Party Foods

Baked Vegan Kibbeh

A few weeks ago I was trying my recipe for baked kipes (baked kibbeh) and had my yoga friends and Ilana's son try them. The reviews couldn't have been better. Unfortunately Ilana couldn't try it (she follows a meatless diet), and I had just one bite (I prefer not to eat meat, but taste some ...

Baked Kipe (Kibbeh)

Nearly two centuries ago a wave of immigrants from the former Ottoman Empire found its way to America (the continent), fleeing persecution and economic hardship. With them they brought bits and pieces of the rich cuisines from a territory that surrounded most of the Mediterranean, and the Red and Black seas. Kipe / quipe, as we Dominicans ...

Kale, spinach and sweet corn savory cornbread

Have I told you about my newest obsession? No? Well, since you insist... For the last few months a group of friends and I meet in our terrace to do "power yoga" with a friend trainer. This is not my first time, nor is it for the other participants, but in my case the last time I ...

Vegan "meatballs" with spicy eggplants dip

If you are a meat lover, please dont tune out yet. Just because you love your meat doesn't mean that you can't enjoy a good, clean, vegan dish. Sometimes, even the sturdiest of systems needs a reset. And for those occasions, or to serve to your vegetarian and vegan friends, I have just the dish: Vegan ...

Cassava bread (casabe)

If you don't know what casabe (cassava bread) is, Aunt Ilana wrote a fantastic article that explains it all. You'd be well-served to read it. If you know what casabe is, you are probably asking yourself why I have to write a recipe for it. After all, Dominicans don't make casabe at home. We just walk ...

Salmon tartine with avocado mayo

This smoked salmon and avocado mayo canape it's a lot like our family. I know that a great deal of our readers belong to bicultural or multicultural families. And anyone of them could tell you that this is not always an easy life, but it's never boring. A successful multicultural family almost certainly require people with open ...

Baked potato croquettes

I have long had this idea on my mind of writing a post about the process of  writing a post for our blog: "How the sausage is made", metaphorically speaking. From the outside it may seem like a simple process, but it is not. From concept to publishing it may be a few days, it may ...

Avocado vegan mayo

Ever since this site was started I have been posting vegetarian and vegan recipes, including a pretty decent vegan version of our sancocho (which was lost in the moving process but I am planning to revisit it). There is a reason for this recipe for avocado vegan mayo being here: For more of half my life ...

Creamy caper dip

Finger foods and dips go together like... like, er, two things that go together. Ahem. Today I am kinda blocked, so please bear with me. I have received many an email asking for recipes for sauces and dips that go with fried finger foods, you know, like yuca and batata fries, croquettes, etc. So, I am ...

Bollitos de yuca (Cheese-filled cassava)

Locavores are those who are part of a global movement that proposes the consumption of locally-grown food. It's a movement fueled by concerns about the environment and the nutritional quality of food that has travelled from afar, and subjected to diverse methods of preservation. As with anything, there are several sides to this argument. As with any non-centralized movement, ...

Mini-tart shells

In an a recent interview for a magazine I was posed a question: "Where do you get your recipes?". I'm not going to reproduce my answer (the interview hasn't been published yet), but this recipe is perfect for exploring some of it. Inspiration sometimes comes from odd places. But let me mention that these mini-tart shells (tarticos in the DR) are a ...

Empanaditas de yuca o catibías (Cassava pasties)

It was love at first sight with Mr. Queso de Hoja, the cheese vendor, whose, uh, balls of cheese were always the freshest… Oh, how I miss the street vendors. All vendors really, but in particular, and in no small part due to their multitude, the food vendors, of course. The travelling hair accessories guy is ...

Guanimos (Corn pockets)

Am I ever glad that I have never called myself an expert on anything. Especially not an expert on Dominican food. Every time I learn something about food in general, or Dominican food in particular, I'm justly reminded that there is much to learn, and with things changing all the time one never finishes learning. This ...

Green bananas garlic and shrimps cups

I think we should get a slogan, and if we do I have just the perfect one: Keeping spouses happy since 2001! Some of our favorite comments and emails from our readers tell us how proud they were to surprise their spouse with some delicious Dominican food. It's not only wives, but husbands, too. It really ...

Empanadas de cerdo y manzana (pork and apple pasties)

'Tis the season. For this challenge our sponsor Holland House chose a theme that had me scratching my head and wondering how I was going to meet it: A light Thanksgiving dish with at least a hint of Dominican flavors. I have to say that it took me much longer to come up with something than it took me to actually ...

