Oct. 9, 2016

Shallow-fried Cashew & Tuna Fish Cakes

Oct. 9, 2016

Welcome back!

I hope that you are having a good weekend?  Last week, I posted the first of the cashew dishes I promised you when I was in the Brong Ahafo (BA) region last month.  If you haven’t seen that blog, please go here.

This week, I am sharing the second of the three dishes which I have used cashews to prepare. I decided to go for a fish dish this time because I think it is a bit unusual to pair Cashews with fish and so I wanted to show you how wonderfully they click in this Tuna fish cake dish.  For obvious reasons, I have added BA at the beginning of the dish to give the hard-working people who work day-in-day-out on the Cashew plantations some credit and also to bring awareness to their hard work!  So here’s to all the Cashew Farmers in the Brong Ahafo region “BA Cashew & Tuna Fish Cakes.” Hurray!!! There is a beautiful mix of crunchiness and fishiness which play quite well together.  Do try and make this inexpensive but very satisfying dish this weekend and see what you think!  Please don’t forget to send me your photos and/or thoughts on the dish once you make it. Mo ato me! (Bon appetite)!

To make this dish, this is what you have to do:

Difficulty and servings

Easy, serves 6

Preparation and Cooking times

Preparation time:  30 minutes: Cooking time:  30 minutes

You will need:

100g roasted Cashews, crushed

2 cans of Tuna in oil, drained or 1 large can Salmon

1 tbs Margarine

1 medium Potato (about 200g), baked in the microwave, peeled and mashed

2 sprigs of Coriander, washed and chopped (optional)

100g Breadcrumbs

1 medium Egg, beaten

1 medium Onion, chopped

3 cloves Garlic, chopped

1 fish cube Seasoning, crumbled

½ tsp White Pepper

100g Oil for shallow frying fish cakes

Method:

  1. To Prepare Cashews:  Pour Cashews into a polythene bag and crush into small pieces using a rolling pin. Set aside.
  2. To Make Breadcrumbs: Make breadcrumbs by slicing old bread into thin slices and putting the oven on low heat until the bread slices are hard and golden brown.  Remove bread, cool,   and place in a polythene bag and crush with a rolling pin until grainy. Set aside.
  3. To Prepare the Potato: Wash and punch holes into the potato.  Place in a microwave oven and bake until firm but cooked.  Remove skin and mash it with a fork and set aside.
  4. Pour all ingredients (except oil) into a large bowl and mince with clean finger tips until it’s all blended together.  Shape into medium-sized balls, then pat them flat and arrange on a large plate.  Heat the oil in a large, non-stick frying pan until medium hot.  Fry the fish cakes in shallow oil, in small batches, turning sparingly to avoid breakage.  Fry until golden brown.  Remove onto a large plate and serve hot or cold.  

Monica’s Tips:

If the cakes are coming apart in the oil, then reduce the oil amount or whisk another medium egg and wash the shaped fish cakes before frying.

When the cakes are shaped, they can be fried or baked in a hot oven (180 degrees Celsius) until they are golden brown.  Either way they are delicious!

Please note that you can use Salmon to make this dish as well.  Do exactly what the instructions suggest for the Tuna.  Serve with rice and stew, Jollof Rice, buttered bread or put them in a pita bread with salad and mayonnaise for a special meal.  Serve with a chilled glass of cider or a tall glass of chilled cordial!

Whatever you are doing this weekend,

Happy Entertaining!

 

Oct. 2, 2016

Crispy Cashew and Plantain Crisps Salad

Oct. 2, 2016

Welcome back! 

Doesn’t time fly?  I remember last Christmas as if it was yesterday, and there it is again!  By the way, do you remember a promise that I made a few weeks ago about Cashew production in the Brong –Ahafo region in Ghana?  In that blog, I promised that I would share a few recipes that you can include Cashews in preparing.  I have been surprised by the immense benefits Cashews provide our bodies but the bit that blew me away is their benefit as natural antidepressants?  Did you know that? They are packed with protein and so are a good alternative to meat in our food! They also apparently have other nutritional benefits that improve psychological health.  We learn something new every day! I am honouring my promise today with a salad which I have named Wenchi Crunchy Cashews and Plantain Crisps Salad - A mouthful to say but very simple and nutritious to make.  I would like to know what you think when you try it.  

It’s the kind of salad you can use the vegetables you have in your garden to make and substitute whatever you like in your salad with the exception that the crispy cashews will be plentiful whatever you include so you enjoy a wonderful crunchy salad!  I have also added shavings of deep-fried plantain crisps to give it another tier of crunchiness and unripe tomatoes which also tend to be crunchy when bitten into. You can add croutons or hard baked pitta bread broken into pieces which is also very crunchy for salads. Make sure the vegetables that you are using will not ooze too much water onto the crunchy ingredients!  Once these conditions are met, you will have a satisfying salad! 

To make this crunchy cashew salad, this is what you have to do:

Difficulty and servings

Easy, serves 6

Preparation and Cooking times 

Preparation time: 20 minutes, cooking time: 10 minutes for frying the plantain crisps

Plus 15@ minutes cooling time

You will need:

½ raw Plantain, peeled and deep fried and cooled (You can use hard baked pita bread broken into pieces or Croutons also)

200ml Oil for deep frying

2 bunches Lettuce, torn into bite size-pieces

1 bunch Rocket Salad, torn into bite-size pieces (or whatever salad leaves you have)

1 medium-sized Onion, sliced into rings and separated

200g roasted Cashews, 100g crushed and 100g left whole

2 hard, fleshy Tomatoes with crunch, cut into wedges (I added 1 unripe tomato from my garden

A sprig of Coriander (optional) Use Parsley or Mint or other herbs of choice

Salad Cream

All-purpose Seasoning Salt (optional)

Method:

  1. Put about 200 ml of oil in a deep but narrow pan. Heat until  slightly smoky
  2. Peel the plantain and use a slicer to slice them onto a plate.  Fry in small batches, separating them all the time until they are crispy and golden, drain and set aside to cool.  Repeat process until it’s all done.
  3. Mix the lettuce and rocket leaves and arrange in batches, with onion rings, and crushed cashews
  4. On top of the salad, arrange the crispy ingredients – the whole Cashews, the Plantain crisps and the tomatoes and decorate with the Coriander, if using.

Monica’s Tips:

Because you want to keep the salad crunchy, only add the salad cream when you have served individual portions and then sprinkle with the all-purpose seasoning if required.  Enjoy!

Whatever you are doing this weekend,

Happy Entertaining!

Source:http://www.herbs-info.com/blog/cashews-are-a-natural-anti-depressant/?c=d

Sep. 25, 2016

"Haute Couture"line up of fusion foods presented by Peduase Valley Resort