After savoring the French cuisine, I am now taking you to Guyana.The past week has been an incredible journey through the various cuisines of the world and I am really enjoying this series.
Today I have taken a break from the Soup -Salad theme and made a dish that uses lentils and a side that is made with potato.
Coming to the post...
Guyana is situated is country situated on the Northern coast of South America.Here are some of the Guyanese Facts
Now coming to the Guyanese cuisine...
- This country is called Cooperative Republic of Guyana.
- It is the third smallest country in South America.
- Tropical forests covers 80% of the land.
- It is also called the Land of Waters as it is crisscrossed by many rivers. The longest river in this country is the Essequibo[ River
- Guyana exports gold, rum, alumina, bauxite,sugar, rice, shrimp, molasses,timber etc.
- The great demand for plantation workers several years ago lead to the migration of East Indians into Guyana
- Slavery was banned in the year 1834.
English, Amerindian dialects, Hindi, Creole and Urdu are the major languages spoken here.The major religions of Guyana are
Christianity, Hinduism and Islam.
- Guyana is the home to the rare species -Giant Otter and Harpy eagle.
- Cricket is a major sport here and it is a part of the West Indies Cricket Team.
Some of the popular dishes include
- I read that it has an East Indian,African,Portuguese, Chinese,British,Creole influence on the cooking.
- Most of the families cook 3 meals a day.
- Cassava, beans, sweet potato , rice are some of the staples here.
Here is what I cooked from this cuisine....
- Pepperpot-A type of meat stew
- Crab soup with Okra
- Cookup Rice- Usually prepared on New Years eve
- Roti and
Curry: because of the large Indian population curries
of all kinds are common including those with meat, seafood, or vegetarian
Metamgee: corn dumplings, yams, cassava, and plantains
served in coconut milk
- Peanut punch
The first dish is the Kitchri ,a rice and lentil one pot meal that is so similar to the South Indian Pongal! This dish is supposed to have found its way into the Guyanese cuisine through the Indian migrants who had settled down there ages ago. This dish is also said to be served to the groom after the wedding ceremony.
It had a very creamy texture probably due to the use of coconut milk and it was very filling too. I paired it with Aloo Balls
, a popular street food from this country....
Behind the scene:
A few weeks back I went to one of the hyper markets to purchased some groceries and other stuffs for the house. In my haste to pick up things as quickly as possible, I picked up a pack that looked like channa dal and only after coming home did I see the label as Split pea
. It looked so much like our channa dal / kadalai paruppu that I thought they had labelled it wrongly or it was just another name for channa da. So I googled and found that it was indeed a different type of dal and it is supposed to be more tastier than the channa dal!
Split Pea and channa dal
When I was looking for a Guyanese soup, I saw this recipe and decided to make it and as a bonus, I was lucky that I had the split pea dal ready!
I made it last weekend for breakfast and the kids and me enjoyed it with some coconut chutney.
Adapted from here
Rice- 1 cup
Split yellow pea- a little more than 1/2 cup
Coconut milk - 3 cups
Turmeric powder- 1/8 teaspoon
Salt to taste
For the tempering
Ghee- 1 tablespoon
Cumin seeds-1 teaspoon
Garlic-2 pods, chopped
Black peppercorns-1 teaspoon
Heat the coconut milk in a pressure cooker and add the lentil and rice. Put in the turmeric powder and salt. Cover and pressure cook for 3 hisses or 15 minutes / till the mixture is well cooked.
Once the pressure releases and mash the contents of the pressure cooker. Heat ghee in a pan and add the cumin. When it crackles, add onion and garlic and saute till soft. Next add the pepper corns and saute till the onion is golden brown. Pour this into the rice-lentil mixture, stir well to mix and serve hot.
This can be served as such / with chutney / pickle.
- You can prepare this with any other lentil too.
- Adding ghee enhances the creamy texture of the dish.
- You can avoid onion and garlic if you are preparing this dish to have during fasts.
Labels: Blogging Marathon, Flavors from across the border, Guyanese Cuisine, Morning Raga, Rendezvous with Rice, Step-by-step Pictorial Recipes