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11.23.2008

Grand Bahama and Some Pigeon Peas and Rice

Well I'm back. I don't want make this a wordy post so I'm going to let Certain Someones pictures speak for most of the trip to Grand Bahama. We stayed at the the Westin Our Grand Lucaya. This is a wonderful resort that allowed us to just chill and do nothing. Unfortunately Certain Someone could not escape work and spent the first half of the trip working. But he did manage some beach time and a round of golf on one of their several golf courses. I was amazed at how easily Certain Someone could become a beach bum. I like to see him relax.


Isn't this beautiful? These are debris from a earlier hurricane . The photo was taken at a beach in the Grand Lucayan National Park. We took these pictures after a visit to underwater caves across to road. If you were a diver you could dive between the cavernous caves which housed Arawak Indian remains.The path to the beach was a lesson in flora and fauna. Who knew walking mangrove could be so beautiful. Reminded me of a tropical vineyard with all the gnarled branches. I was startled by the depth and life down there.But it was nice to come up and take in this beauty. A Victoria Secrets Photo shoot was going on a few miles down the sand bar.
I like this shot Certain Someone took. It doesn't make me look fat.

After our excursion we went to this lovely sea side restaurant and beach, Banana Bay. I had my first real Bahamian lunch of cracked conch( like fried calamari) and pigeon peas and rice in which I will give you the recipe at the end.Certain Someone regretted his fries and took to my rice. Unfortunately the Bahamas let me down with the food. Cynthia explained its not really the Caribbean because of its close proximity to the United States. And at the resorts its a lot of tourist fare.The Port Lucaya marketplace across the street was the got to place if you didn't want to pay an arm and a leg for hotel food. Thinks bars, pizza, Greek , Italian , etc.Stuff I can get at home. Conch is huge in the Bahamas. You will find this shell fish in Chowders,fritters,pasta, pizza, fries, steamed, etc. Its on every menu and pretty cheap. I liked it, Certain Someone not so much.Fish Fry's are big too. Grouper rules, but Barracuda can be found. A local told me not to fear it. A test to see if Barracuda is poisonous is to see if the flies come to it. If so, its good!But the drinks were plentiful and excellent wherever you went.Rum Runners was our favorite hangout. Drinks averaging $5 and great fun staff. I was sure to bring back my allowed liquor allocation. One of our favorite drinks was this retro Bahamian cocktail called a Gully Wash. Its Gin, Coconut Water, Condensed milk, with cinnamon and coconut meat shavings. Its great for the hoildays and even better served up in a coconut and allowed to brew. Its packs a punch for sure.
My final thoughts are of the locals. The dependence on tourism is huge in the Bahamas and the economic hardships we are all facing will really trickle down to to places like this where tourism employs a lot of the island. Even though it was still coming off season, there were a lot of empty tables and shops.I loved that they really thankful for each and every guests business. You don't get that lot and it makes you feel appreciated. In same token we were conscious of where we spent to be sure to visit everyone. The high season is about to begin and hope it goes better than expected. But as one retailer told me, we are all in this together.
I leave you with this Pigeon Peas and Rice I recreated at home today. Its full of island soul.

1 can Pigeon Peas( 1 lb)
2 cups rice
2 slices salt pork( soaked in water for a few hours and chopped up)
1 small can tomato sauce
1 red bell pepper
1 small onion
3-4 cloves garlic
3 cups water
black pepper to taste
In a large skillet fry up salt pork, onion, pepper for a few minutes. Add chopped garlic. Cook a few more minutes. Add sauce and pigeon peas. Add rice and water. Cover and cook until rice is done. Approx 30 minutes.
*Due to the salt in the salt pork, no extra salt is needed. Bacon is used more commonly.

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41 comments:

Judy@nofearentertaining said...

Looks like a great trip Courtney. To bad about the food. I always love the small local places with no names when I am there! Love those beaches. So wild looking huh?

kellypea said...

Lovely photos of you and your vacation! I've never been there, but love the way the uncrowded places look. Very relaxing! I'll be the water was lovely and warm, too. Welcome back and thanks for the recipe. We love rice dishes and often experiment. The flavors sound lovely together.

Christina said...

Beautiful pictures! You look very happy and it sounds like you had a great time. :)

Your recipe sounds really good.

Proud Italian Cook said...

Welcome back Courtney! Beautiful pictures CS took, especially the shot of you sun bathing, you've trained him well, a perfect angle!!
I got my hubby trained too!
That coconut drink would be high on my list, please recreate that on your blog, please!

Andrea said...

Welcome back! What a lovely vacation you had. I like that Gully Wash cocktail, it sounds perfect.

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

It seems you had a great time there! What great pictures and yummy food! I love that rice dish!

Cheers,

Rosa

Ivy said...

Welcome back Courtney. It's great to have you back and I'm happy you and CS had a great time. Bahamas sounds so exotic for us Europeans but only in our dreams as it's quite expensive. I also like to try the local cuisine but it gets a bit tricky if you don't know what you're ordering. When I heard pigeon peas rice, I thought there would be pigeon meat, peas and rice.... :)

linda said...

Looks like you had a wonderful time at the Bahamas. Pity the food was disappointing.
The rice looks delicious though...

The Caked Crusader said...

Ah, conch fritters! My favourite! Whenever I'm in Bahamas (I have work trips to Nassau) I always make sure I head down to Arawak Cay to get my fix of conch!
Sounds like you had a great trip - love the glam beach photo too!

