Hi my name is Sharnette but my family call me Ann. I grew up in Jamaica, loving the people, the culture, the weather and the food. For as along as I can remember I have been obsessed with food. I think about food when I am awake and dream about it in my sleep. I love to cook and enjoy trying new recipes. When I eat anything I think about ways to improve the flavor or other ways I could incorporate it into something else.
However there are times when I taste something and its just absolute perfection and needs nothing except my hands and mouth to eat it. When I cook for friends, I constantly hear, " Sharnette you need a restaurant." I have pondered, even had dreams about it. However right now at this moment this is where I want to be. At this point I want a life that allows me to be creative in the kitchen, to impart what I have learnt about food and to teach you how to prepare the dishes I have grown to love.
Childhood Memories at 972 London Ave
My earliest memory of being in the kitchen with my mom was at ‘972LondonAve’ and I thought about giving my blog that name. I vividly remember standing on a stool just watching her prepare meals or sometimes just to get a lick off her spoon. On one occasion I recall her cooking liver and she gave me the bowl to pour it in the heated oil. I was so scared of the splattering oil and my little hands were shaking. She eventually took over but that did not keep me away, I kept going back for more.
I even remember a time when my dad who loves seafood, brought home fish to cook. He would call me in the kitchen to help. One day I gave him the wrong spice to season some red snapper he was steaming. Of course it was when we started eating dinner that night that we realized the fish had an odd taste. We later found out that I gave him ‘chinese five spice’ to put on the fish.
Favorite catch phrase – Beg Yuh a Bite! – Jamaican Patois ( May I have a bite)
My family and friends often tease me tirelessly because I am always begging a bite. “Beg yuh a bite nuh” proceeds most sentences when we are in a food setting. One of my most cherished memories when I was a child is of me saying “Mummy, beg yuh a bite, ” she would respond, “You want a bite? laying a trap that I would walk into every time! “Like a lamb to a slaughter” I would go to her, she would grab my hand and bite me. Shocked and often dismayed, I would scream “Mummy!” to which she calmly replied, “You asked for a bite.” And so began my cat and mouse game with my mother, still begging a bite but never volunteering my hand.
My hope for this blog is to introduce you to the foods that I grew up on, teach you the basics of some of those favorites so that you can make it into your own.
I have lived in the UK and I am now residing in the US. Throughout my travels I have tried and tested many other national dishes of which a few have become favorites. So while Jamaican food will always be number one in my heart, there is an appreciation for other types of food.
Through this blog I will show you how food unites us. I can easily sit and talk food for hours with a stranger, old friend, new friend or a co worker and by mentioning that I like collard green or something else, you can see the barriers breaking down and that commonality forming. My diet has changed a lot in the past year and I don’t eat like I use to, but I am finding new and interesting ways to enjoy the food I grew up on. If you have gotten this far in my mini bio, thanks for reading through but more importantly come back again and again, tell a friend, try one of the recipes and always send me your honest opinion about how I am doing.
See you on the other side of the wall:)