We had a great weekend. I was off for 3 days, which was especially nice. On Friday night Aliyah babysat for us and we had a rare evening out without the kids. We went out to a nice restaurant to celebrate our 12th anniversary. We had a wonderful time and drank too much champagne! Thank you Aliyah!
For some reason, I was in the mood for Trinidad food this weekend. Yesterday we had doubles for lunch, and they came out great. Today we had curried duck, curried potato and channa and roti. It was the first time I made duck and it was quite good, if I do say so myself. I also tried to make “buss up shut” roti, but it didn’t come out quite right – not ribbony enough, (rather like a sada roti actually) but still good. I guess I will try again another time. Mom, if you’re reading this, that means that you should send some of that frozen buss up shut for me when Aliyah returns!
The kids are well. Isaac has an end-of-kindergarten concert, and there is a song where he is supposed to “strut his stuff” and do some sort of action onstage, and he doesn’t want to do it. He says he’ll be embarrassed. So we’ve been helping him think of things to do. I’ll be curious to see what he actually does.
Jonathan has been really into jigsaw puzzles these days. He can’t seem to get enough of them. And he’ll build them over and over again. His birthday coming up soon, and he is so excited. He has been trying to read and write also. He’s also been interested in the solar system (because that was Isaac’s very favorite kindergarten subject this year), and here’s Jonny’s little scrapbook with stickers of all the planets. He wanted help spelling the names of the planets, but I was busy helping Isaac with something else. He had a crack at spelling “Earth” by himself:
It’s definitely “ERF” when he says it!
Ben has been getting better and better at rolling. One day last week when I was at work, Mark was at the computer, and he had put Ben on his back on the living room floor. Ben started to cry, and he was lying on his belly! Mark rushed to get the camera and called everyone to clap for him. Ben was so surprised by all the attention that he forgot that he was crying!
I have still been going to our local YMCA usually three times a week. While my weight is still about the same (probably from too much creme brulee and duck), my blood pressure and cholesterol have greatly improved.
For anyone who is interested, here’s the curried duck recipe:
1 four to five pound duck
Green seasoning (I describe what that is here)
1 tsp fresh thyme
3-4 cloves garlic
1-2 tsp Salt
Cilantro or shadon bene
Juice from one large lime
1 medium onion
2 tablespoons oil
3 tablespoons Trinidad curry powder (some of the manufacturers have blends specifically made for use with duck or goat)
1/4 cup water
Hot peppers to taste
Cut the duck into pieces, wash with some white vinegar and water. (I remove the skin because there is so much fat underneath. I have found that ducks are much harder to cut up and skin than chickens! Does anyone know if you can buy pre-cut duck in Trinidad?)
Marinate the duck with the green seasoning, garlic, thyme, cilantro, salt, and lime juice (and hot peppers if your family will eat them) for a few hours.
Dice onion, heat oil in a large pot. Add onion and cook until starting to brown (I added a little extra garlic here too). Mix curry powder with water, add to onion and oil. Wait until the mixture is thickened, then add the duck. Cook uncovered, stirring periodically until most of liquid has evaporated, then more water can be added to make gravy. I think ours took about 45 minutes to cook completely. I suppose if I had covered the pot at some point it might have cooked more quickly.
Garnish with cilantro if desired. Serve with roti or rice.