Monthly Archives: March 2015

The Sauce is It

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I usually do my experimental cooking and meal planning during the weekend. A couple of weeks ago, a good friend asked if I knew any good mustard sauce recipes and of course I did. She wanted it but didn’t want to make it herself so I made her a large jar of my dark flavored layered sauce which she bows put on everything. 

This sauce calls for cumin, ground mustard powder, salt, sugar, pepper, paprika and curry along with a bit of olive oil, water and cayenne pepper. 

In a bowl I add all the dry ingredients with some water. Then in a small sauce pan add the olive oil, turn the heat low and slowly add the mixture turning frequently to prevent lumps and burning the sauce. When all the seasoned water mixture is in, take a taste to see if you need to add any of the dry seasonings ntil you get the flavoring that you like. 

Sometimes in the mixing process I will add a bit of vingear and hot sauce along with jam or honey depending on my mood. Enjoy.    

  

 

 

Lazy Sunday Dish

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I would rather bite my tongue than say out loud, sometimes I don’t want to cook a fancy dish. Yes. A foodie cook who could easily eat a bowl of cereal with warm milk than actually think about what to make. That’s how I came up with this lazy Sunday dish. 

All you need is one steak, noodles, tomato, green pepper, garlic and onion. A dash or two of pepper, salt and curry. You start be flattening the steak and cutting it into squares. Season the steak then place in a hot pot with a bit of oil and add the garlic.  

 

You keep Turing the meat over in the pot until all pieces are completely brown. When all the meat is completely brown add three cups of water, the onion and green pepper slices and cover for ten minutes.  I like this dish spicy so I add hot sauce before covering. 

 

After cooking regular noodles according to package, place in a wok or frying pan and add 1/4 cup of kikkoman stir fry sauce. Be sure to turn the noodles over in the sauce completely coating them which should take about a minute or two. Be sure the heat on the pan or wok is low. You don’t want the noodle sticking.  

 The main items are cooked so all that’s left is plating your tasty dish and adding wedges f tomato’s. If I had done ripe avacado I would have place some slices as well. Easy, tasty lazy Sunday dish.  

 

Pork On Pork

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A good friend of mine had a large roasted pig at his birthday party that was stuffed with all pork meat products! Spicy sausages, pulled pork, links, you name it – it was in there. It was so tasty that I figured it should taste just great on a smaller scale. 

I love bone in pork chops because I do enjoy sucking on the bone to get to that baked in or fried flavors and seasoning. These were nicely butterfly, seasoned and stuffed with the bacon before being wrapped in bacon. No oil was used since the bacon and the pork chop fat were all the oil needed. 



When I make pork chops I have a habit of putting it with red beans rice but figured I would do a twist on a risotto. Balsamic creamy risotto had just the right amount of smoothness and bite to go with the pork chop. Add in some corn and slices of avocado and you have a colorful, delicious plate of food. 



Experiment with different types of bacon as well as seasoning combinations to make this wonderful combination your own. 



Pot Roast Steak

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There’s nothing my dad use to love more than a good piece of nicely cooked steak. Even when he got older and should have avoided the steak he would still gum it down. So when I cooked his steak it was always full of flavor. I would change up the seasoning and cooking style just to surprise him. I did this recipe in his honor. 

Pot Roast Steak is cooking the steak as though it’s a pot roast. You’ll need two 3/4 inch steaks, eight pieces of pepper bacon, nine small red skin potatoes, three handful of baby carrots, half small Spanish onion, half green pepper and five garlic cloves. Seasoning consists of salt (just three pinches), pepper, paprika and ground cumin. Combine the dry ingredients in a small container so you can season the steaks completely. In an oven pan (regular or foil) place at least five pieces of pepper bacon. Then directly on top place the slice in half red potatoes and baby carrots. 



 Cover the vegetables with the seasoned steak then place the three remains steaks on top with one on each side and one down the center. Then place the sliced separated onion pieces sprinkled on top and to the side along with the chopped green pepper and the finely chopped garlic cloves. Tent with aluminum foil and place in a 450-degree oven for about an hour and 20 minutes.



The bacon and covered steak will provide the steak dressing and the veggies will have that delicious pepper bacon flavoring. Of course, you will want to eat the bacon as well. The fun part of this dish is you don’t have to use any oil and it’s really hard to mess up. I got my steak and peppered bacon from Cheplic’s a family of local butchers. All of their meat is home grown and trust me, you can tell the difference when you chow down. Here’s Cheplic’s website: http://www.cheplic.com and they did not ask me for any endorsement and I purchased my meat. 

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Now, you may be wondering what an island girl like me would know about a great cut of meat. Well. My family would get fresh meat during the holiday season so that would mean butchering a cow, pig or goat. The freezer would be stacked for days with tasty meat. No dyes, forced feed, tough meat for us and when we had to go back to supermarket meats at times. The difference was easy enough to taste and see. So give the local butchers a chance and let your taste bud direct you. 

Happy eating! 

Using substitutes while maintaining taste

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When I’m cooking my homegrown island recipes sometimes it’s very difficult to find the right ingredients that make the dish sing. I can’t see fugee cooked without some okra or my mom’s lip smacking pepper pot without the medley of greens and meat that has this dish always making me think of home!

So, I figured out that I can coax flavors out by using some frozen products and dry seasonings. Find items that has the texture or close to taste and bring it the rest of the way by combining items. See. The best tamarind stew ball is made with fresh tamarinds but sometimes I can’t find them or get them sent to me. Using the bottle syrup found in Asian grocery stores combining it with various spices in a pot under a low flame then rolling in sugar. Well! I smell and taste my younger days. 

Some of the island fruits that I use for my drinks and dishes I need to get them while in-season and even then they can be a bit expensive because they’re consider “exotic.” I miss just going in the backyard for sugerapple, sour sop and star fruit. The main thing in saving cost is to find a market that will provide some of these items that you will cut, peel and open yourself. Getting it already prepped may save time but cost even more. 

I’m still experimenting with substitutes to maintain the right texture, flavor, and look of food & drinks. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t, while other times I’ve created a new dish that speaks to me like the trade winds bringing fresh breeze to a parched land.