This past weekend I cooked a dish that hits close to home for me. Its a national Jamaican dish called Ackee and Salt Fish(Cod fish). For those of you who have read my bio know that my dad is from Jamaica, and one great way for me to celebrate my heritage is through my cooking :). I was raised on this dish, waking up in the morning to the sweet aroma’s. My boyfriend’s mom is also from Jamaica so its only right for me to cook it for my own family. We went to 3 different super markets in Washington D.C. to buy green bananas and I couldn’t find them anywhere! The bananas are suppose to be boiled and served with the fish, but since that failed, I cooked coconut rice and peas, and festival to go along with it. I got Martha Stewart on my man and became a perfectionist, carefully placing beans for the picture…lol. Here are my recipe’s below.

 

Ackee & Saltfish(Codfish)

Serves 4-5

  • 1/2 lb. Saltfish (codfish) I used regular unsalted Cod
  • 1 can of ackee
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 1 crushed garlic or 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 3 slices hot scotch bonnet pepper
  • 1 small red sweet pepper
  • 2 medium size tomatoes
  • 1 tblsp. of tomato paste
  • black pepper to taste
  • cooking oil

Directions:

Soak the salt cod in a pot of water overnight to remove most of the salt. If the cod is still very salty, boil in water for 20 minutes. Drain cod and cut or break into small pieces.

Heat oil in a frying pan. Add the onions, thyme, garlic, scotch bonnet pepper, tomato, tomato paste and red peppers. Stir for a few minutes. Add the cod. Stir. Simmer for 5 minutes, then add the can of drained ackee. Do not stir because this will cause the ackees to break up. Cook for a few more minutes then sprinkle with black pepper.

Coconut Rice & Peas

1 medium sized can red kidney beans
1 can coconut milk
2 cups of rice
1 small onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
1 table spoon oil
1 scotch bonnet pepper (whole, do not chop up)
water

Directions:

Drain the liquid from the can of beans into a measuring cup and add the can of coconut milk and enough water to make four cups of liquid. Place liquids in a pot with beans, onions, garlic, thyme and oil, bring to a boil. Add rice and stir for a minute. Reduce heat to Medium-Low. Place scotch bonnet pepper on top of liquid and cover tightly for 30 minutes or until rice is cooked. Remove scotch bonnet pepper before serving.

This recipes can also be made using other peas.

 

Festival:

1 cup yellow cornmeal
1 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
oil for frying

Directions:

Mix all ingredients together, adding just enough cold water to make a stiff dough (about 3/4 cup of water). Let dough mix sit with a wet cloth covering it for 15 minutes.Divide and shape into egg sized portions. Flatten slightly. Either deep fat fry till golden brown. Or fry in frying pan till golden brown on both sides.