Taste of Home: Pommes de terre farcies

Are looking for an easy-to-make recipe for lunch, dinner or party? Try Pommes de terre farcies also known baked stuffed potato filled with healthy ingredients. It surely makes a fun dinner.

Pommes de terre farcies or baked stuffed potatoes

You can fill this simple baked potato with minced beef, parsley and spring onions or you can use up all kinds of leftovers from the fridge. You can topped it with Emmentel cheese or you can top it whatever you want – with sour cream, avocado and cilantro or bacon bits if you wish.

It’s varied, rich and balanced! Plus, you can depend on the fact that it will keep you and everyone full and happy! I love it!

So for those who wish to try making Pommes de terre farcies or baked stuffed potatoes, here’s a recipe for you:

Pommes de terre farcies or baked stuffed potatoes

What you need (good for 3 servings)

  • 2 fresh large-sized potatoes, washed
  • 400 grams minced beef
  • 1 pack parsley, chopped
  • 8 spring onions, chopped
  • 3 tomatoes, sliced
  • Butter
  • Emmental cheese
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon basil
  • 4 tablespoons Kikkoman soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Aluminum foil

How to make it

Step 1: Marinate the meat

  • In a bowl, put in the minced beef. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce, basil, and black pepper.
  • Mix together. Marinate for at least 20 minutes.

Step 2: Bake the potato.

  • Wrap the whole raw washed potatoes with a foil.
  • Bake it at 250 DC for about 2 hours.

Step 3: Prepare the fillings.

  • Heat a pan with olive oil.
  • Put in the marinade. Add parsley, spring onions and tomatoes. Stir.
  • Let it cook for about 10 minutes.

Step 4: Putting together.

  • Cut the baked potato into 2. Then half scoop out the inside.
  • Butter the inside of the potato.
  • Then add the filling.
  • Add a bit of cheese on top
  • Put the stuffed potatoes in an oven dish.
  • Put it back in the oven at the same temperature for about 10 minutes.

Step 5: Et Voila! Serve, share and enjoy!

 

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Myanmar: Temple Questing in Beautiful Bagan

The major reason for our travel in Myanmar last December 2017 was to visit the staggering ancient city of Bagan, the capital of the Pagan Empire from 1044 to 1287 and one of the world’s greatest archeological sites.

Bagan, Myanmar

At the top of Shwe Leek Too Pagoda

Ananda Temple, the most beautiful ancient temple in Bagan.

Bagan, Myanmar

Between the 11th and 13th centuries, a plethora of temples, pagodas, stupas, stupors and monasteries were built by the kings of Bagan in a magnificent setting – a verdant 13 by 8 km plain, part-covered with palm trees caught in a bend of the sluggish-flowing Irrawaddy River and framed by the reddish-brown and silver-grey of distant mountains. It’s a Buddhist belief that to build a temple was to earn merit.

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Thatbyinnyu Pagoda, the tallest ancient temple in Bagan.

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Rising from the plain’s canopy of green you can visit about 3,000 out of over 10,000 of the religious monuments still existing in Bagan Archeological Zone today. So, literally you can see temples after temples after temples in view from every angle as far as your eyes can see. Truly, we were blown away by the sheer number of temples in Bagan. It is beyond amazing!

Bagan, Myanmar

Shwezigon Pagoda

colorful temple puppets

Bagan, Myanmar

Once there, we hired a taxi and visited different beautiful temples, stupas and stupors in Old and New Bagan by ourselves. We wandered through the pagodas and its surroundings. We noticed that many temples have been restored by UNESCO and are superbly preserved. Some temples contain carvings, frescoes and statues of Buddha, big and small.

wandering around

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

We also climbed some temples and saw the fantastic views from above.

at the top of the temple

Very narrow way up to the top of Shwe Leek Too Pagoda

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Around 5pm, we managed to make our way through a crowd as the artificial hill was packed with hordes of tourist just to watch the sunset from the hill overlooking the temples. Simply breathtaking during the day and the sunsets are just gorgeous. We were truly, mesmerized by its beauty.

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Out of about 3,000 temples that still exist today, only a handful are regularly visited by tourists. In spite of the mounting number of tourists coming in and many local hawkers are beginning to appear, this site is still a gloriously unblemished destination. I hope that it doesn’t lose its magic as the number of tourist increases.

