Update: As promised, here are all the chefs’ recipes from the market tasting event! Also, the Super Porkwich became a Super Borkwich (that’s a ground beef and pork shoulder mix) on Sunday night in the @MGFD_GCM condo kitchen. Highly recommend giving that recipe (courtesy chef de cuisine Bradley Herron) a whirl, too, if the occasion calls! Think sausage patty in non-breakfast form… Michael added shaved red onions to the salad mix, which I thought was a nice touch.
On Saturday, farmers and chefs gathered at The Farmers Market at The Grounds to celebrate local foods for Grand Cayman’s first of many more Slow Food Days. From chef Niven Patel of The Brasserie cooking farmer Patrick Panton’s all-natural chicken to smokey, jerky perfection in their Caboose, to the largest crowd I’ve seen turn up at The Grounds of supportive locals eager to taste the freshest products the island has to offer, it was a great day for the island. “I’ve seen this market for years, but never like this,” a seventh generation Caymanian woman pulled me aside to share. “This is Cayman.”
if things weren’t delicious enough in the morning, the celebration concluded back at Camana Bay with chef Jonathan Waxman’s farm-to-table dinner at Michael’s Genuine. The family-style menu of dishes from his new cookbook, Italian, My Way, featured locally-sourced ingredients like lionfish, Thai eggplant, fennel, green onion, green tomato, chicken, bacon, and more — the show-stopper being what may be the best fish he has ever tasted. 2-pound yellow eye snappers were stuffed with parsley, green olives, and thick slices of lemon, and after a generous shower of extra-virgin olive oil, some Cayman sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper, roasted in the wood burning oven. The meat was as plump and juicy as I can remember a snapper being.
Click here for our photos of the entire day. Huge thanks to Kerry Forbes from the Cayman Islands Agricultural Society and Alan Markoff of Slow Food South South for their partnership on the event, to his Excellency The Governor for championing local agriculture, and the generous support of our sponsors including Foster’s Food Fair, Camana Bay, Bon Vivant, Books & Books, Home Gas, BlackBeards, and Cayman Free Press. And of course to the folks without whom this event would not have been possible, nor delicious: chefs Sara Mair (Ortanique,) Niven Patel (The Brasserie,) Paul Carroll (Hemingway’s,) Keith Griffin, and Thomas Tennant (MGFD,) and farmers Hamlin Stephenson (Hamlin’s Farm,) Joel Walton (Plantation House,) Donna Connolly (Healther Choice Eggs,) Paul Bodden (Old Brown Ranch,) and Patrick Panton (East End Garden.) We will make all of their recipes available online later today in this post.