Monday, July 8, 2024

Trini Fry Bakes #BreadBakers

Light and fluffy, Trini fry bakes are easy to make with just a few simple ingredients. They are one of my favorite snacks from my childhood years in Trinidad. Why they are called bakes when they are always deep fried, I cannot tell you. It remains a mystery to this day.

Food Lust People Love: Light and fluffy, Trini fry bakes are easy to make with just a few simple ingredients. They are one of my favorite snacks from my childhood years in Trinidad. Why they are called bakes when they are always deep fried, I cannot tell you. It remains a mystery to this day.

We moved to Trinidad when I was five years old and thanks to my mom’s adventurous spirit, I was introduced to so many new foods that have become part of our family menu, like curry, fried wontons, stuffed crab, tamarind balls and salt prunes.

My older sister and I were in enrolled in a small school not far from our new home and my mom got busy finding out where to shop and otherwise outfit said home. One of the first things she did was to hire a local lady to help her care for our five-month-old baby sister and to help clean and cook occasional meals. 

I’d get home from school, shuck my uniform and shoes in favor of shorts and bare feet, then run to the kitchen for a snack. On days when bake dough was in evidence, I could hardly wait to hear it hit the oil. I’d retire to the back garden to eat my hot puffy treasure in peace. Good times. 

In Trinidad, fry bakes are eaten with an assortment of other ingredients from plain butter and cheese to fried eggs, smoked herring or saltfish and tomatoes. Fry bakes are also one half of the classic shark and bake, essential to any beach day on the island. 

Trini Fry Bakes

I have adapted my recipe from several I’ve found on the internet, primarily Cooking with Ria and Triniinxisle. Some recipes use baking powder as the only rising agent and some either require yeast or list it as an optional ingredient. 

Ingredients
1/4 teaspoon instant yeast
3/4 cup or 180ml warm water
2 cups or 250g flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2-3 cups or 480-720ml canola or other light oil for frying

Method
Put the yeast in a small bowl with a pinch of sugar. Add a couple of tablespoons of the warm water and set aside to proof. The yeast should start to bubble up if it is active. 


In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder. Add the butter and use your fingertips or a pastry blender to work it into the flour mixture. 


While stirring with a wooden spoon or Danish whisk, slowly add water into the flour and mix until the dough starts to leave the bowl’s sides. You may not need quite all the water. 


Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface to knead for a few minutes. Or use a stand mixer instead of hand kneading. Knead the dough in the mixer for several minutes or until it starts to pull away from the sides.


Form the dough into a large ball in a bowl and cover the bowl with cling film or a plastic shower cap. Let it rest for a minimum of about 30 minutes. You can refrigerate for several hours or overnight. This helps to create a fluffier result.


When you are ready to fry the bakes, divide the dough into 8 small "golf" ball sized pieces. My dough weighed 498g so each ball weighed 62g.


On a lightly-floured surface, using your clean hands and/or a rolling pin to flatten the balls out into disks about 4x6 in or 10x15cm.


Pour oil into a medium sized pot on medium heat. For the most accurate judge of oil temperature, use a thermometer. Deep fry temperature is 380°F or 193°C.

I like to use as small a pot as will fit my bakes comfortably, one at a time, to minimize the amount of oil I have to use. I add just enough oil to reach my thermometer so I know that the temperature reading is accurate. 


When your oil reaches the correct temperature, put the bake in the hot oil. When it floats and turns golden on the bottom, quickly turn it over to brown the other side. This takes about 30-45 seconds on each side. I have seen recipes that shallow fry the dough but then how do you know when they float? My childhood experience is that the bakes were always deep fried. 


Using tongs or a slotted spoon, transfer the fry bakes to a paper towel-lined plate. This helps absorb the excess oil. 

If you aren’t serving these hot as they come out of the oil, you can put the plate in a warm oven. 

