one love includes food, of course
Jamaica is not just about its most famous spokesperson, Mr. Marley. What Marley said was true. The spirit, soul, people, conflict, food, strife, struggle, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, families, militants... all of it/them/who/what make this place what it is and the people the strong individuals they are. The natural environment has EVERYTHING, yes everything, you could ever want or need to live a free and rich life. To eat, everything to satiate, found naturally. For what ails you, everything to fix you, found naturally. And, it's not just about mary jane either. The natural mystic is true. And, anyone who hasn't experienced it should go there and see for themselves. Off my soapbox for now... As for the papaya pic. In 2006, I travelled to Jamaica (Ocho Rios) and was part of a tourist excursion that took me and some friends through the countryside. Instead of playing with dolphins or sea urchins, we thirsted to see and taste the real Jamaica. And, we did. Gorgeous. In this pic, we were at the ruins of a slave master's house, getting a taste of the local fruits and some rum punch. Yum! (Check my full set of Jamaican vacay pics here.
) This was by far one of my favorite vacation moments ever... in my entire life. And it involved connecting with people and sharing local flavors. Again, food is love. Don't knock it. - A Collins yelhsa.collins@ gmail.com
post-thanksgiving lamb experiment
My first lamb experiment
. Rubbed with herbs, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Topped with smoked blue cheese, garlic, and bacon. And, served with seasoned mixed veggies, blueberry apple sauce, and dried apricots. I was pleased with the results. (View on Flickr along with other foodie randomness.
) ~* UPDATE *~ Here's the recipe: Lamb Experiment #1 You'll need:
2 lambchops, about 1-inch thick, 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (for oiling a skillet). On top:
1/3 cup of sliced mushrooms (canned is fine), 3 garlic cloves (minced), 3 slices bacon (chopped), 2 tsp extra virgin olive oil, smoked blue cheese crumbles (regular blue cheese or gorgonzola would probably work here just as well). AND pinches of the following spices for a rub:
italian seasoning (basil, oregano, rosemary, etc.), sea salt, whole ground black pepper, whole ground white pepper. Prep:
Rub meat with seasonings listed above, drizzle with olive oil to coat, then let sit and/or come to room temp for at least 30 minutes. 1 hour or more would be better. If leaving the rub on overnight, leave in fridge. Heat a slightly oiled (the oil is really up to you... I prefer EVOO, canola, or vegetable) iron skillet over a large stovetop burner (about 1 minute or so should suffice). Saute minced garlic, bacon, and mushrooms until bacon is cooked. Remove sauted tasty bits and put aside. Add rubbed lambchops to skillet to sear. Wait 3 minutes for the first side, then flip. Wait another 3 minutes and check to be sure either side of each lambchop has some golden browning taking place (i.e. they should look delicious). Once the lambchops are seared almost to desired done-ness, remove from heat, top with sauted tasty bits plus some smoked blue cheese crumbles and cover skillet so the meat may rest. Note: the meat will continue to cook at this stage, so be sure not to "over-sear". Suggested side-dish(es): mixed vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, corn, and peppers and dried apricots and/or blueberry applesauce. Suggested wine-pairing(s):
If you're like me, a syrah, cab, or pinot goes with ANYTHING, but for more traditional pairing, I'd suggest the following... Reds: Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon. Whites: Pinot Blanc, Fume Blanc. Thoughts and/or comments are welcome. Speak up and tell me what you think. (The LinkedIn peeps did.
Apparently lamb is a tad on the controversial side.) - A Collins yelhsa.collins@ gmail.com