Coconut Corn Salad

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 ears of corn, shucked
fine grain sea salt
3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1 cup big coconut flakes, well toasted
1 cup sliced almonds, well toasted
3 tablespoons chopped red onions
big squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the corn, sprinkle with a couple pinches of salt and stir well, you want all the corn to be coated. Cook for just a minute, until the corn looses its raw edge, stir in half the thyme, and then transfer the corn to a large serving bowl.

Just before you’re ready to serve, add most of the coconut flakes, most of the almonds, the rest of the thyme, red onions, and citrus juice. Stir well. Taste, season with more salt, to taste, and serve topped with the remaining coconut and almonds (and another jolt of juice if needed!).

Peach Crisp Buttermilk Biscuits

Topping:
1/4 cup large-flake, old-fashioned oats
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 Tbsp flour
1 Tbsp butter melted

Biscuits:
2 cups all purpose flour
2 Tbsp white sugar
1 Tbsp baking powder
1 tsp salt (3/4 tsp if using salted butter)
1/4 cup butter cold and cut in to 8 pieces
3/4 cup + buttermilk * cold and well shaken
Milk or cream for brushing tops

Filling:
2 medium firm, ripe peaches peeled and diced
1 Tbsp flour
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Glaze (Optional):
1 cup icing/confectioners sugar
1 Tbsp + milk

Preheat oven to 425F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Set aside.
Prepare topping mixture by combining all ingredients and stirring until moistened. Set aside. Peel and dice peaches and set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together well the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Add cold butter chunks to flour mixture. Using your fingertips, rub the butter in to the flour mixture until you have coarse crumbs with butter pieces no larger than a pea. Add about 2/3 of the cold buttermilk and using a fork, stir in to mixture until flour. Add more buttermilk, AS NEEDED, until the flour is just evenly moistened (but not wet).

Turn dough out on to floured surface. Gather the dough in to a mound and fold it over on to itself 2 or 3 times, until dough is one moist piece. Form in to a ball. Using a floured hand, press dough down until you have an even 1/2-inch thick piece of dough. Scatter diced peaches over 1/2 of the dough. Dust flour and cinnamon over-top of peaches. Fold the other 1/2 of the dough over the 1/2 with the peaches and press down lightly.

Using a 2-inch cutter, cut rounds from the dough and place on to parchment lined baking sheet, allowing several inches between each biscuit. Take scraps of dough and re-form in to a 1-inch thick piece and cut more. You should get about 6 biscuits. Brush tops of biscuits with a bit of milk or cream. Divide prepared topping mixture evenly on top of biscuits. Sweep away any that falls on the parchment (so it doesn’t burn).

Bake in preheated 425F. oven for 15-17 minutes or until lightly golden and just cooked through. Remove from oven, then remove biscuits from baking sheet on to a cooling rack. Allow to cool slightly, to enjoy warm or cool completely and store in an airtight container.

If you’d like to add the sweet glaze, combine the icing sugar and milk until you have a just pourable consistency. You may need to add more milk. Place a baking sheet under your cooling rack to catch the drips and pour your glaze over-top of the biscuits.

**Make your own buttermilk by adding 2 tsp vinegar or lemon juice to a 3/4 cup milk and allow to stand 5 minutes.

Thai Skirt Steak with Tomatoes (Yam Neua)

1 large shallot, sliced into very thin rings (about 1/3 cup)
3 tablespoons lime juice from 2 limes
4 teaspoons packed brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 1/2 pounds skirt steak, trimmed and cut into 2 to 3 pieces
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 1/2 cups (about 7 ounces) red or yellow cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro, plus cilantro sprigs for garnish (optional)
1/2 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint

In a large bowl, combine the shallots and lime juice and let sit for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

In a small bowl, combine 2 teaspoons of sugar, the salt, and white pepper.
Pat the steak dry with paper towels, then rub all over with the sugar-salt mixture.

Prepare a grill for very high heat. For a charcoal grill, spread a full chimney of hot coals evenly over half of the grill bed. For a gas grill, set all burners to an even, high flame. Heat the grill until hot, about 5 minutes, then clean and oil the cooking grate.

