|Dishes||Langouste a la Vanille, Poulet de Comoros (with sweet mash)|
|Population||850,688 (160th largest)|
|Land mass||1,861 km2 (171st largest)|
|Languages||Comorian, French, Arabic|
FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Comoros is an island nation in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Mozambique and Tanzania, and sharing a maritime border with Madagascar. It is a member of the Arab League, with Arabic, French and Comorian as its official languages. It is made up of 3 different islands; Grande Comore, Moheli, Anjouan, and also has claim to the island of Mayotte.
Its cuisine has influence from French and Arabic cultures, with aromatic spices. Thanks to its geographical location, the cuisine also features lots of fresh seafood and wonderful fruits. Mwara went down this road and made Langouste a la Vanille, a famous dish made traditionally with fresh South African lobster caught in Comorian waters and newly harvested vanilla beans, which are a major agricultural crop. The dish has its origins in French cuisine. I was unable to source lobsters and so served raw whole tiger prawns in the sauce instead. I roasted them in their shells and removed the meat, as described for the lobster. Bridget made a vegan version of another classic main course Poulet de Comoros. This is served with a delicious sweet potato mash, which has coconut flakes and cinnamon in it – almost a dessert!
Langouste a la Vanille
- 2 lobsters OR 2 bags of tiger prawns (M used prawns!)
- 1/2 vanilla bean, sliced
- 3/4 lb fresh spinach
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1/4 cup white wine
- 3 medium shallots, peeled and finely diced
- 7 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 medium onion, finely sliced
- salt and pepper to tase
- Prepare the tiger prawns by laying out in a roasting tin, tossing in oil and roasting in a hot oven until cooked (max. 10 mins)
- Remove the pan from the oven and set aside to cool.
- Melt two teaspoons of unsalted butter in a saucepan.
- Sauté the shallots in the butter for about three minutes until soft.
- Pour in the wine and vinegar.
- Cook on medium high heat for about five minutes
- Turn off the stove when the liquid has been reduced to about a tablespoon.
- Stir in six tablespoons of butter, one at a time
- Prod the seeds out of the halved vanilla bean and add to the sauce
- Strain the sauce into a clean saucepan, and discard the diced shallots
- Season the sauce with a sprinkle of salt and black pepper. Set aside.
- Chop whatever meat you have into ¼ inch chunks and place the meat chunks into a container and cover with aluminium foil to keep warm
- Melt a tablespoon of butter in a pan and sauté the spinach and onions. Cook until the spinach is tender.
- Season with salt and pepper
- Arrange the greens onto the serving dish, and then place the warm lobster on top of it.
- Reheat the sauce and pour it over the prawns and serve with rice.
Poulet de Comoros
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled and finely sliced
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 packet mushrooms (I added these in cause I had some kicking about)
- (I also added 1 finely sliced fresh green chilli)
- 1 packet vegan chicken (B used the This is not chicken)
- 3/4 cup coconut milk
- 1/2 cup vegetable stock
- 1 tsp ginger
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
Sweet potato mash
- 3 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 5 carrots, peeled and sliced
- 1/2 cup desiccated coconut
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp vegan butter
- Heat the coconut oil in a pan on a medium high heat. Fry the garlic and onion and chilli for 5 minutes.
- Add in the chicken and mushrooms and a little more oil, stirring for 5 minutes.
- Add the stock and put the lid on the pan for 10 minutes. Then add in the coconut milk and stir well, and stir in the ginger, salt, and pepper. Cook on a low-medium heat for 10 minutes until the sauce has reduced a bit.
- Serve it up with the mash (mash all ingredients up) and parsley! YUM!
Merci and see you in Congo! M + B x