Grilling for dad
Proud papa, Richard McCreath, looks on fondly at his daughter Amanda, as she prepares for him a Father's Day treat to remember - succulent Char Siu Copperwood Pork Tenderloin done with a cauliflower mash and red cabbage slaw.
Owner of the popular catering company, Gourmet Jamaica, Amanda McCreath is a self-proclaimed daddy's girl, and in his eyes, she can do no wrong in the kitchen. "She does very good pork, as she did today. I'm a steak person as well ... and she does a nice beef Wellington and she's very good at handling meat on a whole. I'm very happy that she's actually doing something that she loves," said Richard with pride.
McCreath inherited her cooking skills from her mother and maternal grandmother, but her father admitted that he has been the beneficiary of all their culinary skills. However, it wasn't always so, and Amanda recalled when it was her goal to change that.
"He's a very picky eater, and he wouldn't eat anything unless my mother made it. So when I started cooking, it was always my goal to get him to start eating from me," disclosed Amanda.
Food has always been a big part of the McCreath family life, and many Sundays have been spent with Amanda and her mother, Celia, in the kitchen trying different things. For Richard, nothing beats a good pork chop with a little fat on it. "I have to admit, I think pork without fat isn't real pork. I think you have to have pork with a little fat on it, and the skin, crispy. I love that!"
Mothers Who Fathered
Across town, Christina Taylor had her boyfriend, William Thwaites, assisting her with a Father's Day dinner for their families. Christina's mother, Ann, had to fill the role of father and mother after her husband, Gordon, passed away while Christina and her brother Geoffrey were still very young. This meant Chrstina always celebrated Father's Day with her mom, and this year, she thought a special treat for both her mom and William's father (William Thwaites Sr) would be perfect.
William's grandmother, Pearl Chang, was also in attendance and William Thwaites Sr loaned his expertise to help with overseeing the meal's preparation.
Christina's culinary skills are self-taught, and it's a recurring joke that her current level of culinary prowess is a surprise, because for such a long time, she did not even have a working stove.
"My mother operated a restaurant, and I worked in hospitality. For a long time, our stove wasn't even 'hooked up'; we just ate out constantly," Christina told Food. But eating out all the time quickly got boring, and having moved out on her own, her confidence in the kitchen developed through trial and error, reading cookbooks and watching cooking shows.
For Father's Day, using their home-made double-barrel smoker, Christina prepared Copperwood Pork Country Style Ribs in a sweet cherry and blackberry BBQ sauce, butterfly CB chicken in a herb marinade, smoked BBQ CB Chicken, smoked pork belly with a Red Stripe honey mustard glaze, and the accompanying sides were a jalapeno cornbread and a Southern coleslaw.
After enjoying the meal, William Thwaites Sr was obviously pleased and declared his Father's Day treat to have been a big surprise, and one that tasted exceptionally good!
While proud of her daughter's accomplishments in the kitchen, Ann doesn't lay any claim to them. She explained, "I think she has developed her own style, her own skills. I'm a different cook. I do quick and easy stuff, and for her meals, preparation takes time. She does spend a lot of time prepping and cooking."
A centrepiece of the house is the double-barrel smoker used to prepare the meats. Using locally and internationally sourced parts, the smoker took about a month and a half for Taylor and Thwaites to build.
"It took time getting the parts, and we both worked full-time, so it was whenever we had spare moments. It was labour-intensive, but it was worth it. It's the centrepiece for when we're cooking to impress, or having gatherings. It's easier and time was put into it [building the smoker], so you know it's loved," they explained.
Amanda's Father's Day Meal
Here, Amanda shares the recipe for her Char Siu Copperwood Pork Tenderloin and accompanying sides!
1 medium head cauliflower,
4tbs salted butter
3tbs sour cream
1tsp garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1. Boil cauliflower until tender, and drain off the water. Add all ingredients to a bowl, mash the cauliflower until it has the same consistency of mashed potatoes. Add salt and pepper to taste and garnish with parsley (optional).
Red Cabbage Slaw
1/2 head red cabbage, thinly
2 medium carrots, shredded
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
1/3 cup rice wine vinegar
1. Toss all ingredients in a bowl and let it sit for at least an hour.
Char Siu Copperwood Pork Tenderloin (8 servings)
4 Copperwood Pork Tenderloins
1 head of garlic, chopped
1/4 cup favourite pork rub. Rub down the tenderloin thoroughly.
1 cup Scotch or whisky (use
1 jar Char Siu sauce
1/4 cup ginger, chopped
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup scallion
1/2 cup Hoisin sauce
1. Rub the Copperwood Pork tenderloins thoroughly with the pork rub and place in a deep dish. Mix the garlic, scotch (or whisky), Char Siu sauce, ginger, brown sugar, scallion and Hoisin sauce together and pour most of it over the tenderloins (reserve just enough to use as a gravy/glaze for the cooked pork).
2. Massage the marinade into the meat for at least three to four minutes. Seal in foil and leave overnight in fridge.
3. Get the grill nice and hot. Remove the pork from the marinade, making sure excess bits of seasoning are taken off. Place the tenderloins on the grill for about seven minutes.
4. Flip and grill for about six minutes, then shift the meat to a cooler part of the grill and let cook over medium heat for about five minutes.
5. Take the reserved marinade (not from the dish the pork was in) and place in a small pot and boil over heat to cook. Brush this over the pork as it cooks.
6. When finished, remove from heat and let sit about three to four minutes.
7. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and slice to serve.