Potato Tacos

You can do more with potatoes than you think.

Literally one of the simplest and easiest recipes ever!

Potato tacos

4 medium sized potatoes

2 cloves of garlic

3 tbls of cooking oil

20 corn tortillas

Salt pepper to taste

Depending on preference you can peel the potatoes or leave the skin on. You’re going to wash the potatoes chop them into large chunks. Place the potatoes in a large pot, fill with water about an inch above the potatoes, salt the water and let boil until tender. Heat a large skillet with the cooking oil in it. When the potatoes are ready, drain them and place them in the heated skillet on medium heat. Add salt and pepper to taste and mix. While the potatoes cook you want to smash them, but not mash them, you want them chunky but an appearance between home-fries and mashed potatoes. Flip them about every 5 minutes adding oil when necessary, until the potatoes have a nice golden color and remove them from heat.

Now, at this moment…. you’ve got the power to change your future. You’ve got two options with these tacos… you can eat them soft, by warming up the corn tortillas on a dry griddle and leave it be, fill it with the potato mixture and top with chopped lettuce, tomato, salsa, and avocado. OR you can warm up your tortillas a bit fill them with the potato mixture, fold them in half… AND FRY THEM! It’s honestly up to you, I like both ways, but the soft taco format leaves more room for left overs.

The tacos can be served with rice and beans, steamed/grilled/roasted veggies, your favorite sauces and dips, or nothing!

Because they’re so simple, there’s a lot of room for creativity. Next time you make them try throwing in some chili powder and cumin, or caramelized onions and nooch! The possibilities are literally endless!

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Lavender Rose Iced Tea with a Hint of Lime

First and foremost, I would like to laugh at this thumbnail of coconut palm sugar. Secondly, I would like to bask in the moment that there’s finally a video here for y’all to watch. Thirdly, it’s going to be so amazing in the next few months when my video quality shoots through the roof!

This iced tea is dope AND is super easy to turn into limeade, which was the original plan; but when life gives you ONE lime, you ought to use it in iced tea.

Hearts of Palm Toona

One of my favorite things to eat as a child was my mom’s tuna sandwich. No one makes it like mom. I took a twist on an old favorite by subbing tuna for kelp and palm hearts. The results? Astounding!

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Hearts of Palm Toona

1 14.5oz jar of hearts of palm (drained)

2-3 tbls kelp flakes

¼ cup mayo substitute (avocado is a great substitute)

1 small carrot (4-5 in)

½ celery stalk

1 tbls minced onion

2 tbls minced green bell pepper

1 tsp fresh dill (optional)

½ tsp Lemon juice

½ tsp salt

½ tsp pepper

Drain the hearts of palm, then pat dry and chop.  Place chopped palm hearts in a medium bowl.  Add 2tbls of kelp flakes and mayo substitute (I prefer Just Mayo) then mix.  Now it’s time to add the veggies!!! Everything can be cut to your preference; however, I suggest to mince everything.  Mince the carrot, celery, onion, and green pepper and add it to the palm heart mixture and mix.  If the mix doesn’t taste oceany enough for your preference, throw another tablespoon of kelp flakes into the mix.  Add some chopped dill, salt, pepper, and lemon juice.  Now your creation is ready!

I like to eat this in sandwich form on multigrain bread or a sourdough baguette, with Just Mayo, yellow mustard, avocado, romaine lettuce, and sprouts.  But, its mighty delicious in stuffed avocados, with pita chips, tortilla chips, crackers, or crudité (a fancy word for cut up veggies).

Trini Approved Doubles

My friends welcomed me wholeheartedly into their culture, and what better way to repay them than to make their favorite street food for them in my home.

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Bara:
4 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2 teaspoon curry powder
2 teaspoon gheera (cumin)
1 tsp ground pepper
2 teaspoon yeast
2/3 cup warm water
1/2 tsp sugar
Oil for frying

Filling (Curried Channa):
1 16oz bag of dried chickpeas (cooked in salted water and drained)
3 tablespoons curry powder
6 cloves garlic, minced
2 onions, sliced
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 tsp ground geera (cumin)
1 jalapeno minced
3 tsp salt
2 tsp black pepper

