Hibiscus Tea

 

20160727_132549Hibiscus tea is known by many names all around the world. The three names I’m most familiar with are Hibiscus, Bissap and Sorrel. Hibiscus is called Bissap in Senegal and it is known as Sorrel throughout the Caribbean.

I’m not a big fan of tea, especially in the summer when the temperatures are high. But when I discovered this cold brew recipe for Hibiscus tea, It became a mainstay in my fridge. Sweetened or unsweetened, it’s so refreshing and good for us too. I decided to include Hibiscus/Bissap/Sorrel Tea as a part of my Africa In Our Kitchen Spice Blends and Tea inventory.

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Association of African American Museums Conference

I’m so excited to share that Africa In Our Kitchen will be an on-site vendor at this year’s Association of African-American Museums Conference in Riverside, California.  The conference will be held at the Marriott Riverside Convention Center, 3400 Market St., August 3rd through the 5th.

I will introduce my new line of Africa In Our Kitchen Spice Blends and Tea. My hand mixed spice blends are used in many of the recipes posted on the Africa In Our Kitchen blog. I will also have available handcrafted baskets and tote bags imported from Senegal, west Africa.
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Meat Patties

Spicy meat patties are one of my favorite snack foods.  I like to make them small and serve as an appetizer.  While there are different versions through out the Caribbean islands, Jamaican beef patties are the best known around the United States and Canada. I use sofrito and adobo because they shorten the ingredient list and you have less veggies to chop.

Spicy Meat Patties Regular and Appetizer Size
Spicy Meat Patties
Regular and Appetizer Size

 

For more information and background on some of my favorite snacks click here http://africainourkitchen.com/?page_id=1096 to go the Snack section of the Africa In Our Kitchen website.

For the Recipe click on the “continue reading” link.

 

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SAVEUR Blog Awards

Please nominate Africa In Our Kitchen for the best new food blog category. I would love to have the conversation about foods of the African Diaspora receive more exposure.

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Hello everyone,

I hope you can find time in your busy day to help Africa In Our Kitchen get nominated for the Saveur Best Food Blog award. There are many different categories and you can choose whichever one or more you think is appropriate for me. I was encouraged by a friend to participate in this competition even though my blog/website is very new.  So I decided to go for it. Nomination ends July 18th, so please act soon.

You can read more about each category definition HERE.

You can nominate more than one time so have fun with it!

You can nominate HERE.

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Adobo

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Adobo is a basic dry seasoning mix that is a cornerstone in Latin American cuisine. Primarily consisting of salt, black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder, it can be purchased bottled in your International or Latin section of most grocery stores today.

My personal recipe incorporates dried oregano and dried parsley with no onion powder. When you make your own you can control the amount of salt you want to use. The Photo above shows the mixture available in “Africa in our Kitchen” gift baskets.

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Low Country Seafood Boil

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Low Country Boil cooked ingredients!
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Low Country Boil Ingredients

Summertime and the living is easy….  I was first introduced to a Low Country Boil when I visited my sister in Savannah, Georgia.  Low Country refers to the southern coastal region of the United States starting in the southernmost part of North Carolina and extending down to the northernmost coastal regions of Florida. It also includes the many islands off the coast of the U.S. which were home  to many enslaved Africans and their descendants. The culture that developed in this region is known as Gullah or Geechee.  Visit http://www.gullahgeecheecorridor.org to find out more about the Gullah/Geechee culture.

Low country seafood boil is a simple meal, consisting of fresh seafood, corn on the cob, smoked, spicy sausage of your choice, and potatoes. The spicing of the boiling liquid determines just how successful the meal will be.

My cousin shared a photo and caption describing how she and her family enjoy their summer, Sunday meals. She has allowed me to share this with you.  I hope this post will inspire you to try this fun, one pot dish sometime soon.

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Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Figs and Goat Cheese

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I recently relocated from south Florida back to Chicago, so I haven’t posted for a while.  To continue with my Moroccan/Mediterranean meal, following is the recipe for the second entree, roasted sweet potatoes with figs and goat cheese.

 “Jerusalem: A Cookbook”* is the source for this recipe. A collaboration between two chefs, one Jewish and the other Palestinian, living in London. There they discovered their parallel histories (they were both born and raised in Jerusalem); became close friends and then business partners.

Through this cookbook I was introduced to a Jerusalem to which I’d not been exposed. The authors describe Jerusalem as, “A city rich with four thousand years of history, that has changed hands endlessly.  A city of such diversity that it puts the old tower of Babylon to shame.”

If you enjoy Middle Eastern food, I hope you’ll add this cookbook to your collection. It’s a wonderful read with great photos and historical background. The recipes taste great too!

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A Moroccan/Mediterranean Inspired Meal

 

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Moroccan Chicken, Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Figs, and a salad of Water Melon, Arugula, Israeli couscous and Feta

For a recent birthday, a dear friend sent me a cookbook entitled ” Mourad, New Moroccan”. She knows how much I enjoy reading cookbooks and I highly recommend this for the history and background on Moroccan cuisine. Mourad provides recipes for traditional spice blends and instructions for preserving your own lemons, a key ingredient in Moroccan dishes. If you’re not into making your own spice blends and preserved lemons, you can purchase these items. I’ve included sources at the end of the recipe.

My friend and I had the pleasure of traveling to Morocco several years ago. The food was outstanding and the cookbook inspired me to plan a menu based on north African and Mediterranean flavors for friends recently. I’ve included a couple photos from that trip.

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Traditional tea service, Marrakesh, Morocco
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Tagine service, Marrakesh, Morocco

 

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