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You have to try these two Haitian fried dishes

The culinary Gods might have been in a blockbuster, fun mood while they got the idea of Haitian Patties. Here’s the thing. You can’t describe in dry written words how it actually feels to break the skin of the flaky exterior, dig in your incisors on the next layer and keep on pressing till some juice from the brilliant moist meat-beef or lamb, below oozes out and spreads and deluges your mouth, punctuated only by bursts of hot pepper. But be careful though, some of it might seep right into your soul. 

The preparation of dough in this patty is cumbersome. But we thought you already knew that the crisp multi-layers must come at a cost. And loads of patience at that. A perfect little recipe for making the puff pastry here should get you started. Modern bakeries operate on butter but traditional preparations use lard or shortening for the puff pastry. If you are an amateur, overwhelmed by this task, it would do well to rather buy pastry sheets. Also, you owe that baker in your local bakery heaps of appreciation. To be your own baker, try this Haiti Open Haitian Patties recipe at home today. 

The filling is made sensuously aromatic using choicest of herbs- thyme, rosemary, parsley and shallot and garlic. The meat is then rotated in vinegar and lime juice among other seasonings to create a tingling in your taste buds that won’t ever leave your mind. Once done, the snack may then be accompanied by a strong brew of excellent Haitian coffee to wash the flavours of the first bite down, before another bite arrives. This is a snack that demands to be had on a lazy Sunday afternoon by the pastures buried in a detective novel.

Akra, or Haitian fritters could compete with Haitian patties for your choice of snack to go along with your hot cuppa. Akra is most definitely an appetizer, although you could eat enough of them for a meal. Made with a Haitian native starch, Malanga aka Yautia, Akra is a popular street food. Malanga resembles a potato and is consumed broiled, fried or roasted. Add in a just mix of garlic, scallions and herbs bound together using flour and eggs and you get a fried delight which you possibly can’t get enough of. 

This Haiti Open Arka recipe is quick and easy and almost as flavourful as it can get. The credit goes to the flavourful, piment bouc, a Haitian pepper responsible for sprucing up most of the Haitian dishes. Grating or processing a malanga is an individual choice. Although food processors quickly turn malangas soggy and might cause you to entirely miss out on the texture. As far as the question of which condiments to be served on the side goes, Pikliz more than does the job. Pikliz the slaw like shredded vegetable condiment compliments the dish by cutting out the heaviness of the oil and granting a fresh tangy flavour. The preparation may take you 45 minutes and cooking time is 20 minutes depending heavily on the number of people you serve.

Those of you counting calories, beware-this is what you would call a sinful dish given the frying part. Obviously, there are alternatives to preparations and you could try greasing a ramekin and baking it. This may as well require a twist in the recipe. Nowadays an air fryer too, could come to the rescue. Just as a cautionary warning- air fried Akra may look starkly different although the taste factor is least compromised. 

Such interesting recipes call for an elaborate table laid out in your backyard and a backlit sun. With some close friends and a grill on red hot fire, discussing matters of birth and life (yes, you read that right!) and everything in between.