WENT RED!! #FRIED RED TOMATOES/AVOCADO DIP

Needed something to quiet and satisfy the craving within. What do you know? Bobby Flay came to my rescue. Stumbled on one of his Brunch shows. One of the items on the menu was fried red tomatoes.

Decided to create my version as I had the main ingredients on hand (red plum tomatoes). Sliced them up about an inch, sprinkled a pinch of salt for flavor as well to draw the excess fluid. These were then placed on a sheet of paper towel in order to absorb fluid.

Made an egg wash consisting of egg/milk/dollop of sour cream. This was seasoned with a pinch of salt. Also, did a mix of cornmeal/flour/cheddar cheese/squeeze of honey/pinch of salt/black pepper.

PREPPING FOR RED FRIED TOMATOES
PREPPING FOR RED FRIED TOMATOES

Placed tomatoes in egg wash for a few minutes. Then in cheesy cornmeal mix. These were then fried in a combination of hot canola and olive oil on both sides until they were crispy.

Served red fried tomatoes with an avocado dip. Oh, my red fried tomatoes were crispy and mouth-watering; just what my taste buds needed. Thank you, Bobby Flay.

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A FEW OF JAMAICA’S FINEST #CALLALOO PLUS

So it’s back to basics for yours truly. It always warms my heart and stomach to indulge in Mother Nature’s offerings. I’m doing that with a few of Jamaica’s wholesome foods in the form of:

  • Callaloo (Jamaica’s spinach)
  • Breadfruit (great starchy substitute for rice, pasta, yam)
  • Avocado
  • Pumpkin
  • Plantain
  • Plum tomatoes
  • Garlic

Thanks to my neighborhood farmer’s market; I’m having one of the best times ever.

 

 

BRAISED BEEF CHUCK FLANKEN RIBS

Felt like having something beefy in my weekend food repertoire.Decided to go with a  few flanken ribs. These are basically thin cuts which are approximately  a half-inch thick and cuts across the bones.

Some of the ingredients that created this succulent dish are:

  • finely chopped ginger
  • balsamic vinegar
  • soy sauce (low sodium)
  • salt/black pepper
  • fresh thyme
  • crushed garlic
  • a sprinkle of sugar
  • onions
  • celery
  • mini bell peppers

Seared ribs on both sides in a drizzle of canola oil. Added an assortment of root veggies. Then covered ribs with cold tap water. Additional water was added when needed. This simmered and braised with a lid on for about one and a half hours or until ribs were fork tender.

Mouth-watering  ribs were garnished finely chopped Italian parsley.

CANTALOUPE/BERRY SALAD

Decided to take advantage of the peak of cantaloupe season  (June/August) by making a salad. It was the perfect time to use the nifty gadget, melon baller on my cantaloupe. It turned out some super-sweet balls. They made my taste buds salivate with delight. Balanced out my sweet cantaloupe with some of my favorite berries, blueberries.

These fiber and antioxidant berries were just what my melon needed. With the tart and sweet taste, they gave a fine balance to my summer salad. With a squeeze of fresh lemon and an input of finely chopped mint, my cantaloupe, and berry salad came to a refreshing and mouth-watering finish.

GRILLED BREADFRUIT WITH IDEAL PALS (ACKEE/CODFISH/CALLALOO)

Sunday’s brunch was quite a Jamaican affair. I went with one of my favorites, breadfruit which was roasted the previous day. This was done in oven at 450 degrees fahrenheit for approximately one hour. Peeled the tropical beauty and sliced:

SLICED BREADFRUIT FOR GRILLING
SLICED BREADFRUIT FOR GRILLING

Brushed slices with a little olive oil, sprinkled with a pinch of salt and then allowed my grill pan to do the work:

GRILLED BREADFRUIT SLICES
GRILLED BREADFRUIT SLICES

Served grilled slices of breadfruit with Jamaica’s national dish, ackee and codfish with slices of fried plantains, steamed callaloo (Jamaican spinach) and a slice of nature’s butter, avocado.

N.B – History books have stated that the breadfruit plant/tree was brought to Jamaica  from Tahiti in 1793. Over the years, this fruit has flourished in abundance. The young fruit is often boiled and used in soups and the mature version is ideal for roasting on an open flame (coal/wood), on stove top or oven.

Breadfruit is a great substitute for rice or bread. It is loaded with fiber, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients.

 

 

 

 

MIND-BLOWING JERK TURKEY BALLS

Not all balls are created equal. There are balls. And, there are BALLS!! Of course, I went the ones that screamed enormous flavors. After all, I’ve been here before. It’s amazing how a few added ingredients can tweak a bland poultry dish into an amazing one.

The main ‘player’ (ingredient) that made my turkey dish super-special was a small input of jerk seasoning  from the jar. Thanks to the ethnic aisle in my neighborhood store, I was able to be transported to Jamaica. A pinch goes a long way. That small move took my balls to another level. In addition, sautéed diced veggies and other ingredients  consisting of:

  • onion
  • carrot
  • celery
  • garlic
  • egg
  • panko bread crumbs
  • scallion
  • thyme
  • parsley
  • salt/black pepper
  • soy sauce
  • olive oil
  • brown sugar

were added in order to make these balls succulent and mouth-watering. Instead of frying my balls, I baked them for approximately 20 minutes at 375-degree fahrenheit. Then, they were placed a sweet and sour sauce consisting of a pinch of jerk sauce.

My balls were extremely happy and receptive. They absorbed all the sticky, sour, spicy and sweet ingredients.