Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Day 69! Guyana (SA) - the last of the "G" countries!! Guyanese Beef Curry, Roti and Rice with Pigeon Peas - Up Next, Haiti(NA)

Tonight's meal was so much fun to make after a couple of days that haven't been much fun at all...But, rather than focus on the hard stuff, I'm going to dive right into how I made this unbelievably fragrant and tasty meal from the beautiful Caribbean country of Guyana.

Officially the Co-Operative Republic of Guyana, this Carribean country is located on the northern coast of South America. Once a British and Dutch colony, Guyana's cuisine is very similar to Caribbean cooking and incorporates African, Creole and East Indian traditions. Cassava, sweet potatoes, okra, fruit, vegetables, sorrel and ginger beer are all enjoyed by the Guyanese.

Now, my friend Gary - an amazing photographer-artist and transplanted Trinidadian (check out his link to see his work), suggested I make Guyanese Pepper Pot, the country's national dish. I researched it, but it's quite involved, has billions of ingredients and is best cooked over several days. And, while I'd love to attempt it, I just didn't have the time this week. So.......I decided to make, wait for it....Beef Curry, Roti and Rice with Pigeon Peas. And, a big shout out to Trinigourmet an excellent Caribbean foodie site where I was able to find a video showing me exactly how make Roti

 The dough is very easy to make and takes very little work to mix up, knead and roll out

 After rolling out to a 9-inch disk, cut a slit from the center to the edge
 Roll tightly into a cone shape

 Then flatten and leave to rest again

 I do not own a Tawah -- a flat, cast iron griddle with no sides, so I used a regular frying pan
Beautiful, brown and perfect for scooping up a spicy curry
 Garam Massala - a combination of cloves, coriander, nutmeg, cumin, cardamom and cinnamon
 Onions, garlic and a jalapeño pepper flavor the curry
 The smell that fills the house when the curry starts frying -- all kinds of heavenly!

Pigeon peas for the rice - also flavored with onions, garlic and thyme

All of these recipes were found at the Guyana Outpost and were provided compliments of  "A Taste of Guyana" by Dr. Odeen Ishamel.


  • 4 cups flour
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 1/2 oz ghee, margarine or butter
  • Water (enough to make a soft, pliable, but not sticky dough)

  1. Mix flour and baking powder. Add enough water to form a smooth, soft dough.
  2. Kneed well and leave half covered with a damp dish cloth.
  3. Knead for a second time and divide into four balls.
  4. Flour a surface and roll out dough to 8-9 -inch disks, then spread with ghee and sprinkle with flour.
  5. Cut the flattened dough from the center the edge, roll tightly into a cone shape, press peak into the center of the cone, then flatten.
  6. Leave again for 30 minutes. Sprinkle flour on the board and roll out very thin with a rolling pin.
  7. Bake on moderately hot baking iron (tawah), coating dough with oil on both sides as it cooks.
  8. Turn on both sides and cook for about 1 minute on each side.
  9. Remove roti from baking iron and clap between both hands for about 15 seconds, while it's still hot until it is soft and flaky.

Curry (can be made with chicken, beef or lamb)

  • 3 lbs. chicken, beef or lamb
  • 4 medium potatoes, peeled and halved
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 small hot pepper
  • 2 medium onions
  • 2 Tbsp. oil
  • 2 Tbsp. ground curry powder (I used Jamaican)
  • 1/2 tsp. garam massala
  • 1 piece cinnamon stick

  1. Mince garlic, onion and pepper.
  2. Heat oil in stew pan.
  3. Add mixture of garlic, onion, garam massala and curry powder.
  4. Allow to fry on slow heat for about 3-4 minutes
  5. Add meat and potatoes and salt to taste.
  6. Add cinnamon stick.
  7. Cook on slow heat for 15-20 minutes.
  8. Add one cup water and sprinkle 2nd. chopped onion. Bring to a boil for about 20 minutes until potatoes are fully cooked. Serve over rice.
Final Assessment:  I love, Love, LOVE Caribbean cuisine. A++

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