Jamaican Food: Vacation in Negril – Jerk Chicken, Curry Goat and Soursop

Ackee and saltfish? Jerk chicken?

I was very excited about these Jamaican dishes. I had no idea what ackee was, and did not know what spices are in the jerk seasoning. Aside from all kinds of drinks with Jamaican rum, I set it as my mission to find soursop juice. Another ingredient I did not know.

The common carbs on a plate is of course rice and peas ─ rice and usually kidney beans cooked with coconut milk. We were at a supermarket in Negril. Those kidney beans looking beans were labeled as “red peas.”

During our five-day trip, I tried jerk chicken from five different places and jerk pork from two. Jerk seasoning is the

Jerk chicken from Margaritaville at the Montego Bay airport.

Jamaican style barbecue rub. Some are spicier than others. You can find jerk pork, jerk conch and other grilled meat with jerk seasoning, but jerk chicken is the most popular. Be sure you look for street food stands with a grill made out of an oil barrel. Highly likely that’s where you would find the best jerk chicken of your trip.

If you happen to stay in Grand Palladium resort, the jerk chicken that comes with paella from the Jerk Hut at Sunset Cove is probably the best you would get in the resort. Check their hours so that you don’t miss it. The jerk chicken at the second floor restaurant Xaymaica was good. Don’t get it from the Poseidon restaurant at Sunset Cove! (In fact, don’t eat there…) If you try jerk chicken from the buffet, chances are what you have does not do this famous dish justice.

The best jerk chicken we had was from a stand at a parking lot across the street from Rick’s Cafe. Our tour guide said this guy

won a national “jerk off” jerk chicken contest before.

We got an order of jerk chicken for six dollars. Aaron said it was the best six dollars we spent over there. It was so good that I forgot to take a picture. The chicken was so tender, moist and well-seasoned. Nothing beats grilling over charcoal. That smoky taste made the chicken so much better. All the jerk chicken we tried in our resort could not compare. His jerk seasoning is better than all other ones that I tried.

The flavor was one of the biggest differences from this street food jerk chicken and what we had at the hotel. The jerk spice blended together very well. Normally if you let a sauce or marinade sit overnight or longer, the flavors come together. The sauce of the jerk chicken that we had at the Poseidon restaurant of the resort tasted like they just whipped everything together and brushed it on the chicken.

curry goat

Curry goat is another must-eat. I only got to try it once though, at the Xaymaica restaurant of the Grand Palladium resort. I thought goat would be tough, but surprisingly it was more tender than I expected. I was happy with what I got.

The national dish of Jamaica is ackee and saltfish. Ackee is a local fruit that kind of looks like scrambled eggs in this dish. I again only tried it once at the same restaurant. I was not impressed. The saltfish, supposedly dried codfish, was very very dried. I

was convinced that the hotel cooking did not do this national dish justice.

From my search prior to the trip, I read about this soursop drink but never saw it in the resort. I asked our super nice waiter at the Xaymaica restaurant. He said he was in fact going back home that weekend and would be picking soursop and making soursop juice with his family. That confirmed my mission searching for soursop was not crazy and made me want to try it even more.

When I saw soursop juice in a bottle at the supermarket we stopped in at Negril, I was so excited! I did not quite know what to

expect. This is what I read online: “It tastes like a combination of strawberry and pineapple, with a hint of creaminess and sour citrus.” That really does not help. And the store bought juice did not taste like what this description said either. The drink I bought was sweet and a bit thick. If you have ever tried the Japanese uncarbonated soft drink, Calpis, then you would have an idea. Calpis was what the store bought soursop drink tasted like. The consistency was in between Calpis and Asian yogurt drink.

Red Stripe is the most common beer in Jamaica. Many people buy Blue Mountain coffee or Appleton Estate rum as souvenirs. I personally did not like the almost whiskey taste of Jamaican rum. A friend of mine who used to work at this coffee shop for coffee connoisseurs said the Blue Mountain coffee that I bought from the resort was very good.

Near and Far

Ackee and fish? Jerk chicken? I was very excited about these Jamaican dishes. I had no idea what ackee was, and did not know what spices are in the jerk seasoning. Aside from all kinds of drinks with Jamaican rum, I set it as my mission to find soursop juice. Another ingredient I did not know.