Meanwhile, add the fish sauce, pepper flakes, and remaining 2 teaspoons of sugar to the shallot-lime juice mixture and stir until the sugar has dissolved.
Thinly slice the steak against the grain, then transfer to the bowl along with any accumulated juices.

Add the tomatoes, cilantro, and mint and fold to combine.

Transfer to a platter, garnish with cilantro sprigs, if desired, and serve.

Grill the steak (directly over the coals, if using a charcoal grill) until charred all over and cooked to desired doneness, 2 to 4 minutes per side for medium-rare (depending on the thickness of the steak). Transfer the steak to a carving board and let rest for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, add the fish sauce, pepper flakes, and remaining 2 teaspoons of sugar to the shallot-lime juice mixture and stir until the sugar has dissolved.

Thinly slice the steak against the grain, then transfer to the bowl along with any accumulated juices.

Add the tomatoes, cilantro, and mint and fold to combine.

Transfer to a platter, garnish with cilantro sprigs, if desired, and serve.

Peanut Noodles

1 pound spaghetti or Chinese egg noodles
2 tablespoons peanut oil
2 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal, plus more for garnish
1-inch piece fresh ginger, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Asian chili paste or to taste (optional)
2 tablespoons light or dark light brown sugar
1/2 cup creamy peanut butter (may use natural peanut butter)
2 to 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce, plus more as needed
2 tablespoons rice vinegar (optional)
6 to 10 tablespoons hot water
Salt, as needed
3 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
Cucumber slices
Carrot sticks
Red, orange or yellow bell pepper slices
Fresh cilantro or mint leaves

Cook the pasta according to package directions, and drain it well. If a cold dish is desired, rinse the pasta under cold running water to cool, and drain again.

Meanwhile, in a small pot over medium-low heat, heat the peanut oil. Add the scallions, ginger, garlic and, if desired, chili paste and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the brown sugar, peanut butter, soy sauce, vinegar if desired and 6 tablespoons hot water. Stir until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture smooths out.

Remove from the heat. If necessary, add additional hot water, 1 tablespoon at a time, to achieve the desired consistency. Taste and add more soy sauce or salt, as needed.

Return the hot or cold noodles to the pot in which they were cooked, add the sesame oil and toss to coat. Add as much of the peanut sauce as desired and toss again to coat. Transfer to a serving bowl or individual plates and sprinkle with additional scallions, sesame seeds, cucumber, carrot, bell pepper and cilantro or mint. (May cover and refrigerate up to several hours.)

Note: You can toss raw, julienne carrots and bell peppers or steamed snow peas and broccoli with the noodles and peanut sauce. Leftover sauce can be refrigerated and served with cooked rice and raw or cooked vegetables.

Coconut Slaw

1 head of green cabbage, shredded
1/2 head of red cabbage, shredded
1 large carrot, shredded
2 red bell peppers, julienned
1 bunch cilantro leaves, finely chopped
2 cups toasted unsweetened coconut flakes
1 can of coconut milk
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons agave syrup
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons black pepper

Mix vegetables and coconut evenly.

Blend dressing ingredients until smooth.

Combine dressing with slaw mix. Salt to taste.

Picadillo with Coconut Slaw

1/2 cup vegetable oil
2 pounds ground beef
1 yellow onion, diced
2 red bell peppers, diced
2 green bell peppers, diced
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
2 bay leaves
1 cup green olives
1 cup mixed raisins
1 quart tomato sauce
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1/2 tablespoon ground black pepper

Heat oil over med-high heat. Add beef, cook until browned and crumbled.

Add onions & bell peppers, cook 5-6 min. Then, add garlic, bay leaves, olives, raisins, cook 3-4 min.

Finally, add spices and seasoning, reduce heat to low, simmer 10-12 min.

Remove from heat, and serve with black beans, rice, and coconut slaw (see related recipe).