Food Lust People Love: Light and fluffy, Trini fry bakes are easy to make with just a few simple ingredients. They are one of my favorite snacks from my childhood years in Trinidad. Why they are called bakes when they are always deep fried, I cannot tell you. It remains a mystery to this day.

Enjoy! 

It’s the second Tuesday of the month so that means it’s time for my Bread Baker friends to share their recipes, Many thanks to our host today, Sneha of Sneha's Recipe who challenged us to make fry breads. Check out the links below:


#BreadBakers is a group of bread loving bakers who get together once a month to bake bread with a common ingredient or theme. Follow our Pinterest board right here. Links are also updated each month on this home page. We take turns hosting each month and choosing the theme/ingredient.


Pin these Trini Fry Bakes!

Food Lust People Love: Light and fluffy, Trini fry bakes are easy to make with just a few simple ingredients. They are one of my favorite snacks from my childhood years in Trinidad. Why they are called bakes when they are always deep fried, I cannot tell you. It remains a mystery to this day.

 .

Sunday, July 7, 2024

Sparkling Blueberry Cocktail

When it’s hot outside this sparkling blueberry cocktail made with lemon juice, flavored vodka and blueberry juice will cool you off and cheer you up!

Food Lust People Love: When it’s hot outside this sparkling blueberry cocktail made with lemon juice, flavored vodka and blueberry juice will cool you off and cheer you up!

One of my favorite things to do, especially in a new country or town, is to explore a local grocery store, going up and down each aisle so I don’t miss anything. Sometimes I find things I didn’t even know existed, like the blueberry juice I use for this cocktail. 

Sparkling Blueberry Cocktail

If you can’t find any store-bought, a simple Google search for homemade blueberry juice turned up pages and pages of recipes and videos. The lemon juice, blueberry juice and club soda should be chilled for the optimal cool drink.

Ingredients 
Ice cubes
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
2 oz or 60ml blueberry juice (store-bought or homemade)
1 1/2 oz or 44ml Absolut Wild Berri vodka
Club soda to top up glass

To garnish: lemon wedges and fresh blueberries

Method
Use a cocktail stick to skewer a few fresh blueberries. Pop it in a glass with 3-4 ice cubes along with the fresh lemon juice.


Measure in the flavored vodka then add in the blueberry juice.


Garnish with a lemon wedge and top up with club soda.


Enjoy! 

Did you know that it’s National Blueberry Month? Yeah, I didn’t either until our Sunday FunDay host chose blueberries for our theme today. Many thanks to Wendy of A Day in the Life on the Farm! Check out the blueberry recipes below. You've got the rest of the month to make them! 


 
We are a group of food bloggers who believe that Sunday should be a family fun day, so every Sunday we share recipes that will help you to enjoy your day. If you're a blogger interested in joining us, just visit our Facebook group and request to join.


Pin this Sparkling Blueberry Cocktail!

Food Lust People Love: When it’s hot outside this sparkling blueberry cocktail made with lemon juice, flavored vodka and blueberry juice will cool you off and cheer you up!

 .

Wednesday, July 3, 2024

Miso Butter Noodles

These Miso Butter Noodles are savory and rich, with crunchy snow peas and slivers of green onions. Add some shichimi togarashi for a little spiciness.

Food Lust People Love: These Miso Butter Noodles are savory and rich, with crunchy snow peas and slivers of green onions. Add some shichimi togarashi for a little spiciness.

Everyday my husband forwards me his email from New York Times Cooking with lots of great recipe links and meal ideas. I don’t read them every single day so sometimes I find myself catching up a week or more. 

A while back, there was a recipe for miso butter pasta which caught my eye. Goodness knows that there were plenty of times I ate plain buttered noodles growing up and the addition of miso would add a welcome savory hit for my now very adult palate.

I saved the recipe to my “recipe box” then promptly forgot about it. Then a couple of weeks ago, our daughter made miso butter chicken for dinner and it all came back to me. Miso butter noodles was again on the list. 

