Yeah, yeah. The end of my Belizean Adventures is LONG overdue but lucky for you I saved the best and tastiest part for last. In Part 1 we talked about real food airport style and the first week in Belize. Part 2 consisted of Guatemalan adventures and some really amazeballs curried pescada fresca.
At this point in the adventure I am all rested up from enjoying my coffee with view and hammock time so clearly I needed to relocate again. We headed back to San Ignacio so we could stop at the farmers market one more time then continued on alllllll the way back to the eastern coast. We landed in the chill little beach town of Hopkins, Belize where we watched the sunset at the Kismet Inn.
The Kismet is run by Tricia, an ex-New Yorker who just couldn’t get enough of Belize. She is hilarious, crazy, and a phenomenal cook. She loved my sandals so much she tried them on and wanted to buy them off of me but they were too small for her (I have little elf-sized feet). Instead, she let us stay for free our first night if I promised to buy her a pair when I got home and ship them to her. I love the trust you have to have in others when you backpack. I have yet to be disappointed by these strangers and have been helped so many times by others in my travels that I made sure to fulfill my promise when I got home.
The first meal Tricia whipped up for us was skate which sort of looks like a stingray but is different (thanks, Wikipedia) with seasoned rice and a ginger beet salad. At that moment I wouldn’t be leaving the Kismet for the rest of my time in Belize.
I don’t have any more crazy adventure pictures to show you because from this point on it was all about fun in the sun. We walked up and down the beach and town, soaked up the sun before we returned to snowy New York, and enjoyed Tricia’s meals and the company of the Kismet guests. If you are in Belize and just want to be somewhere quiet and super laid back this is definitely the place to go.
Not to mention the fact that it is a real food lovers paradise. The fish is caught and cleaned by Tricia’s husband and the eggs are laid in a plant on the back porch of the Inn. I’m not joking…
You can’t get any fresher than that. And Tricia knew how to turn it into a delicious meal. Check out these scrambled eggs with veggies, taro, cabbage, and carrot pancake (kind of like a potato pancake) and fresh fruit salad.
At another restaurant down the road we also had bundiga which is barracuda with plantain dumplings in a coconut milk sauce. I am still not sure how I feel about the plantain dumplings. I like plantains but it just seemed like I was chewing on a lot of a doughy like substance.
I forgot to take a picture of my favorite meal by Tricia. Red sauce from scratch with sausage (I passed on the pasta and added it over veggies). Simple concept but ridiculously good.
On the way back home I had a late breakfast of fresh fruit and nuts and for lunch a salad topped with a can of Wild Planet salmon that I carried in my pack the whole trip. Not difficult and all real food.
So what would I do differently with my traveling nutrition next time? Well for sure eating more meals from “home” can help you stick to whatever goals you are looking to accomplish. Backpacking presents unique challenges because you are moving from day to day and can’t leave food that needs refrigeration in your pack. Most hostels have a joint refrigerator that you can use but that doesn’t help if you are changing locations as frequently as we did. We compensated for this by stopping at the farmers market almost daily to pick up fresh produce and carrying dried and canned goods like banana chips, nuts, and canned salmon. I’m obviously a professional at ordering real food at a restaurant but a part of that is because I actually ask what foods are made with (coconut oil vs. vegetable oil) and where they come from.
So there you have it friends, Pearl’s adventures in Belize and Guatemala. Now I want to hear from you! How do you stick to eating real food while on vacation?