|Limbo dancing, Spice It Up Miami|
Spice It Up Miami is an event that has been held the second Friday of every month since April of 2017. Participants experience Caribbean-themed music, dance, libations and food. As an added plus, some of these activities are hands on allowing for a more immersive, and fun cultural experience.
|Caribbean Marketplace, Little Haiti Cultural Center, Miami, FL|
The event has been held at the Caribbean Marketplace which is part of the Little Haiti Cultural Center. In part funded by the City of Miami, the Cultural Center is an event space whose mission is to increase exposure to Afro-Caribbean culture in addition to providing exposure to the arts. With the cultural experiences provided to attendees, Spice It Up Miami fits perfectly into the events and programs provided by the cultural center. Although a whole other story in itself, Little Haiti is a neighborhood in Miami that is one of the best known areas in the world for Haitian ex-pats. Interestingly, it acquired it's moniker 40 years ago after a story was published about the area in a local newspaper. Little Haiti became an official neighborhood in 2016 through the actions of the Miami City Council.
|Chef Sheron Chin, Spice It Up Miami|
After a little bit of dancing to Caribbean rhythms to work up an appetite, Chef Sheron Chin took the stage. Former owner of the noted Jamaican restaurant MoBay Uptown Restaurant in Harlem, Chef Chin beat celebrity chef Bobby Flay during a Jamaican Throwdown on the Food Network Channel. She presently co-owns Standing Ovation Events and Catering in Miami.
Chef Chin showed the crowd how to spice up their ice tea with a bit of ginger ale and bourbon. We were then treated to a demonstration of how to make chef's curried chicken salad with apples and cranberries, which was excellent.
|Sushi Ingredients, Spice It Up Miami|
We were then given everything we would need to make our own sushi rolls, which were sort of a soul-food/Japanese hybrid. Besides jerk chicken, we were also supplied with mango and avocado in addition to collard greens and sundried tomatoes to make our rolls. I know now my calling is definitely not sushi chef!
As a third course, jerk chicken on top of boniato mash with collard greens was served. Boniato is very hot right now, and is a white sweet potato indigenous to the Caribbean, Latin America and Asia. The sweetness of the mashed boniato melded perfectly with the chicken and greens, a very good dish.
Bourbon-infused banana pudding was the dessert of the evening. Even though I almost always avoid mixes, I really enjoyed this. The recipe was a real time saver and was made from banana pudding mix, bourbon and a can of condensed milk. Once set, top with fresh whipped cream and bananas.
Spice It Up Miami was a really fun event both visually and interactively. For something really different, a perfect event for date night. Even better, future events will include a walking tour of the area prior to the start of the event at the Caribbean Marketplace.
That's that for another post on Forks.
Spice It Up Miami
5925 NE 2nd St.
Spice It Up Miami Face Book Page
|Dancing, Spice It Up Miami|
|Table set up, Spice It Up Miami|
|Attendees, Spice It Up Miami|
|Curried chicken salad|
|Attendees making sushi|
|Finished "sushi roll"|
|Jerk chicken with boniato and collard greens|
|Bourbon-infused banana pudding|