Posts tagged “salad

pineapple black bean salad

sprouts

It’s Saturday night, I hear music blaring in the distance and I’m up, trying my best to post this recipe before Sunday hits.  I’m trying to do this so that it can become a part of your Sunday lunch/bunch/dinner.  It should be.  It’s as delicious as it is vibrant- what its colors will do to your eyes its flavors will do to your taste buds.  You simply MUST try this one.

Pineapples are a part of my life.  They are staples here in our house. I picked up two along the roadside (translation: I purchased them from a roadside vendor-many of whom are scattered along the way to Mayaro) when driving down to Mayaro a few days ago and decided to incorporate it into this lovely salad that I learned to make while I was away at school. 

pineapple bean salad ingredients_1closeup

Down here in Trinidad we have something called ‘chow‘.  Traditionally made using mangoes- the best are greener or at least half-ripe (I actually love sweet, ripe mango chow the best, but most will disagree).  Chow is made using the ubiquitous chadon beni (bandania) herb, garlic, salt, pepper, vinegar/lime and a tip of sugar.  It’s sort of a pickled fruit salad? I’m not sure of what’s the best way to describe it, but I’m going to venture out on a limb here and say that Trinidad owns chow!  Ask any Trini about chow and they will begin their description with a nostalgic glean and a mouth ‘full of water’. It’s ours.

before mixing

Pineapple chow has grown in popularity since some genius on the heights of the North coast road en route to Maracas decided to make it.  Since then many have perfected the art of making pineapple chow.  I was lucky enough to have a bit left over and decided to incorporate it in my black bean salad.  I would have to say the decision was a good one! I will definitely be doing a post on pineapple chow in the very near future.

dressing the salad

This served as dinner for me last night and part of lunch today.  I threw in some raw beets because I just love beets.  This salad is filling as a main but works really well as a side too. Of course, since I’m doing the 4 week salad challenge I can’t say I’ve used it as a side…it’s my only focus.  I ate this with grilled chicken breast for dinner and for lunch the next day I had it with a piece of steak.  I’d say the 4 week challenge is in full swing and it’s really causing me to come up with great new salads ūüôā

pineapple bean salad

[yumprint-recipe id=’9′]


fruits and ginger sauce

fruit and oat bowl

Today was a very busy day in our household, well, not so much busy as hectic. ¬†I didn’t get a lot of rest last night, in fact I’d say it reminded me of when my baby was a newborn. ¬†My little one decided to stay up all night until the early hours of this morning and then wake up early! ¬†Needless to say I woke up feeling like a train wreck!

Of course this meant that breakfast, lunch and dinner had to be quick and easy…

Today I had fruits and old-fashion rolled oats for breakfast.  Simple and delicious; I threw in apples, pawpaw, pomegranate, pineapple and strawberries.  That was all there was to it, yet the sweetness of the fruits and knowledge that I was doing something good for myself by having rolled oats was enough for me to feel satisfied until lunch.

fruit/oat breakfastfruit/oat close

For lunch I made Chinese style ginger chicken. ¬†It’s super easy and really quick with very little prep time and cooking is a snap. ¬†I’m focusing¬†on this multi-use ginger sauce because the chicken or meat that accompanies this is really variable since it’s about how you’d like to prepare it. ¬†I do it the traditional way- boiled or steamed because it’s quicker, healthier and no fuss. ¬†But I’ve had it and prepared it roasted and pan fried. ¬†It really doesn’t matter since the motive is the same- to have a bland tasting meat with an explosive sauce!
It works, it really does! ¬†My way of ‘healthyfying’ the traditional recipe is to use extra virgin olive oil- it’s not really a huge adjustment, but it’s something and every little counts for something! ¬†I ate the ginger chicken as a salad- Romaine lettuce, water cress, cilantro, sliced carrots, lemon juice all topped by slices of the steamed chicken and ginger paste- it was clean yet sharp, healthy yet satisfying.

ginger sauceoil being added

ginger sauce

The last thing I made today was a smoothie. ¬†I’ve been trying to find ways to rid myself of all the junk I’ve been putting into my body over the last couple of years and reading a lot about juicing and its benefits. ¬†After my last trip to the market¬†I got some stocks so decided to make myself a refreshing smoothie. ¬†I made mine with fresh strawberries, frozen berry mix(blueberries, raspberries and blackberries), a sweet starch mango,¬†pomegranate juice (all natural, no additives or sugar), cilantro and some raw chia seeds. ¬†It came out remarkably well! ¬†The tanginess or the berries were so well balanced by the unique flavor of the cilantro and the sweetness of the mango was enough to have me wishing I had made more!

