Mauritian Pudding Maïs (Sweet Polenta Cake)

“Pudding maïs” is a Mauritian staple sweet treat. This tea time snack is loved by both adults and children alike and is an amazingly easy treat to make with only a handful of ingredients.

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This treat brings back so many wonderful memories of my primary school days with my sister. We used to get small triangular slices of this pudding as an afternoon snack from the street vendors. Mauritians are very attached to this delicious treat and relish it with their afternoon cup of tea.

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“Pudding maïs” is a dish that requires very few ingredients but lots of patience (and elbow grease). Some people also like to add soaked raisins (sultanas) in the pudding or to top it with almond flakes. I also like my “pudding maïs” less on the sweet side but you can make it as sweet as you like.

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Enjoy!

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Mauritian Tamarind Rice (Poulisadon) – A Step-by-Step guide

If you have never eaten tamarind rice before, boy you are in for a treat!

Tamarind rice or Poulisadon as it is commonly called in Mauritius is a vegetarian meal that is usually prepared during the religious fast. Poulisadon is usually accompanied by an eggplant dish, greens, coriander chutney and hot tamarind sizzling peppers. I couldn’t find any peppers for this time but all the other fixings are here and my, are they good!

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Easy Pear, Lemon & Blueberry cake

If you are not big on baking or you are just lazy like me, then this cake is for you.

As we wrap up 2016, I decided to reflect on all the things that I accomplished this year. I told myself that instead of writing down New Year’s resolutions (that I’ll realistically never accomplish), I would focus on the things that I have already started and take it a notch further.

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Mauritian Egg Rougaille

This is the perfect dinner to make when your pantry is as empty as your stomach.

The rougaille is a traditional recipe from Mauritius and Reunion island. Reunion island is famously known for its “rougaille saucisse” but the rougaille has been part of Mauritian cuisine forever.

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Mauritian Piments Farcis

Ah the taste of these stuffed chilies….

Piments Farcis is usually served as delicious gajacks (appetizers). For this recipe, I have used Turkish chilies that are milder in taste and roomy enough to hold all of this tasty filling. If you are using a spicier chili, make sure you remove all the seeds and soak it for 10 minutes in water. This is very important else it will be impossible to enjoy your piment farci as the taste will be very spicy.

Here’s what you will need:

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Once the filling has cooled down, stuff the chilies generously. Also how adorable are these bowls? I got them from a market in Tajikistan. I am clearly in love with them.

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Piment Farcis are great appetizers for events. You can change the filling by making it vegetarian (cheddar/mozzarella diced cheese, corn, chopped shallots) or substituting the tuna with meat.

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Look at these babies. So good!

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If you have some remaining batter, you can use them for making “croquettes” or tempuras. I have used shrimps here but you can use cheddar cheese, onions, eggplant, zucchini, potato, the possibilities are endless…

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So yummy!

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Tajikistan

Salamalek Tojikiston (Hello Tajikistan)!

Largely unexplored today, Tajikistan is part of the Silk Road. A country with endless dramatic landscapes and rivers drizzling down from the melting glaciers of the Pamir mountains.

Tajikistan is closely bordered by Afghanistan, separated only by a river, most of the way along the Pamir Highway to the narrow Wakhan Corridor also know as the Roof of the World.

People travel to “The land of the Tajiks” for the gorgeous landscapes and abundance of open spaces and greenery: some travel by bike, others are there for trekking and climbing. However, the heart and soul of this country consists of its people and their hospitality.

There are many preconceived notions about countries ending with ‘…stan’, especially one that borders so closely with Afghanistan. Not to mention a country with a muslim population. Gasp!

What we found were people with an incredible heart and tolerance. Women dressed in traditional and modern fashion living together in close knit communities. People going out of their way to understand and help us – even though we don’t speak Tajik or Russian. And people who like to dance – so much!

During this trip, we also saw glimpses of beautiful Afghanistan across the river, a place stuck in time with traditional huts and nearly no electricity or modern infrastructures. We bathed in hot springs, ate countless apricots, drank too much chai, rode yaks, danced to Tajik music, and we came back with incredible memories, legendary stories and a flower Rubob (local guitar).

We hope you enjoy this video as much as we liked making it.

Rahmat Tojikiston (Thank you Tajikistan)!