Sweet Potato Shepherd’s pie

IMG_6411I was brought up on sweet potato, so it has been a staple in my diet from the beginning, I have to say it’s good to see it taking off in such a big way here  in Ireland. This one is so good and all I did was use what ever I had available in my kitchen. I’m actually so proud of how it came out and I hope you like it to where ever you are.

Serves  4

Ingredients

1 tsp paprika
1 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cayenne powder
1 tsp tandoori spice mix (optional)
1 tsp of The Caribbean Dub’s Hot pepper sauce ( optional)
400g turkey mince
1 cougette diced
1 small onion diced
1 large carrot diced
1 tsp cococnut oil
100g petit pois peas
1 large sweet potato peeled and diced.
450 grams of chicken stock

Method

First we do our prep. Preheat an oven at 175 c. Put the sweet potato in a pot of boiling waterseason with a little salt ( you could actually do this hours before).

In a pan add 3/4 tsp of oil add the turkey mince, cook until there is no pinkness and remove.

In the same pan add the all spices to the rest of the oil. Make sure to keep the heat on medium. Add the onion, carrots, petit pois and Courgette and sweat for a few minutes. If your pan is starting to dry out simply add water.

Add the stock and cook for another few minutes, take off the heat and place in a baking dish.

When the sweet potato is cooked drain off the water and mash the potato. Season with salt and pepper and spread the mashed potato over a the turkey mix.

Place in the oven and cook for 25/30 minutes.

For extra crispiness I place under the grill for 5 minutes then serve.

Hope you enjoy this one as it was all me!!

Thanks for reading TCDub xxx

Papaya, Pawpaw or Pupaw

IMG_4943For me growing up in the Caribbean gave me the opportunity to pick a lot of fruits that I am now forking out a fortune for. My mam had a Papaya  tree in the garden and that was among one of my favourite fruits. Me and my brothers would collect almonds ourselves. Weirdly I can’t remember what my favourite sweet would’ve been at that time but I can list about 10 fruits. I guess it’s a cultural thing. Even now I would eat a fresh mango over any sweet.

This was one of my favourite fruits growing up. It’s a tropical fruits and for a while there I actually thought that I didn’t like it as the quality we were getting in Tesco’s was so bad. It was half the size of the ones I remembered and it was what we would call force ripe in Montserrat (picked when the fruit was too young).

I found a little shop just off the Ilac I think the owner is Pakistani well his cricket banter points in that direction. They do the nicest Papayas so sweet. Why am I taking about this fruit.. Well it’s good for you!

The papaya is a melon like fruit with yellow-orange flesh enclosed in a thin skin that varies in color from green to orange to rose. You could actually cook the green papayas in soups and such but that’s another story. Papayas are a rich source of vitamin A and C. One half of a small papaya can provide 150% of the recommended daily dietary intake of Vitamin C. It is low in calories, fat-free, cholesterol free, and a good source of potassium, folate, and fibre.

So next time you having a fruit salad why not add a little something from the tropics.

See you tomorrow! Thanks for reading TCDud xxx

 

Chilli beef stacks

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Sometimes I get such a craving for chilli. It’s literally up there with one of my all time favourite meals. I like to mix it up with what I have it with so I could end up having it with brown rice, baked potato, chips, sweet potato but there is always a salad always. Here’s a recipe that I sort of put together myself.

Serves  4 

Recipe

1 tin of kidney beans in chilli

1 tin of chopped tomato

1 large sweet potato (sliced in to 1 cm circles)

1 brown onion (finely diced)

1 tablespoon of coconut oil

1 or 2 avocados ( sliced)

1 lime (cut into wedges of 4)

400 gram lean minced beef

1 red chilli peppers (sliced)

1 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp cayenne pepper

Salt and pepper to taste

Makings of a garden salad (cucumber, lettuce, tomato, scallions)

1 tsp TheCaribbeandub’s hot sauce optional (will be available to buy soon)

Method

In a preheated oven add the sliced sweet potato with 1/2 tbsp of coconut oil, salt, pepper and roast  at 180 c  for 25 mins. Make sure to turn half way through.

In a pan melt the remaining coconut oil, add the spices and gentle fry for a 2/3 minutes.

Add the diced onion and cook for a further  1 minute.

Add the beef and cook until brown.

Stir in the chopped tomato and  kidney beans. Now would be the time to add the Hot sauce if you dare.

Let this simmer for 15 mins or until the sauce has thickened.