Miso Butter Noodles

The original NYT Cooking recipe used dried pasta and, in addition to the salty miso, Parmesan cheese. I decided to lighten mine up by adding the snow peas and green onions to fresh egg noodles and omit the Parmesan. Excellent decision. Makes about 4 servings.

Ingredients
2 green onions 
5 1/3 oz or 150g snow peas
1 lb 4 oz or 565g fresh egg noodles
1/3 cup or 75g butter
4 teaspoons miso
Generous couple of sprinkles shichimi togarashi or crushed red pepper

Optional for serving: Shichimi togarashi or crushed red pepper

Method
Slice the green onions (white and green parts) and snow peas into narrow strips.


Bring a large pan of salted water to boil, add the fresh noodles and cook them over medium-high heat for 1 minute.


Remove the noodles to a colander with tongs and rinse. 


Add the strips of snow peas to the pot. Cook for 1 minute then drain them, reserving 1 cup or 240ml of the cooking water. 


Rinse the snow peas in cool water to stop them cooking and set aside.


Add half of the reserved water into a saucepan, along with the butter and miso. 


Whisk over medium heat until the butter is melted and everything is combined into a homogeneous liquid.


Add the drained noodles into the pan. 


Use tongs to vigorously stir them over low-medium heat for a few minutes, until the liquid emulsifies and smoothly and evenly coats the noodles.


Add in most of the green onions, saving a few bits for garnish, and the parboiled snow peas strips. 


Stir them in and cook briefly until they are heated through. Sprinkle with shichimi togarashi or crushed red pepper and stir again.
 

If at any point the sauce gets too dry and the noodles stick together a bit, stir in a bit extra noodle water to make it smooth and glossy again.

Serve topped with the reserved green onions and some more shichimi togarashi or crushed red pepper, if desired.

Food Lust People Love: These Miso Butter Noodles are savory and rich, with crunchy snow peas and slivers of green onions. Add some shichimi togarashi for a little spiciness.

Enjoy! 

Welcome to the 14th addition to the 2024 Alphabet Challenge, brought to you by the letter N. Many thanks to Wendy from A Day in the Life on the Farm for organizing and creating the challenge. Check out all the N recipes below:

N. Miso Butter Noodles - this post!


Pin these Miso Butter Noodles!

Food Lust People Love: These Miso Butter Noodles are savory and rich, with crunchy snow peas and slivers of green onions. Add some shichimi togarashi for a little spiciness.

 .

Monday, June 24, 2024

Carrot Cake Muffins #MuffinMonday

These carrot cake muffins taste like our favorite carrot cake but are much simpler to make; the batter is whisked together with the muffin method. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. No electric mixer necessary! 

Food Lust People Love: These carrot cake muffins taste like our favorite carrot cake but are much simpler to make; the batter is whisked together with the muffin method. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. No electric mixer necessary!

Our younger daughter is visiting this month so since she won’t still be here when her big day rolls around, we are celebrating her birthday early. 

Her usual celebratory meal always includes a picanha (cap of the rump) roast and chicken hearts, both cooked over charcoal, black beans with smoked sausage, rice and molho which is a sort of pico de gallo.

And for dessert, she always asks for carrot cake! I’ve long wondered if I could convert our favorite carrot cake recipe to use the muffin method instead of the stand mixer. I am pleased to say, it works great.

Carrot Cake Muffins

The original cake recipe called for even more sugar to be beaten with the oil but for muffins, this amount was plenty sweet enough. This makes about 20 muffins.

Ingredients
16 oz or 450g carrots
2 cups or 250g flour
1 1/2 cups or 300g sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
3 teaspoons cinnamon 
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
1 cup or 240ml light cooking oil (like canola or sunflower)
2 eggs, at room temperature

Method
Peel and cut the very ends off of your carrots. Cut them in small pieces. Cover them with water in a medium sized pot and cook until very fork tender.  

