Parks, Monuments, Statues and Sculptures – Oh My!

Uruguay loves its statues, sculptures and almost any style of artwork. You can see the European influence in the buildings and its flair in the bronze busts found inside buildings and churches. Every corner you turn, almost every intersection you come to has a bust, or a huge statue, men on horseback seem to be everywhere, cherubs, dragons, warriors dressed in battle gear, beautiful women. If you love this art style, Montevideo is packed with it.

The most well-known of these statues is located in Independence Square and it sits above the mausoleum of General Jose Artigas.  Yes, the General is buried under this statue, and you can go in to take a look.

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The statue of Confucius in Rodo Park sits watching over the water on the rambla. The surrounding were just so peaceful I had to include it here.

montevideo-2-1-1a montevideo-2-1-1As you can see Uruguayans love their parks almost as much as they love their statues.  All we have seen have plenty of benches, shade trees, walking trails but don’t be afraid walking on the grass is not a problem here.montevideo-1-31-8I cannot tell you where the above statue is located except it is in or near Cuidad Vieja, just in one of the small parks we passed.

montevideo-2-7-33montevideo-2-7-32montevideo-2-7-31montevideo-2-7-30The four pictures above are all located in the plaza outside the World Trade Center.

montevideo-2-7-26This mighty man is located in a small park on Rivera, in Pocito.

montevideo-2-7-23montevideo-2-7-20The above two are also located in the plaza outside of the World Trade Center.

montevideo-2-12-36Another park, another statue.

montevideo-2-9-12 montevideo-2-9-11 montevideo-2-9-10This masterpiece Monumento La Carreta is located in Parque Batlle and it symbolizes the immigrants that came to this county and settled it.

montevideo-2-9-16 montevideo-2-9-15This very tall obelisk called Obelisco a los Constituyentes is located in the middle of an intersection near Av 18 de Junio and Artigas, just another example of how much art, statues and sculptures are appreciated in Uruguay.

montevideo-2-9-20aEvery day is another adventure in this beautiful city.  I love how much time and effort the government gives to the green areas, its parks, playgrounds and just how clean the city is kept. There is a great statue at the beachside entrance to Buceo or Malvin up past us we are itching to go see called greetingman. A Korean artist places these in different parts of the world and it looks so friendly and welcoming, just beckoning you in.  More on that when we can walk there and take some pics!

montevideo-2-23-6montevideo-2-23-7I guess you can see that Montevideo has great love for art and parks and playgrounds.  The rambla (we would call it a boardwalk if you have been to Jersey) runs for miles in the coastal cities.  It is a wide walkway right on the water.  Walkers, runners, bikers and folks just strolling along have a beautiful view of the water, great breezes and many benches to stop for a little break.

Naval Museum

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A short walk from the apartment to the rambla we found the Navel Museum.  It was not open the day we walked by so I was able only to get some outside pictures.

What I like about this area is all the parks, playgrounds and open grassy areas for children and families to share. Not much is cordoned off you can bring the kids up onto some of the military equipment and let them have some fun.

Uruguay, well Montevideo in particular, seems to have a great respect for the outdoors. So many parks, so many green spaces, so many benches and playgrounds for everyone to enjoy.  The city fathers thought out the planning of the city to include many places where people can enjoy the outdoors.

Plum and Fig Tart or is that Fig and Plum Tart?

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I found beautiful fresh figs and large purple Italian plums this past week. Figs are a favorite since living in Playas, Ecuador.  Our guardian would pick figs and bring a bag to our home when they were perfectly ripe, soft and sweet. I would cut them in half, wrap half a slice of bacon around it and bake it in the oven just until the bacon was crispy.  That was a real treat. I can tolerate a Fig Newton, if there is nothing else in the house but unless you have had fresh ripe figs you have not lived.

I loved them so much and our friend Yusuf said I needed to plant a tree in the yard in San Clemente, Ecuador. Where was I going to fit another tree in the San Clemente yard?  Well I found a tree and found a place for it and enjoyed a small harvest a few times from that tree.  That is only one of the things I miss about San Clemente, but don’t get me started on that.

I made a shortbread crust, with flour, butter, sugar, dash of salt and vanilla and an egg.  No rolling necessary as it was going to be a tart, free form and rustic.  I cut up 6-7 figs and plums and arranged them on the pastry which I had placed on a baking sheet covered with a silicone baking liner, this will stick as the sweet juices ooze from the tart. Turned the edges up and baked it for about 15 minutes.  The crust was wonderful and the fruit just so sweet and soft.

We will do that again…

Shiela’s Chicken Wing Sauce

montevideo-2-11Way back when we were just kids I had a good friend, Shiela Adelman. We lived in South Florida at the time and Sheila had a exercise studio where I taught aerobics classes. Besides being a great exercise instructor she was also a great cook.

She would use chicken wings for this recipe, I love using skinless chicken legs and other times I would use boneless and skinless chicken thighs.  Honestly the recipe will work with any cut of chicken.

Her recipe was just the ingredients, no quantities, so you can add additional amounts until you have this Sticky Asian BBQ sauce to your liking. This is how I make it now after years of tweaking it:img_3244Shiela’s Chicken Wing Sauce

  • 1/2 C Ketchup
  • 6 cloves of garlic crushed
  • 1/4 C brown sugar
  • 1/4 C honey darker in color is more flavorful to me
  • 1/4 C soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt (taste before adding salt the ketchup and soy sauce may give it all the salt it needs)
  • 2 small slices of fresh red pepper or a dash of red pepper flakes
  • Fresh ginger

Mix all the ingredients together until the sugar is melted.  Put your chicken wings, thighs or legs in the mixture and allow to marinate overnight in the refrigerator.  Bake at 400 degrees F for 1 hour.  The sauce should be thick and the chicken tender.  Enjoy! Oh, and be sure to have a few napkins handy!

Fish Market at the Buseo Port

montevideo-2-12-28On Saturday we walked down to the Buceo Port as Joe was asking for fish. We got the salmon again, and just like the first time, it was fabulous.

montevideo-2-12-31 montevideo-2-12-30 montevideo-2-12-26All the fish looked good and even things like calamari, octopus and the mussels looked fresh and very appealing. Prices are in Uruguay Peso, convert to US Dollars by dividing the number on the card by .28.  All of these prices are for a kilo which is a little over 2 pounds.

montevideo-2-12-27You can buy a whole fish or you can buy steaks or fillets.

montevideo-2-12-33 montevideo-2-12-32There are two other stores including a store with local trinkets as well as a vegetable and fruit stand that carries spices, herbs, a few live herb plants and has a cooler with drinks.

montevideo-2-12-29A new addition from the other times we were there was a van backed up to the sidewalk and the back door opened. As you can see it had a variety of cheese, wine and salami.

We got our salmon and ran home to have lunch.