Park Bulvar in Sahil

Park Bulvar in Sahil

It’s the last day of the Novruz holiday, so after cleaning up my classroom and preparing for tomorrow, I headed off to Park Bulvar. It’s my mecca mall in this city. One of my simple pleasures is brisk walking along the tree-lined Bulvar and having lunch or dinner at the top floor’s food court. International choices abound from Japanese to Russian to Chinese to Sbarro, which is American-Italian.

But my fave food vendor is Sultan’s, which serves salads, kebabs, Azeri main courses and desserts. The food is healthy. The food is delicious. But the reason I keep coming back is because of the servers’ friendliness, smiles and flexibility. The man who I think is the supervisor can also communicate in basic English. The older I get and the more I travel, the more I appreciate excellent customer service because I tend to frequent places that I like, and it always makes me happy when I have a positive and friendly transaction. I will refrain from commenting on the opposite 🙂 But let it suffice to say for now, that in Baku you get an equal amount of positive and negative customer service, of people who genuinely care about other people and love their job, so I tend to cling on and only visit places where I sense a happy vibe.

Salad bar at Sultan's

Salad bar at Sultan’s

Sultan’s salad bar offers plenty of healthy eats. They have the usual lettuce and cucumber, but they also have red beets, cucumber pickles, jalapenos, a variety of beans, red cabbage, and my mystery leaf, which I will tell you about later.

I usually order the chicken kebab and couscous, but today I asked if I could change my couscous into salad. The supervisor was very flexible. Most restaurants stick to the prescribed menu, but he gave me half a salad and the kebab for 5 manat – a very reasonable price for a meal in Baku.

Chicken kebab and half a salad from Sultan's at Park Bulvar

Chicken kebab and half a salad from Sultan’s at Park Bulvar

And just to back track a bit, yesterday, I found a green grocer and I bought this mystery leaf that I love! It’s a bit spicy and I love how it tickles my tongue! But I’ve never seen this leaf before.


Today, I asked Sultan’s servers about it and they said it was “petrushka”. So I looked it up and apparently, “petrushka” is the word for parsley in Russian 🙂 I can see how it’s similar to the parsley we have in the Philippines and the ones I’ve tried in the States. They look similar and they taste similar but they are different. Petrushka is definitely worth trying!

After eating lunch, I explored the new grocery store at the Park Bulvar’s basement. It’s called Bazar Store and it’s a popular chain in Baku. I wanted to see if they sold kefir and this is what I ended up buying–

74_salmon kefir and a glass

The kefir is deeeliiicious! This brand (I will not yet attempt to decode the Russian name :)) tastes exactly like lassi. It’s 95 quepic, but I don’t mind because it’s a good investment on my health. The salmon is 4.20 manat for 100 grams. I have yet to try it. And I know that you’re probably wondering why there’s a glass there. Believe or not, the usual grocery store I go to, doesn’t sell glasses in boxes so I’ve never bought from them because I tend to break glasses. When I first arrived, I bought six pieces and only one is left! I was able to find six chic small glasses – I wasn’t too fond of the the tall glass designs – for 2.15 manat. Considering that I didn’t buy them from Sederek mall, I would say it’s a steal.

I’m definitely coming back to the Bazar Store, even if it’s just for the kefir. But yes, I did see a reasonably price Russian caviar which I want to try during one of my cheat days.

If Scribbles were a book, Louie would have one whole chapter! I love how he innovates. I love his spirit of fun! Louie is larger than life and is quite contagious!

Louie in Tommy's Inn, New Jersey about to gobble up his seafood pasta. But nope, that's not what I'm blogging about today.

Last December, he experimented with poaching salmon in his dishwasher. As usual, I was fascinated. Here’s the recipe for those who would like to try.

Rub olive oil, and season the salmon with salt, pepper and dill if you like.

Seal the fish tightly in foil.

Add to your dishwasher load, turn your dishwasher on to poach your salmon! (And wash dishes.)

Unwrap the foil. This batch was poached to perfection!

Let’s eavesdrop on an fb conversation about this recipe 🙂

Do you have an unusual healthy eat to share? Let me know and I’d love to feature your recipe in Scribbles!

