Monday, January 24, 2011

Deep Frying Adventures

Look at these hands.

Who, you may ask, could convince me to get them so goopy and gross?

The roomie! Ever since break I've heard about how amazing deep fried (I totally just typo'd fried as friend) pickles are and how we had to try them and make them and join the rest of the world in their deliciousness. So I made beer batter using Carib, since I am in the Carib after all, although technically, I'm in Wadadli country (let's see how many people understood that, haha). Dredged the pickle spears in flour then dipped in beer batter (which I seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and a little sugar). I then fried them, but also dipped a few in Italian bread crumbs too just to see how those would turn out, and I loved them like that. Layla like the regular ones, the bread crumb ones were a tad peppery for her liking, so fry accordingly.


Thursday, January 20, 2011

Revision of Sorts

Remember this genius creation from way back when? Yea, me too. Rice crispie treats have never been the same since that memorable day.

Flash forward over a year later. I'm in med school on an island where serious junk food and the tools to deep fry them are harder to come by (and a bit pricey honestly for your average student). But fortunately, when there's a will, there's a way.

Lo and behold. The answer to the quick question revised:

1. Take a regular rice crispie treat, not the little ones, the bigger ones and cut them in half.

2. Hmmmmmm... Familiar smear of Nutella (actually, it wasn't real Nutella, it was an Antiguan version of Nutella, but hey, it worked).


4. Did I mentioned I joined a gym? I may actually even teach an abs class there.

5. Yup, I'm gonna be a doctor.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Good Burger in Antigua

Don't get me wrong, I like it here. Every day on my way to school I round a corner and am greeted by an amazing view of the ocean, on the flip side, in those few miles I go over NINE speed bumps. On Saturdays, a women named Harriet sets up a tent and a barbecue and sells the most amazing ribs I have ever had an my entire life, and there's a chicken shack that sells jerk chicken that the smell alone will make you drool from a mile away. One downside though, they're not big beef eaters here, and I'm a Persian Kabob that grew up in Burger Land America. I swear, I asked a cab driver once where he goes when he craves a good steak, and he actually said "ehhh, beef?". I was convinced Antigua and I were going to have some serious issues then, but they eat a lot of pork too, so we've come to an agreement.

Now I know every student has gotten themselves in the food funk here, because while there are good and nice places to eat, they are often tucked away. That has done nothing to damper with my mission to find a GOOD burger here. Hmmmmm, burger. And that my friends, brings me to The Tides Restaurant. It's located very close to school (AUA students will understand these directions). Imagine you are leaving school by making a left, after the sharp turn you make a left at the intersection and then a right on the first detour off that road. Another perk, it's on the water, so you get to hear the ocean while you eat along with getting a nice little ocean breeze. OH! And you can see Jumby Bay from The Tides when you sit outside, so if you do, the house on the right side of the island that you can see, is Oprah's. YUP. OPRAH.

I had been there for dinner before, I got the spring rolls as my appetizer and the lamb for my main. They were both absolutely delicious. But I wasn't paying attention and didn't take any pictures. This time I made sure to pay a little more attention. The lunch menu was quite different than the dinner menu when it came to the main courses. It included salads (cesar, nicoise, the reg's) and sandwiches as well as some pasta dishes and desserts. I got the spring rolls again for my app, because they are that good. They're not as doughy as most egg rolls and don't ooze oil when you bite them, they're actually quite light for being deep fried. For my main, I went for the burger. Hmmmmm, burger. And no frozen patty like they give us at school. They use Rib Eye!

Tastes like America.

And for $32 EC (that's a little under $12US), you get either fries or a salad. I would like to still be able to wear bikini's, so I went for the salad, I'm sorry if I disappointed you. I also had fruit for dessert. Back to the burger. I ordered it medium well, because I like to disappoint you all. But it was still super juicy. Even the bread was yummy. The cheese was nice and melted but not overly so where it gets crunchy. So next time you're craving a burger (in between classes, HA), I highly recommend The Tides, it's by far the best burger I've had in Antigua.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Ba-Nana Bread

First off, I'm back!

Yes, after nearly a year, I am making a post, but in my defense, med school isn't a breeze and takes up a lot of time. So all of you thinking that since I'm on a Caribbean island, I'm living the life, you are so wrong. I'm not going to lie though, I've totally gone to class smelling like chlorine after jumping in the pool and laying out for a bit and I sip my coffee nearly every morning on my patio, all of which is pretty sweet considering it's NOVEMBER. On the flip side, the average medical student is weird. I have been lucky to meet some wonderful people though.

In the middle here, we have Nana, and on the right, Layla, my bestest buds on the island and the people I would lose my mind without. Together, we call ourselves the Reverse Oreo Cookie because we are awesome like that. Sadly, Nana is leaving us soon and Layla and I are both bummed. Especially because now we are no longer going to have someone say "banana" to us in a Ghanian accent.

Banana Bread
(Which is totally possible to make without baking soda, suck on that food network, I mean that nicely, I actually like food network a lot. Also, I don't have measuring cups or spoons which makes baking HARD. I used the smallest coffe cup we had, which looked like one cup and normal eating spoons, so teaspoon= small spoon. Oh, and I don't have a bread loaf, I used a cake pan. Now I know what to bring back when I go home for break.)

- 2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- some shakes of cinnamon
- some shakes of salt
- 3/4 cup of brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- a blurb of vanilla
- 1/2 cup oil
- 1 cup of mashed super ripe bananas

1. Mash up the bananas, they are going to look gross.

Those are some ripe bananas.