Drain the water off and mash them with a potato masher until there aren’t any lumps. Transfer the mashed carrots to a bowl and set aside to cool.


Preheat your oven to 350°F or 180°C and prepare your muffin pans by greasing them or lining them with paper muffin cups.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt. 


In another bowl, whisk together the mashed carrots, oil and eggs. 


Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredient bowl and whisk again until well combined. 


Divide the batter between the cups in your prepared muffin pans. 


Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes or until a toothpick stuck in the middle comes out clean. 


Remove to a wire rack to cool. 

Enjoy! 

It’s the last Monday of the month which means it’s Muffin Monday, time for me and my fellow bakers to share our muffin recipes. Check them out below: 


#MuffinMonday is a group of muffin loving bakers who get together once a month to bake muffins. You can see all of our lovely muffins by following our Pinterest board. Updated links for all of our past events and more information about Muffin Monday can be found on our home page.


Pin these Carrot Cake Muffins!

Food Lust People Love: These carrot cake muffins taste like our favorite carrot cake but are much simpler to make; the batter is whisked together with the muffin method. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry. No electric mixer necessary!

 .

Sunday, June 23, 2024

Chinese Sausage Broccolini Fried Rice

This Chinese sausage broccolini fried rice is seasoned with onion, garlic and ginger, plus fresh chili peppers, for a lovely spicy explosion of flavor. This is one of our favorite meals! 

Food Lust People Love: This Chinese sausage broccolini fried rice is seasoned with onion, garlic and ginger, plus fresh chili peppers, for a lovely spicy explosion of flavor. This is one of our favorite meals!

Have you ever tried Chinese sausage aka lap cheong or xuong? Made with pork and pork fat and sometimes duck liver, it is normally smoked, sweetened, and seasoned with rice wine and soy sauce. 

You do have to peel the skin off before cooking but it's not hard to do. I love the way the flavorful fat renders out so I always start a stir-fry by cooking the sausage. That way I can stir-fry in it without adding extra oil. 

Chinese Sausage Broccolini Fried Rice

If you aren’t into spicy food, the chili peppers can be left out or reduced. They do add a lovely fresh heat though. 

Ingredients
4 Chinese sausage (lap cheong)
2 in or 5cm fresh ginger
1/2 medium onion
2 cloves garlic
2 red chili peppers, plus extra for garnish, if desired
7 oz or 200g broccolini aka tenderstem broccoli
3 cups or 375g day-old cooked rice
2-3 tablespoons lighter sodium soy sauce or more to taste
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 eggs, lightly beaten

For garnish: 1-2 green onions, green parts only, sliced 

Method
Remove the skins from the sausage and slice them at an angle. 


Peel the ginger, onion and garlic. Slice the peppers. Mince them all finely. Or, if you prefer, pop them all in a small food processor to mince. 


Trim the ends from the broccolini and cut the floret parts off and set them aside. Cut the stems into bite-sized pieces. 


In a wok or a large pan with plenty of room for all of your ingredients, fry the sliced sausage until browned. Tip the pan to the side to remove the sausage to a bowl, leaving behind the oil that came out of them. 


Add in the minced ginger, onion, garlic and peppers. Cook for a couple of minutes, stirring often. 


Add in the broccolini stems and cook till just tender but still crunchy.


Add in the rice and stir to combine well with the stems and seasonings. Cook for a couple of minutes or until the rice is heated through. 


Push the mixture to one side of your pan and add in the lightly beaten egg. I like to use long cooking chopsticks to stir them as they cook to create small curds. 


Once the eggs are cooked, combine them with the rest of the ingredients. Sprinkle on the soy sauce and sesame oil, tossing lightly to combine.


Add in the broccolini florets. Stir and toss for a couple of minutes then add the sausage back in. Stir and cook until the sausage is hot again and the florets are lightly cooked.


Taste the rice and add a little more soy sauce, if desired.

