Friday, May 21, 2010

flippin birds and yellin eff u

When you decide you are going to participate in one of these smackdowns you have to understand what you are getting into. This month BamaTrav is hosting the Caribbean Smackdown. Since I got my ass kicked in Lobster I thought I would try again.

Jerk chicken with coconut rice and black beans garnished with a mango and tomato and cilantro relish - cant get more simple than that. If you want the recipe for my extra sweet and extra spicy jerk rub you know how to reach me......

Doggy Jerk Rub Or
ChezWhat a Jerk Rub

1 dried cascabel chile
1 dried habanero chile
1 teaspoon thyme
10-15 whole allspice
1 teaspoon dried ginger
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar

Put the whole thing in a spice mill and grind to a powder.

I took 5 legs and thighs and rubbed the jerk into boths sides generously and then I drizzled olive oil and let it sit for a couple of hours to fully marinate. (save a little bit of the rub to toss in the relish)

Preheat oven to 350

Heat an oven proof skillet to almost the smoking point and put the chicken pieces in skin side up, because of the sugar they will smoke and caramelize quickly so keep an eye on them - turn over and brown skin side as well.

Pour in a half a cup of coconut milk, cover and braise for 25-30 minutes or until the meat pulls away from the leg bone, uncover and let crisp up for a few minutes. Let chicken rest before serving to allow the juices to re-position themselves.

For the rice

Make rice ( I used brown jasmine rice in a rice cooker)
After rice is perfectly cooked and fluffed add drained and rinsed black beans, a 1/2 cup of shredded and toasted coconut and a 1/4 cup of coconut milk and fluff again.

For the relish

De seed and cube a nice ripe tomato
cube a semi ripe mango
a handful of cilantro leaves chopped
Toss everything together with salt and pepper and a little of the jerk rub and a squeeze of lime.

Plate it all up and enjoy!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

sweets like you never thought exactly just like you thought I think

With a little thinking you can turn something ordinary into something extraordinary and if you think a little harder you can go ahead and hit it right out of the ballpark. Black Star Gourmet sent me some truffle honey and I wanted to use it a little different than I normally would.

Typically I like it with grilled fish and chicken.

But today I wanted to have it as dessert, so I candied some rose petals and nasturtium leaves and I made some sugar ornaments. (lets not forget that I am still using my POS cell phone to take pictures) For the sugar swirls you simply melt some sugar by itself in a small sauce pan until its liquid and then you drizzle it in what ever shape you want, it hardens and its ready.

For the candied flowers you need a little time on your hands, the petals and leaves get brushed with egg white and then dusted with fine sugar and then they are left to dry for anywhere between 4 and 8 hours.

You can make ice cream or you can simply purchase some good quality vanilla ice cream and arrange everything on the plate, drizzle with truffle honey and enjoy.

A nice dry champagne would go great with this.

In fact, pretend like you have already had a few whiskeys and a couple glasses of champagne when you look at these pictures and they will seem just fine.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

kickin' along country roads

Never in a million years would I have imagined that Neil Sedaka would speak for me but today he does.

I went ahead and used my cell phone to take pictures because I am a man of few words and I need to hide behind pictures. I made dumplings...

In fact I made a few of them....

Steamed them on a banana leaf.....

Ate them with a soy ponzu siracha combo...they were good.

Friday, May 14, 2010

blogging, its not my life but it sure feels that way - most of the time

Life without a camera is not as bad as it sounds, in fact I have enjoyed not photographing everything that passes my way thinking of its blog worthiness or not and while this may be a partial truth it is not the entire truth- I have my cell phone camera and I will still snap off a few, if only to keep in the hang of it. (wow, what a long sentence - and subject, verb, predicate seems to all be in order). I still have quite a few things in the old archives that I have yet to mention like this cucumber and carrot salad with rice wine vinegar and sesame oil.

Refreshing, crunchy, sweet and savory, these grated carrots played along nicely with my little english cucumbers.

I wanted to keep this a secret but the guilt of enjoying this without sharing has finally got the better of me. Black Star Gourmet sent me some truffle products to try out and one of them was this truffle butter. Most people know its great on steak and even simply scrambled into some eggs so with this knowledge in place why not have it with a rich and succulent scallop.

Why not go ahead and have it with three rich and succulent scallops. The only hard part of this dish is the patience it takes to let the scallop do its crusty thing in a hot skillet and if you do it right your patience is rewarded and since you are rewarding yourself go on and add truffle butter, trust me, you wont regret it.

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Thursday, May 06, 2010

camera woes
y now most of you know that I use a little point and shoot Casio camera, and if you can recall previous posts you will remember that I use the hell out of these cameras and I often need to replace them, guess what? I sent my camera in to get fixed because the video stopped working and now I am a camera bum borrowing whatever camera I can get my hands on. I am in an endless loop with Casio since I purchase the warranty and the cameras cease to function before the warranty is up I get offered the next newest camera for about $80 bucks and it comes with a new warranty. So I spend $80 dollars a year on new Casio cameras. This is getting old. Should I continue with the warranty loop or should I start over? As dumb as it sounds I like the Casio, it aint the hammer its the carpenter.

Whatevs' I have some pictures in the archives I can use and I can always use Bananas camera or the pups (they both have new ones too since I last complained, by the way - Banana has a new canon and the pup has a little video camera). These pictures are from our little drive up towards Woodstock to get some fresh duck and chicken eggs last weekend that I had heard about from this blog. 100 miles each way and the little miles in between just futzing around. Twists and turns and finally we find the little sign.

Inside are the eggs, or so we think.

Yup its the honor system.

The thought crossed my mind to clean em' out - come on I live in NYC thats how we think, but I didnt and we dropped in our 10 bucks and scored 4 beautiful dozen.

We love our eggs and we love em' more when they are free range and cage free.

These shoes are Leopoldo Girodano, they are brand new 37 1/2 - google him. Banana wants to sell them, they dont fit her and they are left over from a photo shoot. Let me know if you are interested.

Monday, May 03, 2010

somewhere between good ol' hot chocolate and who knows what

What if this blog was like a blog that you had to remember everything. When suddenly out of no where you would be expected to recall items. These are not questions they are simply what ifs. La, la la la.....lalalala la la la la laaaaaa...... Q and A time. Whohoa big pinky .....It is a blog where you have to remember everything - every single little thing.... so I been posting and waitin to be quizzin' - I post pictures and you post captions winner takes all!

get goin' those three (3) above pictures need some snarky names. good luck
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