FC: Daniel Owens's Guide to The Cocos (Keeling) Islands
1: Daniel Owens The Ultimate Guide to the Cocos Islands
2: What are the Cocos (Keeling) Islands The Cocos Islands, also known as the Keeling Islands are a small band of 24 islands off the east coast of Australia. Though they are considered territories to Australia, they act as an independent country. They were founded by Captain William Keeling in 1609 but remained uninhabited until the 19th Century. In the Cocos Islands, the climate is very mild and tropical, with occasional rainfall. The geography is also tropical with coral reefs and rain forests in abundance. There are also only two islands that are inhabited, so its not too populated. Most people come as visitors. There is a mix of languages, but the primary Language is English.
4: The Cuisine of the Cocos (Keeling) Islands The main food sources come from fish, chicken, and vegetables. Since the land is tropical, the soil there is moist and suitable for vegetation. There are only two restaurants on the the two inhabited islands: The Tropika Restaurant on West Island, and Bunga Melati on Home Island.
5: Dishes of the Cocos (Keeling Islands include -Roti -Martabak -Island Lemon Chili Chicken -Homemade Curry Puffs -Sambal Udang Just to name a few.
6: Roti Whole Wheat Flour (Chapati Flour) – 2 cups Salt – 1/2 tsp (optional) Oil – 4 tsp Warm Water – 3/4 cup All-purpose flour – for rolling and dusting Method: 1. In a large mixing bowl, mix Chapati Flour and Salt well. 2. Add Oil and mix until all lumps are gone. 3. Add Warm Water a little at a time to form a medium soft dough ball. Do not overwork the dough. 4. Add few drops of Oil and coat the dough ball. Cover and let it rest for 15 minutes. 5. Heat Tawa or skillet on medium heat.
7: Roti (continued) 6. Knead the dough once and divide into golf ball size balls. 7. Dip one ball into the All-purpose flour to coat and roll it out into a thin disc. Keep dipping the rotli into the dry flour to prevent it from sticking to the rolling surface. 8. Shake or rub off excess flour from the rotli and place it onto the hot tawa. 9. Flip to the other side once you see bubbles appear on the surface. Allow it to cook for 10-15 seconds. 10. Increase the stove heat to High, gently pick the rotli up with tongs, remove the tawa off of the flame, flip the rotli over and place onto an open flame. 11. The rotli should balloon up. Flip it over and cook on the other side. 12. Place the cooked rotli into an insulated container and smear it with Ghee or clarified butter and repeat the process for the remaining dough.
8: Martabak Ingredients: 1/2 cup flour 1/4 cup sugar 1/2 teaspoon yeast 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 eggs 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 cup water 2 tablespoons butter 1/4 cup chocolate 1/4 cup peanuts 1/4 cup sweetened condensed milk
9: Directions Combine first 7 ingredients in a bowl. Adjust water amount to make a slightly runny batter and let sit on the counter for 3 hours. It will thicken up. Finely chop the chocolate (good quality works best). Finely chop the peanuts (salted works best). Spray a nonstick skillet or griddle and cook the batter pancake style (makes 2), flipping once. When cooked, butter the top. Pour generous amount of sweetened condensed milk over top and sprinkle with chocolate and nuts. Fold in half like a taco. Cut into strips and serve warm.
10: Island Lemoned Chili Chicken Ingredients: 1/3 cup lemon juice 2 tablespoons olive oil 1 tablespoon chili powder 3 cloves garlic, minced 2 tablespoons mustard 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon white pepper 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
11: Directions Combine all ingredients except chicken in heavy-duty zip-lock food storage bag. Add chicken; close bag and zip to close. Place in bowl or baking dish and refrigerate for 2-6 hours. When ready to cook, prepare and preheat grill. Cook chicken for 12-17 minutes, turning once and brushing frequently with marinade, until chicken is thoroughly cooked. Discard remaining marinade. Serves 4
12: Homemade Curry Puffs Filling 1 tbsp vegetable oil 1 onion, finely chopped 700 gms – 1.5 lbs potatoes, diced and boiled 1 carrot, grated 1 cup peas 1/4 cup soy sauce 1/2 tsp ground turmeric 1/2 tsp ground cumin 1/2 tsp ground coriander 2 tsp fish sauce 1/2 cup lemon juice 2 tsp sugar Dough 2 cups flour 1 tsp salt 1 tsp baking soda 3 tbsp ghee [clarified butter] 1 egg, lightly beaten water
13: To Prepare the Filling In a small bowl, combine meat curry powder and chili powder, Worcestershire sauce and soy sauce, add a few tbsp of water if necessary and mix into a thick paste Heat wok on high, add peanut or vegetable, stir-fry onions, curry paste 1-2 mins, add beef and potatoes, season with salt and pepper Stir-fry until oil begins to separate from the meat Pour off some of the excess oil and add a cup of water Lower heat and simmer till quite dry Remove from heat and cool in a strainer To Prepare the Dough Sieve together flour, salt and baking soda Using your fingers, rub ghee [clarified butter] into the sifted flour until it resembles fine crumbs Mix egg in, add water gradually, press into a ball Knead dough by pushing away, using the heel of your hand till smooth On a floured surface, roll out dough, cut into rounds 3 inch in diameter Flatten each round with a rolling pin, fill with a tablespoonful of beef & potato filling In a small bowl, add 2-3 tsp water to the beaten egg Fold over in half, pinch along the edges to seal, using a little egg wash if necessary to seal Brush the tops of each curry puff with the egg wash Preheat oven to 350F degrees oven. Bake curry puffs until light golden brown, about 20-30 mins Serve hot or at room temperature - ideal as a cocktail party snack!
14: Sambal Udang 5 tbsp cooking oil 500 shrimp(shelled and deveined) 2 cups water 2 tbsp tamarind pulp (mixed with 1/2 cup water & strained) 3 kaffir lime leave (sliced thinly) 2 tsp salt 1 tsp sugar Directions: 1. Combine all spice paste ingredients in a blender and blend well. 2. Heat up cooking oil, add in the blended spice paste and stir-fry until fragrant. 3. Add in shrimp & continue to stir-fry for about 2-3 minutes. 4. Add in water, tamarind juice, bringing it to a quick boil. Add in salt, sugar & kaffir lime leaves. Dish out & serve hot