New Rican Cuisine

nightlife

Saturday evening was spent with friends at a party featuring New Rican food. ‘New Rican’ is a term for Puerto Ricans in New York. It was my first time eating this style ever!

Our generous hosts spent 2 days preparing the food and desserts. Wow.

appetizers2

We started out with the traditional Empanadillas (Stuffed Meat Pies), Camarones al Ajillio (Prawns in Garlic), Tostones (Fried Green Plantains).

The Plantains were very different from the Goreng Pisangs that we are used too. These were dense and not as sweet. If you are not careful, you end up spoiling dinner with these babies.

empanadillas2 appetizers hotsauce

I was told to look out for the Empanadillas. It was great! They look like the Singaporean Curry Puff, but these were packed full of beef. There was salsa, garlic sauce and the scorching Hanbanero hot sauce.

camaronesalajillio

I did not do the Camarones al Ajillio as I don’t eat prawns, but with the garlic and hot sauce dip, everyone was munching on it continously.

Unfortunately, I had to control myself otherwise, there would be no place for the other good stuff.

beans pescadoenescabeche

The Avocado salad was interesting. The vegetables in a very tart dressing was counterpointed by the soothingly smooth avocado. A good palate cleanser especially after all the salsa and hot sauce.

I was told that Puerto Rican parties were a casual walk-in affair where there is plenty of food all day and inevitably someone named José. So, if you see any Puerto Rican party going on, just walk on in and help yourself to the food. If anyone asks, just say you’re a friend of José’s. 😉

pescadoenescabeche2_1 pinon2 assembly

The mains were Pescado en Escabeche (Pickled Fish), Arroz Con Pollo (Rice with Chicken), Pinon (Beef / Plaintain Casserole).

The Pescado en Escabeche was made from red salmon. It was delicately flavoured, not the strong sourish pickled taste you’d expect when you see the name.

arrozconpollo

And the Arroz Con Pollo was amazingly good. It’s their version of chicken rice. Full of chicken, olives and peas.

pinon

What blew me away was the Pinon. Who would have thought that beef, beans and bananas would actually taste so good? It did! The sweetness of the plantains was actually enhanced by the beef. The beef was ground sirloin. Yum!

Before I go on, this is a good time to warn people who are on a diet not to continue.

MrsBudak: This is not for your eyes, scroll down quickly to the pretty cat pictures. However, Budak is entirely welcome to savour the goodness of…

Pernil al Horno. Roasted Pork Shoulders. The kind where pigs hope to become when they grow up. 😛 Thick slices of roast pork. Served with a platter of crackling pork skin. Seriously, this platter was attacked with vim and vigour when served.

pernilalhorno assembly1

I had to defend the sanctity of everyone’s health by stealing it away. The sacrifices I make for my friends… ;-0

Ok. It’s safe to look now. Oh wait. Stop. I tell a lie. What came next was dessert.

3cakes

Served with a choir of angels singing in the background, the El Flan De Tio Carlos (Uncle Carlos’ Flan), Orange Cake, Mango Cheesecake was exquisite.

dessert

What I could not believe was that everyone forgot to bring a sticky (dessert wine). But no worries, we were all seriously distracted by the desserts.

The flan, I’m told is the customary Puerto Rican dessert. In this case, this was a recipe from a cookbook.

The mango cheesecake was sublime. It took 3 tries to get it right according to the legendary Jeremy. I say the result was worth it. Light and fluffy, the cheese and the mango did not overwhelm each other. It was a perfect balance.

mangocheesecake

We also discovered that if you dribble a bit of Grappa (this was made from apples) over the orange cake, let it soak for a while, a delicate fragrance will emerge and the taste is enhanced. Yay!

Before we continue. Just want to bring your attention to this amazing kitchenware. Isn’t it amazing? This should be put in every office pantry if not the home. Great for getting back at annoying people.

voodooknifes

Now for the cats. At the end of the dinner, the cats were allowed out. 5 cats, but only 2 visited us downstairs.

cats

I must say they have really huge cats with lots of personality. Good looking too.

All in all, it was a wonderful Saturday night party. Great food, good wine and wonderful friends. Thanks M and J for the party!


Posted on 18th Oct 2005 in Makankaki, New Rican

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There Is Only 1 Comment So Far

 

[…] Almost a year ago, I sampled for the first time “New Rican” food. It was very good. Especially the Arroz Con Pollo, which is their version of Chicken Rice. This sparked off a promise of authentic Puerto Rican food. From Puerto Rico. […]


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