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From the Tropics: Vino de Palma (Palm Wine) edit

My father had come from a small village in the Panamanian countryside, but he has always been very fine with life in the city. He brought us up with a sense of his family's ancient traditions, including the love for the land, nature and learning new things. It was that same spirit what made all of his children artists of creating and exploring. Curiosity is the beginning.

Now in my thirties, I still have as much of that curiosity as I had at the age of five. That's hot and it is not easy to get...But it is NOT impossible. Just opening your mind to trying new things will be your first step on this marvelous quest that is "life."

1_1_3 Let's start here: Vino de Palma, or Palm Wine

I have heard stories that made me really thirsty to try this juice from the heart of the rain forest. But it was not until yesterday when I had the intriguingly yummy opportunity to experience it at its fullest. As my sister was coming back to Panama City from Colon, she found a very little stand run by an older woman, smiling her problems away...cheerfully selling some unique goodies; Palm Wine among others.

I happened to be in their town, getting my weekly share of raw, organic-tasty-fresh milk, so I paid them a visit. To my surprise, Paola, my sister, greeted me with a bottle of palm wine and a bottle of freshly made Habanero Pepper Relish. It was out of my hands. I could NOT resist it. They know for sure how to get my attention.

It was an ethereal moment, when I saw those bottles, I forgave her for all the times she wore my clothes and evaporated my perfumes, without permission...when we were teenagers. Holy smokes, ...it was such a soul awakening moment, ...and I didn't have a choice other than to smile (and take the gifts of course!).

Happy Valentines Day! I'll be posting some delicious recipes (in Spanish) soon, so stay tuned!

Con amor,


For more information on Palm Wine visit: Wikipedia. Or How to extract Vino de Palma: a pictorial review!

Ok, Ok,---I know you are a coconut lover...The following posts were specially designed for you:

P.S. you see, I do not only post in English! smile

  • by Chef Melissa
  • February 13, 2007
  • 8:34 pm


Picture of Elena Hernández Elena Hernández said on...
02.13.07 at 09:57 PM |

Wow! This is sooo cool.. I love the new look!! Congrats! smile

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.13.07 at 10:58 PM |

Gracias Elena! Me descubristes smile
un abrazo,

Picture of Kelly Kelly said on...
02.14.07 at 12:01 AM |

Hey!  Your new look is HOT!  I love it!

Picture of Don Ray Don Ray said on...
02.14.07 at 08:39 AM |

Thanks for the coconut recipes and congratulations on the bright new look!

Picture of andreina andreina said on...
02.15.07 at 11:03 AM |

Meli que lindo el nuevo diseno de tu blog!!!!!, me encantaaa!!!!

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.15.07 at 02:39 PM |

Thank you Kelly, Don Ray and Andreina! I am delighted with the new look too. Joelle, the designer did such a great job! Un abrazo,

Picture of Paz Paz said on...
02.15.07 at 08:36 PM |

Happy Valentine’s!  I love you new look!  Que bella!

Paz wink)

Picture of Paz Paz said on...
02.15.07 at 08:38 PM |

P.S.  I remember palm wine from my days in Africa. 

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.16.07 at 09:23 AM |

Thank you Paz! Palm wine is such an interesting drink. It is a cross between coconut water and lime juice——I wonder how a shorbet would be smile

Picture of Greta Greta said on...
02.16.07 at 07:25 PM |

L-o-v-e the new look, congrats!

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.16.07 at 07:44 PM |

Greta!!!!!! gracias amiga! Por cierto, me encantaron las fotos de tus pequeños en la playa…wow! y ni decir, la del 2004 en la que estas surfeando está fascinante, ya sabes, ... una foto de acción!
Que la pasen bien en estos carnavales,

Picture of valentina valentina said on...
02.18.07 at 07:13 AM |

Hi Melissa, i haven’t been posting in English for a while but i am trying to redeem myself ..REally lovely to come visit you and read this lovely post. I have aslo read the delicious DELICIA DE COCO post - the name seems make it more than justice. I will put it on my list of things to prepare.

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.18.07 at 03:45 PM |

Valentina! what a great surprise! BTW, I loved your seafood risotto recipe…it looks so creamy and delicious. You did a great job. Have a tasty week.


Picture of neil neil said on...
02.18.07 at 05:25 PM |

I have a friend from the Sechelles and I stayed with his family for a while and I recall trying some sort of coconut rum, it was really a little rough but it seemed to put everyone in good spirits! Nice new look, very warm and tropical, just like you.

Picture of melissa_cookingdiva melissa_cookingdiva said on...
02.18.07 at 06:02 PM |

Thank you Neil! it is quite an interesting drink. Although it is not something I am ready to enjoy every day, it is quite an experience!

Un abrazo,

Picture of Jay Jay said on...
02.20.07 at 03:58 AM |

Good stuff. I should not be thinking this hard about food at 4 in the morning!

Picture of Alejandro Alejandro said on...
02.20.07 at 09:41 AM |

Love the new look, very warm and inviting.



Picture of Allison Allison said on...
02.20.07 at 01:21 PM |

Palm Wine is wonderfully delicious & refreshing.  Had it every day back at a resort in Africa.  Love it, thanks for bringing back that memory today!

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