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

While wandering around, we observed that there were so many kids selling souvenirs and not going to school, and that breaks my heart.

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan is certainly an amazingly magical place and its temples are stunningly beautiful. And, WOW, the pictures I saw before I came did not do it justice. So, if you are a temple quester, Bagan, Myanmar is a perfect place for you. Visit now while it is still relatively quiet.

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Bagan, Myanmar

Little Lilly travel tip:

  • The area of Bagan is enormous, at least 2-3 full days here is good before traveling on to your next destination in Myanmar.
  • There are several mode of transportation for you to visit the place and get lost in what feels like a magical land. You can
    • rent ebike (electric scooter) if you wish to enjoy more freedom of getting around the area.
    • hire a taxi. In our case we paid $35 for the whole day.
    • hire a horse carriage (dusty and bumpy though).
  • Go there very early in the morning to see the sunrise with an oxcart or a horse carriage, you will be alone and discover one of the wonders of this earth.
  • It can be hot walking barefoot in full sun on heated pavement, so consider a “siesta” during the hottest hours.
  • Wear appropriate clothes (very long skirt or trousers) – shorts and sleeveless are not allowed.
  • Wear slippers or sandals so it would be convenient and easy for you to remove and put it on back as you have to explore each temple barefoot.

 

 

 

Myanmar: The Stunning Shwedagon Pagoda in Yangon

Last December 2017, we traveled to Myanmar to spend our Christmas/winter break there. Our first stop was in Yangon, the former capital city of Myanmar. Before going there, we didn’t really have a lot of expectations about the city since some of our friends who have been there were not really impressed about the place. Before our trip, we were also never aware of Shwedagon Pagoda being one of the famous ones in the world. However, we were pleasantly surprised when we found the place very imposing. After our visit, we understood why it is one of the wonders of the religious world.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

Here are some highlights of this super stunning Shwedagon Pagoda we learned during the tour:

Shwedagon Pagoda is the crown of Myanmar and the most iconic landmark in Yangon! It is at least 2,500 years old – the oldest Buddhist Stupa in the world. I have learned that it is the holiest Buddhist site for the people of Myanmar as it houses the relics of the four Buddhas who had attained enlightenment.

It is an archive of Burmese heritage – architecture, sculpture, history and art.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

It stands about 110 meters on the Hill of Dagon Township in the center of Yangon City.

Shwedagon Pagoda

The amazing Shwedagon Pagoda is covered with thousands of gold plates. The top of the stupa is encrusted with about 5,450 diamonds, 2,300 rubies, sapphires and other gems and at the tip is a single 76-carat diamond.

Shwedagon Pagoda

The main stupa is surrounded by so many colorful temples, stupas and statues where devotees from all over the country could come and pray.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

There are also several planetary posts, and each planetary posts has a Buddha image and people who were born on that particular day offer flowers and pour water on the image with a prayer and a wish.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

While wandering around, I observed many devotees doing many different activities – washing the statues, offering flowers, worshiping, meditating, and doing other rituals. I saw fabulous names of each area such as Shrine of Sun and Moon, Victory Ground, Hall of Wizards, Hall of Great Prosperity, Pagoda of the Eight Weekdays, and many more. I love the beautiful ornate architecture.

Shwedagon Pagoda

Certainly, no visit to the Union of Myanmar is complete without a visit to this mesmerizing tourist and pilgrim attraction. So, enjoy yourself – it’s an impressive and beautiful pagoda!

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

Shwedagon Pagoda

Little Lilly travel tip:

  • It is located in the center of Yangon, walking distance to some gardens, restaurants, shops and other pagodas.
  • It is open daily, and last admission is at 21.45.
  • The entrance fee is US$ 8.
  • It is best if you visit around sunrise or sunset, so you can beat both the crowds and the heat (you won’t burn your feet as you explore the place barefoot).
  • There are 4 entrances to the Shwedagon Pagoda (North – Arzarni Road, South – Shwedagon Pagoda Road, East – Gyatawya Road, West – U Wisara Road).
  • Wear appropriate clothing. Women should wear loose trousers or long skirts (up to toe level) otherwise the security won’t let you in.
  • Shoes, socks and stockings are not allowed inside. So, bring a plastic bag for your shoes. Bring some wipes (wet tissue) as your feet are putrid by the end.