Prepare the salad adding the diced avocado, lime and  chilli to the mix,

Plate up and enjoy.

Thanks for reading xxx

TheCaribbeandub.

 

 

 

 

Cauliflower Rice

 

Cauliflower Rice

Having tried the Paleo diet and loved it for the most part there were a few things that have remained in my  diet, This cauliflower rice is so tasty and absolutely delicious. Sometime I have it on its own with my curry etc or sometimes I blend it with the carbs for example rice.

I added the recipe for this on my instagram page (@TheCaribbeanDub ) have a look it’s the easiest dish I’ve ever made.

Here’s a simple Chicken Curry to accompany it with.

Serves 4

Ingredients

4 chicken fillets diced

1 onion

1 scotch bonnet chilli

5 mushrooms (or more)

200 grams butternut squash sliced into small cubes

1 tablespoon of curry power (more if you want)

1 tsp coconut oil

4 pimento seeds crush ( optional)

1 can of coconut milk

1 tsp grated ginger

3 cloves of garlic crush

100g diced tomato

Method

In a wok I added the chicken and cooked until white.

Remove chicken and add All the spices and vegetables.

Cook for about 5 minute. If the pot gets a bit dry add some water, you shouldn’t need more oil.

It’s now time to add the chicken again.

Pour the coconut milk in and simmer for about 30 minute.

Plate up and enjoy,

Thanks for reading TCDubxxx

 

Caribbean Baked Chicken

I love me some IMG_6549chicken.. and I love me some southern fried chicken but I have vowed never to get a deep fat fryer and I hate the smell of oil after deep-frying. So I had to dig deep to get this one right, yes took a couple of goes and many a guinea pig to test it out but it was worth all the pain and suffering in the end my friends. It is also kind of healthy I did say kind of! Here’s the perfect cheat recipe for y’all.

Serves 4

Ingredients

1 pack of mixed chicken pieces (you could use even a pack of chicken wings or drumsticks )

or

1 whole chicken cut into pieces

1 teaspoon paprika

1 teaspoon of ground chilli (optional)

1/2 cayenne pepper

1/2 teaspoon white pepper

3 tablespoon of butter / margarine (you could go as light as you wish)

1 lemon

1 egg

salt / pepper to taste

1 1/2 cups of flour

1 teaspoon of Caribbeanbeandub’s hot  pepper sauce (if your like me then you’ll probably use more than that)

Method

Before we talk about seasoning and marinade anything you need wash your chicken with your lemon. Cut it into wedges and literally rub all over the skin .

Place you chicken pieces in a bowl I would try to do this at least four hours before your about to cook them.  Add the chilli, cayenne pepper,  white pepper, paprika, salt and pepper.

With you finger mix it all together making sure that all the chicken pieces are coated.

Cover and Place in the fridge for a couple of hours for better results overnight would be perfect.

…….Finally!

Pour your flour onto a plate or large bowl, in another bowl beat an egg and add  hot sauce.

Sometimes I even put a bit of black pepper in the flour.

Turn your oven on  the highest it can go  mine is 250 c

Place a large baking tray with I’d say 2 generous  tablespoons of  butter and put it in the oven to melt.

Dip you chicken into the egg mix then press it  into the flour. Repeat until everything is coated.

When the butter is melted and the  oven is really hot carefully place your chicken into the tray.

Mine usually takes about  45 -60 minutes make sure to turn it after about 20 minutes.

I guarantee you will be surprised at how good this taste. Don’t forget to tag TheCaribbeanDub  I do love a bit of food porn!

Thanks for reading TCDub xxx

An Unlikely Duchess

20140704-181744-65864055.jpgI am a romantic. Plain and simple. I guess it’s programmed into me after reading so many Happily ever after stories. I don’t know , I can’t help it. I was obsessed with Carrie’s and Mr Big. My Ideal man is the rather dashing Mr Darcy.Maybe that’s why I’m as single as a bag of chips! Anyway to keep this post from sounding like an AD from Plenty of Fish, I think I should stay on point here. Nadine Millard I met you at my Godson’s birthday party last year and  I found you absolutely hilarious to say the least.You know why? Little did I know that a few months later I would be on a beach in Barbados reading a book that you’ve written. Makes me smile just thinking about it.