Serve topped with the green onions and sliced chili peppers, if using.

Food Lust People Love: This Chinese sausage broccolini fried rice is seasoned with onion, garlic and ginger, plus fresh chili peppers, for a lovely spicy explosion of flavor. This is one of our favorite meals!

Enjoy! 

It’s Sunday FunDay and today we are sharing quick stir-fries! Check out the tasty recipe links below: 


 
We are a group of food bloggers who believe that Sunday should be a family fun day, so every Sunday we share recipes that will help you to enjoy your day. If you're a blogger interested in joining us, just visit our Facebook group and request to join.



Pin this Chinese Sausage Broccolini Fried Rice!

Food Lust People Love: This Chinese sausage broccolini fried rice is seasoned with onion, garlic and ginger, plus fresh chili peppers, for a lovely spicy explosion of flavor. This is one of our favorite meals!

.

Wednesday, June 19, 2024

Fresh Mint Sauce

Sharp and bright, this fresh mint sauce is the perfect, classic accompaniment for roasted and grilled lamb. Make it at least one hour ahead of serving to allow the ingredients time to meld together.

Food Lust People Love: Sharp and bright, this fresh mint sauce is the perfect, classic accompaniment for roasted and grilled lamb. Make it at least one hour ahead of serving to allow the ingredients time to meld together..

I know it’s not eaten as commonly in the US as it is in the UK, but lamb is becoming more readily available, at least in Houston, and that is a good thing. It’s one of our favorite animal proteins.

If you live in the States, I can highly recommend the lamb chops that Costco stocks. They are tender and usually quite thick cut so they are great on a charcoal grill. If you live in the UK, Australia or New Zealand, you are spoiled for choice of lamb cuts and sources!

We recently spent a week in Wales and were in absolute lamb-y heaven. We even managed to source hogget (lamb 1-2 years old) from a well-stocked local butcher and salt march lamb, raised in the Gower on the southern coast from the farm shop

If your mint plants are anything like mine, they grow wild in the summer. Now is a fabulous time to make fresh mint sauce.  

Fresh Mint Sauce

My sprigs of mint weighed 125g. Strip the mint leaves from the stalks. Keep the leaves and discard the stalks. This recipe is adapted from one on Fuss Free Flavors.

Ingredients
1 cup, packed, or 54g fresh mint leaves
4 teaspoons sugar
3 tbsp boiling water
3 tbsp white wine vinegar
Good pinch fine sea salt

Method
Place the mint leaves on a chopping board. Spoon the sugar on top


Rock your very sharp knife back and forth through the mint to chop it. Push it into a pile again, and chop some more. 


Keep going until it is chopped very finely.


Transfer the mint and sugar mixture to a small bowl. Add the boiling water, and mix together, using a wooden spatula or spoon so you can pound the mint gently to soften it. 


Add the vinegar and the pinch of salt and mix together. 


Leave to stand for at least an hour to allow the flavors to meld. I tasted this immediately and thought, “Oh, no, this isn’t like the mint sauce I’m used to.” An hour later and it was much nicer than store-bought!

Serve alongside/on top of your favorite lamb roast or grilled lamb steaks or chops.

Food Lust People Love: Sharp and bright, this fresh mint sauce is the perfect, classic accompaniment for roasted and grilled lamb. Make it at least one hour ahead of serving to allow the ingredients time to meld together..

Enjoy! 

Welcome to the 13th addition to the 2024 Alphabet Challenge, brought to you by the letter M. Many thanks to Wendy from A Day in the Life on the Farm for organizing and creating the challenge. Check out all the M recipes below:


M. Fresh Mint Sauce - this post!


Pin this Fresh Mint Sauce!

Food Lust People Love: Sharp and bright, this fresh mint sauce is the perfect, classic accompaniment for roasted and grilled lamb. Make it at least one hour ahead of serving to allow the ingredients time to meld together..

 .