Saturday, May 06, 2006

Akoho misy Sakamalao (Chicken with Garlic and Ginger) & Verenga (Roasted Shredded Beef)

Madagascar is a Southern Africa, island in the Indian Ocean, east of Mozambique and is often referred as the "The Great Red Island". The Malagasy are of mixed Malayo-Indonesian and African-Arab ancestry and they are about 52% indigenous beliefs, 41% Christians and 7% Muslim.

It used to be a French Colony and you will recognize the French influence. It is not so highly spiced as the rest of Africa is and the curry is subtle, very much like Malaysia. Most recipes call for a little bit of hot peppers called Sakay but they usually make a pepper sauce separately so individuals can control the amount. Rice is very important part of their meals. It is simple food but flavorful and very easy to prepare.

The main beverage they have is a burned-rice beverage called Ranonapango. Usually the cook makes extra rice and the remainder is heated until it is burned and gets a characteristic aroma. Boiling water is poured over the rice. It is then cooled and strained and chilled. They drink this beverage instead of water on the island.

Akoho misy Sakamalao (Chicken with Garlic and Ginger)

3 pounds chicken cut into serving pieces

2- inch piece of ginger, grated or crushed

6 cloves garlic, finely minced or crushed

Rub garlic and ginger into chicken. Sprinkle a little salt on top. Place small amount of oil in large frying pan and gently cook chicken on low heat until done, about 40 minutes

Serve with rice.

Optional: Cover chicken and bake 50 minutes at 325 degrees F. Uncover and bake 10 more minutes or until tender.

Verenga (Roasted Shredded Beef)
8 servings:

In a 4-quart saucepan:


4 Ibs. BONELESS CHUCK, cut in 1-inch pieces.

1 quart WATER

2 Tbs. SALT

2 cloves GARLIC, minced finely

1 cup ONION, sliced.

Cover and bring to a boil; simmer gently for 2 hours or until meat can be shredded with a fork.

Add water if necessary to keep meat at simmering point.

Shred the meat by cutting it into thin strips. Meat should come apart easily.

Transfer the shredded meat and sauce to a greased 9 x 12-inch baking pan (oven-proof).

Roast at 400' for 30 minutes until it is nicely browned across the top.

Garnish with 3 or 4 PARSLEY SPRIGS and bring to the table on a trivet.

Serve with white rice.

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