La Cocina Encantada


The Charmed Kitchen

Finding the right name can be one of the most difficult parts about starting a blog. Or buying a kitten for that matter. I originally wanted to use the “lick the bowl” title as a… descriptor of my zest for cooking and eating! Also because you can find me greedily licking the bowl clean after cooking most things.

But onto La Cantina Encantada. My husband, Andrew, and I dream about someday opening a restaurant. He has proposed many names for it, a few of which are in Spanish to reflect the Latin infused cooking styles that would undoubtedly be in place. “Siestas” was a recent one… I told him that sounded too blah. Who wants to go to a restaurant named after a nap? But the other day he came up with Encantada Cantina, mostly because of the pleasant way these words roll off your tongue. I loved it! It was backwards of course, and cantina refers to more of a bar,  but Andrew doesn’t really speak Spanish…

I just cant seem to get this “charmed” or “enchanted” kitchen idea and how much I love it out of my head. Why do I like this title so much? Let’s make a list:

1. To begin with, the title is in Spanish, a language I love, attempt to speak, and feel a strong connection in my roots to.

2. I have always viewed the kitchen as somewhat of a magical place. As I child I made both cookies and potions in my kitchen. You didn’t make potions as a child? That’s odd.

3. My potion making days may be over, but I still think that the kitchen has a lot of power to heal and promote all over well being. Scientists are discovering more and more about the way foods affect us and can be more powerful than medicine to prevent and treat illness.

4. I feel like this title invites the image of the domestic goddess (or witch?) that I have always fantasized about being “when I grow up.” Providing nourishing meals for people I love brings me joy. Baking bread makes me feel sexy. Too much?

5. I really do just like how these words go together…

6. I like lists.

On a side note, I wanted to share something my father taught me last time I was visiting home.

How to Cut a Mango  Like You Mean it:

Slice one side right before it hits the pit
Slice this portion into a grid pattern
Bend it back so the pieces pop up and slice away! Repeat with the other half.

Maybe you already knew of that cool trick, but it was new to me! So much neater than peeling before slicing.

xo/ Nikita


About lacocinaencantada

I live, work, study, and of course cook in Portland. I find nature continuously inspiring and love verdant pacific northwest for its lush and wild charm. I love cooking, baking, drawing, painting, photography, running, yoga, and spending time with people I care about. I believe in eating real food: minimally processed, no weird additives, heavy on the fresh produce and whole grains. I also believe in eating delicious food. Healthy food should be creative, inspiring, and yes taste good! While I strive to make healthful recipes, I never sacrifice taste for "low cal" or "low fat." Everything in moderation is key! I hope to share some of my recipes and thoughts on food or heath issues here. Enjoy :)

One response »

  1. Pingback: Bell Pepper Stuffed with Coconut Rice, Black Beans, and Mango « La Cantina Encantada

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