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Where When How March/April 2017 : Page 117

believe in recreating tradition, putting a special touch to it.” Like his Tropical Conch Salad. A native dish and a bastion of our cuisine, Nik’s untraditional slant adds cantaloupe, mango, pineapple and fresh orange and mango juices. “So you get an array of flavours…you’ll get the sweet, the spicy, the conch – everything sweet and nice,” he said. Perfect heat and great acid-ity prompted my fellow diner to say, “My taste buds are tingling.” Crank up the heat if you dare by dipping a slice of scotch bonnet pepper into the conch salad juice. Next, he offered up a round of Chunky Conchy Chowder Shooters. “Something to warm you up and get you started,” he smiled. Very savoury with a hint of sweet-ness, thick and creamy with tons of flavour. Rolls are house-made, savoury and satisfyingly warm. Cracky Conch Fritters come on a stick with a side of Flamingo Sauce, so-called for its pink, vibrant colour. These sausage-shaped treats of spiced, minced conch and veggies were scrumptious and the sauce was an undisputed hit. “Get me a spoon!” I ranted. Chef Nik smiled and said with a grin, “The sauce complements any-thing, trust me.” The popular East Caicos Lemon Shark Spring Rolls are crispy and addictive delights stuffed with melt-in-your-mouth ‘hash shark.’ He explained the slow cook-ing process indicative of preparation methods dating back long before his time, when hash shark was a Saturday morning staple. “I just took the dish and did some-thing creative with it,” Chef confessed. Cue the Flamingo Sauce. More Starters include Cracky Conch, Curry Beef Spring Roll, Fire Engine Arancini made with hash corned beef, and salads-a-plenty with Garden, Mozza Tomato, Lobster and Caesar. Chef Nik admits he likes to give people what he likes. “If you look on the menu, you’ll see ‘ signature ’ on the side of some things, that’s what I eat, that’s what I love to eat.” So when it was time to choose main courses, he encouraged us to experi-ence some local delights done his way. The Drunken Bird is Chef Nik’s person-al favourite. It’s a whole Cornish hen mari-nated in his outrageously tasty and intoxi-catingly tangy Signature Jerk Sauce. My husband was instantly smitten with this CHEF NIK’S TAMARIND BBQ BABY BACK RIBS SIGNATURE CRUSTY GROUPER Visit the Turks & Caicos Islands at MARCH/APRIL 2017 • • • • • 117

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