Saturday, September 26, 2009

Haitian Meal

The CC had been hankering for a Haitian meal and he received a ton of the right veggies courtesy of a friend's CSA so he decided to go all out and prepare a Haitian meal.

He had some vegetarian friends over for dinner so the beef was substituted by tempeh (the only reasonable thing that can stand up to a long marinade, and long cooking times without falling apart.)

Corn Fritters with Pikliz

Rice & Beans
Tempeh in Creole Sauce

(Source: Fine Haitian Cuisine by Mona Cassion Ménager.)

Beef in Creole Sauce


2 pounds beef (rump pot roast, sirloin tip or any beef cut suitable for braising)
1 bitter orange, or 2 lemons + 1 orange
1 1/2 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 habanero chile
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
pinch of ground cloves
1 tbsp chopped chives
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup white onion shavings
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf pasley
1 sprig of thyme
5 garlic cloves, peeled, and crushed
1 tbsp tomato paste diluted in 1 cup boiled water
4 cups boiled water
1 sliced white onion (for sauce)
1 sliced bell pepper (for sauce)


Trim excess fat from beef. Cut meat crosswise into six fairly equal pieces. Rub meat with bitter orange. Rinse quickly with very hot water. Drain carefully. Put meat in a bowl and coat with orange juice, vinegar, chile, black pepper, cloves, chives, salt, onion, parsley, and thyme. Cover with plastic wrap, and marinate in a cool place for 30 minutes to 1 hour in the refrigerator or overnight.

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a heavy lidded 5-quart pan over high setting. Reserving marinade, add meat, and saute until beginning to brown, about 10 minutes. Add marinade, reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until juice thickens, about 10 to 12 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a 3-quart heavy pan over medium high setting. Add garlic and sautee for 1 minute. Add diluted tomato paste and boil uncovered until all liquid evaporates, 15 to 20 minutes. Stir-fry for about 1 minute. Add 3 cups of boiled water to tomato paste, mix well, and pour it over meat. Cover and cook until all liquid evaporates, about 45 minutes. The sauce should be thick. Remove meat and chile from the sauce. Season sauce with additional salt and pepper if desired. Add 1 cup of boiled water to the sauce, and stir in. Add meat and reserved chile. Reduce, uncovered, over medium heat until sauce thickens, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add onion and bell pepper slices during the last minute. Discard chile. Serve hot.

Rice and Beans


1/2 cup red kidney beans (soaked)
1/4 heaped tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp ground cloves
3 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
1 tbsp minced chives
1/2 cup white onion (finely diced)
1/2 cup shallots (finely diced)
1 habanero chile
1/4 cup red bell pepper (diced)
2 bouillon cubes
1/4 tsp ground cayenne pepper
3 cups bean cooking liquid (read below)
2-3 sprigs thyme
1 sprig parsley
2 cups long-grain rice


Wash the beans, and bring to boil with 8 cups of water. Cover, and cook over medium heat with the lid ajar until the beans are cooked through, 45 minutes to 1 hour. The beans should hold their shape. Drain but reserve the cooking liquid.

Heat 2 tsp oil in a heavy pan, over medium heat. Add the beans and sauté until the beans are crispy about 7 minutes. Add black pepper and the cloves at the last minute. Set aside.

Heat 2 tsp oil in the same pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté till slightly golden. Add the onion, shallots, chile, chives and diced red bell pepper and sauté for 3-5 minutes. Add the rice and fry to coat with the oil. Add the bouillon cubes, cayenne pepper, thyme, salt and parsley along with the 3 cups of cooking liquid and the reserved beans.

Cook till the rice is done. (You may need to add additional cooking liquid or water.)

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