A Caribbean Recipe With Middle Eastern Inspired Dishes ║ How-To Cookings Hacks
Because summer is ending oh so quickly, I decided to entertain my guests with a Caribbean-themed dinner with a dash of Afghan/Persian-inspired side dishes. You’ve never made them like this before! And I should know, as these are original recipes—things I learned from my mom, who integrated the best of both Afghan and Persian dishes into one.
Serving: Caribbean style sausages with 3 unique & Middle Eastern inspired side dishes:
▴ Avocado/Mango salsa ▴ Maste Khiar ▴ Shirazi
I started off by getting the right ingredients from my local farmers market, then prepping them at home. While cooking, one of the most essential factors to keep in mind is timing!
Since I barely have to use the stove, I decided to prep all my ingredients first with a little help from our friend: red wine.
What you’ll need: (serving 6)
- 1 avocado
- 1 lemon
- 1 mango
- 1 red onion
- 1 red sweet pepper
- 2 tomatoes
- a bottle of red wine and some cookie snacks to help you through!
Fresh grown produce is important in any dish. I recommend visiting your local farmers market. Indulge in the quality, help out small businesses, and while you’re at it … snap some pictures.
My favorite fresh herbs are parsley, dill, and mint leaves. Yes, the soil your food grows from matters!
I recommend getting a fruit or vegetable you’re not very familiar with. I got this sweet red pepper to add to my shirazi, a Persian dish I’m upgrading with extra ingredients. The traditional form always has red onions, tomatoes, and cucumbers. But from an early age my mom taught me to mix it up, add fresh herbs and other vegetables I enjoy, because I will be getting the necessary nutrients while keeping it delicious!
Since cutting fresh herbs can be a long process. I got this 5-blade scissor from a wonderful French kitchen line called Mastrad. This $12 tool has helped me cut my prep time majorly!
Cut up what you need and store the rest away.
Here’s a great tip for dicing up your avocados:
- cut the avocado in half
- cut a grid into it, without cutting through the skin
- then unfold the skin and the diced avocados pop right out!
The best and most mess free way to remove the mango skin is by using a glass. Simply cut your mango in big pieces and use the rim of your glass to slide the mango meat right off. Then dice it up!
Add your diced up mangos and avocados into a dish, followed by your chopped mint.
Add some of the diced red onions and the sweet red pepper to the mix.
Voila! Your Mango Salsa is complete!
Now let’s make the Maste Khiar. Use a Greek yogurt for your base — I like Fage because I trust the quality the most and the flavor isn’t too strong.
Here’s where we make it a bit different than your normal Maste Khiar: add freshly chopped herbs! I love using dill for this, but didn’t add the cucumber (it’s optional!).
Add the desired amount of crushed garlic. And here’s a tip on how to peel your garlic best: simply put it on a hard surface, put your knife (blades facing away from you) on top and CRUUUUSH!!!
Everything should fall off and whatever’s left will simply peel away from the clove then crush the garlic and add it to your dish.
Now let’s start on the Shirazi — I’ve added red onions, tomatoes, parsley, and the remainder of the sweet pepper I have. Your dressing is freshly squeezed lemon juice with a dash of salt and pepper.
Voila! Your side dishes are complete!
Once you have all your side dishes complete, start on the sausages. I like my flavors spicy and I’m a fan of chicken, so I chose to serve Maroon Sausages. Feel free to use any sausage of your liking!
I love their pre-cooked sausages because of the quality; they use only the most succulent part of the chicken, the thighs. This is an all-natural chicken with a collagen non-pork casing, no MSG, no fillers, gluten-free with no hormones or steroids. A taste to transport you to the Caribbean!
Grill your sausages — butterfly style — until they’re nice and brown. I used our George Foreman.
Wrap your sausages in a potato bun and add your side dishes and toppings.