How to make Japanese Gyoza (in Chinese Jyaozi/ in English Potstickers)

This post is by Kay, who writes the K’s Kitchen section of Todd’s Wanderings. She also happens to be Todd’s lovely wife! “What is your fiancé’s favorite food?” This was one of my hen night questions. ‘Gyoza!’ (normally called potstickers in English). I got the answer right and at the same time I became determined that I had to cook this dish very well all the time! [Todd here, isn't Kay a lovely wife?! I am a lucky man.] Well, the truth is that I also love Gyoza, but the problem is that we can’t buy the Gyoza skin in Kosovo. If we want to eat something we have to find a way, so I started making Gyoza from the scratch! If you have a Chinese (or Japanese/Korean) store near by, you can simply buy the skin (it is much easier and takes less time). In Japan we usually fry Read full article…

When Japanese Toilets Fight Back

  I was excited, nervous and sweaty. It was 2000 and I was on a date in Japan. I chose the perfect spot, the 11th floor bar overlooking Lake Biwa, Japan’s largest lake and where I spent 5 years of my life after university (near the lake, not the bar). The bar was called Medusa. Small and smokey (like most Japanese bars at the time) the dark room was sandwiched by glass. One side was wall to wall panoramic views of the lake, distant mountains  glowing in the sun’s retreat for the day. A black light lit massive aquarium claimed the wall behind the bar. At first glance it looked empty. “Look again,” the bartender advised. He didn’t look up and kept at his task of shaping a large cube of ice into a sphere to accompany the scotch destined for a group of black tied salary men. We found two small Read full article…

Desolate Beauty: Travel Photo Contest Friday 29

Update: The winner is Michael…who guessed Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia . Runner up mention Jade who guessed Salt Flats in Bolivia, but the local language wins each time Thanks again to Lindsay and her humor and tequila filled travel blog.  Here is what makes this salt so special to Lindsay: “It has a few names, and it’s location is not directly in a city, but in the middle of Salar de Uyuni, in the Daniel Campos Province, Potosí Department, Bolivia. To be brutally honest, it is special to me because I went through a bad break up in La Paz, and when I jumped on the salt flats tour, I was in such awe of its ‘awesomeness’ that I totally forgot all about… umm… what was his name again? ” Michael gets the prize this week so please check him out at Go See Write. Welcome to Travel Photo Contest Read full article…

Want a location independent life? 23 ebooks and courses to help you

This is a very different post than I normally write. I was planning to write about my new website that I’m about to launch called the Travel Blog Challenge, along with the 1000-1000 Blog Challenge experiment. But since the website and the challenge are geared toward helping all us wayward travel bloggers gain more visitors and earn more from our websites I decided I needed to let you know about a great sale going on that lasts only 72 hours (well 48 hours as of time of posting, it ends at 10am EST on December 2).  I’ll write about the Challenge next post. OK, so basically there is a huge sale where you can buy 23 Business Courses and Ebooks for only $97 that would normally cost $1,052 if you bought them separately. I’m usually skeptical about these types of things and I passed over the links to this for Read full article…

10 Free Things to Do in Tokyo, Japan

Many people dream of traveling to Japan and experiencing this unique island first hand. Culture, history, technology, fashion and food blend together in an unforgettable experience that not only rewards the intrepid traveler but has fueled pop culture around the world for decades. Japan has taken on a somewhat mythical persona as it highlights its cultural differences to the outside world and implanting the desire to visit the country in minds of countless travelers. However, one myth has served to repel would be visitors:  Japan is extremely expensive. While its true Japan can be expensive, a trip to Tokyo can still be done on a budget and can cost much less than a jaunt to Europe’s largest cities. A journey to Japan can be incredibly rewarding without cashing out your child’s education fund. I lived in Japan for over 5 years, and my wife is from Tokyo. Since we travel Read full article…