smoothie

smoothie detail

The ginger sauce and smoothie recipes are both very simple and can be viewed here.


trip to the market

seasoning

Today is Sunday. ¬†It’s market day for us- in my family at least. ¬†It’s the first time I’m taking my little one. ¬†We go to the Marabella market located in South Trinidad. ¬†It’s vibrant colors and characteristic scents remind me of when I myself was a little one and I’d go with my mother. ¬†I always loved it. ¬†The people, the colors, the chatter, the produce. ¬†It’s about getting in touch with the real Trinibagonians, the people who we seldom think about; those kind folk who choose to make their livelihoods toiling away beneath the blistering sun so that we-you and I- could taste and sample only the freshest crops. ¬†I admire them. I love them. ¬†They are my people.

pumpkinpiccassavatomatoes dasheen bushshattine pumpkinmosaicmarket

Everything looked enticing and fresh today at the market and I’m keen to see what recipes I come up with during the week!


trip to the market

seasoning

Today is Sunday. ¬†It’s market day for us- in my family at least. ¬†It’s the first time I’m taking my little one. ¬†We go to the Marabella market located in South Trinidad. ¬†It’s vibrant colors and characteristic scents remind me of when I myself was a little one and I’d go with my mother. ¬†I always loved it. ¬†The people, the colors, the chatter, the produce. ¬†It’s about getting in touch with the real Trinibagonians, the people who we seldom think about; those kind folk who choose to make their livelihoods toiling away beneath the blistering sun so that we-you and I- could taste and sample only the freshest crops. ¬†I admire them. I love them. ¬†They are my people.

pumpkinpiccassavatomatoes dasheen bushshattine pumpkinmosaicmarket

Everything looked enticing and fresh today at the market and I’m keen to see what recipes I come up with during the week!


soy sauce baked chicken salad

soy sauce board

Ok, now one of my favorite types of chicken is stewed chicken- called ‘stew chicken‘ here in Trinidad & Tobago. ¬†Now, the thing with stew chicken is that it’s quite rich and sweet- that’s probably why it tastes so good! ¬†It’s old-fashioned food, it’s comfort food, it’s food that goes well with almost everything. ¬†Some West Indians eat it with roti, others choose rice and some even eat it with pasta-perhaps I remember this being eaten more when I was a student? ¬†The point is, it’s good. ¬†But, as with all good food there’s a trade off. ¬†This is no exception. ¬†Stew chicken or beef or pork or shrimp, any kind of stew is made with oil and sugar and some people make it with coconut milk. ¬†Sure, you can make it with smaller amounts of these ¬†ingredients, but it somehow just doesn’t taste the same; the way mama used to make it. ¬†So I’ve come up with a way to almost fool myself into believing I’m eating stew chicken. ¬†It’s not stew chicken; there’s no comparison; but I have to do something that’s healthier while still giving me that caramelized goodness of stew chicken done right.

So, this is my take.

about

Recipe

This salad is simple and mild yet refreshing. The citrus of your choice adds a dash of sweetness to the meat without adding the extra calories of a traditional dressing.  The crisp carrots and lettuce leaves add texture to an already flavorful meal.  I prefer to stay away from local Trini lettuce for this recipe simple because it tends to have a slightly bitter after-taste, hence I chose Romaine for my salad. The citrus I chose for my dressing was tangelo- an hybrid between an orange and and a grapefruit, it was sweet and delicious and gave the salad a crisp, clean taste. Choose premium dark soy sauce since the flavor is a bit muted compared to regular soy sauce.

Ingredients        

1/4 whole chicken- or piece(s) that you prefer
1 Tbsp premium dark soy sauce
1 sprig of French thyme
2 garlic cloves
1-2 pimento peppers-I prefer the red ones
2 Tbsp chopped chives
1/2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 small carrot
2 cups Romaine lettuce/Boston/Local Trini lettuce
Juice of 1/2- 1 whole fresh orange/portugal/grapefruit
Salt and black pepper to taste
Method

Preheat oven at 350F. Slice or grate garlic cloves thinly or on the smallest side of the grater.  Season chicken pieces with soy sauce*. Remove the leaves of the thyme sprigs and slice the pimento peppers.  Add 1 Tbsp (reserve 1 Tbsp for garnish)chopped chives, pimentos, thyme and garlic to soy sauce chicken. In a thick bottomed sauté pan heat olive oil over high heat. Add seasoned chicken. Let the chicken brown for about 2 minutes on each side, just until golden brown.  Off heat, remove pan and place in oven at 3o0F for about 20 minutes or until cooked.

