The Pretend Chef

Jamaican oven baked Jerk chicken

Spicy, hot, tender, juicy oven baked jerk chicken

Jamaican oven baked jerk chicken is spicy, hot, mildly sweet, tender, juicy with crispy skin and packed full of flavour. Jerk chicken is traditionally Jamaican, there is also jerk pork, jerk burger, jerk shrimp, jerk cauliflower etc.

Authentic Jamaican jerk chicken made in jerk joints use a jerk grill made out of old oil drums or barbecue grills, they use pimento wood to fire it up. The wood adds to the flavour of the jerk chicken but the pimento (allspice) seeds used in the marinade mimic this very well.

(more…)

Steak and kidney pie

Golden delicious steak and kidney pie

Desserts/ finger food, Meat, World food | September 25, 2017 | By

Steak and kidney pie is traditionally a British pie with filling that is slow cooked for a long time to yield a rich gravy with very tender, juicy meat. It is comfort food that truly comforts, in fact, if you are into comfort eating, stay away from steak and kidney pie, seriously it is addictive.

Although it takes a while to cook, it is worth every effort put into making it. Steak and kidney pie is

(more…)

Minced Beef Herb Empanada Filling

Awesome Minced beef Herb Empanada filling

Minced beef Herb empanada filling is one of my favourite empanada fillings. It is rich, filling and delectable. What makes it exceptional? It is the Simple Sofrito in it. It totally enriches the taste and makes the filling suitable for so many other uses.

The simple sofrito, a staple in Puerto Rican cuisine, is a blend of vegetables and herbs and is easy to make at home. It is a condiment that enhances the flavour of so many dishes. You should actually make it and store in the freezer for use when ever you need it.

(more…)

Minced Beef Empanada Filling

Minced beef Empanada filling

Meat, Stews/ Sauces/ dips | August 18, 2017 | By

Minced beef empanada filling is a juicy, delicious, hearty pie filling, similar to the Jamaican beef patty. It is very easy and straightforward to make and is the filling I use the most.

This filling can be made even more substantial when you include 

(more…)

Gizdodo, Gizzard and fried Plantain

Sweet and salty gizdodo, gizzard and plantain

Gizdodo, gizzard + dodo = gizdodo (dodo is fried plantain). The name is simple enough for one to guess the 2 main ingredients, gizzard and plantain. The dish is also simple enough to prepare and cook but when it comes to the taste, you realise where the originator of this dish channelled their creative energy. Gizdodo is fried gizzard and plantain coated in tomato sauce.

(more…)

Peppered Ponmo, Peppered Cowskin

Soft, spicy and sticky Peppered Ponmo (cow skin)

Peppered Ponmo is a staple ‘small chop’ (hors d’oeuvre)in Nigerian parties and bars. It is soft, hot, spicy and slightly sticky with a sauce that feels like savoury caramel. Delicious in every sense of the word. Normally, you will not serve your guests only Ponmo in their soup or stew, you will include other cuts of meat. An exception is if you are serving Peppered Ponmo.

Ponmo is the processed skin of a cow. The skin from different parts of the cow will have subtle differences in taste and texture. Some are

(more…)

Bushmeat and Vegetable

Special Bushmeat and Vegetable

Meat, Recipes, Salads | June 11, 2017 | By

In Nigeria, the success of a party is judged by the quantity, variety and availability of food and drink. Variety is a key factor, most especially, variety in meat, fish and other seafood dishes. Sometimes, the variety is so much that they are brought out in phases. This could include suya, nkwobi, isi-ewu, peppered chicken with various pepper dips, homework, pepper soup, peppered bush meat, cow head ponmo (skin), oxtail, peppered snail or gizzard, Asun, slabs of dry fish or stockfish steamed in pepper sauce, tiger prawns, fried croaker fish etc. Bushmeat and vegetable will

(more…)

Nigerian Cornish Pasty

Desserts/ finger food, Meat | June 8, 2017 | By

Nigerian Cornish pasty is a wholesome hand pie filled with meat and vegetables. The few times I have bought Cornish Pasty in Nigeria, have been underwhelming. More like a meat pie with a different name, so I now make my own.

I love Cornish pasty not just because it’s awesome but it is full of history and I love anything with history and culture. To learn about the history and regulations of Cornish pasty visit

(more…)

Nigerian Meat Pie

soft and golden Nigerian meat pie

Desserts/ finger food, Meat | April 4, 2017 | By

Nigerian meat pie is a hand pie or turnover and is one of the most popular snacks in Nigeria. I am presumptuous enough to say that it is the fastest selling item in any eatery or fast food restaurant in Nigeria.

From the rich and expensive meat pie sold in casual dining and fast food restaurants to the cheap and almost empty ones sold in showcases at motor parks and open markets, Nigerian meat pie never fails to satisfy. It is a complete meal that can be taken on the go which is part of what makes it popular.

(more…)

Nigerian Sausage Roll

Golden melt-in-the-mouth and flavoursome Nigerian sausage roll

Desserts/ finger food, Meat | April 4, 2017 | By

Nigerian sausage roll is a snack of seasoned sausage meat wrapped in dough. The Sausage roll is common in countries with a British influence like Nigeria. It is so popular in Nigeria, that every eatery or fast food restaurant must include sausage roll on its menu. Freshly baked sausage roll should be soft and golden with well-seasoned sausage meat inside.

The quantity and quality of both dough and filling are as varied as the restaurants. You can get Nigerian sausage rolls with hard, rubbery, buttery, crumbly or flaky dough. The fillings of some sausage rolls are thick and robust, full of flavour while others have a streak of sausage meat painted

(more…)

%d bloggers like this: