Monday, July 14, 2008

Food from the Carribean

What do you think of when you think of foods from the Caribbean? Hot, spicy flavors married with tropical fruit? Aromatic spices blended with fiery hot peppers? Bananas, pineapple, mangoes, ginger, allspice are all flavors indicative of the Caribbean.

When I think of Caribbean cuisine, I first think of jerk seasoning. Jerk is a seasoning that imparts a spicy, complex flavor to meats and vegetables. Jerk is usually a combination of hot peppers, spices and fruit. The combination creates an exciting layering of hot, aromatic and sweet flavors that are spectacular on chicken and pork. Jerk seasoning is also naturally gluten-free.

To get you in the island mood, let’s start with, ‘Island Banana Bread’, a great blend of bananas, rum, lime and coconut – a delicious start to a summer breakfast. For dinner, if you are in the mood for something spicy try, ‘Jerk Chicken with Pineapple Chutney’, deliciously hot and sweet. For an island style side dish try ‘Jamaican Rice & Beans’ or ‘Caribbean Risotto’. And for those fish lovers, ‘Caribbean Fish Fillets’ is a great way to spice up your next fish meal. And let’s not forget dessert – try our mouthwatering Grilled Fruit Kebabs! Serve this delicious combination of grilled fruit over gf vanilla ice cream for the perfect ending to a ‘Caribbean’ meal!

Caribbean food is generally pretty hot, but you can tone it down by controlling the amount of peppers you add to the recipe. Serve your Caribbean meal with a cool glass of Chenin Blanc. The fruitiness will offset the heat of the peppers.

So, put on some reggae music, let a warm breeze drift through your windows and share a Caribbean meal with a few good friends.

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