leek and corn risotto dusted with chopped chives

Leek and Corn Risotto

One of my favorite features of my apartment is my kitchen. Let me tell you…the kitchen is the thing that pushed me over the hill. Originally when I saw the listing for the apartment, I was on the fence about it. But I got a showing and I was desperate so I came reluctantly. Boy! When they say God will not let you miss what is yours…it is my kitchen. It is beautiful. It is spacious. When I made the leek and corn risotto for my friend F. the other day, I had a moment of gratitude. I looked at her sitting on the other side of the granite countertop, and I said a quick prayer of thanks to God.

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Slow Roasted Tomato

Yes, I know that Labor Day has gone by and the world seems to be abandoning summer for fall. But, now is the perfect time to make this slow-roasted tomato. At the end of summer, tomatoes reach their peak sweetness. The vines become heavy, the store shelves become full of vibrant tomatoes and the prices go down. So, now is the best time to buy a bunch of tomatoes and slow-roast them for the fall at least.

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nigerian jollof rice on a white plate

Mama Sunday’s Jollof Rice

I arrived at my godson’s mother’s hospital bedside carrying a bucket of steaming hot jollof rice, a few hours after he was born. Along with the fragrant rice, I made fried chicken and dodo (aka fried sweet plantain). In my Iro and Buba, made out of ankara fabric, I was there to welcome this child into his heritage as a Nigerian boy. He might have been born in America but as his godmother, I intend to keep him connected to his roots. One of the best things about being a Nigerian person is our connection to our foods. Jollof rice, with its long traveling roots, is certainly part of the Nigerian heritage.

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Serving a scoop of chipotle mujadara with rice, lentils, and corn into a white plate with a wooden spoon

Chipotle Mujadara

A few years ago, I went primarily plant-based for a few weeks. At that time, I was constantly looking for new food options. Mujadara is a plant-based options that has remained a favorite of mine. What is there not love about rice that is cooked with onions and spices? The other thing I always loved about this dish is the blend of lentils and rice. I sometimes feel guilty about eating white rice but the addition of the lentils boosts the nutritional profile. A few months ago, I put together a version of mujadara that features one of my favorite spices, chipotle pepper.

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corn and zucchini fritters vertical

Corn and Zucchini Fritter

I have spent the past couple of days developing recipes for this blog. Luckily, I have also had access to taste testers. My taste testers, aka my friends and family, have been giving me feedback. This corn and zucchini fritters is one of the recipes that scored high marks. Since it got a high mark, I thought I would share quickly so that you can make some fritters from your late summer zucchini crops.

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smashed twice cooked cumin potatoes in a white plate with a white sauce and parsley

Smash it!

smashed twice cooked cumin potatoes in a white plate with a white sauce and parsley

I first made this potato recipe on Thanksgiving day. It was one of those things that I just kept playing with, in my head. Unsurprisingly it worked. This recipe for Smashed Twice Cooked Cumin Potatoes is one that would work so well in any meal prep plan.

For me, when I meal prep, I want to be able to combine my foods with different items. To prep the potatoes I used in this recipe, I boil the potatoes and smash them once they are soft. Once the potatoes cool down, I store it in the fridge. This initial cooking of the potatoes gives me a lot of flexibility when I am ready to use the potatoes. So instead of having finished dishes, I like to have cooked or prepped items that can be combined to make different dishes. This way I don’t get stuck in a rut of feeling like I am eating the same thing every day.

smashed twice cooked cumin potatoes in a white plate in a black cast iron pan

Spices can really make a huge difference in changing up the way food taste. The cumin in this smashed twice cooked potatoes does a marvelous job making this feel so different. Cumin and I have had a loving relationship. This relationship with cumin only got better once I became obsessed with chicken fat. This means, more often than not, when I use cumin in a recipe, chicken fat makes an appearance. I just found that the combination works. Individually, cumin and chicken fat work. Together, they are magic like in this Smashed Twice Cooked Cumin Potatoes.

If you can’t get chicken fat, duck fat is also a very good option for cooking this potatoes. If you don’t want fat from a bird, a butter or ghee works nicely as well. The point is that you want to use a fat that has good flavor when you are making potatoes. Don’t skimp on flavor by using neutral oil.

I served the smashed twice cooked cumin potatoes with a lemony yogurt tahini sauce. The recipe for the sauce is here.

smashed potatoes in a black cast iron pan.

Smashed Twice Cooked Cumin Potatoes

A meal-prep favorite of mine, these smashed twice cooked potatoes are crispy and loaded on flavor when done. Don’t believe me, try it!
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Side Dish
Servings 4


  • 1.5 pounds Potatoes russett potatoes work well
  • 1 tsp Cumin seed
  • 3 tbsp Chicken fat duck fat or ghee make a great substitute
  • Salt to taste


  • Don’t peel the potatoes. Simply scrub the skin. If the potatoes are large, cut into large chunks.
  • Cook the potatoes in well-salted water until fork tender. Drain
  • Allow the potatoes to cool a bit. Once you can handle then, flatten with the side of a cup, rolling pin or your palms. If you are meal prepping, this is the best point to store the potatoes.
  • When you are ready to eat the potatoes, heat a pan big enough to hold all the potatoes. Add in 2 tbsp of chicken fat. Once that is melted, add in the cumin seeds.
  • Once the chicken fat is sizzling, add in the potatoes. Press the potatoes into the pan so that they spread out and flatten out. Then leave it alone. You want the bottom to fry and crispy up undisturbed.
  • Keep listening to the pan, as it starts to crackle regularly, you know it is time to turn. Usually takes about 7-10 minutes. It is time to flip the potatoes.
  • Try as much as possible to turn all of the potatoes. It is not going to be a neat singularly piece. It is likely going to crumble. That’s ok. 
  • Once you are happy with the new flat layout, tuck bits of the single tablespoon of fat leftover into the potatoes. You can place the bits of fat on the edge of the pan for extra crispiness.
  • Fry on the second side for about 5 minutes. Then you are ready to serve the smashed twice cooked cumin potatoes.
Keyword chicken fat, cumin, potato, potatoes, smashed potatoes