Tag Archives: baking

Pastizzi from Malta

Yes, we’re talking about the Pastizzi, the small puff pastry filled with ricotta (pastizzi tal-irkotta’) or peas (pastizzi tal-piżelli’) and one of the icons of the Maltese gastronomy. Who has not tried one in the street food stalls? It is said that the best Pastizzi in Malta are served at Crystal Palace a small traditional bar in Rabat. […]

via The most famous Maltese —

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Goodies from Secnarf’s Place

Today on Foodie Tuesdays, we are going to meet a local food wizard and learn to make sweet potato pudding.

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Meet Frances! Born and raised on St. Kitts, Frances moved to Saint Martin 30 years ago with her husband, who relocated for work. She can work wonders in the kitchen. I met Francis at a local event, where she was selling delicious meat patties, pies, puddings, and cakes.  She calls her business “Secnarf’s Place,” and you can find her at almost any public trade show or market event.

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As you can see, Frances loves to cook. Before she retired, she worked in a store nearby. Now, she spends a lot of her time in the kitchen, baking for her family or preparing for an event. She told me that she stayed up all night to make fresh-baked goodies for her booth. She doesn’t mind the work, though, because she loves what she does. “I like to use my hands,” she says, “It’s like a work of art.”

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Frances’ culinary skills aren’t limited to the oven. She also makes her own all-natural fruit and vegetable juices. All she adds is a little bit of sugar for flavor, if it’s not quite sweet enough. Passion fruit is her best seller. “It’s so much better than what you can buy in the stores,” she says. No preservatives, no shipping. Just natural goodness!

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I asked Frances what her favorite food is. She thought for a moment before answering, “Sweet potato pudding.” The pudding is actually what sparked Frances’ interest in cooking. When she was a girl, her mother would make sweet potato pudding every year as a special Christmas dessert. As she got older, Frances would help. The rest is history.

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Here is how you can make sweet potato pudding, as described on Jamaican Caribbean Favorites. You can visit their site to learn how to make many more awesome Caribbean dishes!

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Sweet Potato Pudding:

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs sweet potato, grated
  • 4 green bananas, grated
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup grated coconut trash
  • 4 cups coconut milk
  • 3 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp mixed spice
  • salt to taste
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • raisins
  • rum to taste
  • 2 oz melted butter
  • Greased 9 inch pan

Directions:

  1. Mix grated potato, banana, coconut trash, raisins, flour and baking powder.
  2. Combine coconut milk, vanilla, sugar, butter, rum, salt, nutmeg and mixed spice.
  3. Add milk mixture into potato mixture and batter until smooth.
  4. Pour mixture into greased tin and let sit for 30 – 45 minutes.
  5. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for about 1 1/2 to 2 hours.
  6. Serve hot or cold.

Papa Dan’s Pizza, Behind the Scenes

This is a special installment of Foodie Tuesdays! Today we are going to visit one of Sint Maarten’s best restaurants, Papa Dan’s. Come with me to discover delicious pizza flavors and the elements of business on an island.

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Papa Dan’s is located near American University of the Caribbean, between Tung Yuen Market and the coffee shop. It has been operating for nearly a decade, and has become an important part of the local community. The restaurant is hugely popular with students; at any given time, one can see AUC students walking briskly to class or study group with a pizza box in hand. It’s little wonder that the shop attracts so much local business. The surrounding neighborhood is constantly filled with the aroma of baking pizza, and once you try a Papa Dan pizza, you’re hooked. Why? Because there’s a lot more to Dan’s pizza than just pepperoni.

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I arrive at Papa Dan’s on this warm tropical morning, camera in hand. Dan Passerieu greets me at the back door and gives me a quick tour of his little kitchen. Cooled boxes of fresh toppings line one wall: cheese, veggies, meat, and tomato sauce for the traditional and barbecue sauce, jalapenos, pesto, and honey for the adventurous.

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The first thing you will notice when you visit Papa Dan’s is that the menu is no ordinary menu. Dan shows me the lists of pizzas and explains where some of the unique combinations came from.

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Student’s Special, a combination of mozzarella, Gorgonzola, pepperoni and honey, was the first special he created. Dan tells me about the history behind this pizza. Before Dan lived on Saint Martin, he ran a restaurant in Paris. He first came to Sint Maarten to visit a friend of his, who was a student at AUC. Dan fell in love with the island, and decided to stay.  His friend was a regular visitor of the shop, and always ordered the same thing- pepperoni. Finally, Dan insisted that he had to try something else, and concocted Student’s Special for his friend. Before long, Dan was getting constant requests for this pizza, so onto the menu it went.

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There are actually three other pizzas inspired by students. Dan named these pizzas after regulars from the school who ordered the same combination of toppings every day. If you visit Papa Dan’s, be creative with your toppings and tell your friends to order the same; who knows, your creation might end up on the menu!

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My personal favorite is Sugarmama, a combination of Gorgonzola, mozzarella, goat cheese, and honey. I would never have thought to put honey on a pizza, but it’s a surprisingly delicious addition.