Rice Paddy Terraces: Travel Photo Contest Friday 28

Update: The winner is Caz…who guessed the Longshen Rice Terraces, also known as The Dragons Back Rice Terraces in China (OK she only said Longshen China). Thanks again to Andrea and her educational travel blog.  Here is what makes these rice terraces so special to Andrea: “It’s a special place because the terraces are stunning. They were mainly built during the Ming dynasty, so are about 500 years old. The lower terraces are at 380m, while the highest part is 880m, so there are 500 meters of stunning photographs at every turn. One of the best parts of Longshen are the female porters, who moonlight as manic pashmina sellers in the evenings. They have a wonderful humor that breaks through any language barriers. The family homes that are run as guesthouses also make it a special place to stay. Longshen is a wonderful break from the crowds and pollution of China. Although the hike can Read full article…

I don’t do this often enough. Usually I’m tooting my own horn, or at least the horn of a destination or event. Today is a day to give back, to highlight 6 of my favorite travel bloggers. Each of these writers has inspired me and my development of Todd’s Wanderings in a different way. I’m also proud to call them my friends. Well, friends that I’ve never met face to face. But friends that I talk to more often than my friends back home thanks to the addictive power of twitter, facebook and RSS feeds. OK, OK, friends might be too strong a word, but what else do you call an obsessive compulsion to read everything about someone on the internet, check out where they are day in and day out, and spy on their conversations with others in the bushes of a comment box? For those of you humming Read full article…

Blocks of Light and Shadow: Travel Photo Contest Friday 27

Update: The winner is Norbert…who guessed the Holocaust Memorial in Berlin, Germany. Thanks again to Jonny and his fun travel and photography site.  Jonny is a man of few words so here is what Wikipedia has to say: “The Memorial to the Murdered Jews of Europe (German: Denkmal für die ermordeten Juden Europas), also known as the Holocaust Memorial (German: Holocaust-Mahnmal), is a memorial in Berlin to the Jewish victims of the Holocaust, designed by architect Peter Eisenman and engineer Buro Happold. It consists of a 19,000 square meter (4.7 acre) site covered with 2,711 concrete slabs or “stelae“, one for each page of the Talmud arranged in a grid pattern on a sloping field.” Norbert gets the prize this week so be sure to check him out over at Globo Treks Welcome to Travel Photo Contest Friday, wow that’s a mouthful! If you’re new or never bothered to actually Read full article…

(Warning: there are no pretty pictures in this post. You’ve been getting distracted too easily recently and this is important) Shhhhhh, come closer. I have a secret. Many of you may think you know me through my blog. I try to be open, transparent and honest about my life on the road.  But I still have secrets. Recently people have begun to associate me with the recent trend of travel and lifestyle bloggers who have dumped their corporate world and stifling cubical for the freedom of the open road.  It’s a compelling story, a dream of millions. It tugs at the emotional triggers of the reader for a life of endless beach cocktails, far away romances, and awe inspiring moments as you stand in center of a 10,000 year old monument, feel the ancient dirt shift between your feet, breath in the scent of accumulated history and finally make a Read full article…

How to Cook Kisir-Turkish Tabbouleh

This post is by: Kay (my lovely wife and writer for K’s Kitchen!) I just came back from my work trip to Istanbul. Although this was my third trip there, I am still impressed with the energy and number of people! And Istanbul will welcome you with so many interesting activities including beautiful historical sights, shopping, and delicious Turkish cuisine. Today, I would like to introduce you to one of the Turkish dishes called Kisir which is a Turkish style Tabboleh.This dish is very healthy and friendly for vegetarians. As usual, I had to substitute bulgur with couscous as I could not find bulgur in Kosovo (and forgot to buy it while in Istanbul). I hope you enjoy this glimpse of Turkish Cuisine! Ingredients (for 4 people) Couscous: 1 cup=240 cc (and of course use bulgur if available) Hot water: 1 1/4 cup Salt: 1 teaspoon Tomato paste: 2 Tablespoons Read full article…

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