In a large bowl combine the flour, salt, curry powder and gheera. In a separate small bowl place the warm water, sugar and yeast and set to sponge for 5 minutes. To the flour, add the yeast mixture and enough water to make a slightly firm dough.  Mix well, cover with a damp cloth and allow to rise for 1 ½ hours. Since we’ve got to wait for the dough to rise until the next step, we’re going to work on the filling now.  For the filling, heat the oil in a heavy skillet, add onion, garlic, jalapeno, and 3 heaped tablespoons of curry powder mixed with 1/2 cup water.
Sauté for a few minutes.  Add the channa, stir to coat well and cook for five minutes.  Add 1 cup water, gheera, salt and pepper; cover, lower heat and simmer until the peas are very soft (20-30 minutes).  When the channa is finished it should be moist and soft, you want the channa to basically melt in your mouth.  Season to taste with additional salt if desired.  And, now we’re back at it with the bara: The dough should be punched down and allowed to sit for 10 to 15 minutes.  To shape the bara, take 1 tablespoon of the dough and flatten to a round, 4 or 5 inches in diameter (You want them as thin as possible without ripping a hole in the dough). In my experience, the dough is always really sticky, so I use oil to on my hands to work the dough.  You do not want to work them too much, or else they will come out dense.  Fry the baras in hot oil until puffy (about 15 seconds per side), turn once and drain on paper towels. When all the bara are fried, you’re going to do like the Doubles Man does, take two bara, add a heaping tablespoon (or two) on top of the bara, top with pepper sauce, shado beni, pineapple chow… WHATEVER Floats your boat!  Doubles are not a sandwich… I repeat! NOT A SANDWICH, so if you try and eat them that way you’re going to get channa all over you.

My Trini friends haven’t told me that my shado beni tasted like an American trying to copy Trini food… So here’s the recipe!

1 bunch of culantro (and if you’ve never ever seen this herb in your life… you can use cilantro)

1 lime

2 jalapenos (you can use less… for a mild version sub ½ of a green bell pepper)

¼ teaspoon of salt… probably more

¼ cup of water.

4 cloves of garlic

Remove the skin from the garlic, slice and place in blender. Cut and squeeze the lime juice in the blender, then add the salt, water and jalapeno. Now wash and rough cut the culantro (or cilantro I swear they’re different) and … place in the blender. Then you’re going to blend until smooth everything in the blender for about 3-4 minutes, stopping to push the ingredients down so everything gets worked. That’s it! Voila! Well… unless you need more salt.  Throw it on top of your doubles or literally anything.  (At the Subways in Trinidad you can put shado beni on your sandwich!)

Pineapple Chow!

1 chopped fresh pineapple (skin and core removed)

1 clove garlic minced

2 tbsp cilantro chopped (same thing… if you can get your hands on culantro grab it)

Juice from ½ a lime

Couple dashes of pepper sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

If you just feel like snacking on this chow, cut the pineapples into nice sized chunks.  If you’re putting this chow on your doubles, cut them into much smaller pieces (think pico de gallo). Put pineapple in a medium sized bowl, add garlic, cilantro, lime juice, pepper sauce, salt and pepper, then mix.  It’s ready to go right then and there… However, if you let sit for at least 20 minutes you can get all of the flavors to meld.

Cinnamon Rolls

A good cinnamon roll is hard to come by… it’s a good thing that you can stop looking.

Ingredients (makes 10-12 small rolls):

For the dough

½ cup almond Milk
½ package (1/8-oz) active dry yeast
¼ cup and 1 teaspoon sugar
¼ cup Warm water
2 tablespoons earth balance
½ teaspoon Salt
1 ¼ cups cups all-purpose flour (more as needed)

For the filling

2 tablespoons earth balance – at room temperature
¼ cup Brown sugar
½ tablespoon Ground cinnamon

Method:

For making the dough:

In a saucepan, heat the milk.
Add butter, sugar and ¼ cup sugar to the milk.
Once the butter melts,remove the mixture from the heat and let cool.
In a large bowl, stir the yeast and 1 teaspoon of the sugar into the warm water and let it stand for 5 minutes.
Stir in the cooled milk mixture and 1 cup of flour. Beat this with a spoon or an electric mixer until smooth.
Stir in the remaining flour, keeping the dough smooth. If the dough is still moist, add more flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, to make a soft dough.
Cover with a dry cloth and let it rise until the dough doubles in bulk, about 1 hour.

For making the rolls:
Punch down the dough and roll it out into a rectangle on a lightly oiled board, with a lightly floured rolling pin.

Spread the soft butter over the top of the dough. Sprinkle with the brown sugar and cinnamon.
Beginning on a long side, roll the dough up a bit tightly (Do not roll dough too tightly because centers of rolls will pop up as they rise)
Cut the dough into ¾ to 2-inch slices ( I cut it into ¾ inch piece) and place on the baking sheets.

Cover and let the rolls rise until doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.

