Bananas Foster is what inspired this recipe. Caramel, spice, and bold tropical sweetness abounds. I rarely buy canned pineapple for this recipe, but in a pinch it can be used. Substitute enough canned pineapple to equal what size a stack of fresh slices from one pineapple would be. You can also do this one on the grill; use a piece of foil over medium heat coals and turn the pineapple slices frequently to avoid burning. Pay close attention to them when they are baking; I have burned a batch or two of these, but, oh my, they are worth the attention. When you have prepared a batch of these, there are numerous ways to put them to use. I like mine with ham steaks, or pork chops or tenderloin, they’re great with good French Vanilla ice cream, and will complement any fruit tart, or any slice of cake, or simply prepare a plate of roasted pineapple presented with knives and some whipped cream as a dessert. If you want a non-alcoholic version, simply omit the dark rum, or substitute it with a nice apple cider. If you don’t have the allspice, any other tropical spice, or combination of tropical spices will do, such as; freshly grated nutmeg, ground clove, cinnamon, freshly ground star anise, and even some red and white freshly, and finely ground, peppercorns work very well (just a pinch or two) in a caramel.
Pineapple slices from one ripened, fresh pineapple, cut to ½” thickness
1 stick of butter
¾ cup of dark brown sugar (molasses or dark corn syrup can be substituted)
½ cup of good dark rum
1 tsp of Madagascar vanilla flavoring (just kidding about the Madagascar piece, just (please) don’t use imitation vanilla flavoring)
½ tsp of allspice (please see above for spice alternatives)
Preheat your oven to 375°F. Combine all of the ingredients, except the pineapple slices, in a small saucepan. Over medium heat, stir the caramel mixture until it combines and comes to a soft boil. Wrap the bottom of an 8 x 12 or 9 x 13 pan with aluminum foil, taking care to come up the sides where possible. Arrange the pineapple slices in the pan to be spread out as much as you can. Pour the caramel sauce over the pineapple slice, lifting the bottom slices so that all the slices are coated evenly. Roast the slices in the oven for about 30-45 minutes, turning the slices and re-coating if necessary every 15 minutes, or, until the fruit has softened and the sauce has caramelized on the fruit. Just keep an eye on them. There is not much difference between perfectly done and burnt to the point of being inedible. Enjoy!
A hodge-podge from the start, this wonderful salad is one of those “play-with-it” salads. If you started with just the crab and some salad dressing, and simply added stuff that you thought would taste good with those two items, you could possibly end up with a crab salad version similar to the one below. Don’t hold back, have fun with this one; it’s a great salad to have for supper on a warm summer evening and unless you are such a purist that you refuse to eat mock crab, try it with the mock crab first before you go out and spend too much for lump crab meat. Note: If you can, make this a day ahead of the day you plan on serving it; I think it gets better by sitting overnight.
¾ cup to 1 cup frozen peas, thawed, patted dry
1 ½ lbs. imitation crabmeat, cubed (of course, other crab “product” may be used)
3-4 stalks of celery hearts, chopped fine
2 TBSPS sweet onion, finely chopped
1 TBSP green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 cup salad dressing (or mayonnaise, if you must)
½ cup chili sauce, or ketchup
1 TSP prepared horseradish
1 TSP Worcestershire sauce
A pinch each of salt and freshly ground black pepper
Lettuce leaves (optional, for serving)
3 hard cooked eggs, quartered lengthwise, for serving
1 large, ripe, tomato, cut into wedges, for serving
In a bowl, loosely mix together the peas, crab, celery, onion, and green pepper. Cover this bowl with a piece of plastic wrap and set aside in the fridge while you prepare the dressing. In a smaller bowl whisk together the dressing, chili sauce, horseradish, Worcestershire sauce, and the salt and pepper. Set the dressing aside and let it rest for about 30 minutes to meld the flavors. Whisk the dressing one more time after resting and pour over the crab and vegetables mixture. Lightly toss the salad to coat it evenly but beware of over-mixing it because any form of crab can be fairly fragile; softly fold in the dressing only long enough to evenly coat the salad. Refrigerate the salad for no less than an hour before serving and overnight is better. I like to serve it on a clear glass plate on top of a nice lettuce leaf surrounded by tomato wedges and topped with cooked egg.