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Cuisine in Saint Lucia is influenced by British and French traditions, as well as by the bounty of tropical fruits and vegetables indigenous to the island such as mangoes, oranges, tangerines, avocados and breadfruit. One of Saint Lucia's most famous dishes is bouyon, a dish that can be cooked using fish, chicken, meat, plantains, bananas, yams, dumplings and coconut water and/or milk. Garlic, cinnamon, nutmeg, cocoa, parsley, cloves and allspice are frequently used spices.
A few words about breadfruit. Interestingly, the fruit grows on a flowering tree that is in the mulberry family, Moraceae. Breadfruit grows on many Caribbean islands, as well as in South East Asia and Haiti. The fruit got its name as many believe that when cooked, it imparts a potato-like flavor that tastes and smells like freshly baked bread. There are many ways to eat breadfruit, which vary from country to country - everything from boiling, to baking, to frying and mashing. We thought it tasted like a cross between a potato and a baked apple, with a starchy texture slightly similar to cassava. It was very good, but I think it would have been better if I'd had a tutorial from someone who cooks regularly with the fruit. Regardless - it was tasty, fun to cook with - not to mention thrilling to located!
Peel, parboil, core and stuff breadfruit
Island Jerk Spice
Baked Stuffed Island Spice Breadfruit (Adapted from food.com)
1 large breadfruit, (full, but not ripe)
3/4 lb. lean ground beef
3/4 lb. ham, minced
1 cup onion, chopped
1 scallion, chopped
1 medium tomato chopped
salt and pepper to taste
2-3 tsp. Island spice Jamaican jerk spice (recipe below)
2 tbsp. canola oil
- Peel and parboil breadfruit whole in salted water; remove from water and cool.
- Preheat oven to 350 F and lightly grease a baking pan.
- Lightly fry chopped onion, scallion and tomato in oil; add minced meats and jerk seasoning and cook until meat is almost done.
- From stalk end of the cooled breadfruit, cut out the core and scoop out enough of the pulp to make room for the meat stuffing.
- Fill the cavity with meat mixture.
- Bake in oven till soft and of a nice golden brown color, about 50 minutes. If pan appears dry, add a little water.
2 tsp. dried minced onion
2-1/2 tsp. dried thyme
2 tsp. ground allspice
2 tsp. ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1/2 tsp. salt
In a small bowl, stir together all spices. Store in airtight container.
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