This is one of my fave recipes! I found while I was browsing through Cooking Light in the Cortland library and it is deee-li-cious! I remember waking up early one Sunday morning to prepare the salsa. Don’t you love it when you discover something new and are super excited to try it out?

Cooking Light also shared some valuable advise that I’d like to follow. Measure, measure, measure! I’ll be back in Mumbai in a couple of days and buying measuring spoons, cups and a weighing scale is on top of my list. It’s one way to ensure that I don’t overeat. It’ll also help me pass on accurate recipes to you.

This recipe serves two.


For the salsa:
1 cup chopped and peeled peach
3/4 cup quartered cherry tomatoes
1/4 cup thinly sliced red onion
3 tablespoons chopped fresh mint leaves
3 tablespoons basil leaves
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon honey

For baking the salmon:
4 pcs of 6 oz. salmon fillets
salt and pepper
olive oil

Mix the ingredients for the salsa and refrigerate for an hour or more. This ensures that the various flavors blend and settle.

Rub salt and pepper on the salmon fillets and leave for 15 minutes or more. Coat a baking pan with olive oil and bake the salmon for fifteen minutes.

Bon appetit!

Healthy Eats Facts:

Salmon – rich in vitamin D, omega 3 fatty acids and protein
Peaches – a good source of potassium and beta-carotene
Mint leaves – relieves stomach problems
Basil – rich in vitamin K and has anti-bacterial properties
Honey – raw honey is an anti-bacterial, anti-viral and anti-fungal substance

Health Food Guide
The World’s Healthiest Foods

Salmon is B’s fave fish so I’ve cooked this several times in the past month. Apparently, it’s salmon season in the US so we’ve been able to find salmon fillets for a very reasonable price in Walmart.

The hunt for dill was a little more challenging. There’s an organic herb section in Walmart where they didn’t have fresh dill on the first day we looked, so we bought dry dill weed instead. Two days later, I found fresh dill in the same Walmart section so I’ve been using it every time we cook salmon. In Manila, I’ve found fresh dill in Santi’s Delicatessen.  I have yet to look for dill in Mumbai!

This serves two.


For the salmon:
2 pcs salmon steak
2 stems of dill
olive oil

For the dressing:
4 tablespoons of Japanese mayonnaise or any low fat mayonnaise
1 teaspoon mustard (any kind will do)
1 stem of dill

For the salad:
1 cucumber
10-15 pcs of red grapes
goat cheese
3-4 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar

Preheat your oven for 30 minutes to 350 degrees. Rub the dill on the salmon steak and leave for at least 15 minutes. Coat the bottom of a baking pan with 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil. Bake the salmon for around 15 minutes. Sprinkle with capers.

To make the salmon dressing, remove the dill leaves from the stem and chop into tiny bits. Combine the mayonnaise, mustard and dill.

For the salad, shred the lettuce and dice the cucumber. Combine your lettuce, cucumber,  grapes and goat cheese on a plate and sprinkle with balsamic vinegar.

Healthy Eat facts:

Salmon – improves metabolism and can lower blood sugar levels

Dill – improves digestion and can help people with sleep disorders

Capers – rich in anti-oxidants

Cucumber – low in calories and a good source of potassium

Goat cheese – lower in calories compared to cheese made from cow’s milk; high in protein and calcium

Balsamic vinegar – is a source of calcium, iron, manganese and potassium, which improve the body’s functioning and weight loss abilities

Organic Facts
The World’s Healthiest Foods

I absolutely love smoked salmon. Besides tasting delicious, it’s an easy ingredient to use because I don’t have to cook it. This recipe takes ten minutes to prepare.

My ingredients include–

smoked salmon strips
romaine lettuce
feta cheese
1 teaspoon of virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar

All you have to do is mix all ingredients together and it’s good to eat! I like putting more balsamic vinegar in my salads more than most people do. So please feel free to adjust according to your taste.

Healthy Eats facts:

Smoked salmon – has omega 3 fatty acids which are good for your heart. It also has a lot of vitamin B and protein.

Romaine lettuce – besides having vitamins A, C and K, romaine lettuce had the minerals manganese and chromium. It also has a lot of fiber.

Olives – have monounsaturated and vitamin E

Pistachios – excellent source of minerals such as copper, manganese and phosphorus