A CULINARY JOURNEY AROUND THE WORLD
A weekend of cooking and reading and here’s a review of my
favorite recipes from Kelis Rogers’ “My Life on A Plate.”
By Rodney Goode
It is no surprise in this entrepreneurial age we live in, that Rappers and Singers want to be Actors and Actors want to be singers (and sometimes Rappers). On occasion these endeavors are successful but rarely do you see any of the above leaving the glam and the glitz of celebrity to become an accomplished chef or cookbook author. Kelis Rogers is the exception. The ex wife of superstar rapper, Nasir Jones a.k.a Nas, Kelis is quite the accomplished musician herself. She plays several instruments and is probably best known for her hit,
“Milkshake.” Her recent labor of love, however is far removed from that lifestyle. “My Life On a Plate,” heralds her successful ascendency into the ranks of the culinary royalty. My Life On a Plate is a global culinary journey that tells the stories of a world traveler who enjoys good food. Her fondness of hole-in-the-wall eateries combined with her Le Cordon Bleu education is evident throughout the book and clearly serves as her inspiration. She adeptly captures the sights and sound of exotic locales and provides the reader with easy to follow instructions that allow you to taste her journeys via her refined palate.
Foodies who travel will certainly appreciate her cookbook and the recipes will transport you there. This is a recipe source that is sure to be used over and over again. Two recipes of note that are certain to be favorites of traveling foodies, due to their taste and ease of preparation, are Kelis’ Beef Sliders and Shrimp Alcapurias.
“My Life On a Plate is a global culinary jouney that tells the stories of a world traveler who enjoys good food.”
Fans of Kelis may be surprised to know that during a musical hiatus, she worked on a food truck (yes, a food truck)! In the book she share this story, as well as her
delicious recipe for Beef Sliders. Sliders can be found on menus in practically any modern eatery, but what makes Kelis’ sliders a new standard for home cooks is not in the preparation of the beef. Kelis stays true to her roots and utilizes a traditional Caribbean method of preparation in need of little improvement. The recipe calls for the braising of shredded flank steak seasoned in spices endemic to the region. So what’s the game changer you ask? It is the sauce. Kelis, a culinary entrepreneur in her own right, has a unique line of sauces and provides her recipe for a Root Beer Espresso BBQ sauce that can only be described as simply delectable. Kelis’ Beef Sliders are perfect for a quick hand-held meal in front of the television or can be easily used for either a hors d’oeuvre or snack platter.
The second recipe noted is for Shrimp Alcapurias. As an introduction to the recipe, Kelis shares glimpses of her time in Puerto Rico and anyone who has been there is certain to be whisked away again to sand and sun to reminisce of this beach food favorite. Alcapurias or fritters are a handheld delicacy from Puerto Rico and while they are quite common throughout the Caribbean, this version is made with a batter of taro and/or green bananas. They are usually stuffed with meat or seafood and the latter, shrimp to be exact, and are what Kelis utilize in her recipe. Prepared to her specifics these fritters make a perfect snack or side. Leftover, they are a welcome addition to any lunchbox. My Life On A Plate is a cookbook that will make you want to see, feel, and taste the places Kelis has been for yourself and if you have been to any one of her destinations already, be prepared for a wonderful (and tasty) trip back.
Bon Voyage and Bon Appétit.
About the Author
Born and raised in Harlem, New York, Kelis Rogers, better known by just her first name, first came to prominence singing the hook of Ol’ Dirty Bastard’s hit Got Your Money. Years of chart dominating songs and thrilling, boundary-pushing music followed resulting in millions of albums sold and numerous top 10 hits.
She has released six albums, won Brit, Q, and NME Awards, and been nominated for two Grammy Awards. Her latest album Food, made with a live band and horn section, mints a sound that is rootsy, raw, and soulful without ever being retro. Upon release the album was praised as one of her most adventurous works yet.
Kelis has toured every corner of the world, performed at every major festival, and shared the stage with the world’s top artists. A fashion icon and designer muse since the early days of her career, she is celebrated for a personal style which is often as creative and forward-thinking as the music she makes.
Besides her career in music, Kelis is a Le Cordon Bleu trained chef with multiple television cooking specials, and a burgeoning entrepreneurial streak with her Bounty & Full organic sauce line.
“My Life on a Plate” by Kelis copyright 2015 Kyle Books