2. Mix together, the eggs, sugar, vanilla, and the mashed bananas. It will look even more gross than the mashed bananas alone.

3. Mix in the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt.
4. Pour into the pan and bake for about 45-50 minutes in a pre-heated 350 degree oven.
5. Eat while learning why mutations in human growth hormone cause the protein to be improperly transported and... back to the food:

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Eating on the Island

Ok. I know, it's been forever and what I'm about to post isn't even all gluttonous. But can I just say, it is NOT easy to cook here. First of all, the produce selection is just terrible and it's hard to find all the little things that a person wants, and then I didn't think this fully through and I'm missing some key kitchen appliances that I'm going to have to bring back with me when come back from break, but even that's not until the end of April. 

The building I live in is called Mandalay, and as far as I'm concerned, it's the best AUA has to offer. 1) I'm across the street from the beach 2) The people here are AMAZING. Seriously, I have the best roommates and everything. I no longer have a roommate anymore, but I suppose the benefit to that is I don't have to close the door when I'm in the bathroom. It's the little things in life people, the little things. 

As far as eating out goes, my Epic Portions buddies wouldn't survive. The only American chains here are Subway and KFC. Both of which are much more expensive and have much smaller menus. But then there are a million shawarma places to choose from. I tend to just cook and eat at home. I feed some of my neighbors sometimes and it turns out I make pretty good beef and broccoli. Want to see?

The way I do it is I cook the meat with some onions, then add the sauce which I make by adding: soy sauce, brown sugar, grated garlic, and lime juice. I then add the sauce, throw in my broccoli and grated grated (the second time I made it, I also added mushrooms). Give it a little stir to just slightly cook the broccoli so it doesn't get mushy, and yum! Tastes like PF Changs

For dessert, I like to make the easiest cake known to those who bake from scratch. A laisy daisy cake. 

There are about 800 million variations to this cake. I make the cake portion from scratch, but I have a friend who uses a boxed mix for the cake and just adds the topping after it bakes, which, let's face it, is the most important part. So bake whatever base cake you want. For the topping, get a bowl and mix enough coconut to cover the entire cake with a nice layer, a glug of milk, a nice good couple of spoons of brown sugar, and a couple of tablespoons of melted butter. Spread over the cake (it should be thick), and place under the broiler on low until golden and toasty. Invite all your neighbors over and become their favorite! hahahaha.

Oh, I miss deep frying an wrapping things in bacon. I just need TIME! But not all has been lost, I did manage to do this one night:


Sunday, January 3, 2010


Ok, this time I think I have a pretty legit reason for slacking like crazy, I got into AUA so I can be a doctor and make money to dip all my bacon in really, really, really good chocolate. Let's hope the plan works. In the meantime, I will be back in Virginia at the end of April but I will make some posts from here once I get settled in! 

BTW, my new roomie who is one of the sweetest people ever (no, seriously, she wrote me a greeting letter for when I got there with all these helpful tips on what to do and all, she's fabulous, everyone in the building LOVES her) and she's also quite the cook herself! No joke, people knocked on the door tonight because she made dinner. Loves it. She's already been given a heads up that pictures of her cooking may end up here. 

Monday, November 16, 2009

One Big Can of Pureed Pumpkin

I may be alone in doing this, but when seasons change, I start convincing myself I need things I don't really need. Fuzzy boots, intensive care lotion, two pairs of rain boots, a plaid jacket, hats with matching scarves and gloves, you get the idea. This list totally spread its way into my pantry and kitchen in the form of one super huge can of pureed pumpkin. I had been hoping to make pumpkin cookies, because a super awesome patient brought in pumpkin cookies to our office, but they were so good that I knew if mine didn't come out as amazing, I'd be kind of bummed. I totally need to get the recipe. Those cookie, you don't understand, they were heaven in bite size form. Anywhozers. I made pumpkin bread. I read several recipes and the general gist, most had a lot of white sugar, so mine is a little different than what you're probably used to seeing. I also think I used more pumpkin than most recipes. Either way, it came out super delicious and moist and I came home from work tonight and I made it yesterday and only about a quarter of it is left. I only got one good picture of it though, and it's not even a good picture, and that's because I totally pulled a Varta and found a way to deep fry pumpkin pie filling after I baked the bread. I'll go in order:

Pumpkin Bread, Cake, Whatever
20 ounces canned pumpkin 
4 eggs
1 cup olive oil
1/3 cup milk
1/3 cup water
2 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
sprinkling of salt 
teaspoon-ish cinnamon
1 teaspoon-ish nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon-ish cloves
*I say -ish, because honestly, whatever crinkles your socks

- Mix all the wet ingredients together
- Stir in the sugars until everything is smooth
- Add the spices 
- Add the flour and mix until all even, stick your finger in a lick regularly to make sure it tastes as awesome as you want it to
- Pour in a cake pan, should be fairly big, it's a lot of batter
- bake at 350 degrees for 50-60 minutes, or until you can poke it with a knife and it doesn't come out with goop

If you bought a really big can of pumpkin like I did (which is like 30 ounces or so) you're going to have a very awkward amount of leftover pumpkin in the can. 

Don't take it out, instead crack an egg into it, add some sugar, spices, and flour. Mix all that goodness until even. 

Then, as per usual, take a won ton wrapper and plop and nice size helping of pumpkin pie filling on there. Only don't fold it into a won ton like usual, make a ravioli by just laying another won ton wrapper on top, sealing with water, deep fry like you (or I) would normally do. 

Yea, these babies didn't last very long at allllll