Friday, April 25, 2014

Fry Bake, Crispy on the outside, Soft on the inside

 
 
If you are not a trini, then you would find this bread rather contradictory; how can a bake be fried? I am not sure what the origins of this fried bread are, it could be Indian as it is usually eaten with things like tomato choka, or it could be African in origin as it is eaten with buljol, salt fish and shark. Bake and Shark is a Trinidadian institution.
 
It's a fish sandwich famously available at Maracas Beach in north Trinidad. The sandwich comes as the name suggests, with 'Fry Bake' and 'Fried Shark' but what takes it over the top for me are the vegetable toppings and condiments. Vegetables such as tomatoes, onions, shredded mango, shredded cucumber, pineapple chunks and cabbage and condiments such as chadon beni sauce, pepper sauce, mayonnaise, garlic sauce, mango kuchela, tamarind chutney and old standbys ketchup and mustard. It's definitely a Trinidadian invention and absolutely a must try if you visit Trinidad. Richard's Bake and Shark is a popular Kiosk in Maracas Beach, I've had quite a few from Richard's; they usually have the longest line and are really good.
 
Fry bake also makes a great trini breakfast and can be paired with tomato choka, fry aloo (potato), saltfish buljol and bygan choka. My favorite is bake and fry tomato or fry aloo. Fry Bake could almost be an indian puri, although it's a bit bigger and thick enough that it has a pocket inside to put yummy fillings in.
 
 
Cuisine:        Trinidadian Indian
Good for:      Break fast, Lunch, Dinner
Category:      Bread      
Time:            1 hour
Serves:         4
Skill:             Medium
Suitable:       Vegetarian
 
 
Ingredients

2 c           white flour (or combination white and whet
2 tb          baking flour
½ tsp       salt
1 to 1½ c water
                vegetable oil for frying
 
Procedure 
  1. Mix flour, baking flour and salt.
  2. Make well in middle of flour. Pour water a little at time while mixing until you get a semi-dry dough.
  3. Knead for 5 minutes until you get a smooth ball.
  4. Let rest for 30 minutes.
  5. Divide dough into 8 balls and knead these into smooth balls and let them rest for 15 minutes.
  6. Heat oil in a frying pan, oil should be 1½ to 2 inches in depth.
  7. Roll out a ball of dough till around 4-5 inches diameter using a rolling pin.
  8. If a small piece of dough sizzles, oil is ready.
  9. Drop a flattened dough into the hot oil. Let cook on one side for a few minutes and then on the other side for a little less.
  10. If it puffs up, even better as it's easier to make a pocket inside the bread after it has cooked.
  11. Take out and drain on adsorbent paper.
  12. Repeat with remaining dough balls.

 
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