Strange, Unusual, Delicious: Cayman Island Turtle Patties

     Cayman Island Turtle Patties

 

I few years back, when I was a young, immature foodie just starting out, I had the amazing privilege of visiting the Cayman Islands.  It was a very unique experience and allowed me to venture outside my comfort zone to try things I normally wouldn’t.  As a matter of fact, I think the Cayman Islands actually made me the foodie I am today!

While in the Cayman Islands, I visited Boatswain’s Turtle Farm which is one of the largest attractions there and saw some pretty interesting things. The most interesting part was the Turtle Patti Vendor inside the souvenir shop.  The man was literally selling us patties made from turtle meat INSIDE the turtle farm.  I found this bizarre and quite disturbing until I was prompted to try one. Even if the man had been selling the patties ten miles down the road the fact that it was a TURTLE he had cooked was off setting.  But, I didn’t want to be rude so after hesitating and looking back and forth between the dead turtle I was being offered and the live ones happily swimming around outside, I took the man up on his offer and tried a piece.

To say it was the most delicious thing I’d tasted in a long while would be an understatement. Think of Jamaican patties but with the most delicious, moist, fresh meat inside. I was so shocked at how delicious it was that I quickly asked for two more and took a picture of them. My palate expanded exponentially that day and I now have my own turtle farm where I kill…just kidding.  You may think me horrendous but as any foodie knows, you can’t turn own a potentially delicious meal because it was alive only moments ago.  I challenge you to try something completely foreign and see what happens. Good day!

Food For All: 12th Annual Gourmet Soiree

The 12th Annual Gourmet Soirée is a signature event that benefits the American Red Cross of Southeast Georgia Chapters.  There is much talk of delectable dishes from the most talented chefs the “Host city of the South” has to offer.  Good food, great silent and live auctions and dancing to top off the evening.
There is nothing like eating good food for a great cause so come support the Savannah Chapter of the American at their 12th Annual Gourmet Soiree!
Where: Marriott Savannah Riverfront, Savannah,GA
When: Thursday, May 10 6:00pto 10:00p
Costs: $125/person/ Early Bird Special $85

Try This: Oatmeal Sandwich Cookies With Peanut Butter

Oatmeal Sandwich Cookies With Peanut Butter

Ingredients:

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup brown sugar, packed

1 large egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 1/4 cups uncooked oats

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)

For the Filling:

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1/2 cup smooth peanut butter

1 cup powdered sugar

3-4 tablespoons milk

Directions:

Cookie

Place racks in the center and upper third of the oven and pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F.  Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

Beat the sugar and butter in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment.  Do this until it’s creamy, about 3 to 4 minutes.  Add egg and beat on medium speed for about 1 minute.  Add the vanilla extract and beat until blended.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the oats, flour, baking powder, baking soda, spices, and salt.  Add the dry ingredients to the butter and egg mixture slowly beating on low-speed until just incorporated.  Add pecans and stir.

The cookies will be small, so portion about 1 heaping teaspoon of cookie dough into your hand.  Roll into a ball and place on the prepared cookie sheet.  Keep cookies about 1 1/2-inch apart on the baking sheet.  If the cookie dough starts to stick to your hands as you’re making dough balls, rinse your hands and portion the dough with just slightly damp hands.

Bake for 10 to 13 minutes or until they’ve reached your desired texture.   Allow to cool on the cookie sheet for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

Peanut butter filling

To prepare the filling, place butter, peanut butter, and powdered sugar in the bowl of an electric stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment.  Beat on medium speed, drizzling in vanilla extract.  Scrape down the bowl as necessary.  Add milk one tablespoon at a time until you’ve reached your desired consistency.  The filling should be easily spreadable.

When cookies are completely cool, flip over and spread half of the cookie bottoms with peanut butter filling.  Top with a similar size cookie.  Wrap individually and store in the refrigerator. It is best to serve cookies just as they cool down.  If wrapped, cookies can last up to five days!

