We Were Bong Belly Pickneys – Jamaican Food
Over the years we have had some pretty nasty and iffy foods while traveling. We finally learned the secret of asking the native peoples where they eat meals out–and we have been very successfully sated.
In Jamaica, we were pretty limited as to the local dish offerings as we were staying at a resort hotel. But every day they would offer a few Jamaican foods.
The above dish, callaloo, is served at every meal. What is called “native spinach” is really taro- or amaranth leaves, chopped, and cooked with various vegetables such as peppers, onions, and garlic. It’s fantastic with eggs in the mornings.
Hubs likes the akee with salt cod (I wasn’t that into it). Akee is the strangest looking fruit–really alien-ish, but he likes this traditional dish which they usually serve at breakfast.
Fried bammy is made from the cassava shrub, sometimes called manioc or manihot in other countries. To prepare this dish, they have to grate the cassava tuber and then squeeze all the toxic juices (it can cause acute cyanide poisoning if not prepared properly) from it. Neither one of us ate this as a general rule not to eat fried foods.
Of course, the pièce de résistance–Jerk- chicken or pork! Jerk seasoning is a mixture of various spices including cayenne and chile which gives this dish a kick. Yum, yum, yum.
Anybody hungry? haha
“Food to a large extent is what holds a society together and eating is closely linked to deep spiritual experiences.”
Peter Farb and George Armelagos
‘Consuming Passions: The Anthropology of Eating’
© Teresita Abad Doebley. All rights reserved 2009-2011.