Caribbean cuisine

Caribbean cuisine is a fusion of West African,[1] Creole, Cajun, Amerindian, European, Latin American, Indian/South Asian, Middle Eastern, and Chinese. These traditions were brought from many different countries when they came to the Caribbean.[1] In addition, the population has created styles that are unique to the region.

Mangu with veggie meat


The Caribbean is a fusion of West African, Amerindian, East Asian, Arab, South Asian, British, Spanish and French cuisines. In 1493, during the voyages of Christopher Columbus, the Spaniards introduced a variety of ingredients, including coconut, chickpeas, cilantro, eggplants, onions and garlic.

Caribbean dishes

Dhalpurie roti, pumpkin tarkari, channa and aloo, and curry goat, from Trinidad and Tobago

Ingredients that are common in most islands' dishes are rice, plantains, beans, cassava, cilantro, bell peppers, chickpeas, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, coconut, and any of various meats that are locally available like beef, poultry, pork or fish. A characteristic seasoning for the region is a green herb-and-oil-based marinade called sofrito, which imparts a flavor profile which is quintessentially Caribbean in character. Ingredients may include garlic, onions, scotch bonnet peppers, celery, green onions, and herbs like cilantro, Mexican mint, chives, marjoram, rosemary, tarragon and thyme. This green seasoning is used for a variety of dishes like curries, stews and roasted meats.[2]

Traditional dishes are so important to regional culture that, for example, the local version of Caribbean goat stew has been chosen as the official national dish of Montserrat and is also one of the signature dishes of St. Kitts and Nevis. Another popular dish in the Anglophone Caribbean is called "cook-up", or pelau. Ackee and saltfish is another popular dish that is unique to Jamaica. Callaloo is a dish containing leafy vegetables such as spinach and sometimes okra amongst others, widely distributed in the Caribbean, with a distinctively mixed African and indigenous character.

The variety of dessert dishes in the area also reflects the mixed origins of the recipes. In some areas, black cake, a derivative of English Christmas pudding, may be served, especially on special occasions.

Over time, food from the Caribbean has evolved into a narrative technique through which their culture has been accentuated and promoted. However, by studying Caribbean culture through a literary lens there then runs the risk of generalizing exoticist ideas about food practices from the tropics. Some food theorists argue that this depiction of Caribbean food in various forms of media contributes to the inaccurate conceptions revolving around their culinary practices, which are much more grounded in unpleasant historical events. Therefore, it can be argued that the connection between the idea of the Caribbean being the ultimate paradise and Caribbean food being exotic is based on inaccurate information.[3]

By location

See also

  • Ground provisions
  • List of cuisines
  • Caribbean Chinese cuisine
  • Puerto Rican Chinese cuisine


  1. "Cuisine." Archived 2011-09-28 at the Wayback Machine (Caribbean.) Accessed July 2011.
  2. Caribbean Green Seasoning Recipe
  3. Graziadei, Daniel. “The Fierce Questioning of Fictional Caribbean Communion in Édouard Glissant’s Ormerod and Fortuné Chalumeau’s Désirade, ô Serpente!” In Caribbean Food Cultures: Culinary Practices and Consumption in the Caribbean and Its Diasporas, edited by Wiebke Beuhausen, Anne Brüske, Ana-Sofia Commichau, Patrick Helber, and Sinah Kloß, 89-96.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.