Caribbean Life-HGTV

 

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There are a thousand benefits to befriending the folks who make your food. The gift of foodie insight, great food, and being on HGTV? Well, the latter was beyond unexpected, but a memory I won’t soon forget. Thankful to my farmer friends at Artfarm, Christina Gasperi, for suggesting to the folks at “Caribbean Life” that they visit our home as an example of the kind of food sharing and community that exists on our little Rock! Continue reading

Delicious Living Magazine!!!

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Happiness. It feels like someone stuck a handful of sunshine way down into your spirit and let  the warmth of it build and spread up to find a place on your face called your lips that curl and bend into a deep unchanging smile for hours! That’s just a little bit of how I felt when I saw the FIVE page spread that Delicious Living Magazine gave to Crucian Contessa! Continue reading

Beef Pate

Beef Pate

Pates (pronounced Pah Tays) were my fast food growing up.  After Hurricane Hugo blew away our high school cafeteria, lunch time was trimmed down and simplified. Some days it was just a Pate either beef or saltfish and an “Island Dairies” juice box either passion fruit, Iced Tea, or guava—Total Cost $2.00!! What I remember about those pates were the crispy crunchy dough with the raised welts and blisters fried into place where the hot oil met and melt the fat in the dough in a puff of steam. Sigh… it was food heaven! I have longed to find the perfect Pate ever since. I usually ran into pates that were too greasy, or too doughy, or too much butter/shortening. None were able to capture the balance of textures for me of those high school pates. Continue reading

Hubby Honey Collections

One of the many reasons I adore my husband is his love of all things nature. He is a wild man. If I’m looking for him around the house and can’t find him, I  give a shout to the four trade winds and he answers with his hands in the dirt planting, pruning, or growing something! Lately, he has taken on a love of bees. He’s a true novice, but he learns so quickly! This week, he took off  to help a friend who called him to clear a wild hive. The reward was this beautiful sample of raw Crucian honey! Oh…Dear…Lord. Yes, each word needed to be said separately. An ethereal lightness matched by a sunshine citrus brightness. I have no idea what these bees were gnoshing on, but the honey sample he brought back was supple and DEHLICIOUS!!

Fresh Honey
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Contessa Pumpkin Rum Flan

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As a food blogger, there are times where I don’t want to write about something I made. I just want to make it and email a slice to every person reading the blog, because talking about it just CAN NOT do it justice! There literally are recipes that defy words, that shrug off adjectives, that laugh at sentences. This is one of those. Rum, pumpkin, and flan all had a conversation and said, “Hey, you know, we TASTE GOOOOOD together!” Yeah, that’s this recipe. Just in time for the Thanksgiving season. It would make a fine dessert addition to any Turkey Day dinner! Continue reading

Contessa Shrimp and Avocado Salad

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There are times when the kitchen and I break up. Complete with side-eye and cold shoulders. I don’t feel like spending too much time with it whatsoever. My kitchen creations feel hum-drum, and I answer the call of carry-out more than I should. Lately, I’ve had a serious case of the kitchen-blues! But ever so slowly we’ve been spending more time together. Checking each other out and starting to do the dance of reconnection. Continue reading

Contessa Guacamole

 

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One of my favorite parts of island living is the food sharing culture that is so very much alive on our little rock! From co-workers, friends, or family, someone is always offering the blessings of their back yard bounty. This late summer’s offering is the alligator pear avocado. A friend of ours gave us two mammoth sized avocados and my first and only thought was Spicy GUACAMOLE!! Guacamole is the easiest thing to make–a perfect testament to the idea that it takes just a few well sourced ingredients to make ahhhmazing food! Continue reading

Johnny Cakes

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Has it really been that long since my last post? I’ve been having TOO much fun enjoying all the fun and sun that is summer on this rock. To make up for lost times, here is my world famous (OK, only in my house famous) Johnny Cake recipe! Johnny Cakes are fried heaven on a plate, or a napkin, or just balanced hot on your fingertips, because you couldn’t wait to find either a plate or a napkin before you tore into it. It is one of our MOST traditional island favorites.

There are some foods that are strictly breakfast, lunch, or dinner foods. Johnny Cakes are that rare breed of food that defies those rigid boxes. You can enjoy them any time of day! Quick and easy, they fry up fast and are gone just as quickly! Tooooooo good! Continue reading

Contessa Island Spiced Iced Coffee

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There is no mistaking it. It IS summertime on the island. The humidity has shown up, and the trade winds are working overtime to keep things one notch above comfortable. This is a great time to dust off this cold brew iced coffee recipe. Making coffee this way means there is nothing to heat up in an already warmed up Crucian kitchen. 

Sweet, flavorful, spiced up, and versatile are just a few words that describe this recipe. A true coffee lover’s confection with it’s mellow flavor. There is no bitterness as there is in the normal hot brewing process. On island, my hubby and I use whole beans roasted locally by a guy named “Don Tomas” (Dontomascoffee@mac.com). His beans are  roasted to deep dark coffee perfection–ideal for an iced coffee!

If the flavor of this drink doesn’t capture you, there is a moment when making this coffee that you get to step back and take in the image of the cold white heavy cream wandering through the midnight canvass of the jet black coffee. For just a second there is a beautiful marbling before the separateness of the very black coffee and very pale cream becomes a beautiful mocha beige. Yes, feel free to savor that “Look What I Did” feeling! The kitchen offers the curious breathtaking moments like that! Sigh… Continue reading

Contessa Tomato and Onion Relish

 

Onion Relish

Sometimes its just too easy to make incredible food! Sometimes unfussy food is just the most rewarding. This relish is tropical summer food–cool, uncooked, and perfect on everything from fish to meat dishes. It may look like an uncomplicated tangle of red and purple, but it is so much more in terms of flavor!

The farmers have been showing off with the brightest, reddest, most flavor-packed tomatoes at our local markets–much Tomato Love! How could I not find something amazing to do with this summer season fruit. Yes, tomato is actually a fruit. Top it off with a dash of your favorite hot sauce (anything but Tabasco), or just savor as is. It really is just TOO good. Continue reading