorbet. But I should mention that I never met a Rapanui ice cream that didn’t make my heart skip a beat.

So why is this my Feature of the Week-er? Because this place is cheaper (and better) than the most well known ice cream shop in Argentina, Freddo. A 1/4 kilo at Rapanui comes out to 27 pesos while the same size is 33 at Freddo! And of course, in ingenious argentine style, you get to try 3 flavors per 1/4. Sweet.

Rapanui is also an adorable spot for a coffee or chocolates (it’s originally known as a chocolate shop from Bariloche) with ample seating and even a communal table. I’m thinking this would be perfect ice cream date spot, in fact. I have also been lucky enough on TWO occasions to be offered a free chocolate, so they really have won me over.

If all that doesn’t convince you then know this: I don’t even really LIKE ice cream that much. Please, just try it.

So celebrate “Every Day Should be Ice Cream” day (if President Cristina FK can make up random holidays why can’t I?) and swing by Rapanui. I promise you won’t be disappointed.

Rapanui, Arenales 2302 (corner of Azcuenaga), Recoleta

Update: I tried Jauja. No comparison.

5 Ways to Use Vegetable Throwaways

Broc

Annoyed when you end up paying for parts of fruit or veg you think you need to throw out? Your man/woman at the veg stand may be very nice, but it IS really annoying (and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise) when you walk out of there with unripe/overripe fruit or broccoli stalks longer than your arm. This is definitely something I have had to get used to in Buenos Aires.

The following are five ways to fill your belly with those bits you used to throw away. Here’s to living up to your true frugal-ness.

1. Broccoli Stalk Salad

I bet you weren’t aware of this ingenious use for broccoli stems. You can grate them and make a salad from them. Whoa. Who knew? Apparently everyone, though, because there are recipes all over the place! This is truly useful because broccoli in BA tends to come with a lotta stem and not so much top. I have gotten some truly ridiculous stems with my broccoli that made me weep large tears (overstatement).
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Try adding toasted sunflower seeds, raisins and a simple olive oil/balsamic dressing (thanks Chocolate & Zucchini! ). Maybe asian inspired or even pickled for your next toothpick soiree.
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2. Spinach Stems
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Oh the spinach stems. I think these may be the worst. Not only are they really long, but ninety-five percent of the time the part below the tie or rubber band that holds my leaves together is brown, wet, and gooey. Its gross. I know this is a “yanqui problem” but I am just not used to having to throw away a good portion of the veg that I just paid for. I often end up chopping off most of the stems to avoid having to touch, let alone eat, the bottom bit. I’ll get over it, but I think making a delicious looking indian curry like this one made specifically with the stems would help. Lots of stir-fried stems, too. But, uh, still cut off the brown bits.
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3. Unripe fruit
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They get you when you’re not looking. Your eyes are sweeping around the verdularia, deciding what you want to ask for next (your mind trying to figure out how to say it in Spanish, perhaps) and you get distracted. And right THERE is when they sneak in the rock-hard fruit that leaves bruises on your legs as you walk away. If you can’t stand to wait the days it can take for your peach pear whatever to ripen, poach it! Or at least that’s what they say. And with the deliciously priced wine you can often find here in the Arg, mmmmmmm.
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Oh, the worst is avocado. People say you can microwave it. I say set a booby trap for pigeons.
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4. Over-ripe fruit
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Overripe fruit is a bit disappointing, but not the worst because there are so many options. We all know to make banana bread (the moosewood recipe was the staple in my household); but what about the other fruits? You can bake them a la banana bread: This scone recipe for over-ripe strawberries looks great and Deb says you can use it with just about any fruit. Also try making smoothies if you have access to a blender. Or cook them on the stove with some sugar and eat over pancakes or ice cream, mash-up and cook INTO your pancakes, or layer with whipped cream, nuts and/or granola to make a decadent and semi-nutritious (ish) fool. Just remember to cut away the brown, bruised, or furry bits. Please.
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On the topic of avocados again, this time overripe, people say you can use it as a hair mask . Ew, but I’m down.
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5. Vegi Scraps
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All of those veg scraps you are so used to dumping could be your next vegi stock turned vegetarian soup. Take one of those million produce bags you have in the cupboard and start squirreling away bits from prep in your freezer. Avoid using cabbage, brussels sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, turnips, artichokes, beets and onion skins. These veggies will overpower your broth or turn it brown. Everything else is a goThese guys explain the process better. This leek and lemon soup sounds perfect for spring.
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So this is why your next beer can be on you. Any other ideas I should know about? You know I’d love them…

Pill Poppin’: A Cheaper Pharmacy in BA

For two months I have been searching now for a way to get my meds cheaper. Argentina already has a fairly open over the counter policy which suits me just fine. However, prices tend to still be high even with my lovely dolar blue exchange rate. If you have obra social or pre-pago (i.e. health insurance that gives you discounts on medication by showing your card) you are looking at a 30% + discount. For poor little old me thats worthless.

I have a solution:
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A farmacy that offers a perpetual 20% discount !!
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I’m not exactly sure why but I assume it has something to do with a subsidy. Whatever it is, I am glad for it and for the adorable older pharmacist man behind the counter that doesn’t glower at me like the poor, over-worked Farmacity peeps. Supporting the neighborhood and saving almost 20 pesos which can be used on more important things like my eating-out-at-delicious-restaurants fund? I’m in. 
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Farmacia Avalon, Guemes 4028 (in between Scalabrini and Malabia)
UPDATE: I may have found another couple of pharmacies with a similar (and better) deal, one on the corner of Santa Fe and Darregueyra (Palermo) and the other at Santa Fe 3089 (Barrio Norte). They seem to both offer 25%+. Confirmation pending!