Everyday Meals and Treats

Cooking is a messy mixture of science and art. All of my cooking takes place in my home kitchen – my favorite place in the home.

These photos are a visual approximation of what you are aiming for when you follow my recipe suggestions, and a peek into what I care about and love (my family and my dog.) Many of these dishes are great for regular family meals, some are great for company and some are suited for both.

Substituting Ingredients

Quality ingredients are a must. However, please don’t be discouraged by a list of ingredients. This is where “with a twist” comes in. For example, the recipe calls for eggplant and you don’t have it. However, you discover some zucchini in the fridge. Take a chance and substitute the zucchini for the eggplant. I discovered a variation on a favorite recipe called “Pasta Melanzana” by making that exact substitution.

Another exampIe of substitution is with bora (pictured in the slideshow below). I grew up eating “bora” (long green beans) with “mince” (ground beef) but over the years my family has developed a taste for sweet and hot Italian sausages, so I tried adding those sausages to the dish and it was a smash hit.

Versatile Essentials

  • Fresh herb blends
  • Butternut squash
  • Carrots and Celery
  • Potatoes (Yukon gold are my favorite – very creamy. However fingerlings and blue potatoes are also fun to mix it up)
  • Spinach and Swiss chard are my favorite greens. I always have lots on hand to mix up with my grains.
  • Coconut milk (keep a few cans handy) Essential for curries and several other dishes
  • Chickpeas (I use canned but you can use dried if you are good at planning ahead)
  • Lentils (I love black and french green lentils the most. Also red lentils)
  • Flour
  • Butter
  • Baking powder, baking soda, cream of tartar
  • Cinnamon (powder and sticks)
  • Nutmeg (whole)
  • Curry Powder (Indi Special Madras or Sujata are my favorite Guyanese brands)
  • Rice (I prefer jasmine)
  • Quinoa
  • Orzo Pasta (a huge winner for pilafs)
  • Bulgur
  • Dried cranberries (I use for baking and cooking)
  • Something for breading (panko or breadcrumbs)
  • Cheeses (At the very least, cheddar and parmesan)
  • Oils (coconut, olive, grapeseed, peanut, sesame, avocado…)

Bora: A Guyanese Delight

I am discovering that this extremely delicious long green bean which pairs nicely with every meat (beef, pork, lamb), chicken, some fish (Guyanese fish like butterfish and any other fish with skin that fries well) and shrimp is virtually unknown to my American friends! Growing bora this summer is one of my greatest successes. Below, the slideshow takes you from the gorgeous, elusive bora blossom which makes an appearance in the early dawn and withers in the sun by 9:00 AM EST through a cooked bora meal: Bora with ground lamb in coconut milk (Twisting It Up) This is one of the traditional Guyanese vegetables that I am so grateful my entire family loves.