牙買加必吃的當地菜色充滿我看不懂的食材或調味,像是阿開木煮鹹魚ackee and saltfish(又叫西非荔枝果) 或者牙買加香料雞jerk chicken。

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Jamaican breakfast with ackee and saltfish and dumplings

Jamaican Food/Recipe: Full yuh belly wid Jamaica’s National dish, Ackee and Saltfish

By: Denise N. Fyffe. Copyright © 2017, Denise N. Fyffe Ackee and Saltfish is Jamaica's national dish. This meal is tasty and provides great nourishment for many families. The ackee tree grows all over Jamaica and can be found in the back and front yards of hundreds of thousands of Jamaican homes; even by the road side and … Continue reading Jamaican Food/Recipe: Full yuh belly wid Jamaica’s National dish, Ackee and Saltfish

Jamaican Recipe of the Day: Jamaican Cream of Ackee Soup

As we have stated before in previous articles, the ackee fruit is a part of Jamaica’s national dish (ackee and saltfish). Today we give you a recipe for a new way to twist this fruit by using it to make a soup. Check it out below.

Preparation time: 30m
Cooking time: 30m

Ingredients

For 4 people ()

  • 1 tablespoon Margarine
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 stalk escallion, chopped
  • 1 whole scotch bonnet pepper
  • 1 dozen ackees, boiled and drained
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup Anchor Heavy Cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 0 GARNISH:
  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts
  • 2 stalks escallion, julienne
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup Grace Vegetable Oil

Directions

  1. Melt margarine in a sauce pot and use to saute chopped garlic, onion, thyme, escallion and whole scotch bonnet pepper.
  2. Add ackee and toss with the sauteed seasonings.  Pour in the chicken stock and simmer for about 5-10 minutes.
  3. Remove from flame and blend for about one minute or until smooth.  Return to sauce pot, and bring to a simmer.
  4. Add heavy cream, black pepper and salt to taste, and stir well.To Toast Cashew:
  5. Toast cashew nuts in a preheated oven 180°C (350°F) for about 5 minutes.
  6. Dust julienne escallion with flour and fry in heated vegetable oil for 30 seconds.  Drain on absorbent paper.
  7. Garnish with four toasted cashew nuts and fried escallion.
    Julienne:  To cut into thin strips.

Enjoy

JamaFo (Jamaican Food)

As we have stated before in previous articles, the ackee fruit is a part of Jamaica’s national dish (ackee and saltfish). Today we give you a recipe for a new way to twist this fruit by using it to make a soup. Check it out below.

Preparation time: 30m
Cooking time: 30m

Ingredients

For 4 people ()

  • 1 tablespoon Grace Hello Margarine
  • 1 tablespoon garlic, minced
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 1 stalk escallion, chopped
  • 1 whole scotch bonnet pepper
  • 1 dozen ackees, boiled and drained
  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 1 cup Anchor Heavy Cream
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 0 GARNISH:
  • 1/4 cup cashew nuts
  • 2 stalks escallion, julienne
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup Grace Vegetable Oil

Directions

  1. Melt margarine in a sauce pot and use to saute chopped garlic, onion, thyme, escallion and whole scotch bonnet pepper.
  2. Add ackee and toss with the sauteed seasonings.  Pour in the chicken stock and simmer for about 5-10 minutes.
  3. Remove from flame and blend for about one minute or until smooth.  Return to sauce pot, and bring to a simmer.

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Jamaican breakfast with ackee and saltfish and dumplings

Jamaican Recipe of the Day: All things Dumplings, Fried Dumpling and Boiled Dumplings

  There is nothing I like more than my Jamaican Dumplings; from birth till death, if you cook boiled food or soup and no dumplings, I will make certain you won't hear the last of it. My Love For All Things DumplingS My brother and mom's nickname for me is actually dumpling. When I used … Continue reading Jamaican Recipe of the Day: All things Dumplings, Fried Dumpling and Boiled Dumplings

Jamaican Food / Recipes: Finger licking good, Jamaican Barbecued Chicken

  By: Denise N. Fyffe. Copyright © 2012, Poetess Defy, Denise Fyffe Jamaican Barbecued Chicken is sure a tantalising recipe option. This meal can be prepared easily and for any occasion. Jamaicans really know how to throw down and Jamaican Barbecued Chickenis just one of the fabulous menu options you can enjoy at home, at a restaurant or a party. … Continue reading Jamaican Food / Recipes: Finger licking good, Jamaican Barbecued Chicken