Salads

Carambola (Star Fruit) and Serrano Ham Salad

As a denizen of this little tropical corner of the world, I am very spoiled when it comes to fruits. We have the juiciest, sweetest mangoes, delectable and fragrant papayas, blissfully sweet watermelons, and... well, it's too long a list to mention. We are also in the unique position to grow fruits that don't normally grow ...

Potato with yogurt dressing and happy New Year!

If you've been paying any attention -- and frankly, why would you? -- you'll have noticed that I've taken a short hiatus from blogging and social media. I want to reassure my many (as many as two) fans that I'm not going anywhere. I just needed a break. I haven't taken a real vacation in a ...

Papaya and tofu salad

To those of us who love playing with food, when life gives us lemons we make pies, cakes, and yes, lemonade. And when we pick a papaya that looks like a prizewinner to make the world's best batida de lechoza, and it turns out to be a disappointment, well, we make tofu and papaya salad. Papaya ...

Watermelon summer salad

We change our eating habits significantly during the summer. That's what happens when you live in the tropics. I am always looking for cooling dishes and dishes that don't require long cooking. We loved this watermelon summer salad. I served it for dunch the other day and we practically licked the bowl clean. - "Wait... 'dunch?!'" Dunch ...

Potato, chicken and kale summer salad

For the last few weeks I have been repeating how mild this year's temperature have been. Sure half the world was plunked into one of the coldest winters of late, but for us living in the tropics that was such a nice respite from our usual curse: heat. I should have kept my mouth shut. The last ...

Chickpea and zucchini blossom salad

I loved this chickpea and zucchini blossom salad. Few of these are ingredients traditionally used in traditional Dominican cuisine, but you know what I love the most about it? I grew almost everything that went into it. Yep, I did. Nothing tastes as good as freshly-picked vegetables that you grow yourself. I have been obsessed with growing ...

Couscous and dry tomatoes tabouleh

We Dominicans  love rice, looove it! Some even feel like a lunch isn't complete without a serving of the grain. Corn and bulgur make an appearance in our cuisine as rice substitutes. But those are not dishes that are served frequently. I have to be honest, I love rice, but it would bore me to tears ...

Cold zucchini noodles

I mentioned this dish to somebody a long time ago, I finally got around to writing a recipe. Not a strange occurrence with me: I am the Queen of Procrastination. But let's not talk about that. Let's talk about this delicious dish, half salad, half cold dish, and one of my go-to foods when I crave ...

Pasta and avocado salad

I love avocados. It's in my blood. I am not saying there isn't one out there, but I have yet to meet a Dominican that does not love them. And while everyones oohs and aahs over the smooth goodness of Mexican guacamole (I am partial to it myself), the way we Dominicans eat the fruit from ...

Chickpea and codfish salad

Have you ever thought what the exact definition of "salad" is? Salads are the most versatile of foods. Practically any cold (?) dish with a raw ingredient seem to qualify for the title. It is this flexibility that makes it the best part of meals for me. Or, like in this case, it makes it the ...

Mango and shrimps salad

Before mango season is over I wanted to bring you this recipe for mango and shrimp salad. Every Dominican has an opinion on which is the best mango cultivar: banilejos, puyitas, injertos, etc. Truth is if you have never tried a ripe mango in our country you have missed much in your life. I find mangoes ...

Tipili (Bulgur salad)

Let us tell you the story of tipili (bulgur salad), and how it arrived in our shores. Immigrants from the Middle Eastern region, mainly from Syria, Palestine, Lebanon and Egypt came to the Dominican Republic and other Latin American countries in the late 19th and early 20th century. At the time, most of the Middle East and ...

Carrot and cabbage salad

There is a question I have been asked many times in these ten years: What makes a dish "Dominican"? The answer escapes me. And since Aunt Ilana is the anthropologist here I have put off coming up with my own definition. The fact is that I doubt there will ever be a consensus on the subject. As ...

Healthier "Russian" potato salad

The good thing about this season's celebrations is that it spares no segment of our country. At least everyone celebrates New Year's Eve with a feast fitting their budget. But let's not forget those with alimentary restrictions, be them because of religious, ethical or health reasons. And especially for those looking for a light alternative to ...

Repollo guisado (Cabbage stew)

It happened in the summer of 1993. It wasn't a difficult decision. It was always uncomfortable around the table in the company's cafeteria. I had already developed a reputation for being picky, people had suspicions. The real challenge came when we were sitting for our Christmas dinner, as my mom cut me a piece of the ...

Molondrones a la vinagreta (Okra a la vinaigrette)

Regardless of your opinion of okra as a food, you have to admit Ensalada de Molondrones (Okra Salad) is a dish that looks good. It's also good for you. We've all heard about the Mediterranean diet, held up as one of the healthiest eating regimes the world has known. Just as beneficial but not so well known ...

Ensalada rusa (“Russian” potato salad)

A Russian salad in a Dominican blog? Why yes! Practically every country on earth has a version of potato salad, and many call also call theirs "Russian salad", but did you know where Russian salad originated? I bet you won't guess in a million years. Well, what do you know, it did come from Russia after all! The ...

Ensalada de coditos (Pasta salad)

Let me tell you my story on ensalada de coditos. When you are a kid you tend to believe everything you read: I thought that all English ladies went picnicking once or twice a week and that they all wore long flowery dresses and big floppy hats or fascinators, sat on red and white-checkered tablecloths and sipped ...

Ensalada de aguacate (Avocado salad)

Since the dawn of time us humans have had to go out in search for food: to hunt it, forage for it, or grow it. These days a visit to the supermarket is the modern equivalent. Armed with plastic and brandishing trolleys we roam stealthily down the aisles... but that's another story. In the Dominican ...

Ensalada hervida (Boiled salad)

A few weeks ago we had a poll to determine how good our readers were in the kitchen. From this we learnt that 44% of our visitors were good cooks, 33% were ok cooks and 21% were a hazard in the kitchen. If I am surprised by the result it is because there weren't more ...

Ensalada verde (Green salad)

I was astonished when I learnt that in the US there was a new product being marketed, something that sounds like having come out of Dr. Frankenstein's kitchen: The Lipton Instant Mashed Potatoes with Knorr Beef Gravy Mix Kit®. My goodness!  We have gone from fast food to instant meal. What's next? Do not mistake me, I ...