An unlikely Duchess is addictive to say the least.  It is a Regency romance drama (think Pride and Prejudice). Did I say this is Nadine’s very first novel. I couldn’t put it down.  Anyway back to the book I ‘ll give you a quick run down and try not to give too much away. Edward the Duke of Harttridge is coerced by his mother to accompany her to visit her late husband’s best friend and his wife  (The earl of Ranford)  in Ireland. Little did he know that his deceased father and the Earl of Ranford made an agreement that there first-born daughter (Caroline) and Son (Edward) should be betrothed to each other. Having quickly realised this, Edward objects strongly to this and prepares to return to London. He subsequently meets lady Rebecca the Earls the tomboy fouled mouth youngest daughter and this is where it gets interested.

Nadine paints hilarious picture of how these two enter an  unlikely romance. I couldn’t help but root for them. When your surrounded by Facebook,  Instagram,  Twitter,  etc. It’s nice to taken back to a time when to be alone with a boyo is a big no no. And every meeting is chaperoned so you can actually get to know each other. I liked this book and think its a perfect escape. Nadine a big to salute to you girl. You actually made a show of me laughing to myself on a plane while reading this. Great first effort and I’m hand on my heart looking forward to what happens with Caroline in the next book. Hurry up already!!

Thanks for Reading

TCDub xx

Paradise Lost

20140625-162018-58818267.jpgI remember waiting for a bus as a kid in Cork Hill, Montserrat and a Jehovah witness handing me a leaflet with a poem called Paradise Lost. I can’t remember the actual poem but the title always stayed with me.

Little did I know that it was going to play such a big role in my life. Montserrat the little island in the Caribbean was paradise to me. It’s that kind of place that my brothers and I used to go off fishing for crayfish in the river, picking mangoes, collecting almonds and literally acting like we were Huckleberry Finn. So many adventures. Life wasn’t easy but thankfully I had a vivid imagination that came from a love of books inherited from my mam. My Aunty Rose and Godmother Lola kept me grounded and faithful. And even as a child I learned to be happy with the things that mam couldn’t afford to buy us. The beach, the fruit trees, music,family, being outdoors, sunshine and of course laughter . Essential backdrops for mischief.

We moved to Ireland as I was turning 11 and I think if I’m honest it was a difficult adjustment to me. I was excited and lost and I think it’s only really the last 5 years that I’ve started really feeling comfortable in my own skin as such.

I remember seeing Donnycarney for the first time. May 7th 1995 we arrived and I had no concept of what a terraced house was so I thought the whole block was my house ha. It seemed like I was 10 going onto 7 as the kids around me seemed so street wise. One of my friends saw me for the first time skipping to school in the rain. I probably looked like a weirdo but hey she’s still one of my besties xx.

There’s only two times in my life when I’ve looked at the news and thought this can’t be true one is 9/11 and the other was two months after I arrived in Ireland. My whole family sitting down tears dripping down my face. Watching sky news like it was a movie, a mountain. smoke , wait; that looks like…. The caption reads volcano erupts in small Caribbean Island. My mother numb, everyone speaking at once. The phone calls. Has anybody died that we know. Phonecalls about ash. “Does this mean we can never return home”.

We’re lucky to have left when we did. Me thinking I don’t feel lucky. Only half of the Island gone. Only?It’s a modern-day Pompeii. Should this make me feel better? It’s crazy I had such a chip on my shoulder. Hi Santis I heard your from the Caribbean tell us about it my teacher said.? No! Classmate can you talk like Cool running? No! I’m nobody’s fucking clown. New memory’s are built as the years go by.

I returned to Montserrat everything is smaller. I wanted to show my boyfriend at the time everything. But I couldn’t. We weren’t allowed to enter. Danger zone. This is real. I can’t deal with it. I’m never coming back. It’s smaller, people I grew up with evacuated to America, other Caribbean islands, Uk. Scattered. Wtf.

Present day me
I’m a Montserration who grew up in Dublin. I’m blessed. My memories are sacred. The circle of life is a beautiful but rocky terrain. The innocence of my childhood, the move, the volcano has all helped to sculpt me into who I am today. It took 20 years for me to feel realise, if you can’t change it then learn to appreciate it.

Dedicated to..all the people who have died at the hands of the eruption. To my family and friends wherever you are I love you. To the 2nd generation of Caribbean Dubs Annalise, Elijah and Noah. To anyone who has relocated and have felt lost,confused and alien. Smile and somebody will smile back.

Thanks for reading TCDub xx

Zaragoza

20140618-104439-38679420.jpgWell where do I start. I love Tapas when I’m in Spain and there are some Spanish restaurants here in Dublin that are doing it right. So when it was suggested that we head for a bite in Zaragoza I was curious. Yes it was a name I associated with a Spanish football team so I got that part. But with so many restaurants now throwing out the name Tapas like it’s a  new buzz word I was sceptical.
And I believe there are some that are using it as another way of dragging  more money out of our already worn pockets. I will name no names, small portions big prices.

