This weekend was a challenge. I had so many things going on and not enough time to do it in. I had my 20th high school reunion and a family cookout this weekend, so I had a limited amount of time to cook for my blog. I had to cut a couple recipes from my Seychelles menu, but I managed to fit it all in. I’m exhausted, but I did everything I wanted to do.
|Yeah, the two that I ate were good. Could've used some more, though.|
The first thing I made was Gato Koko, or coconut cake. But this isn’t like what you think. It’s more like coconut cookies. First I mixed about 3 ½ Tbsp of butter with 2 eggs until it was frothy. Then I added in 1 ½ c of flour, ¾ c of shredded coconut, ½ tsp of baking powder, and ½ c of sugar. Then I mixed it again until it all came together and was smooth. On a greased baking sheet, I dipped out spoonfuls of the dough and rolled them into balls. Before I put it in the oven, I sprinkled a little coconut on top. The recipe was a little vague on how hot my oven was supposed to be, so I set it for 375ºF, and I left it in for about 24 minutes. But in all honesty, I could’ve probably pulled them out closer to 20-22 minutes. I thought they were a little dry at first, but the second bite was better for some reason. It actually kind of grows on you. They must’ve been good. The family ate them all up. Out of the 23 I made, I got two.
The main course today is Seychelles-style Coconut Chicken Curry. I grabbed my heavy pot and heated some oil in it and added in some onions. Once they sautéed for a few minutes, I added in some garlic, dried ginger, black pepper, ground cloves, ground ginger, ground nutmeg, ground cinnamon, some curry powder (I was out, so I just added some cumin and turmeric), a pinch of saffron, and a few bay leaves. I stirred and let it simmer for a couple of minutes before throwing in my diced chicken and diced potato. Once I stirred everything to coat the potatoes and chicken with all of the spices, I covered it and let it simmer for about 5 minutes. Then I added in a can of coconut milk, stirred, lowered the heat, and let it simmer covered for about 20 minutes. After that, I took the lid off, stirred and let it cook down for another 15 minutes or so. I really enjoyed this. It wasn’t spicy, but it was spiceful. I’ve always been a fan of North African, Arab, and Indian cooking styles of combining sweet spices with savory ones. I think it creates a very complex flavor. I don’t think we do that well (or often) in American cuisine.
|I loved everything about this.|
To go with the curry, I made Creole Rice. I heated some butter (in lieu of ghee) in a pot and sautéed some diced onion, diced red pepper, minced garlic, and a little bit of ground cloves. Then I added in my rice along with some cinnamon, salt, turmeric, and black pepper. Once I let it sauté for a minute while stirring constantly, I added in my water. After it came to a boil, I turned the heat down and let it simmer until the water was evaporated. I garnished it with a little bit of parsley. I thought this was quite tasty and probably could’ve just eaten it by itself as a side dish, but I put my curry on top of it. And it was amazing.
|I thought everything on this plate was really, really good. And the family did, too!|
This has been a whirlwind of a weekend. I haven’t been this busy for such a long time. But instead of shirking this off somehow, I decided to go ahead and cook. I had to skip on the octopus curry and the banana ladob, but at least I did make a meal and some cookies (that were gone by the time I got home from my reunion). It was also a weekend of meeting some interesting characters, I mean, people. No matter how normal or how weird people are, I always think the same thing: I might put them in a book one day.