With Old Man winter creeping at our doorstep, a flashback of summer kept the snow and cold away for just a little bit longer. Recently on November 15, for one night only the Philippines and Trinidad sparked a love child called “Manila Nights Caribbean Heat”. The team from Baonbistro had the pleasure to work with Chef/Owner Ave Dinzey formerly of Purple Hibiscus Restaurant and in my opinion, arguably the best Caribbean food our city has to offer.
I first met Ave Dinzey a few years ago at a Reggae Festival in the Old Market Square. Here was the first time I tried her ancestors famous “doubles”(doubles a street food from Trinidad is a fried flat bread usually made with curried chickpeas were created in 1936 by Ave’s relatives in Trinidad). I then got thinking to myself “I wonder what doubles and roti and other traditional Caribbean foods would taste like with say Filipino Mungo or Adobo chicken?”
Fast forward to August, after attending a Purple Hibiscus pop up dinner Ave and I exchanged information and a plan for a fusion dinner was hatched.. After weeks of planning and preparation a culmination of Filipino and Trinny food into a mash up of flavors not yet seen anywhere before on November 18.
Reggae playing in the background paired with Angostura Rum and a lively group of diners was the perfect backdrop for this 6 course Fusion dinner. Courses included Burnt Sugar stew and Lechon Lumpia (from the minds of baoncraftlumpia), Caribbean jerk chicken pancit was another hit. The famous doubles were filled with our traditional mungo in place of chickpeas and the flavors blended perfectly. Adobo chicken roti with papaya salad made up the main entrée with a twist on the traditional Halo Halo “of D’islands” which included Rum leche Flan as well sa jackfruit, Ube Ice cream and Coconut jelly. Still Hungry? Good, food like this is made once a month by the guest chef and I with a focus on Nouveau Filipino food. A proceeds of each dinner and Baoncraftlumpia order goes to “The Baon Project” lunches made for the less fortunate.
Come see and taste what this cities culinary community has to offer, see you at the next dinner.
Photos by Peter Ruiz