Red Chile Hot Sauce

20 red Fresno chiles, seeds removed
8 red habanero chiles, seeds removed
1 small garlic clove, finely grated
2 tablespoons kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
1 cup white distilled vinegar

Pulse Fresno and habanero chiles, garlic, and 2 Tbsp. salt in a food processor until very finely chopped. Transfer to a small bowl; cover and let sit at least 2 hours and up to 12 hours (this will both develop the chile flavor and soften the flesh, resulting in a smooth flavorful sauce when puréed).

Purée chile mixture and vinegar in a blender until smooth. Season with salt.

Do Ahead: Sauce can be made 2 months ahead. Cover and chill.

Low Country Hoppin’ John

Peas:

2 quarts Pork Stock or Chicken Stock
1 cup Anson Mills Sea Island Red Peas, soaked in a pot of water in the refrigerator overnight
1 1/2 cups medium dice onions
1 cup medium dice peeled carrots
1 1/2 cups medium dice celery
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 fresh bay leaf
10 thyme sprigs
1/2 jalapeño, chopped
Kosher salt

Rice:

4 cups water
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 cup Anson Mills Carolina Gold Rice
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed

Red Pea Gravy:

Reserved 1 cup cooked red peas
Reserved 2 cups cooking liquid from the peas
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Cider vinegar
Sliced chives or scallions for garnish

For the peas:

Bring the stock to a simmer in a small pot. Drain the peas and add to the stock, along with all of the remaining ingredients except the salt. Cook the peas, partially covered, over low heat until they are soft, about 1 hour. Season to taste with salt. (The peas can be cooked ahead and refrigerated in their liquid for up to 3 days; reheat, covered, over low heat before proceeding.)

Drain the peas, reserving their cooking liquid, and measure out 1 cup peas and 2 cups liquid for the gravy; return the rest of the peas and liquid to the pot and keep warm.

Meanwhile, for the rice:

About 45 minutes before the peas are cooked, preheat the oven to 300°F.

Bring the water, salt, and cayenne pepper to a boil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, add the rice, stir once, and bring to a simmer. Simmer gently, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the rice is al dente, about 15 minutes.

Drain the rice in a sieve and rinse under cold water. Spread the rice out on a rimmed baking sheet. Dry the rice in the oven, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes. Scatter the butter evenly over the rice and continue to dry it, stirring every few minutes, for about 5 minutes longer. All excess moisture should have evaporated and the grains should be dry and separate.

For the gravy:

Put the 1 cup peas, 2 cups cooking liquid, and the butter in a blender and blend on high until smooth, about 3 minutes. Add cider vinegar to taste.

(The gravy can be made up to 3 days ahead and kept in a covered container in the refrigerator; reheat, covered, over the lowest possible heat, stirring occasionally to prevent scorching.)

To complete:

Use a slotted spoon to transfer the peas to a large serving bowl. Add the rice and carefully toss the rice and peas together. Pour the gravy over them, sprinkle with chives or scallions, and serve.

Sweet Patatas Bravas

2 pounds sweet potatoes
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt (I use Morton’s)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons hot sauce
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 large garlic clove (or 2 small), minced

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Peel the sweet potatoes and chop into large (roughly 1 1/2-inch) chunks. Add to a naked, rimmed sheet tray, then toss with 2 tablespoons olive oil and the salt. Roast—stirring the potatoes halfway through—until they’re just tender and beginning to brown, about 24 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix the tomato paste, sherry vinegar, hot sauce, and smoked paprika in a bowl.

In another bowl, mix the mayonnaise, garlic, and remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. (Both sauces can be prepared days in advance, then refrigerated!)

When the potatoes are done, let them hang out for about 10 minutes. Drizzle with the tomato dressing and gently toss. Transfer to a platter and zigzag with the garlicky mayo. Serve warm.

Basic Chana Masala

Soak 160 grams who,e chickpeas overnight.
Boil until soft. Set aside.
Mash 300 grams tomato in a mixer. Set aside.
Heat 5 teaspoons ghee. Saute a medium sized chopoed onion and 1 teaspoon chopped green chili until brown.
Add 1 1/2 teaspoons ginger paste and 1 teaspoon garlic paste. Saute for 2-3 minutes.
Add tomato puree and pinch of tumeric. Saute until cooked through.
Add cooked chickpeas, 2 teaspoons channa masala, salt to taste, and about 200 mL water to get desired consistency. Simmer 5 minutes.
Garnish with cilantro and julienned ginger.
Serve hot with rice.

