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06/17/2010

“Doubles” the Fun

Today resident foodie Mia Aronson (once a pastry cook at Le Bec Fin before entering the world of Razorfish) gives us an inside look at next week’s Edible World menu and shares another recipe from Ann Vanderhoof’s memoir, The Spice Necklace. Check out Mia’s last adventure in Caribbean food here.


Ann Vanderhoof passes on some Trini (Trinidadian) wisdom in her book, The Spice Necklace: My Adventures in Caribbean Cooking, Eating, and Island Life- “Cold water, slight jelly coconut, and doubles will fix anything.”


Whether or not you’ve got something ailing you, a taste of Calypso’s doubles (tender fried dough around a savory chickpea filling with a healthy dash of homemade hot sauce) is worth a trip to the Chestnut Hill Farmers Market. At the next next Edible World you can meet Vanderhoof, hear about her travels, and eat a fabulous dinner from Calypso that starts off with… you guessed it… doubles.


tassa chicken
While reading The Spice Necklace the Tassa Chicken recipe caught my eye but seemed too time consuming for a weeknight meal. A couple quick revisions solved that problem and made this one pot dish a great addition to my regular rotation. This is a flavorful, spicy curry with a touch of sweetness from raisins and mango chutney. If you’d like to follow my shortcuts and have your meal on the table in under an hour, substitute boneless, skinless chicken thighs for the chicken pieces, which cuts the cooking time by 10-15 minutes, and season the chicken early in the day and leave it in the fridge. I wasn’t able to easily locate West Indian curry powder, but the regular curry powder I had on hand tasted pretty good!


Tassa Chicken
4 bone-in chicken quarters (about 3 lbs)
8 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Kosher or sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp vegetable oil
3 tbsp West Indian curry powder
2 onions, cut in eighths
4 medium tomatoes, cut in eighths
1 cup coconut milk
2 tbsp raisins
1/2 cup whole peanuts
1/2 cup sweet mango chutney
1 tbsp tomato paste


1. Cut the chicken into pieces at the joints, and season with the garlic, salt and pepper. Set aside for at least 1 hour.
2. Heat the oil in a large pot, add the curry and cook for about 2 minutes over medium heat, stirring to avoid burning.
3. Add the chicken pieces, and stir well to coat them with the curry mixture.
4. Add the onions, tomatoes and coconut milk. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 40 to 50 minutes until chicken is tender and sauce has thickened.
5. Stir in raisins, nuts, chutney and tomato paste; cook for a couple minutes more to blend flavors and heat through.
Serve over rice. Makes 4 servings.


– Mia Aronson

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