The island of Grenada, its beautiful beaches, its turquoise and crystalline sea, paradise of the Caribbean Sea and its famous oil down!
Grenada is also called the “Island of Spice”, due to the fact that there are more spices per square mile than anywhere else in the world. The island of Grenada is located in the southern Caribbean, less than 100 miles north of Venezuela. It is an independent country which includes 3 islands: the main island being Grenada, then Carriacou and Petite Martinique.
People say it is the island of delights as the smell of spices spreads throughout the country. It is famous for its forests with scents of cinnamon, various spices, cocoa, vanilla, ginger, mace and nutmeg.
Granada produces a third of nutmeg consumed worldwide. It was the largest producer before a hurricane destroyed most of the plantations. Today, Granada is the second largest producer of nutmeg after Guatemala. All of this combined with its clear turquoise waters and white sand…
If there was one dish that really represents Grenadian cuisine, it is definitely the oil down. This is the traditional dish of the island, a stew of cod, herring or salted pork simmered in coconut milk with, to name a few, breadfruit and taro leaves. The name of this dish comes from the fact that it is cooked until all the coconut milk has been absorbed and only coconut oil remains at the bottom of the dish.
If coconut, its cream, its oil and its milk have no secret for 196 flavors, what about taro leaves and breadfruit?
Taro (Colocasia esculenta ) is a root vegetable that can be found in various countries with hot and humid climate. In addition to the tuber, by far the most popular, you can also eat the leaves or even grind them into flour.
Taro, whose word is of Polynesian origin, is an old vegetable of which the first traces can be found in Burma and the Indian state of Assam 4000 years ago.
You will also often find the term dasheen. It is a term that is mostly used throughout the Commonwealth to talk about taro. Finally, to give my explanation a little health touch, you should know that in addition to its nutritional benefits due to the many vitamins, taro has anti-anemic and antioxidant benefits and… this is where it gets interesting anti-hunger benefits! Diet starts tomorrow?
What is breadfruit?
Breadfruit, “uru” in Tahitian, “popote” in Guadeloupe and “totote” in Martinique, is originally from Polynesia and Indonesia. It is a starchy fruit which was introduced to the West Indies in the late eighteenth century to feed the slaves. It is now grown throughout the humid tropical regions. It weighs between 2 to 5 lbs and grows on a tree that can grow up to 80 feet high. It tastes like sweet potato and its texture is slightly mealy.
Breadfruit is only consumed cooked. It is prepared like potato: steamed, baked, sautéed sliced or diced, au gratin, or mashed, in soups, or roasted or fried.
For the lovers of sweet flavors, know that you can cook this fruit to make fritters or use it to make jams. Breadfruit can also be ground to make flour.
This classic dish of Grenadian cuisine was amazing! Flavored and spiced to perfection and with new ingredients. I urge you to discover it very quickly. All of this love simmered in coconut milk had to be delicious!
If there was one dish that really represents Grenadian cuisine, it is definitely the oil down. This is the traditional dish of the island.
- 2 lb salted cod , cut into chunks
- 1 large breadfruit , peeled and cut into pieces (or 2 potatoes)
- ½ lb taro leaves (or spinach leaves), chopped
- 2 stalks celery
- 3 carrots , sliced
- 1 green bell pepper , finely chopped
- 3 onions , sliced
- 2 cloves garlic , crushed
- 2 red hot peppers , thinly diced
- 2 sprigs thyme
- A few stems of chives , finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 tablespoon fresh ginger , finely grated
- ½ teaspoon nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley , finely chopped
- ½ cup coconut milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 5 tablespoons canola oil
- Cut the cod into large pieces and place in a colander.
- Immerse the colander into a large container filled with water and put it in the refrigerator.
- Desalt for 24 hours, changing the water as often as possible.
- In a cast iron pan preferably, sauté the onions over medium-low heat.
- Add the hot pepper, garlic, chives, ginger, thyme, and parsley and cook for one minute, stirring constantly.
- Add the breadfruit, carrots, green bell pepper, celery and taro leaves.
- Mix well and cook for 5 minutes over medium / high heat.
- Add coconut milk, heavy cream, nutmeg and turmeric.
- Carefully place the fish in the sauce.
- Add salt and pepper.
Cook for 50 minutes total. 25 minutes over medium heat and 25 minutes over low heat until sauce is reduced.