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Making specialty pizzas on Sint Maarten is not all culinary art and creativity. Running a restaurant on an island poses special challenges. Dan’s current problem is a late shipment of mushrooms. Because everything has to be imported from the U.S. or Europe, he explains, you can’t always get what you need as soon as you want it. If a shipment is delayed, there’s nothing you can do. That’s the island life.

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I watch as Dan creates a pizza. First, he prepares fist-sized lumps of dough.

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Next, he runs the dough through a rolling machine.

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He tosses the circle of dough in the air.

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Next, Dan smooths a spoonful of sauce on the pizza.

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Finally, he adds cheese and toppings. This pizza is pepperoni. Dan’s favorite combo is mozzarella, mushroom, spinach, Gorgonzola, garlic, and honey.

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He places it in the oven. The warm scent of baking dough fills the little kitchen.

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Hot pizza, ready to eat!

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Before I leave the kitchen, Dan slides a hot pizza from the oven into a box and hands it to me. The distinctive scent of warm goat cheese floats up from the box. I smile, looking forward to the sweet-and-salty Sugarmama ambrosia that awaits me.

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Foodie Tuesdays: Bahamian Johnny Cake

Hi friends! Usually of Foodie Tuesdays, I tweak an international recipe and share it here on 3rd Culture Wife.

Today, I have glorious amounts of leftovers and absolutely refuse to cook.

We have ribs and pizza, so I doubt Ben will argue with that sentiment.

Instead of the usual, I decided to share with you my favorite Word Press baking post of the day. Incidentally, it fits in with my Caribbean theme. If you’ve ever visited the Caribbean, odds are you’ve enjoyed a nice, warm johnny cake. If you haven’t, now’s a great time to try it for yourself!

Click on the link below to visit Mandy G’s blog and learn how to make this classic Caribbean staple.

Bahamian Johnny Cake

Foodie Tuesdays: Amish Baked Oatmeal

Ben’s favorite breakfast is baked oatmeal. I usually make him something quicker, like toast or eggs, but once in a while I get up early to make this treat. It’s soft, chewey and sweet. It’s also filling and staves off the snacking.

I adapted this recipe to make ours.

Gather your ingredients:

-3 Cups Oatmeal

-1 Cup Brown Sugar

-Tablespoon cinnamon

-2 teaspoons baking powder

-1 teaspoon salt

-1 Cup Milk or Almond Milk

-2 Beaten Eggs

-1/4 Cup Melted Margerine

-4 Tablespoons Plain Yogurt

-2 teaspoons Vanilla or White Vanilla Extract

-1/2 Cup Raisins 

Preheat oven to 350 F or 175 C

  
Mix together dry and wet ingredients separately.

Stir wet and dry mixtures together.

Coat a glass pan with margerine.

Pour mixture into pan.

Bake for 30-35 minutes. 

Yum!

  

Foodie Tuesdays! Pumpkin Spice Latte Pie

Hellooo holiday season! I love Thanksgiving and I love Christmas, so this part of the year is one of my favorites. To kick off the winter holidays, I’m starting a new segment called Foodie Tuesdays. Check back every week for new recipes! I’ll try to stick to international foods, but sometimes I just need some good American pie.

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This pi r squared.

 

As I mentioned in my post last week, I made a chocolate pumpkin spice latte pie for Thanksgiving. Here’s the recipe:

  • Gather ingredients.
    1. 1 1/2 – 2 lbs prepared pumpkin pie purée. I used one 2 lb can of pumpkin pie filling– the kind that is already spiced.
    2. I cup milk
    3. 4 eggs
    4. 1 1/2 cup melted butter (1 cup for crust and 1/2 cup for pie filling)
    5. Chocolate powder to taste (1/4 cup) if you want your latte to be a mocha
    6. Finely ground instant coffee to taste (1/4 cup)
    7. 1 cup crushed gingersnap cookies
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  • First, prepare your crust. We ground the gingersnap by soaking them in the 1 cup of butter and smashing them with a pastry cutter. You can put them in a plastic bag and crush them if that works better for you.
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  • Mix the crumbs with the butter and use a fork to evenly smash them to the bottom of your pie pan. I used a casserole because I don’t have a pie pan. Such is the budget expat life.
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  • Preheat your oven to 425* F
  • Beat your eggs. Add them, the milk, and the remaining butter to your pumpkin pie filling.
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  • Fill two small bowls with 1 cup of pie filling each. Add your coffee to one and your chocolate to the other. You may have to add extra of one or the other powder so that the pumpkin does not overpower the other flavors.
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  • Pour the orange pie filling into the pie pan. Smooth the surface.
  • Drop teaspoons of the coffee and chocolate pie filling all over the top of the orange pie filling
  • Use a butter knife to swirl and marbleize the two colors
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  • Put the pie in the oven and bake for 30-45 minutes. You should turn the temperature down to 350* F after the first 10 minutes.
  • Voilà! You have created a delicious treat to rival Starbuck’s most famous holiday drink.

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Check back next time to find out how to make your own earth-friendly Christmas tree for FREE.

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