Anyway upon entering Zaragoza I thought the interior looked a little modern for what I would usually associate with a traditional Spanish restaurant and I was ready to be disappointed. How wrong was I. Although it was quite spacious,  the two lads on the guitars had me already tapping my feet with their Spanish twist on already popular songs. I loved it .The atmosphere was set.

It was good to see I wasn’t the only one buzzing from my three cocktails on an empty stomach (Thanks to The Vintage Cocktail Club). There was a definite buzz in the place. I’m going to have to bullet point what we had because it was quiet a bit.

 

It all started it with

  • Bread of course,
  • Again then it was bread with  green olive tapenade,
  • Gambas al ajillo- prawn in chilli and garlic oil
  • Brochetas de rape- monkfish & smoked bacon skewers
  • mini pig burger
  • 5oz striploin steak  with pink peppercorn sauce
  • Chicken  wings x2
  • chips

 

By the way there was three of us. The portions are generous and although it was suggested that we chose two dishes each we struggled. There was still a bowl of wings left when we were leaving , which I’m yearning for now. My favourite was the monkfish and the Chicken wings weirdly enough ha ha. But  believe me it was a hard pick. Actually I have to tell you about the wings,  three words sweet, tangy and crispy. I love a good sauce me.

20140618-102639-37599403.jpg                   Olive Tapenade, steak, Prawns

 

Overall verdict…

The staff made it for me  because lets face it, the service is just as important to me as the food. I love a bit of banter and the waitresses were full of it. Friendly but not too  in your face.  Perfect Saturday night service. I thought the food was tasty, I love Tapas as I’m a picker. The value for money was  very fair, it all came to €40 ahead including wine. I asked the girls what they thought of the place in one word. There replies were yum and mixed crowd mine was fresh. Says it all really.

Thanks for reading  TCDub xx

 

#Bringbackourgirls

20140507-154206.jpgMy baby sister is eleven years old,

She’s smart, opinionated. crazy, goofy.

A lover of hugs.

I remind her constantly that I love her.

She changes her mind every week about what she wants to be,

that’s alright and I tell her that.

My whole family try to keep her grounded.

Let her be young and innocent.

She has her whole life to be a grown up.

 

Now imagine this  more than 230 girls are kidnapped,

from their school.

From the ages of 12 to 15.

Taken to be sold .

Why? Well because they were at school of course.

God told the kidnappers to do this.

Their families helpless.

The world looks on. It’s sad but it’s so far away,

We all look on helpless.

 

More than 230 baby sisters, older sisters, daughters, girls.

GIRLS!!

Their world torn apart.

 

If that happened in my sister’s school,

Would anyone notice?

Stupid question. Right?

Imagine how helpless these parents feel?

When the government half heartedly searches for more than 230 girls.

How does this make you feel?

This is not normal! We shouldn’t be numb to this!

We can’t be numb to this. I’m not numb to this!

Are you?

Social media can be used so positively, the hash tag  #bringbackourgirls has been used over

1 million times and is still rapidly growing as people become more aware of the situation in  Nigeria. Increasing pressure on

not only the Nigerian government but governments all over the world to play an active  part in finding and bringing home the girls.

#Bringbackourgirls

Thanks for reading

TCDub

 

 

 

 

 

Pasta and Fish

This one is quick , fresh and tasty if I do say so myself.

I haven’t cooked fish for a bit so thought after my recent visit to Kinsale I’d to get cooking.

Ingredients
Fish fillets any fish will do
Veg ( mushroom, tomatoes, onion, peppers)
Fresh Pesto ( got mine in Aldi)
Tiny bit of olive oil
Fresh Pasta ( once again I got mine in Aldi)

To start sauté the veg in a drop of olive oil.
The veg I used was what I had in my fridge but you could add courgettes or even asparagus. When these are cooked stir in the pesto.

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Heat a frying pan and add a little oil when the pan is hot place your seasoned fish ( salt and pepper) skin down.

In the mean time put your pasta in a pot of boiling water with a pinch of salt. Pasta should only take around 4 minutes max to cook. Stir your drained pasta into veg.

Your fish should be crisping up nicely. This literally takes a few minutes. Turn and when fish is done. Eat with Pasta and enjoy.

Prep time 10mins

Cooking time 10 mins

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