Over the last few weeks I have alluded to the fact that I write a column, “Cooking with Chef Sian” for The Miami Times. The Times is a weekly publication that is available throughout Miami- Dade county and online. The column began publication on January 8 but, it took me a few weeks to realize that maybe the column is and should be an extension of this blog. Common sense doesn’t comes easily for me sometimes.
So, starting this week; you will be subjected to a recap of my culinary adventures in the form of a blog post. To make it easier to keep up each blog post will bear the same title “Cooking with Chef Sian” Excerpts from the blog post will appear in the paper each week. Each article will also include a recipe. This weeks recipe Braised Oxtails and dozens more, many of them unpublished elsewhere, can be found by clicking the recipes tab above.
In this week’s column I’m asking readers to share with me, their favorite Miami Soul Food/ African American restaurants. My reason behind this is twofold. First and foremost, I always want to make sure that I’m giving people what they want. After all the customer is always right. Second, when I began looking around for recommendation on restaurant in the Miami area I realized that whether it was Soul Food, African, Caribbean or otherwise there just wasn’t much to find about African- American foods. So, how could I give my readers what they wanted if there was little to no information on what they cooked and ate, locally?
Every so often I came across a mention of Chef Creole, the local restaurant chain known to serve up the wickedest Rice & Beans and seafood this side of the Caribbean. Jackson’s, an Overtown restaurant that sits on the fringes of Downtown Miami is much heralded for its soul food staples but even they don’t always make an appearance on a sampling of Miami’s culinary offerings. Even Tap Tap a Miami Beach restaurant that offers authentic and Haitian- inspired cuisine in an upscale environment, seldom makes the list. this despite maintaining its location and standard for 2 decades. But for the most past the African- American market is not reflected in the local media. So I thought here’s an opportunity to compile my own ‘best of’ list, with the help of my readers. No matter where I looked we just aren’t making the list.
The way I see it with 20k copies of the paper in print, plus an online audience I’m bound to get a few replies. It also gives me a good excuse to eat out A LOT for the next couple of weeks. This way I can encourage restaurant owners and Managers to share the column with their customers. An overwhelming response would be good for my ego and career. Over the next couple weeks I will remind readers to submit their responses and even set a deadline. Something I forgot to do when I enthusiastically submitted this week’s article to the Editor. The winning restaurant will be selected solely based on the # of votes received. Of the responses I receive one person will be randomly selected to join me for lunch at the winning restaurant.
If you’ve read this far, don’t stop here. Comment below, email your responses to firstname.lastname@example.org and share this post with your Miami friends and relatives so they can put in their 2 cents too.