Friday, January 22, 2010

Ackee and saltfish to celebrate the NFL's New Orleans Saints beating the Vikings on Sunday

When the New Orleans Saints roll over the Minnesota Vikings in the NFL game this Sunday, I'll celebrate with Red Stripe and Ackee and Saltfish.  Here is the recipe if you want to celebrate the Saints win with me:  This delicious and vibrant meal is Jamaica's national dish and is often referred to as Jamaica's version of North America's omelette.  And yes, Jamaican's love the NFL
  • 2 cans of ackee
  • 6 slices of bacon diced
  • 1 onion diced
  • 2 green onion diced
  • 1 scotch bonnet pepper chopped 
  • 2 branches of fresh thyme 
  • 2 cups saltfish (boiled down) 
  • 2 tbsp oil for frying
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Put oil in a non stick pan or pot and add onion, pepper and green onion and saute over medium heat.
  • Slice bacon into 1/2" pieces. Fry separately, drain on paper towel.
  • Add ackee and bacon and mix around.
  • Then, add thyme, cover, reduce heat to low-medium and let simmer for 15 minutes.
  • Then, add salt and pepper to taste and enjoy.
Can be served with sliced avocado and Festival.

Credit for this recipe goes to my son, Court who originally posted this last year.  Thanks Court.

Enjoy the New Orleans Saints over the Minnesota Vikings in the NFL game this Sunday.  I will.

And in the NFL's AFC game, the New York Jets will sink the Indianapolis Colts. 

New Orleans Saints vs the New York Jets in the Superbowl.  What shall I prepare for that football match up?

Until next time...

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Making Jerk Pork this week to beat the winter blues...and enjoy the NFL playoffs

Court started it!  Here is our latest adaptation being prepared just in time for the NFL playoffs this weekend.  Go Dallas!

At the family Christmas dinner a couple of weeks ago (how time flies) one of our dishes was a favourite, Jamaican Jerk Pork.  Delicious.  You can never have enough...especially when its snowed here every day since then.

We dug up the recipe posted by Court some time ago. Then went shopping at Costco for a suitable 'hunk of pork:  found a 10+ lb pork shoulder, bone in.  On the way home, we picked up a couple of bottles of Presidents Choice Jerk Sauce from Loblaws.  Couldn't find our favourite brand, Walkers Wood so that had to do.
We 'enhanced' the recipe by dicing up some regular and green onions and adding to the Jerk Sauce.  We let that sit for about 1/2 hour.

Then we attacked the pork shoulder.  With a really sharp heavy duty knife, we cut off approximately 5 'hunks' of pork around 2 lbs each and put them in large, sealable plastic freezer bags.  Then we added the liquid marinade.  Mmmmmm...the smell was delicious!

We sealed the bags and have them marinating.  We plan to leave them for 3 days before cooking.  For that, we plan to follow Court's method:  400 degree oven, meat on rack inside a large baking pan, water below, for 45 minutes until done. 

Results just in time for the Saturday night playoff game this weekend.  Go Dallas!

Until next time...

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

How I got through the Reggae Marathon...Behind the scenes

I ran it alone but it took an army to get me there.

Lets start with the obvious.  Leaning to run.  Again.
Although I have been running for nearly 30 years and have competed in numerous 10 K and Triathlon events, finishing a marathon has eluded me.  Joining the Wasaga Beach Road Runners was the first 'best' decision.  Mike, Eric and the entire gang kept me running week after week.  Especially for the long runs.  They suggested using the run/walk technique (I went with 8 minutes run and 1 minute walk) and told me to respect the heat.  Really good advice that last one with the +42 degree Celsius conditions.

Sally met at mile 5 as the sun was coming up.  What a treat.  She has been with me every step of the way.  And she deserves a medal for the scare I gave her 3 weeks before we left for Jamaica.  Severe leg cramps and uncontrollable whole-body shivering after screwing up a long run.  Turns out I overdid it on the 'hot weather' electrolyte fluids during the run.  Seems you actually need plain old-fashioned water as well as salts.  Duh.  Thankfully no lasting physical effects.  And I did reassure her that it was better this happened at home rather than Jamaica.  She was not amused.
During training and especially after the race, my recovery was aided by Monique at Juice Plus.  The daily regime of vegetables and fruits put anti-oxidants into my system.  Significantly reduced muscle fatigue and recovery.  It works.  Felt good during the entire 26 miles and finished strong.
"Dr. Greg" Cholewinsky of McNabb Health Centre in Collingwood .  Magician.  His treatments solved the mystery of the painful left knee.  Turns out my hips were out of alignment.  Once he corrected the problem, the pain went away.  Ran pain-free for the entire race.

Hydration and hypnosis. 

Hydration.  I carried my own water in a Camelback as well as a water bottle.  Got them along with all my other gear from The Running Room.  And grabbed water and Gatorade at every one of the 26 stations.  +10 liters of fluid consumed during the 5 and 1/2 hours.  Not including the water I used to drench myself at every stop.  My shoes were soaked the entire race!  Kept me cool and sweating.  And there are no words to describe the feeling of being repeatedly drenched with ice cold water shortly after finishing!

Hypnosis.  I had a number of sessions with Christine in the months leading up to the race.  Focused on staying focused...and breathing.  This was crucial once we passed the 1/2 marathon turn and I entered unknown territory I used her suggested techniques to keep my breathing steady and my muscles relaxed.  Oh, and I also talked to myself.  A lot.  That's another story.

Cold and snowy now along Southern Georgian Bay.  Hot and sandy in Negril.  This picture keeps me going.

The last word goes to Tammy Gauthier of "And There You Glow Aesthetics" in Wasaga Beach gets the last word:  her pedicures solved the plantar fasciitis in my right foot.  Never had a pedicure in my life before that. I am hooked. 

OK, I lied, the real last word goes to all of you who offered moral support and encouragement.  Especially the boys, Andrew, Courtney, Holden and Michael.  Thanks everyone.

Until next time...