One evening at Marie Permenter's house in Trinidad, with Scotch-and-coconut water cocktails in hand, Mary Jane and I began discussing the versatility of mangos. Marie dashed into the kitchen and proceeded to whip up the following chutney for us to taste. Because of the ingredients, one would think that the taste is overwhelming. But quite the contrary; it is delicate and can be used as a dip for chips (plantain chips work well), vegetables, or crackers. Spanish thyme is also known as Indian borage (Coleus amboinicus), and Cuban oregano. Its origin is unknown, but it is grown as a fresh herb in many parts of the Caribbean. From the article Mango Madness!
This is Leonelly’s recipe for soy-marinated chiles. She served these made with jalapeños, but said they were best made with guero chiles. Could the use of soy sauce be a further indication of the Japanese influence on the cuisine of the Baja? Note: This recipe requires advance preparation.
The technique of soaking a food in a liquid to flavor it—or in the case of meats, to tenderize the cut—was probably brought to the Caribbean by the Spanish. A marinade is easier to use than a paste, and when grilling your jerk meats, the marinade can also be used as a basting sauce. “In Jamaica,” notes food writer Robb Walsh, “like Texas barbecue, jerk is served on butcher paper and eaten with your hands.” Serve this version of jerk with a salad and grilled plantains.
The neighboring island of Mauritius in the Mascarenes has a harissa-like sauce called mazavaroo that is usually served on sandwiches. This recipe for it was given to one of my writers, Leyla Loued-Khenissime, by Virjanan Jeenea, the sous-chef at the Oberoi Hotel in Mauritius. Leyla writes: “I was happy to see that his recipe is simple compared to others I have run into. I tried it four different ways: with fresh bird's eye peppers and again with fresh Thai dragon peppers, then adding shrimp paste to one and ginger to the other. The best result I obtained was by following the Oberoi recipe with the bird's eye peppers, although it still lacks that smoky fantasia found in the jar I initially bought. Below is the Oberoi's adapted version.”
Most of the calories in fajitas come from the toppings that we pile on, including cheese, sour cream, and guacamole. If you replace these condiments with a high-flavor salsa, you won't miss any of the flavor.
Named after the zombie-like stilt character that prowls around during Carnival celebrations, this sauce features two ingredients common to Trinidadian commercial sauces, papaya and mustard. The sauce can be used as a condiment or as a marinade for meat, poultry, and fish.
Anyone who has eaten at my house knows that sooner or later they will have something flavored with two of my favorites--chiles and rosemary. Depending on your preference, the marinade can be strained before reducing. This recipe will also work well with ribs, roasts, or even cubed lamb, which can be made into kebabs.