At this point you may decide to bake it straight away or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2-24 hours. Remove from fridge and let it sit on the counter for at least an hour before baking .

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Bake the rolls for 15 to 20 minutes or until golden brown.
For glazing the rolls:

¼ cup Powdered sugar
2 tablespoons earth balance- melted
½ teaspoon Vanilla extract

In a small bowl beat all the glaze ingredients until creamy and smooth. Coat the rolls with the glaze immediately after taking them out of the oven. Allow the rolls to cool on a wire rack.

Whole Wheat Spirulina Chia Ravioli

Packed with flavor and nutrients, no matter how ugly they come out they’re still going to taste straight FIRE!

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Vegan ravioli
Whole wheat spirulina chia pasta dough:
4 cups semolina flour
1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 tbls spirulina
1tsp salt
2 chia eggs (2 tbls chia flour and 6tbls water)
1/2 cup water (contingent on how wet or dry the dough is)
Blend dry ingredients together.  Knead in chia egg and water and mix until dough pulls away from sides of bowl and you can form into a ball. Turn dough out onto a floured surface and separate in halves (I put one of my halves in the freezer to use later) and then cut the halves into halves (you should have four even pieces of dough). Roll each quarter into a flat sheet about 1/8th of an inch thick.  You’re going to need two sheets of dough for each batch of ravioli, one for the bottom, and one for the top.
Filling
1 portobello mushroom minced
1 handful of spinach chopped
4 cloves of garlic minced
1/4 green bell pepper minced
1/2 and onion minced
1 container of kite hill foods almond ricotta
1 Tbls Italian herb mix
1 tbls nutritional yeast flakes (optional)
Salt and pepper to taste
Sauté onion, garlic, and bell pepper until onions turn translucent.  Add Italian seasoning, nutritional yeast, salt, and pepper, mix, then add mushrooms and sauté for about 5 more minutes.  When the mushrooms gain a meaty like texture, add the spinach and cook until wilted.  Turn of heat and let cool down.  In a mixing bowl add a container of kite hill foods almond ricotta and mushroom spinach mixture and combine.
Ravioli assembly
Lay out one sheet of pasta dough and spoon about a teaspoon of the ricotta mixture in an even pattern across the dough, with half and in between the next scoop of ricotta mixture.  You’re going to want to do this as uniform as possible so that you can cut straight lines through the dough to have square ravioli.  Once the space is filled on the dough, place another sheet of pasta dough on top. The dough should drape over the filling bumps and give you a guideline as to where you can cut.  After you cut all of the squares out, I used a fork to press down on all of the edges to seal them.
Set up a pot of water to boil, when it reaches a rolling boil add the fresh ravioli and boil for about 7 min, then drain.  And now you’ve got some fresh ass ravioli that you did yourself.

Purple Yam Pie

Tired of the same ol sweet potato pie every year that your Auntie makes? Look no further than this eye catching masterpiece.

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Purple yam pie
2 purple yam
1/2 cup butter
1/4 cup aquafaba
1 can condensed coconut milk
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 tbls corn starch
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Crust
1/2 cup Brazil nuts
1/4 cup buckwheat groats
1/3 cup toasted coconut flakes
2 tbls oats
5 gram crackers
1 tbls chia seed
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup melted butter
Coco whip
1 can full fat coco milk
1 tsp evaporated cane juice
Dash of nutmeg
A dash of cinnamon
Roast whole yams for about 45 min on 375 F turning them half way through.  When finished let them cool down until they’re cool enough to handle with your hands so that you can peel the skin off. In a blender, mix together melted earth balance or coconut oil, aquafaba, condensed coconut milk, brown sugar, cornstarch, and spices.  In a large mixing bowl mash the yams until they’re a smooth consistency.  Slowly mix in wet ingredients until blended and use a hand mixer to beat everything smooth. Pour into crust and bake at 325 F for 1 hr. Let cool for at least an hour and top with the spiced coco whip.
Crust
Place all dry ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until it reaches a sandy or desired consistency. In a medium mixing bowl mix together earth balance or coconut oil with the dry blended mix until it mixture can hold to itself.  Dump mixture into pan of choice (I used a 8 in round cake pan) and press down evenly and firmly.  Bake crust in over at 325 for 10 min.
Coco whip
Place a can of full fat coconut milk in the fridge for at least 8 hrs. DO NOT SHAKE CAN BEFORE YOU OPEN IT.  Open the can and scoop all of the fat into a small mixing bowl and whip on high with an electric hand mixer until stiff. Add sugar and spices and whip until mixed.  Place in fridge for 20 min to let set again. Then it’s ready to be used on top of your pie