Adoption Update and... Griyo!

After six months of hard work, lots of papers, interviews, classes, education, check ups, evaluations, notaries, etc... that we couldn't have done without countless messages of support, love, and blessings (thank you all), we have COMPLETED OUR HOME STUDY!  It has taken all day for that to sink in.  Believe-you-me, it seemed surreal for a bit after I received the message that our home study had been approved and we were ready to move to the next step in our adoption journey.  Our home study was pretty routine, from what I could tell, right up until the end when a few new requirements popped up that caused a bit of scrambling, but in the end, it. is. FINI.  We now begin our dossier, after first applying to immigration for permission to bring a child into the USA.  The wait time for approval from immigration is about 7-9 weeks, enough time to gather the rest of the paperwork, etc. for the dossier. While both (all) of us are ready to jump on a plane and bring home the fourth member of our family, we know we still have some steps ahead of us...only now, we're that much closer.

To celebrate tonight, I made grillots or griyo.  This recipe always comes up when you research Haitian cooking.  The cookbook I used states "Griyo is one of the most important dishes served by Haitians.  This meat is served at every Haitian party without fail."  Well.  Tonight was definitely cause for a party...even if it was just our little party of three.  I have found many griyo recipes, some call for frying the meat after braising, some call for different ingredients than this one.  I suppose I have to do some more research to do to find out just how authentic this one is, but the A Taste of Haiti cookbook by Mirta Yurnet-Thomas and the Thomas Family seems to be pretty reliable. 

Thankfully, I had a little extra time this afternoon to grab the ingredients (one even came from our garden!) and get it made.  Dinner was on the table by 6:30, and it was amazing.  All of us loved it.  Evie actually cleaned her plate.  I'm not sure that's happened before.  I did not make the sos ti-malis, or any sauce for that matter, and frankly, we were fine with it.  Mark even had his trusty bottle of sriracha beside him and I'm pretty sure it was never opened.  Trust me folks, this one was an absolute winner.  Evie decided it should be her little sister's welcome home meal.  Mama agrees.

A few ingredients, featuring a sprig of thyme from our garden!


from A Taste of Haiti by Mirta Yurnet-Thomas

4 to 6 pounds pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch cubes
2 limes, cut in half
4 tablespoons pikliz juice (homemade Haitian condiment)
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
4 cloves
1 onion, sliced thin
3 garlic cloves, crushed and minced
1 thyme sprig
1/2 green bell pepper, sliced thin
2 shallots, sliced thin

Wash meat in cold water.  Clean meat with lime halves and rinse with water again.  (I cut it into 2-inch cubes after this then.  The recipe doesn't stipulate when to do it, but it felt easier when it was two big hunks of meat rather than littler pieces).  In a large [non-reactive] bowl, marinate meat with pikliz, salt, black pepper, cloves, onion, garlic, thyme, green bell pepper, and shallots.  Marinate at least 1 hour and up to overnight.  [I did one hour, that's all the time I had...definitely want to do this again with a full overnight of marinating].

Marinating.  I covered with cellophane for the hour.

Cook, covered, on medium heat for 40 minutes or until fork tender.  [I used my dutch oven stove top, then switched to glass baking pan for the oven in the next part]

Preheat oven to 375°F.  Place meat in oven pan with juices and cover with aluminum foil.  Cook for one hour, covered, and another 30 minutes, uncovered, or until golden brown.  Serve with rice.

Fresh out of oven.  I so wish you could smell the wonderfulness filling my kitchen

Thumbs up from our official taste tester

Clean plate!


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