I decided to make 'Curry & Nutmeg' my first taste of the Caribbean Essence gift basket I received very recently. In the south and probably most anywhere we love our greens. My clients son heard me talking about it, and since he likes me to teach him new things...dinner plans were made.
One of my cafe staff a few years ago turned me onto 'Curried' greens, and already having a taste for Indian cuisine...it took off from there...she talked about making friends from the Islands, and how they liked their spice. Her family was originally from the south, so we be jammin' together in the kitchen to John Legend (sorry Bob)...she liked her grits and greens...this is for you Imani... 'Curried Polenta Cakes' and greens are always on my menu, so I thought I would step it up with an addition of Hoecakes or otherwise known as a pancake version of Johnny Cakes and both were sugar free (to expensive back then). Johnny Cakes originated as a flat bread cooked to keep while on long journeys and was popular with pioneers.
Hoecakes came about after that period, because field hands often cooked it on a shovel or a hoe held to an open flame. Hoes designed for cotton fields were large and flat with a hole for the long handle to slide through. The blade would be removed and placed over a fire much like a griddle.
The nutmeg added a new depth to the cornmeal style flapjacks, and I finally got to use my microplane I bought on my last trip (watch those fingers)...my little helper, Rahi and I just slapped some greens right on top one of those 'jacks and ate it all together! He says he liked the new pancakes and the history lesson...
"I experiment with Flavors"...
Elizabeth Stelling, hails from her home state of Texas and has been involved in the food industry via institutional, fast food, B&B's, ethnic eateries and other restaurants since she was fourteen. Now living n New Jersey she has ran her own cafe, teaches culinary classes, runs a small boutique catering and staffing business, restaurant consulting for NJWBO, is a personal chef and shares her love of cooking with local, organic, healthy, and natural ingredients with the community.
Chef E is a member of Slow Food and the American Wine Society, Princeton, New Jersey. She has published written works of poetry and media pieces, as well as ran Open Mics in the Princeton, NJ area.
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