Tuesday, April 10, 2012


Do any of you readers belong to a book club?
My husband just came up with this awesome idea to start a Cook Book Club.
We put together a group about a month and a half ago and designated a cook book.  We chose "New World Kitchen" by Norman Van Aken.  This book features Latin American and Caribbean recipes.

  We actually didn't designate it to only this book, to make it cost effective for everyone, we also allowed people to find recipe's on line from Norman Van Aken. We also made a point to help people find the book at their local library's as well.  So for the last month and a half our book group has been experimenting with recipe's from the book.  Here are a few of our favorite recipe's from the book.

Vaca Frita (Crispy Beef).  This was basically a flank steak that was cooked twice.  Originally boiled, then marinated over night and then fried in a pan... Really easy and oohh so yummy.  Also from the book, we made Congri (Mixed black beans and rice) and Maduros (Sweet ripened plantains that are fried).  Everything was very easy to do, and delicious!

We also made this dish called Con Mani.  Braised beef shanks in coconut milk, avocado and currents.  We sided it with another recipe Aroz Con Coco.  Coconut rice with bacon. (Homina Homina)
I have to say, this took all day slaving over a hot stove to cook. (Hence the crappy dark photo, I don't think we actually got to eating this till almost 9 in the evening.)  Wasn't the easiest recipe, but it was excellent when all said and done, and the Aroz Con Coco was SOOOOOOOOO good.  The bacon kind of caramelized.... Might I call it candied bacon! 

This wound up being one of our disasters.  Fermented pineapple juice, or should I call it FURRRRMENTED.  You soak a pineapple wrine in water and sugar for 4 days and then strain it.  By the forth day it looked like it could strain its self!  I couldn't bring myself to do anything with this except throw it in the garbage.  I'm elergic to penicillin... I didn't see it going well for me.  On the plus side, I really didn't loose much, just the inedible part of a really tasty pineapple, so no harm no foul!

So after our group experimented with the book for a month and a half, we all got together for a potluck of favorite recipe's from the book!  Great time to get together with friends and eat really great food.  Also, at the potluck we picked another member to choose the next book.  I cant wait to see what book we get to experiment with next!!

Now go out and start your own Cook Book Clubs!!

"Beep Beep" from The Little Road 


Brooke (Crackers on the Couch) said...

This is a stunning idea! I love it! Are you sure the pineapple wasn't supposed to get a little moldy? I know that with fermented pickles it's to be expected...

Liesl Ayers-Southwell said...

Yes it probably was suppost to get fuzzy.... It was just a little too scary for me. lol

You should start a club Brook!! It would be right up your Alley!
Or you can join ours. Our current book is "What the F@#* Should I make for dinner" And the next potluck will be up in North Seattle.

Let me know if you want to join and Ill send you an invite on facebook.