Recipe courtesy of: joythebaker.com

Unique & Sweet: Raspberry-Mascarpone Pizza

Pizza? Pie? A Pizza Pie? The idea alone conjures up a chorus of OOOOOO’s and AHHHHH’s.  Todays winner for most unique sweet is this scrumptious invention. It’s one thing to make something taste good, it’s another thing to make it look amazing at the same time, Bravo!

 Ingredients

1 pizza crust (homemade or store-bought)

1 tbsp butter, melted

sugar for sprinkling

1/4 cup lemon curd

1/2 cup mascarpone cheese

2 tbsp powdered sugar, plus more for dusting

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

fresh raspberries for sprinkling

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Roll out pizza dough and curl up edges to make a crust.

2. Brush middle of pizza dough with melted butter and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for about 8 minutes or until golden brown.

3. Remove from oven and spread lemon curd on pizza crust. Bake two more minutes.

4. Allow crust to cool slightly. In the meantime, beat together mascarpone cheese, powdered sugar and vanilla extract. Once pizza has cooled, spread on top of lemon curd.

5. Spread as many raspberries as you want on top of the mascarpone cheese mixture. Sprinkle entire pizza with powdered sugar. Serve immediately.

Food For All: 5th Annual Chef’s Potluck

For the food enthusiast in the South Carolina area or Savannah (if you don’t mind burning up some gas on the open road), you will want to check out this event!

It’s a world class experience that gives the average Joe the opportunity to taste first class cuisine from top notch chefs (see what I did there?).

In a nutshell, high-profile chefs from the Charleston area are partnering with growers and producers to prepare local ingredient dishes to taste. There will also be live music by the Garage Cuban Band, local Beer, wine and food demos. Participating restaurant include: FIG,EVO,The Glass Onion,SNOB,The Fat Hen,Social Restaurant + Wine Bar,Husk,Two Boroughs Larder,Poogan’s Porch, Cru Café,the Daniel Island Club,Duvall Catering and The Grocery.

When: Sunday, April 22 4:00-7:00pm

Where: Middleton Place Plantation Pavilion, 4300 Ashley River Rd. Charleston,SC

Cost: $65

Visit: http://lowcountrylocalfirst.org/

Shepherd Boys

(The Nile River)

I promised you that I would share with you my culinary discoveries and I am a man of my word. I just had the most splendid time in Egypt! It was quite random actually. My plan was to stay in Cairo, but I became lost and ended up in the countryside and ran into three shepherd boys.

After much excitement by my sudden appearance, they led me to their small shack in the distance where their hard yet beautiful mother prepared food for me and their father sat me down at the table. Overjoyed, I ate to my full. When I was done they gave me a Galabaya which is a long linen robe to replace my filthy traveling clothes.

We filled the night with much laughter as we tried to communicate and failed miserably. They spoke very broken English. I thought things could get no better but then I noticed the most delicious smell. I inquired and the mother smiled and disappeared into the kitchen. She returned a moment later with the most delectable looking treat I had ever seen. She told me the name but I dare not repeat. For now, I will call them Shepherd Boys.

I  asked her how she made it and I could have sworn time stopped by the way all the noise evaporated from the room. The look of utter shock was apparent on the faces of her children and her husband. I grew red from embarrassment but persisted telling her, that’d I’d work for it.

The mother smiled mischievously and nodded. I was to help her boys in the field with the sheep and other household chores and after every day was over, she would give me a part of the recipe until it was complete.

I ended up working for her and her family for over two weeks but had the most splendid time doing so, not to mention I got a killer tan from the inescapable sun and some much needed muscles. She handed me the completed recipe before I left to catch the bus and made me promise that I would never share the recipe with anyone else. I promised and bid them all farewell.

When I returned home, I immediately went to buy the ingredients to make the delicious treat.  So, without further ado I present to you