Sunday, March 20, 2011

Lots of Pork and a recipe for Trinidad Black Cake

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I am not sure where to start. I know you know that I am a bit (yes, a bit not a LOT) crazy. I mean I sorta get Dr. Food into a lot of trouble and leave my family shaking their heads and thinking to themselves "I won't say anything". I had the incredible honor of getting to spend the day at a farm with lots of incredible people. I took part in the Charcuterie thingy at @Podchef's farm. Uh, yeah that is a Twitter name but ok just follow along. You know that I am doing this Charcuterie thing, and I just took it a step further. I bought a pig. Not only did I buy a pig but as luck would have it I got to take an amazing class. Ok just go here to read what it was.

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Look at the artistry.

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Sausage wrapped in Caul. Makes me all weepy just looking at it.

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The food we got to eat was incredible and once again I lived in the moment and didn't get pictures of the cassoulet or the people that I met (looking through my magic mirror and waving to David, and Neal, and Iliana, and Leslie, and uh oh forgot other names) shit. Ok, and another thing is I am really tired so just look at the pictures and know that I was working my tush off all day packing this stuff up and curing and hanging and I have a cold and am sick too.

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Brining and...

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Rolling and...

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Tying stuff and...

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Sealing meat and...

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Smoking and...

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Shoving in the freezer. I can't do anymore today. I do have to stop here to say that the experience has left me a changed person. It was intense and eye opening to see where our food comes from and the loving way that animals CAN be raised. I have always wanted a farm and seeing Neal and Cathy's farm was just how I always imagined mine would be other than the fact I never knew how much work it really was. Ok, so Dr. Food who has lived on farms keeps saying to me "YOU could never do it!". He may be right. I still wouldn't mind owning my miniture cow though. How hard could one little cow be?

Anyhow, I am indebted to Neal and Cathy and Kate and Dominique for everything that I got to learn from them in 2 days.

Ok now as promised here is the recipe for the Jamaican Black Cake that I brought to the farm but didn't get any pictures of.

Oh wait...I did get a picture of fruit soaking in booze

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Oh and of the browing the sugar.

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That is it but you have to believe me that it taste good.


Trinidad Black Cake
Adapted from Sarina at Trini Gourmet
Ingredients:

Cake:
1 lb butter (use margarine for pareve)
1 lb sugar
8 eggs
1 tsp lemon essence
2 tsp lime rind (zested)
2 tsp almond essence
2 tsp vanilla
1 lb all-purpose flour (use 1/2 cassava flour + 1/2 lb rice flour for gluten-free)
4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp grated nutmeg

Fruit Base:
1 lb pitted prunes
1 lb raisins
1 lb currants
1 bottle rum
2 tbsp Angostura bitters

Browning:
1 lb brown sugar (I used Jaggery)
1/2 cup boiling hot water

Have on Hand:
1 more bottle of rum


Method:
Three to Five Days Before:
Up to 5 days before you make the cake, chop up all the fruits for the fruit base. Place in a large bowl, pour in Angostura bitters and rum. Leave in a cool corner, covered, to soak up the liquor. As I said 3-5 days (or longer)

On the Day Of:

Blend Fruit Base:
I pour the soaked fruit and juices into a blender and blend until thick and still a bit chunky (like tomato sauce). Note: If you have been macerating your fruit for a minimum of a month in advance you can skip this step

Prepare Browning:
Burn sugar until caramelized, add hot water gradually. Mix well and leave to cool.
Please be extra careful at this stage as a ‘browning’ burn is NOT a fun thing! (When I left it to cool it hardened in the pan. I would suggest putting it on wax paper or pouring it before it hardens. If it hardens I would grind it back into something that can incorporate into the batter.

Once that is done…
1. Preheat oven to 250F (no that’s not a typo)
2. Cream the butter and sugar.
3. Add eggs one at a time, mixing to incorporate
4. Add lemon essence, lemon zest, almond essence and vanilla
5. Mix and sift flour, baking powder, mixed spice and nutmeg.
6. Gradually add sifted ingredients to creamed mixture
7. Mix in fruit base puree and ‘browning’
8. Pour batter into greased tins that have been doubly lined with brown paper or parchment paper
9. Bake for 3 hours
10. Once removed from the oven soak the tops with equal portions of the remaining bottle of rum.

18 comments:

  1. This cake was SOOOOOO good! Thanks for sharing the recipe :-) I'm still buzzing from all we learned in the workshop, and from meeting such a warm & smart crew of pig lovers. You're doing a splendid job with All That Meat. xoxoxo

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  2. I'm so jealous that you got to go see that. I'm such a meat lover but I seriously think that if I saw the process I'd run out bawling (I'm the one who cries about eating Bambi even though I love venison). The cake sounds fantastic. Get a picture next time, will ya?? Sheesh.

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  3. Wow, you never cease to amaze me #1. What an incredible experience. And the miniature cow comes up once again - you crack me up. Watch out, one day Dr Food will surprise you with one...I will wish on it tonight.

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  4. What an experience. Really enjoyed reading about your adventures with meat. And now I understand why you loved my cow hat, you want your own mini cow! I will wish on that too!

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  5. Oh, boy...that cake sounds incredible...yum!

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  6. Love this post, Janis, and seeing all that meat curing and tying and brining made me proud. xoCathy, one of the Dames of Meat

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  7. Not only does the cake looks amazing, but I am blown away by your experience. That refrigerator is stocked - how wonderful that you really got to know where all your meat is coming from.

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  8. Thanks all for your comments and support of my crazy ways.

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  9. Wow! Go you, Janis! I am both impressed and intimidated!!!

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  10. You bought a pig? You mad, delicious woman! Don't you just love caul fat? This post has me itching for acreage & deep freezers.

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  11. OMG... you are crazy but I love you for it.

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  12. Well, I have to be honest, I read the title and was expecting a blood sausage or something of that nature. (I think I've been watching too much bizarre foods) Anyway, I was quite relieved to see a delish sounding cake. booze and fruit? yes, please.

    OH, and really, how much work could one, tiny miniature cow be? they still do big dumps, I'm pretty sure.

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  13. Janis You rock with getting this recipe out already. I can't wait to make one, I keep going back for more at or pig class but everyone starting looking at me like they wanted to practice on this little pigie. Have more pictures for you, let me kow how you want them .. cd, online. Interested in the movie version??????

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  14. Janis You rock with getting this recipe out already. I can't wait to make one, I keep going back for more at or pig class but everyone starting looking at me like they wanted to practice on this little pigie. Have more pictures for you, let me kow how you want them .. cd, online. Interested in the movie version??????

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  15. What an experience. Really enjoyed reading about your adventures with meat. And now I understand why you loved my cow hat, you want your own mini cow! I will wish on that too!

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  16. A great post! It was our great pleasure in having you to the farm! Your spirit & energy helped make the workshop a success!

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