TeachGirl said...

Welcome back! Tell CS that the pictures are lovely. Good to know that you had a good time.

Maryann said...

Look at that pretty girl! :)
These photos are fab!

Peter M said...

I'll take the beach before any other holiday...you lucky duck!

You look fab on the beach and I do love conch, get them up here with the Caribbean population in TO.

Welcome back!

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Sooooooo beautiful! The islands AND you!

I love, love, love conch, especially conch soup and conch fritters. Yum.

And pigeon peas with rice. Thanks for the recipe!

joanne @ frutto della passione said...

Looks like you had a fabulous time! Welcome home

Núria said...

Hola Courtney!!! I just came back from my trip too :D

I wanted to thank you for your recommendations... I bet you have the best taste ;D and also tell you that you look beautiful in ALL of the pictures!!! What a wonderful trip and the beach is not crowded at all... where you in Paradise?

I'm a rice devorator and yours looks fantastic... thanks for the recipe!

Ilva said...

oh it looks absolutely gorgeous, wish I could go there too but am happy to atleast see your pics! Thanks!

Jeanne said...

Oh Courtney! How fabulous you look! All that tequila must be working ;-)

And what a drop-dead gorgeous place. I have never visited the Caribbean and am beginning to see this as a serious oversight. Funnily enough, I made a version of rice & peas over the weekend - comfort food.

Great to have you back!

~~louise~~ said...

Welcome Home Courtney,
Well it certainly looks like your birthday excursion was sheer delight. You look fabulous! I also hope you will be sharing some of those drink recipes.

Ivy said...

There's an Award for you on my blog.

Deborah said...

It sounds like so much fun!! I'm itching for a vacation - we're going to Vegas this weekend, but I feel like I need more than a weekend!!

kilabyte said...

You little beach-bunny you .....

Darius T. Williams said...

OH my - such great pics...really! Looks like someone had a grand time.

You do know it's my turn next week, right?!?! I mean really - can't wait!

-DTW
www.everydaycookin.blogspot.com

marye said...

welcome back..you look beautiful!

Heather said...

You know what else doesn't make you look fat? Your sick cheekbones. Those things could cut glass!

Glad you're back, but I must admit - you look pretty much right at home on that beach.

Emily said...

Where the heck have I been?! You went to the Bahamas? Geeze. I am SO jealous.

The Pigeon Peas and Rice look really, really good.

You look really good, too. I'm not coming on to you, I swear. Certain Someone is a lucky man.

nyc/caribbean ragazza said...

What a great birthday trip.

These pics make me miss St. Martin/Anguilla. I dreaming of a nice piece of fish, maybe snapper and some johnny cakes right now. Perhaps followed up with some coconut tart.

Swati said...

Oh dear, you look so happy.... Nice to see that you had a great time..
Sorry, I missed the Sugar High Friday event...Next time for sure..

Mochachocolata Rita said...

wat a great holiday...and i do love the shot taken by your special someone ;) the color combo = perfection!

Mary said...

What a terrific vacation! The photo at the top you are stunning and I love your sun hat!
And yeah that rice looks great!

maybelle's mom said...

First of all, stunning pictures of you. That gin drink makes me feel drunk just looking at it. But, for me that pigeon pea thing looks so good--it makes me think of kichidi where indians cook dal and rice together.

Mostly, thanks for mentioning the global effects of this downturn. It is true that the most needy will become needier.

Nina Timm said...

You can really say that we are all in this together! I am envious of you going on this trip, though! I hope you appreciate a certain someone!

Rosie said...

Beautiful photos of your holiday Coco ~ love the top one of you. Therice looks yummy :)

Rosie x

Bellini Valli said...

Looks like you had the best part of a vacation...time to relax and enjoy some island hospitality and afoodie adventure:D

giz said...

I'm looking at gorgeous pictures and then I look outside and see snow flurries...there's definitely something very wrong with this picture. You look very happy and very relaxed. Good for you!!

Paz said...

Happy Birthday! Glad to read that you had a nice time in the Bahamas. Your pigeon peas and rice look delicious!

Paz

Dhanggit said...

Oh my dear Glamah, you are so pretty!! i would say much glorious than Bahamas lol! i'm so jealous I wish someone would offer me same thing when I reach my 40! Thanks for sharing a slice of paradise with us :-)

white on rice couple said...

Happy belated to you! OMG, you look AMAZING!! i don't believe you're 40!!!

Thanks for sharing your beautiful pictures of the beautiful Bahamas!

Cynthia said...

Love your pictures!

Ah yes, pigeon peas and rice is definitely Caribbean.

We Are Never Full said...

happy bday, coco! what a gorgeous post! btw, i would not normally say stuff like this to bloggers i really don't know in person but you are really pretty! your skin is flawless... damn you! i like 'headshots' too b/c my body can be whatever the imagination wants it to be. ha!

i love conch too... how funny your 'certain someone' doesn't like it. it is very mild - almost like squid in flavor. but you have to like that texture. mmmmm.

Lori Lynn said...

Love the photo of you in the hat, and the photomontages, and the pigeon peas rice recipe.

I was a guest chef on a boat in the Exumas, highlight was diving for my own conch, then serving it several different ways (scorched, chowder, fritters). Had one of the locals clean it though, that is not easy.

Lori Lynn said...

Oh gee, I forgot to say Happy Birthday!