I do not intend this blog to focus on food, but it is a huge part of me, so inevitably it will come up from time to time 😌. Lately, cooking also helps carry me through studying and the pressure that comes with it. This environment breeds creativity.
My grandmother and I spoke a few days ago and she told me about the preservation methods that her family used for food while living in the islands. I was astonished that in the heat of the Caribbean, meat could be kept preserved for a long time by using pimento spice. It seemed to be a type of drying or salting method of meat preservation. After we spoke, I wondered how pimento alone kept the meat preserved, so I later looked up the word (which I commonly associate to pepper) and remembered that it has two meanings – red sweet pepper and allspice from the Caribbean and Central America. My grandmother referred to the allspice variation of pimento, which has been traditionally used for food preservation. This is something I definitely want to add to my cooking soon.
In the meantime, I’ve been experimenting with variations on tabbouleh. I made a basic recipe with parsley, mild cheese, tomato, vidalia onion, cucumber, olive oil, salt, a bit of balsamic, mediterranean sea salt blend, and jasmine rice rather than quinoa or couscous or wild rice. I was reluctant to use rice though it turned out well! The main thing is to dice everything up to about the same size and simply use the amount of ingredients that you want to have left over for the week.
My other new food item is arugula – i’ve been adding it to sandwiches for lunch and pasta sauce as well. It is bitter though its earthiness helps lighten the flavor of rich foods. I recently added it to a pasta dish while cooking with fresh pasta (a first for me).