Finally - we made a decision. We're going to be learning about the Caribbean Islands and their cuisine. I have been very fortunate to holiday on a few of the islands and 18 months ago we went to Barbados as a family (Hubby, Little, Small and me). Little remembers it but Small was very small so he doesn't remember it at all. They both loved the food though!
The islands snake from Florida to Venezuela. Each island is different in shape and size and what it has to offer. They are an ideal holiday destination for me with verdant green landscapes, golden yellow sands and warm turquoise seas. When I think of the Caribbean I picture dancing in the sand until the early hours, swimming in the sea with turtles, the friendly, happy people and how laid back they are, all I'm sure comes from living in such sunny climes. If you've never been, and you ever get the chance to go, jump at it!
While we learn about the Caribbean, we'll take a definite dip into my friend Cynthia's blog Tastes Like Home (Cynthia is from Guyana but lives in Barbados). To start us off though I thought I'd share this recipe which is a West Indies inspired curry... It was another of my cheating curries...
Chicken & Plantain Caribbean Curry (serves 2)
2 chicken breasts (cut into 2cm cubes)
1 large plantain (peeled and sliced)
1 medium size onion (finely chopped)
1 tin of creamed coconut milk
2 tablespoons of medium curry paste (I used Patak's)
1 heaped teaspoon of cinammon powder
First fry the onion until opaque, take them out (keep to side) add plantain to pan and fry on each side until starting to colour (about 4 mins each side) Take out and keep to side. Then fry the chicken for 2-3 minutes sprinkle the cinammon over and fry for further 2 minutes. Add the curry paste, plantain and onion back to the pan and cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the cocunut milk and cook for 5-10 minutes. Serve with basmati rice or rice of your choosing. (L & S had a few mouthfuls of this on their way to bed, just prior to teeth brushing ofcourse, and see below for how they had it slightly changed the next day - either way it was great!)
EDIT - Note: Since I made this Cynthia gave me the following advice about plantain. Peel the green ones then boil before fryingt. (I've tried this since and it works well.) The very ripe ones, peel, slice and fry. When it is mid-ripe, it is boiled in its skin and then sliced and served.
Leftovers - If you have any leftover sauce and plantain like we did... this worked a treat as supper for the boys the next day. I cooked 2 chicken breasts. I then added some cream and mango chutney to the leftover plantain and sauce cooked it through for about 5 minutes then poured it over the cooked chicken breasts. Served with some of the leftover rice as I always have plenty of that (I make enough for 10 people)! Little and Small loved it!
I have a little phrase book called Chat Jamaican and we've already started to practice... Yeah mon!