Our first port on this year's winter cruise was St. Kitt's and I chose
to sign up for a cooking class shore excursion. It was brilliant and I
can't wait to try out the recipes back home.
The class was held at Fairview Manor Museum which houses the NIRVANA
Restaurant. The chef in residence is a 20-something year resident on
the island from Britain by the name of Janice Ryan. She has done her
share of big time "chef"ing most famously at the now Relais et
Chateaux Montpelier Plantation on neighboring Nevis.
Our class and ensuing lunch consisted of GROUPER in CREOLE Tomato
Broth which basically cooks the sauce in the pan then steams the fish
on top while the flame is off. It was divine. Since green bananas were
out of stock due to the holiday, our ESCOVITCH (or escabeche) was made
from PUMPKIN which works perfectly. Limes too were scarce, so the
local sour orange (a Seville orange type that is indeed very sour).
Our Lemonade with lunch was also made from the delicious sour orange.
JERK PORK Loin was perfectly cooked and crusted with a mild jerk
seasoning and there was homemade hot sauce made from Scotch Bonnet
peppers if you wanted more bit. On the side was the traditional dish
of ISLAND RICE with PIDGEON PEAS.
We had started with some homemade BREADFRUIT chips (or crisps if you
are from the UK) with homemade BANANA KETCHUP for taste. I managed to
find a locally made Banana Ketchup on St. Lucia the next day and hope
it is as tasty!
Our meal ended with the most divine and lightest of COCONUT BREAD
PUDDINGS I have ever had with a Rum and Brown Sugar Glaze; this dish I
really look forward to re-creating as I am not a great fan or maker of
desserts and this was a winner.
They were all winners. What fun the 7 of us from the ship had; I only
wish Chef Janice could be here on board to improve the mediocre
cuisine we are getting!