S.G.I. 2021 Chapter 3

Ahhh, the meals. Some could argue this is the best part of any vacation. Traveling with Eric, food is never far from our agenda. SGI food is mostly (but not always!) about a meal that is a ‘production’. And by that I mean it is a good thing.

Our first production meal was Paella. A Spanish rice dish, generally accepted as originating in Valencia, Spain. A unique seasoning associated with this dish is saffron. Depending upon your location the veggies and meats can vary. We’re using clams from Cedar Key, Florida and shrimp from the surrounding bay.

No finished photo, we were too busy eating this delicious dish. Maybe next time.

Another evening turned into a (former) typical SGI meal: fried fish and fried shrimp.

Sushi, Poke’ bowl and rolls. Who would have guessed in those first SGI trips I would be eating raw fish for dinner. And, who would have guessed that a sushi mat needed to be packed from home. And, who would have guessed that you could find a sushi mat kit on the island! Below are the results, courtesy of Dennis.

This production involved Eric and Dennis.

The shrimp were steamed before topping the rice, along with a slab of raw tuna, sliced thinly for the other offering. Someone made plans………otherwise why would you pack black sesame seeds – just saying.

The Poke’ bowl I mentioned earlier………….here it is with some asian-marinated and grilled redfish, tuna, cucumber, shrimp and avocado.

Etouffee, a dish found in both Cajun and Creole cuisines, typically served with shellfish over rice. Etouffee is French for ‘smothered’. Also, one of Eric’s favorite dishes to prepare and eat. Warner prepped the shrimp.

While Eric chopped some green onions. Along the side you can see part of the ‘trinity’: onions, celery and bell pepper, chopped and diced.

Yeah, I got a photo of the finished meal.

Here was a first for us (really, just Eric and myself)………….baked, lightly seasoned, crisp greens. Ansley had done this at home and it was a great idea to use some of the greens we ‘gifted’ them from our garden. Collards, mustard greens and kale were trimmed for step 1.

Before tossing with olive oil, salt and freshly chopped rosemary for Step 2.

Then came the waiting game in a low and slow oven. Very nice and quite tasty! Nope, no photo. 😦

Prior to any S.G.I. trip, Eric usually brings along some home-made frozen food. It was perfect for lunches. Thaw, heat and serve. Can’t get much easier – at least for me.

A week prior to the trip, Eric smoked a chicken and made gumbo – my absolute favorite and always requested recipe from Eric’s repertre’. Gumbo comes from the Bantu langage, meaning okra, a typical ingredient used for thickening. It’s defined as ‘aromatic soup-stew charactistic of Creole cuisine’. Eric always has to serve it over rice. Me? I can eat it with or without rice. Yes, there are bits of okra in Eric’s gumbo.

We also brought some frozen chili. Love my beans in chili. Can you see them below? Eric – maybe a few more beans next time?

Potage soup – what is that? Old French calls this ‘food cooked in a pot’. It had its origins in the medieval cuisine of northern France. It’s different every time and created from what it’s on hand. Ours was composed of potatoes, carrots home grown arugula & mustard greens. Add in a drizzle of creme fresche and you have a tasty, warming meal.

And a frozen package of our cooked greens. We periodically harvest our greens in the winter and blanch before putting them up to serve the remainder of the year. Those ‘white’ pieces of goodness in the pot – pork, for extra seasoning.

My contribution………………..frozen cookie dough balls. One evening I actually baked them, while the rest of the week, they were eaten as is.

Why did I include the shot below? Peas. These were supposed to be a part of the paella and they were missed. Sorry Dennis. Maybe Eric will remember next time.