Fly lice (fried rice), or Asian risotto: Norwegian style.

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This is me and my $9 espresso drink.

I have heard it a million times; now I’m repeating it to you. Greetings from Oslo, Norway, one of the most beautiful and expensive places I’ve ever been to.

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Here is an example of Norway being beautiful.

As a result of the latter, I’ve been consuming a ton of carbs. A typical meal for me is bread with either some variation of pesto, some cheese, eggs, or butter. Not the healthiest stuff. A 6 pack of eggs cost me $6 yesterday; that’s a buck an egg! Other typical prices are $4-5 for a soda, $3-4 for a small bottled water, and $5 for a bag of chips. Cheese is pretty pricey as well, starting around $4.50 for a small little thing of regular/crap stuff and going up to about $14 for a block of also usually crap stuff. I’m not talking gourmet cheese here. Most this stuff smells like a boot after a 10 mile hike in no socks. There was one $12 block we splurged on, only to be so offended by the smell that we had to toss it.

So being my mother’s child, I brought a fair amount of food from the states. In my own defense, most of it I brought for P so he could take some easy stuff hiking. I swear the 15 bags of instant mashed potatoes serve a real purpose and I’m not just gross. I also brought over granola, trail mix, hot sauce, and a 2 pound bag of organic long grain brown rice. They have all been good to me. Yogurt is actually not too badly priced. You can get a liter of strawberry yoghurt for about $4 and it is good for 3 meals for 2 folks. Granola and trail mix regularly tops that. Produce isn’t TOO bad either, but it did cost about $20 for 1 carrot, a handful of snap peas, 2 handfuls of diced cabbage, a little broccoli head and a tiny red pepper. I decided I was going to use this to make dinner, and to stretch it as far as possible, a fried rice would be made.

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Want to guess how many minutes I contemplated saving these for my fried rice? Correct answer: too damn many.

Our gracious host, as we are couch surfing here, offered up about 2 ounces of baby spinach, a bit of soy sauce and spices for the meal too. So grateful! It ended up being awesome. P went back for seconds, even though he initially said he wasn’t hungry. Silly mister.

The rice turned out a bit softer than I wanted; it’s definitely not Asian take out fried rice. Though trust me, that’s universally a good thing. The rice was nice and tender and almost had the texture of risotto. Everyone seemed to enjoy it.

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Asian Risotto
serves 4 hungry tummies

2 cups rice
4 cups water
2 tablespoons of olive oil
2 eggs
1 carrot, a handful of snap peas, 2 handfuls of diced cabbage, a little broccoli head and a tiny red pepper (duh)
2 oz of spinach
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning
1/2 cup almonds, coarsely chopped
As much or little of the spicy sauce of your choice!

Boil that water, add rice, boil again, turn heat to medium. Stir occasionally. Scramble the 2 eggs and put to the side. Then, same pan! Toast those chopped almonds. About 20 minutes after you started the rice, take the veggies, cut into little pieces, and with a big pan (wok preferable, but I don’t own one), sauté them in a little bit of oil on medium. As they cook down and the rice has no more water, put the rice into the big pan/wok. Add the seasoning, soy, hot sauce and egg. Stir pretty often, unless you kinda like your rice burnt, like me.

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And yes, peanuts would probably be better but none of my trail mixes had any peanuts to pull out of the bag. Plus I hate peanuts. Almonds worked really well, regardless.

Farewell! I’m off to Poland in a few hours…

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