Triples (Triple-layered mini-sandwich)

I love, love these delicious triples (triple-layered mini-sandwiches). They are perfect for parties and get-togethers. I'm sure I'm not alone when I say that entertaining can sometimes be a stressing proposition: picking the right dishes, food preparation, hiring a brass band... OK, forget about that last one. But having guests over need not be a big production. One thing ...

Cheese-crusted ripe plantain balls recipe

Welcome to my latest obsession: ripe plantains and finger food. Of all my obsessions this is probably the least insane one. I am sure you agree. Please say you do and I'll share with you the recipe for these incredible cheese-crusted ripe plantain balls filled with melted cheese. The greatest thing about cooking is that it satisfies ...

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It is said, not completely groundlessly, that New York City is the second biggest Dominican city. When it comes to our sites, we have more readers in New York than in any other city in the world. Watching Hurricane Irene head for New York filled us with the same sense of dread as the news that ...

Quipes or Kipes (Deep fried bulgur roll)

We're not from round here. Kipe is the proof. One of the things that marvels me about America, the continent, is that for the most part we are all young nations, some more stable and prosperous than others, but we all have one thing in common: short memory. This is well illustrated in Dominican society as ...

Croquetas de pollo (Chicken croquettes)

Regardless of the origin of this dish it has been adopted by Dominicans as another often-found dish in our picadera platter. There are many variations of this dish depending on which ingredients you are using. Here we present you with the most common one in the Dominican Rep. and give you suggestions on what other variations ...

Batata y yuca fritas (Fried sweet potato and cassava)

If you are looking to two foods that speak of the history of Dominican food it has to be cassava and sweet potatoes. Both were part of the Taino diet, long before a European ever set food in this side of the planet. It is our luck that this roots, who grow easily in our ...

Pan con aguacate (Avocado-stuffed bread)

Avocado sandwiches or pan con aguacate are a typically Dominican snack. The classic version is made with a pan de agua (the ubiquitous Dominican bread roll) sliced in half and filled with scoops or slices of avocado. There are varying schools of thought: some mash the avocado onto the bread with a fork, others leave ...

Chicharrón de pollo (Deep-fried chicken)

Santo Domingo has it all, some would say. Drive around the newer parts of the city, and they are all there, those familiar blots on the landscape of every modern city in the world. When I first arrived in the country over eight years ago, there were very few international fast food chains in evidence, ...

Chimichurri (Dominican hamburger)

Some time ago I made the distinction between the art and science of different types of food preparation. My basic premise was that cooking was more of an art, whereas baking is more of a science, with certain exceptions to that rule. Something we frequently mention in passing, but have not tackled in depth, is ...

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If you read our book, or browse through our blog, you'll notice that many a time we credit a friend, a reader, a friend's grandmother, or a stranger we gave a ride home in an isolated area of the country for a recipe. As is the case with these arañitas and arepitas de yuca (cassava fritters). While ...

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Julia Alvarez, a Dominican and one of my favourite writers, once wrote that as a child in Santo Domingo the first thing anyone would ask when she or one of her sisters complained of a stomach-ache, was 'did you eat anything in the street?'* Dominican street food has a bad image. As it's often unhygienic and sometimes unhealthy, ...

Niño envuelto (Rice cake wrapped in cabbage leaf)

School is about to start, and children everywhere are going to be asked to speak or write about what they did on their holidays. Why should I be any exception? The difference is that I'm not going to go on at length about what I did, but what I learned. I spent the first couple of weeks ...

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Someone gave me a deep fat-fryer about a month ago and it sat in my kitchen, ignored, until just last week. I was having such a hard time with the notion of sinking foods into so much hot sizzling oil, tightly contained in a bin-like receptacle plugged into the wall. And my arteries collapsing under ...

Pasteles en hoja (Ground-roots pockets)

Pasteles en hoja are made with many ingredients that, although common in the Dominican Republic, might be hard to come across in your own country. Plan this recipe ahead to give yourself time to hunt down all the necessary ingredients it will be worth it. If you find it impossible to get the banana tree leaves, ...

Yaniqueques (Fried crunchy tortillas)

What is a yaniqueque, and where did it come from? You know what? there seems to be a lot of theories and quite the disagreement. One popular theory is that it came from the British West Indies and it is a corruption of the name Johnny Cakes, a dish with which it shares very little in ...

Empanaditas / Pastelitos (Savory turnovers)

A party’s not a party without a picadera – I may or may not have that printed on a t-shirt. Seriously. My experience with picadera in the DR is that you have to be pretty forceful to get any. If it’s a table laid out with food, you want to elbow your way in there, because, ...