All posts filed under: Cape Verde


Monday Meal Review: Cape Verde

My mom used to slather up dates with cream cheese for us kids. I hated the roach-looking things and never could stomach one. So, what exactly posessed me to try the avocado and date dip is beyond me. I suppose I’m trying to keep it real. Stretch my horizons. Expand my palate. Well, guess what? It worked. The sweet hint of dates actually works inside avocado! Hurrah. Score one for team Sasha. But no way I’ll ever eat a date with cream cheese. That battle’s long been lost. Peasant’s Cachupa [Recipe] What I liked most about this dish: The beauty of Cachupa is that you can use whatever ingredients you have on hand to make your own version – don’t like acorn squash? Fine, put in sweeter pumpkin. Wish it had some collard greens? Sounds wonderful – go to town! Too vegan for your tastes? No problem – you can make this stew a meat-lover’s delight, by adding in smoked and traditional Portuguese sausages. As for our version – the flavor of the hominy and …

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Coconut Milk Chiller

Serves 2 Intended to be drunk cool, but not cold, our creamy Cape Verdean chiller will transport you to the islands. A favorite with Cape Verdean children.  The coconut is a common ingredient in the Cape Verde islands -in the 1600’s the coconut was already being transported to America via west African and Cape Verde… (source)  NOTE: If you add ice or refrigerate this drink the coconut milk will congeal. Ingredients: 1 cup coconut milk 2 cups milk cinnamon, for garnish Method: Swirl together coconut milk with milk. Sprinkle with cinnamon and enjoy. Let the dance begin! I don’t know about you, but these pictures make me insanely happy. All drinks should be this fun to make. Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Intended to be drunk cool, but not cold, our creamy Cape Verdean chiller will transport you to the islands. A favorite with Cape Verdean children. The coconut is a common ingredient in the Cape Verde islands -in the 1600’s the coconut was already being transported to America via …

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Creamy Avocado and Date Dip/Spread

Serves 2-4 as a dip 4-6 as a sandwich spread This dip/spread is a happy blend of sweet and creamy. In Cape Verde, they call this a salad and serve it with shrimp or prawn nestled on top. Personally, I like it spread on a hot turkey panini. If you want to add a kick of flavor, splash in a capful of brandy. (We omitted this step so that Ava could sample the dish). According to Duffy in Cape Verde: “Cape Verdeans put sugar on [avocados], and not just a little bit of sugar but so much sugar that you can’t even taste the avocado.” In this recipe, natural dates (a popular north African ingredient) provide a similar sweetness. Ingredients 2 ripe avocados 1-3 dates, minced Capful of brandy (optional) Method: Scoop out the buttery flesh of two avocados and place in a mixing bowl. Reserve the shells. Remove the seed from each date, then mince it up. Dates are incredibly sweet and sticky, so the minced dates clump together. Add the dates to the …

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Coconut Milkshake

Serves 2 Slurping this Cape Verdean inspired coconut milkshake is a lesson in the happy things sugar can do for us. The cinnamon sticks are the best part – as you dunk them in the milkshake and lick them clean, the cinnamon flavor fills your mouth. Try it! Please note:  this recipe is just for fun – inspired by the authentic recipe from Cape Verde for Coconut Milk. You’d be more likely to find this at a resort on the island than in someone’s home. Ingredients: 3 cups ice cream 3/4 cup coconut milk 1/4 cup milk (optional – depends how thick you like your shakes) cinnamon or cinnamon sticks for garnish Method: Scoop your ice cream. Keep going until you have 3 cups! Add the ice cream to your blender… Pour in the coconut milk… And the regular milk – if you like your shake on the thinner side… Blend and serve immediately. Make sure you garnish with cinnamon sticks or the whole recipe is ruined. I’m not kidding. Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: …

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sasha with ava

Drowned the Doom with Cape Verde (with poll)

We’re shipping off to Beaver’s Bend for a much desired, talked about, planned, dreamed about, already paid for … long weekend. There’s only one problem – the entire trip reeks of doom. Here are three reasons why: 1. Ava loves her crib and room. This, in turn, means that Ava does not love any other cribs or rooms. Upon placement in a foreign crib, she immediately morphs into insomniac zombie baby. 2. Ava is teething and has been waking up shrieking bloody murder several times a night, for the last three nights. Each time she does, my heart stops dead its tracks and I have to ask Keith to restart it. He’s a very patient man. 3. I have the flu. I spent all week trying to deny it, but the fever, chills, aches, and coughing fits won’t be ignored. Oh, if only things could be like this photo all the time, every day: But they aren’t. Last night I got a little overwhelmed. There I was thinking about these three sad facts and wringing my …

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Peasants Cachupa (Cachupa Pobre) Vegan

Makes about 1.5 gallons Cachupa is the quintessential Cape Verdean dish. While there are countless variations, almost all Cachupas have hominy, beans, and potatoes. Some add yucca. Any assortment of vegetables and legumes can be added, depending on availability. For those who can afford it, dried and smoked Portuguese sausages are also added for tremendous “stick to your bones” flavor. Fish, such as tuna and wahoo, is a little more attainable for the average citizen. Our version is vegan and more affordable. More in the mood for breakfast? Leftover Cachupa will suit you too. In fact, refried cachupa (cachupa rafogado) is often served with fried eggs. Nothing like sight, smell, and sound of sizzling eggs in the morning… Tradition vs. our version: Traditionally and typically, the hominy is pounded prior to cooking, however our version leaves the kernel whole for texture. Even still, the entire stew infuses with the soft corn-like flavor of this addictive grain. If you’ve never tried hominy, run out now and buy some! Add it to any stew for wonderful, slightly chewy …

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Menu: Cape Verde

Thanks to Cape Verde, I’m in a summery mood. I even flipped the calendar to September a few dates late in honor of their beach-kissed islands. This menu has something for everyone – a healthy traditional stew, a quirky, indulgent dip, a slurp-able children’s drink, and a purely irresistible, decadent milkshake (although I have a feeling Mr. Picky will love it best). Enjoy! Peasant’s Cachupa (vegan) [Recipe] Hearty stew made with hominy, great northern beans, potato, acorn squash, cabbage, and more. For those who desire more protein, fish or meat can be added for a Cachupa Rica. Creamy Avocado and Date Dip/Spread [Recipe] Smooth blend of avocado with minced dates. Best served with prawns, shrimp or as a sandwich spread. Coconut Milk Chiller [Recipe] Rich coconut milk thinned with regular milk and a dash of cinnamon. Cape Verdean Coconut Milkshake [Recipe] Inspired by the popular chiller, I made a decadent treat from vanilla ice cream, coconut milk, milk, and cinnamon stick swirlers.

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Photo Courtesy of Dave Trainer

About Cape Verdean Food

The magic of Cape Verdean food lies in its history. This cluster of ten tiny islands and 5 islets dotted off the west coast of Africa has only been inhabited since the 15th century, when Portuguese sailors stumbled upon them. Since that time, the inhabitants have developed a cuisine steeped in both African and Portuguese traditions. On any given day, fishermen can be found amidst the sea spray, casting their nets and lines in the shadow of volcanoes. They bring home prawn, shrimp, albacore, wahoo, grouper, and dorado. A brave few travel further from the coasts in hopes of bringing back a tiger shark, known to attack humans almost as often as Great White sharks. We made a wonderful spicy prawn recipe for our Angolan Global Table that is also eaten by Cape Verdeans. For a light lunch, this prawn dish could be served over a traditional Cape Verdean avocado and date salad (or dip). Cape Verde’s national dish is called Cachupa (recipe), a hodge-podge stew that includes whatever vegetables and beans the cook has on …

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