Basic Chana Dal Masala

Boil 200 grams chana dal in 800 mL water until tender. Set aside.
Fry 80 grams chopped onions in 40 grams oil until tender.
Add 100 grams chopped tomatoes and 15 grams chana dal masala. Stir for 4-5 minutes until it becomes paste.
Take 1 part of tge boiled dal and add to paste. Mix well, then add remaining dal.
Check seasonings, then simmer for five minutes.
Serve with rice or roti.

Hot Honey Caramel Sweet Potatoes

2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into large chunks
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/2 cup honey
1 jalapeño pepper, thinly sliced (keep the seeds in!)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Place the sweet potatoes in a baking dish or on a baking sheet in a single layer. I like to chop my sweet potatoes a bit larger here – like 1 1/2 to 2 inch chunks. If you chop yours smaller, make sure to roast for a shorter period of time.

Drizzle the potatoes with the melted butter, sprinkle with salt and pepper and sprinkle on the brown sugar. Toss and stir so all of the pieces are coated. Roasted the potatoes for 20 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven and gently flip the potatoes, roasting again for 20 minutes. The potatoes should be tender, caramely and charred in some places.

Heat the honey and the jalapeños in a saucepan over medium-low heat. Let the honey come to a light simmer then turn off the honey. Let it sit for 5 minutes. Strain the honey through a fine mesh sieve to remove the peppers and the seeds.

When the sweet potatoes are golden and caramely and delicious, remove them from the oven and drizzle them with the honey to serve. Serve immediately!

Candied Sweet Potatoes

4 pounds sweet potatoes (about 5 medium), peeled
1/2 cup unsweetened pineapple juice
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

Cut the potatoes in half crosswise. Cut each half into quarters.

Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, then simmer, reducing the heat as needed, until the potatoes are barely fork-tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain the potatoes and set aside.

Meanwhile, combine the pineapple juice, butter, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a wide, high-sided skillet over medium-high heat. Stir continuously to dissolve the sugar. Bring to a boil, then add the potatoes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is reduced and thickened to form a glaze over the potatoes, 10 to 12 minutes. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes
Make ahead: The potatoes can be boiled up to 1 day in advance. Cool to room temperature, then store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.
Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

Whipped Sweet Poatoes with Coconut Milk and Vanilla Bean

2 to 2 1/2 pounds sweet potatoes (about 4 to 5 medium)
1/2 cup coconut milk (or whole milk or cream)
2 to 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla bean paste (or pure vanilla extract)
Ground cinnamon, to taste
Kosher salt, to taste
Chopped fresh parsley leaves or coconut flakes, for garnish (optional)

Arrange a rack in the middle of the oven and heat to 425°F. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Pierce the sweet potatoes a few times with a sharp knife. Place them on the baking sheet and roast until tender and a knife easily pricks through, 45 minutes to 1 hour. Set aside to cool until cool enough to handle.

Halve the potatoes lengthwise, scoop of the flesh, and run the flesh through a potato ricer or food mill into a large bowl.

Meanwhile, combine the coconut milk, brown sugar, butter, vanilla bean paste, a few dashes of cinnamon, and a generous pinch of salt in a saucepan and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter is melted and sugar dissolved. Reduce the heat to low and keep warm.

Add the warmed milk mixture, a few tablespoons at a time, into the potatoes, and beat with an electric mixer on high speed until smooth and fluffy. (You may not use all of the milk mixture.)

Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more sugar, cinnamon, or salt as needed. Serve immediately. Garnish with the parsley or coconut flakes if using.

Recipe Notes
Make ahead: This recipe can be made ahead and stored in the refrigerator for up to 2 days. To reheat (or keep warm), place the bowl of potatoes over a bowl of simmering water, stirring occasionally.
Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.

