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Posts from the ‘Main Course’ Category

Garbanzos Fritos con Langostina

IMG_0006Last year I took what felt like a slightly selfish trip to New Orleans.  My excuse was book research, so I decided beforehand not to post or take too many pictures.  It felt like if I stopped to post or take a picture every time I saw something beautifully strange or strangely familiar in New Orleans, I’d do little else.  Strange because it’s a city so completely itself that it makes you come all the way there to experience it and familiar because I’d always heard stories from my family about New Orleans when it was a short jump from Havana.  There were so many parallels that it wasn’t surprising that so many of my relatives settled there when they left Cuba in the 1960s. Read more

Tinga de Pollo

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Trying to cover a lot of ground on my site, I regret that I don’t get to spend too much time in any one place – picking up terms and techniques without becoming fluent in any one country’s cuisine.  But lately my Cuban cookbook research has kept me at home, literally and figuratively, so I was due for a side trip. Read more

Risotto al Perfume de Ají

A week ago, I got tired of playing kitchen Jenga in my overcrowded pantry.  Deciding to clear the decks, I went through every can and bottle, checked expiration dates, and relined the shelves.  While there weren’t as many items to throw away as I’d feared, there were enough to make me feel more than a little ashamed and wasteful.  I hate throwing away food to the core, and there’s no excuse for it. Read more

Sea Scallops with a Malanga Crust

Every four years, my extended family gets together in South Carolina for a week long reunion.  Synced to both the presidential election (something to argue about) and the summer Olympics (something to look forward to), we always know when it’s coming.  This time I carved out a few extra days to visit nearby Savannah – a city I’ve had a crush on for a very long time. Read more

Fideos Secos

It was about a year ago today that I started a major kitchen re-haul (really a few hours) before throwing a surprise party in my apartment.  I say started because, while everything was put back into some kind of order, I don’t think it was really finished until this week.  Faced with the potential embarrassment of friends seeing my apartment in shambles, I made miracles happen and then took some time off (about 12 months to be exact).  Most of the elements were in place but crowded, and I hadn’t gotten around to tying it all together. Read more

Harina con Cangrejo

Despite a lifetime of research, I’m always discovering something new in Cuban food.  While it reminds me not to take anything for granted, less pleasant is knowing that my nearest and dearest have been holding out on me.  That’s how I felt when I discovered that harina – cornmeal simmered to a creamy state and topped with peppery sofritos and poached or fried eggs, ham or chorizo, shimp or crab – was a Cuban comfort food staple that everyone was having but no one was talking about.  I’d enjoyed Italian polenta prepared this way, but I  hadn’t realized there was a take on it that was much closer to home – just not my home. Read more

Quinotto de Champiñones

I usually dread fall-back but I’ve been looking forward to daylight savings for weeks. Normally a morning person, getting up in the pitch black, confusing the still bright streetlamps with my alarm clock, and starting every day with the say-it-aint-sos was really getting to me. For once, I was willing to trade darker afternoons for brighter mornings. Of course, playing mind games with the sun has its price. As someone with penchant for photographing their food, I’m sure I’ll be cursing the change when I’m trying to get a decent picture at 3-o’-clock in the afternoon. Read more

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