Our relationship with food and cooking has changed tremendously in the last ten or so decades, more so in the last few. Cooking was considered a skill, something you mastered after years of helping in the kitchen, working alongside the older women in your family. Cooking was primarily a female activity.
On the one hand it is a good thing that cooking is no longer the most important priority for young girls’ future, and that the words “How will you find a husband if you don’t know how to cook?” have slowly become a relic of times past, like corsets and wood stoves. After all, our worth as women and as humans should not be measured by our ability to please current or future husbands.
On the other hand, the loss of a necessary and important skill may have had dire consequences.
Oh joy! Right now I’m as happy as a dog with two tails: My favorite time of the year is here.
Despite what you may think, it isn’t the twinkly lights, the carols or even the food that make me so happy, it’s the weather. For the last few days it’s been so cool at night that I had to find a light quilt to sleep comfortably. You know what that means: It’s soup time chez Aunt Clara.
Let’s start all the soup-making with a new favorite: Fresh Shell Beans and Pork Sausage Spicy Stew
Instead of titling this “Easier Potato Tortilla (Omelette)” maybe we should have gone with “Guess who’s coming to dinner – Dominican style”.
My experiences of adjusting to Dominican customs and etiquette surrounding food and eating have become a theme – and possibly also a standing joke – of some of our articles here.
One such lesson that I learned the hard way is that no matter what, you never know how many people to expect when you ask people round to your house. There is no scientific way of anticipating or calculating this, because the possibilities, I came to realise, are random and infinite.
It’s been many years since I last cooked Locrio de Chicharrón de Cerdo (Rice and Pork Crackling), but it has always been a classic in my family. I ate it so many times at my paternal home, but I seldom cooked it myself. It’s time to change that.
Ate it I did, enjoyed it a lot too. Who raised by a Dominican mother didn’t? This dish, this meat, is part of our cultural DNA.
At home I am always searching for “the next great dish”, that one that we like so much it becomes part of our family tradition. There’s 99 reasons why turkey has never been in that category. To give you only two: Turkey is not a very juicy meat, and it doesn’t belong in either of our cultures (husband’s and mine).
These Breaded Turkey “Chops” with Guava Sauce may very well change all that.