When you are asked to prepare meals for one hundred of the closest family and friends of a woman who was so loved, cherished, and revered by all who were blessed to have had their lives touched by such an amazing individual, you answer with none other than "Of course "!
I have recently been gifted with a family relationship who are as warm, and compassionate as my own family from Jamaica. Given the fact that they're also descendents from Jamaica with Indian and American flavors, it's no surprise that I feel right at home when I'm enjoying their company.
With the recent passing of their beloved grandmother, preparing a meal for the repass that would, not only honor her memory, but also comfort her surviving loved ones was no small feat. In fact, it was a challenge that had to be handled with pure and unimeasurable amounts of my "Love"!
The menu for this special occasion was made to be kept simple, home-like, but capture the flavors that were both Jamaican and Indian: Curried Goat, Indian Butter Chicken, Sunshine Rice, Fried Sweet Plantains, Curried Chickpea & Potato Stew, and a refreshing Chopped Salad w/ Ditalini Pasta and a Poppyseed Ranch dressing. Then the meal was made complete with a couple of my very moist, light & fluffy, rum soaked Fruit cakes.
I can't begin to describe how much effort it took to cook 30 lbs of goat meat, 20 lbs of butter chicken, along with all the other items and have them finished around the same time so that they would all be served hot and fresh! Using a pressure cooker to cook all that goat meat, like my own grandmother taught me, was the most ideal way to get every last bone-chunked piece of goat meat so tender that one could have almost chewed right through the bone! I only hope that I have made you proud and done your memory just...Ms. Conchita!
So at the end of the day, when the last morsel of food was served and the leftovers were packed up, I got to enjoy my favorite part of any catering job that I take on....receiving the blessings from my guests and acknowledgement of how much they enjoyed their meal! It's the very reason why I put so much love and effort into doing what I do. It's the very reason why I love to feed people! It's the very reason why I am "Proud to be a chef"!