From my sleepy college town on the coast to my super-suburban pocket in the boonies, not much changes: most of my day is spent in and around the kitchen. Last night we divided about least 3 hours between watching Food Network on a stained yellow couch and working on a homemade French baguette in a dorm kitchen. Today I took the hour long journey back home to spend 8 hours of it the kitchen making an Easter feast. Then right as I returned back to my dorm I was already starting up a vegetable stock. This is just the way I like it. My life is food.
I took that one-way ticket to the world revolving around food a while ago, and I do like it here. I’ve been cooking for myself for a while now, that’s nothing new. But this venture back home gave me the odd sensation of unfamiliarity with my setting. One would expect cooking to be transferable. Wherever there are wide, open gas-ranges and a water tap nearby, we should be right at home. Though now I am not so sure. There is an unsettling out-of-control feeling when we are not in our own element. It’s strange to think that my comfortable kitchen setting is now the hectic, community dorm kitchen. What I have taken away from this environment are the time and sharing sacrifices, along with the reward of having cooked a meal just the way I like it. I am forming “my own place” in a sense, one meal at a time.
My blog tonight has another purpose as well. As I was going through my old photos I realized that I have neglected a great summer/grilling recipe, a blue cheese and cracked peppercorn burger and Jamaican sweet potatoes. I made it for a few of my friends the other weekend and they were a hit. The burger was simple, a lot like the ultimate bacon and guacamole one I made a while back. This time however, I put some crumbled blue cheese and caramelized red onions on the top [with a little guac on the side]. The Jamaican sweet potatoes are the focus of this recipe tonight though. We all know about roasting kabobs, meats, and maybe even potatoes, but sweet potatoes? It turned out to be an absolutely delicious grill buddy to the burger – the sweetness from the bourbon and the brown sugar, along with a little tang from the ginger and nutmeg complimented the twinge of the blue cheese and salt and peppery-ness of the burger.
Jamaican Sweet Potatoes
1 large sweet potato
2 T butter
2 T bourbon
¼ c dark brown sugar [maybe more?]
½ t fresh ginger, grated
1 t ground cinnamon
¼ t ground nutmeg
1. Wash off sweet potato, poke holes in it with a fork.
2. Microwave for about 7 min, or until just tender.
3. Meanwhile, mix remaining ingredients into a basting sauce for the potatoes.
4. Slice sweet potato and situate on top of tin foil.
5. Brush sauce onto the potatoes.
6. Seal tin foil pouch, place on grill for about 15-20 min.
** You can also try putting the slices straight on the grill for different type of texture.