Recipe: Mauritian Chili Poppers (Gateaux Piments) (w/ poll)

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If you have a hankering for a munchin', come with me via "stove top travel" to Mauritius. While there, we'll cozy up, picnic-style, with a basket of Gateaux Piments. These crisp, crunchy poppers are quite a bit like falafel and I got to try them thanks to you, dear readers, since they won your vote on our Facebook Fan Page as the split pea recipe you'd most like me to try. (Thank you!) What I find most exciting about these chili poppers is their intense, fresh flavor. Each bite reveals … [Read more...]

Recipe: Mauritian Banana Tart

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Don't let the startling geometry fool you. Today's Banana Tart is for those who like mellow desserts. Big bites of health. An entire banana tree in the belly, topped off with delicate lattice goodness. I know. It's craziness. You can thank the dreamy island of Mauritius, way out in the Indian Ocean, for teaching me this ingenious way to use up ripe bananas. The ingredient list is so simple and pure, I almost can't believe it. Bananas, barely a smattering of brown sugar, a pinch of salt, … [Read more...]

Menu: Mauritius

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"When you visit a town and have not visited the market, you have not really visited the town" So goes the saying in Mauritius, according to local Renee. This old saying means that by immersing ourselves in the food culture of a place, we arrive at the heart and soul of the town. I totally agree and I would add that when we visit a country via stove top travel, we get glimpses of that soul, even from half a world away.  Although we cannot fly to Mauritius today to visit the market, we are … [Read more...]

About the food of Mauritius

Photo by Moongateclimber.

Just when you feel isolated, remote, and alone - like no one can possibly understand the way you are feeling, geography comes to the rescue. Way out in the Indian ocean lives Mauritius - an African country even more remote than Madagascar and totally teeny, tiny. If you study this "dot" amidst the crashing waves, you'll find crags and cliffs, turquoise water and rusty rainbow soil. For all her solitude, she is so beautiful. So intricate. How can we feel alone when this exists? It's like … [Read more...]

Monday Meal Review: Mauritania

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I was talking with someone the other day about what this Adventure is all about. She wanted to know if I really thought I could change the world by cooking a meal from every country. "It just doesn't seem realistic" she said. I considered my answer, gazing at the puffy clouds dotted throughout the blue sky. I immediately thought of our latest Global Table meal - Mauritania, in northern Africa. The week was all about food cooked more than once: Stuffing simmered before … [Read more...]

Recipe: Mechoui (Leg of Lamb with Dried Fruit Stuffing)

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I think I've easily quadrupled my lamb intake (for my entire life) during this Global Table Adventure ... and we're only halfway through). Wowzers. As for Keith, a.k.a. Mr Picky, he claims to have never even had lamb until this Adventure. Today we're tackling the lambiest of all lamb dishes - Mechoui, a dish enjoyed in Mauritania and nearby Morocco. Think "epic stuffed leg of lamb." This Mauritanian version includes a sweet filling made with dried fruit and rice - a perfectly addicting way to … [Read more...]

Recipe: Traditional North African Green Mint Tea

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Do you have a steady hand? Can you pour tea from several feet up without shaking, spilling, or missing entirely? If so, give me a call. We're going to need you. We've got some frothy tea to make. It's going to be fun. In fact, quite possibly the most fun I've had on this Adventure to eat the world is when we try new teas. The effort is minimal, yet the flavor impact is huge. Today is no exception. Not only did we buckle up to try the super sweet "Morroccan-style" green mint tea … [Read more...]

Recipe: Rainy Day Couscous

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I've been putting off making couscous. I don't mean the boxed, nearly instant kind - I make that fairly often. What I'm tackling today is delicate, fluffy steamed couscous. The kind  you buy in the bulk bin. The kind that fluffs up like a dream. According to Clifford A. Wright, steaming the tiny pearls twice, sometimes three times, is the "only" way to make proper couscous. Color me intrigued. While we've cooked many countries that enjoy couscous (Libya and Algeria for example), I put off … [Read more...]