Norman Van Aken

Aroma Triggers

Sep 20, 2014


Sep 13, 2014
Norman Van Aken


©2014 All Rights Reserved by Norman Van Aken

Use on almost any preparation you would use a regular barbeque sauce on. Experiment!

Can also be used as a potent dipping sauce for fried and savory items.

Yield: 1 3/4 Cups 

·         2 Cups orange juice, reduced to a near syrup (about ¼ Cup, cooled somewhat)

·         ½ Cup Koshi Miso Paste (We use ‘Marukome Boy Koshi Smooth Paste’)

·         2 Tablespoons Dark Roasted Sesame Oil

·         1 Tablespoon soy sauce

Octopus Balls

Sep 6, 2014
Norman Van Aken



Aug 30, 2014
Norman Van Aken

PAN-COOKED FILET OF KEY WEST YELLOWTAIL with a “Belly” of Garlicky Mashed Potatoes and a Citrus Butter Sauce

©1999 All Rights Reserved by Norman Van Aken

Yield: 4 entrees For the fish:

  • 1  egg
  • ¼ Cup half and half salt and pepper
  • ¼ Cup flour
  • 4) 8 ounces fillets of yellowtail snapper (or other thin, delicate fish)
  • ¼ Cup clarified butter, to cook the fish in

For the citrus butter: Yield: 1 ½ Cup

Passion Fruit

Aug 23, 2014
Norman Van Aken

Guilty Pleasures

Aug 16, 2014

Frito Pie

Aug 9, 2014
Frito Pie
Norman Van Aken


©2014 All Rights Reserved by Norman Van Aken and Justin Van Aken. Excerpted from “My Key West Kitchen”, Kyle Books

The Midget was known foremost for its barbecued ribs. One day Sammy got the idea to cut the meat off the ribs leftover from the night before and toss it in a pot of chili. Because most home cooks are not faced with loads of leftover rib ends, we’ve replaced them here with braised pork shoulder to make a chili that’s just as flavorful but without the work of slow cooking on the grill and having to take the meat off the bones.


Aug 2, 2014


Jul 26, 2014
A batch of home made butter.
Norman Van Aken


Norman Van Aken. © Copyright 2014

The olives here are "broken" so we can remove the pits. Then we make a simple compound butter with them with plenty of herbs, garlic, and spices to serve on the beef. Allow the butter to soften a little before placing directly on meat or fish that are hot from the grill, pan or oven.

Yield: 1 ½ Cups

Vaca Frita

Jul 19, 2014
A plate of Vaca Frita with rice and fried plantains
Norman Van Aken

Before I looked at him I heard his voice. He was ordering from the blackboard menu.

''Vaca Frita please with moros" he added. American accent all the way. But he knew he was going to be 

  getting rice and beans when he requested those items. Confidence all the way. He was told in Spanglish, "you get y una mas 'Side'."

He responded. "Do you have Maduro Plantains?"