Salad Assembly

Chop 2 cups of lettuce leaves. Thinly slice carrot into 1/4 inch thick sticks. Arrange in a salad bowl. Squeeze 1/2 citrus of your choice over salad components. Add salt and black pepper if desired.  Place cooked chicken on top of salad and garnish with chopped chives. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Serving size- 1 person.

Suggestions– Can be served with stir fried vegetables, mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes or mixed rice and a small green salad.

*This step can be done from the day before and stored overnight in the refrigerator for stronger flavor.

chicken close

soy sauce chicken salad


soy sauce baked chicken salad

soy sauce board

Ok, now one of my favorite types of chicken is stewed chicken- called ‘stew chicken‘ here in Trinidad & Tobago. ¬†Now, the thing with stew chicken is that it’s quite rich and sweet- that’s probably why it tastes so good! ¬†It’s old-fashioned food, it’s comfort food, it’s food that goes well with almost everything. ¬†Some West Indians eat it with roti, others choose rice and some even eat it with pasta-perhaps I remember this being eaten more when I was a student? ¬†The point is, it’s good. ¬†But, as with all good food there’s a trade off. ¬†This is no exception. ¬†Stew chicken or beef or pork or shrimp, any kind of stew is made with oil and sugar and some people make it with coconut milk. ¬†Sure, you can make it with smaller amounts of these ¬†ingredients, but it somehow just doesn’t taste the same; the way mama used to make it. ¬†So I’ve come up with a way to almost fool myself into believing I’m eating stew chicken. ¬†It’s not stew chicken; there’s no comparison; but I have to do something that’s healthier while still giving me that caramelized goodness of stew chicken done right.

So, this is my take.

about

Recipe

This salad is simple and mild yet refreshing. The citrus of your choice adds a dash of sweetness to the meat without adding the extra calories of a traditional dressing.  The crisp carrots and lettuce leaves add texture to an already flavorful meal.  I prefer to stay away from local Trini lettuce for this recipe simple because it tends to have a slightly bitter after-taste, hence I chose Romaine for my salad. The citrus I chose for my dressing was tangelo- an hybrid between an orange and and a grapefruit, it was sweet and delicious and gave the salad a crisp, clean taste. Choose premium dark soy sauce since the flavor is a bit muted compared to regular soy sauce.

Ingredients        

1/4 whole chicken- or piece(s) that you prefer
1 Tbsp premium dark soy sauce
1 sprig of French thyme
2 garlic cloves
1-2 pimento peppers-I prefer the red ones
2 Tbsp chopped chives
1/2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 small carrot
2 cups Romaine lettuce/Boston/Local Trini lettuce
Juice of 1/2- 1 whole fresh orange/portugal/grapefruit
Salt and black pepper to taste
Method

Preheat oven at 350F. Slice or grate garlic cloves thinly or on the smallest side of the grater.  Season chicken pieces with soy sauce*. Remove the leaves of the thyme sprigs and slice the pimento peppers.  Add 1 Tbsp (reserve 1 Tbsp for garnish)chopped chives, pimentos, thyme and garlic to soy sauce chicken. In a thick bottomed sauté pan heat olive oil over high heat. Add seasoned chicken. Let the chicken brown for about 2 minutes on each side, just until golden brown.  Off heat, remove pan and place in oven at 3o0F for about 20 minutes or until cooked.

Salad Assembly

Chop 2 cups of lettuce leaves. Thinly slice carrot into 1/4 inch thick sticks. Arrange in a salad bowl. Squeeze 1/2 citrus of your choice over salad components. Add salt and black pepper if desired.  Place cooked chicken on top of salad and garnish with chopped chives. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Serving size- 1 person.

Suggestions– Can be served with stir fried vegetables, mashed potatoes, roasted potatoes or mixed rice and a small green salad.

*This step can be done from the day before and stored overnight in the refrigerator for stronger flavor.

chicken close

soy sauce chicken salad