A taste of Caribbean cooking


There are students from all over the world at BYU-Idaho who contribute a different culture and background.

Gizelle Boncamper, a sophomore studying fine arts, said she is the only student from St. Kitts Island in the British West Indies of the Caribbean.

Boncamper said that when she is away from home, her mother’s cooking and Kittian food is what she misses the most.

“I do miss the Island food,” Boncamper said.”It is always something exotic or new. Sometimes some people on the island will try to experiment, like, ‘Oh I’ve never eaten monkey before; let’s try cooking monkey this time.’ I miss somebody trying something new.”

Boncamper said cooking helps her connect back home.

“For instance, the banana fritters, that’s something that my mom cooks every meal,” Boncamper said. “Instead of making candy and sweets, she says, ‘Here, this is your desserts, the banana fritters.’ So, everytime I make something to eat, I always think about making a banana fritters instead of eating chocolate or ice cream.”

Nearly 60 percent of college students have difficulty affording nutritious food, according to Healthline.

“In college, we don’t have time to eat healthy,” Boncamper said. We always go to Papa John’s or somewhere close to get something quick.”

Boncamper said taking time to plan meals can help a person be healthier, lose weight and save money.

One dish that Boncamper said she likes to make for her friends and roommates is a semi-roasted chicken with potatoes and mixed vegetables, banana fritters and sparkling cider to drink.

“This dish is basically 15 bucks for the total everything: the banana, chicken, vegetables, potatoes, flour, butter, the sparkling cider … and it works,” Boncamper said.

 

Banana Fritters
30 minutes
Yields 25 fritters

— ¼ cup milk
— 1 ½ cups flour
— 3 banana (ripe)
— brown sugar (as sweet as you please)
— ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
— ¼ teaspoon vanilla essence

  1. Peel bananas and smash them with fork in a large bowl.
  2. When the bananas are smashed add rest of the ingredients and mix into a batter.
  3. Set stove to medium high with oil in a frying pan. Let it warm up for 5 minutes.
  4. Pour tablespoon of batter to make oval shape on pan.
  5. Let it drain onto a paper towel. Enjoy!

Johnny Cakes
30 minutes
Yields ~10 cakes

— 1 cup water
— 3 cups all-purpose flour
— 1 teaspoon kosher salt
— 1 tablespoon baking powder
— ½ tablespoon butter (Country Crock is my favorite)
— ½ cups vegetable oil for frying

  1. Nicely mix and knead into dough.
  2. Make dough into little balls.
  3. Heat frying pan with oil for 10 minutes at medium high.
  4. Place dough balls into hot oil, flipping them until they start to turn a nice brown.
  5. Place on a paper town after to absorb any excess oil.

Semi-Roasted Chicken With Potatoes and Vegetables
2 hours

Whole chicken (2-3 lbs) 
— 1 teaspoon rotisserie seasoning
— 1 teaspoon salt
— 1 teaspoon black pepper
— 1 teaspoon garlic and onion powder
— 1 teaspoon paprika
— 1 teaspoon roasted garlic & herb powder
— Strips of green onion placed inside of chicken
Thyme sprinkled on top
— Vegetables
— Mini potatoes
— Carrots
— Broccoli
— String beans
— Onion
— Water chestnuts
— Sugar snap peas
note: you can choose to use any vegetables mix you wish.

— Coating for chicken:
— ¼ cup of ketchup
— Spoonful of honey mustard
— 1 spoonful of brown sugar
— Sprinkle parsley to your desire

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place chicken in a pan and sprinkle seasonings on the chicken and massage it in.
  3. Pierce the chicken inconspicuously under and around with knife 3-4 times so  the juices can soak within the meat.
  4. Add ¼ -½ cup of water to the baking pan to help with the steaming process, and then cover the pan with aluminum foil.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes (or until fairly cooked and you see the fat and juices come out of the chicken).
  6. Then flip the chicken and cook for 15 minutes.
  7. While baking, make the coating mix.
  8. Depending on how brown you want the chicken, coat the chicken with the mix every 15 minutes. Boncamper chose to coat the chicken 5 times.
  9. Once coating is done, add the potatoes. Bake it covered for 15 minutes.
  10. Add the rest of the vegetables on top and shake around the pan so the juice can season everything in the pan.
  11. Remove the cover and set the oven at 325 degrees and finish baking for another 15-25 min. or until everything is thoroughly cooked.

 



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