Roasted Lemongrass Chicken

5 tablespoons canola oil or vegetable oil (divided)
3 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 tablespoon sugar, divided
2 shallots, peeled
3 garlic cloves
2 fresh lemongrass stalks, cut into pieces
1 lime, zested
8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

Preheat your oven to 350°F.

In the bowl of a food processor, add 3 tablespoons oil, the fish sauce, oyster sauce, pepper flakes, sugar, shallots, garlic, lemongrass, and lime zest. Process until smooth. Add to a bowl, along with the chicken, and toss to coat the chicken in the marinade. Cover, transfer to the fridge, and marinate for 1-4 hours.

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons oil in a 12-inch ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Reserving the marinade, add chicken to the skillet skin side down. Cook for 4 minutes. Turn the chicken, add the reserved marinade to the skillet, and transfer to the oven. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through.

Brush the oil and marinade in the bottom of the pan on top of the chicken. Serve with lime wedges and chopped Th

Indian Cabbage and Peanut Slaw

4 cups chopped cabbage or use ready slaw mix
1 tomato diced
1/4 cup cilantro chopped
2 tablespoons Spanish roasted peanuts chopped
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar (Optional)
1 tablespoon oil
1/4 teaspoon black mustard seeds or cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1 lemon juiced

Rough chop the cabbage and carrots slaw mix into bite size pieces.

Chop up the tomato, cilantro, and peanuts into a fine dice.

Place all the vegetables into a bowl and season with salt and sugar.

In the smallest little heat proof bowl you have, heat the oil until it is hot and shimmering.

Place the mustard and/or cumin seeds and allow them to sputter like popcorn about 30 seconds.

Add in the turmeric and stir quickly.

Pour this hot, flavored oil over the cabbage mixture and mix well.
Squeeze lemon juice and mix once again and serve.

Skillet Jerk Chicken

2 tablespoons jerk sauce
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon orange juice
2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken cut into cubes
1 tablespoon vegetable oil or ghee for cooking

Place the chicken in a quart-size Ziploc bag. Pour marinade ingredients onto the chicken and let it rest overnight or up to 24 hours.

When ready to cook, heat a nonstick pan and add the tablespoon of vegetable oil or ghee.

Add chicken pieces into a single layer and cook until done, and the insides are no longer pink, and serve sizzling hot.

Painkillers

For one, follow the 1-2-3-4 model:
1 part lime juice (sour)
2 parts cream of coconut (sweet)
3 parts Cruzan Rum (strong)
4 parts pineapple juice, perhaps diluted with some water (weak)

For a batch:
1 empty gallon jug
Either 2 cups Cruzan dark rum or 1 cup dark rum and 2 cups vanilla rum (for the Nilla Killa)
1 15oz can of Coco Lopez Cream of Coconut
32 oz of Orange Juice
32 oz of Pineapple Juice
32 oz of Mango Juice
fresh grated nutmeg

Put tge rum and Coco Lopez in first, then fill up the jug with the juices.

You can also leave the rum out and let people mix their own.

1-2-3-4 Punch

One of Sour
Two of Sweet
Three of Strong
Four of Weak

For example:

1 part lime juice
2 parts simple syrup or grenadine (or better yet, Campari)
3 parts rum
4 parts juice (orange, pineapple, etc.)
freshly grated nutmeg
a dash or two of bitters

A variation: Maho Bay Rum Punch

1 part lime juice (sour)
2 parts cream of coconut (sweet)
3 parts Cruzan Rum (strong)
4 parts pineapple juice, perhaps diluted with some water (weak)

Black Beans with Mango

2 cups cubed mango, about 3 mangoes, preferably the Ataulfo variety (see Notes)
2 1/2 cups cooked black beans
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice, plus more for serving
1 teaspoon chile powder
1 large handful fresh cilantro, stems removed, chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

In a serving bowl, mix the mango and beans.

In a small bowl, whisk the olive oil with the lime juice and chile powder.

Add the cilantro to the serving bowl and then drizzle the dressing over the salad. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Toss to combine. Serve chilled or at room temperature. This salad can be assembled in advance without cilantro and refrigerated for a day. Add the cilantro (or parsley) just before serving.