We’re looking forward to summer – and some al fresco dining. This year, we’re sensing Caribbean flavours are going to be BIG, and we’re going far beyond just jerk chicken.
The Caribbean is full of so many wonderful food, so much so, we thought we’d give you an insight into said flavours to spice up your summer.
The Caribbean is made up of 13 countries and several territories/dependencies that are part of other countries. And, of course, each one has their own national/known for dishes. And boy are some of them tasty.
But I can’t simply go to the Caribbean for the food
No, most of us can’t just drop everything and jet off to the Caribbean to sample some of their delicious cuisines. But there’s lots of ways you can bring that Caribbean flavour to your home.
Bringing you the taste of The Caribbean across the UK and supporting small speciality producers from the Caribbean. Created by Peter Martin, who has worked with Caribbean producers for year, the company offers a wide range of authentic flavours.
Some of our favourites include:
Pepper Jelly. This is a gradual sweet heat, and the perfect condiment to add a Caribbean spice to your cheese board. Pack of two jars £14.95
Sorrel Syrup. This is a sharp syrup made from hibiscus, and can be mixed with champagne or prosecco to make a fabulous Caribbean summer cocktail. Pack of two jars £14.95
Spicey Fruit Sauce. Bottled in Barbados, this is a sweet/savoury sauce, perfect with your summer barbeque. Pack of two jars £14.95
Classic Caribbean Gift Box – £29.95
This gift box is a combination of the most loved Caribbean flavours (picture does not show actual box, but range of products). The Classic box includes:
- Golden Rum Cake, which is from Barbados and is made with Cockspur rum
- Hot Pepper Sauce, hot and spicy
- Guava Jelly, delicious and sweet and delish on buttered toast
- Jerk Seasoning x 2, spicy and fiery and perfect to baste onto food or marinate
Recently released, Merchant Gourmet is bringing The Caribbean essence to their beans and pulses with their new ‘Fiery Jamaican-Style Grains and Pulses’. They have teamed up with Tomekah George who works with lots of textures and takes inspiration from her Caribbean family to create this pouch.
Available in Ocado and Morrisons from 22 May 2022
With jack fruit as fruit that is grown and known for in The Caribbean, Soul Fruit brings you a healthy, natural snack.
Crunchy, dried jack fruit bag 20g – £1.79
Jamaica On Ice
Jamaica On Ice delivers the taste of Jamaican food to your door in frozen meals. Ready for you to eat and enjoy, with classic and flavourful meals right from the heart of The Caribbean. Their meals are quality food, authentic taste and very convenient and perfect for the summer Caribbean experience.
With a range of tasty meals, we’ve narrowed it down to our favourite two:
Ackee and saltfish – above – £7.99
Jamaica’s national dish and a gorgeous blend of herbs, spices, and sweet peppers to go with a tasty, salted cod fish.
Curry goat with plain rice – above – £7.99
A beautiful boneless goat curry with potato, chilli, and a mix of wonderful seasonings and spices.
And for those of you maybe with big families or big Jamaican food enthusiasts, get your hands on a bundle of 10 Jamaican meals to keep you going for a while.
A meal bundle of 10 meals is £69.50
The bundle includes a variety of dishes, including:
- Classic Jerk Chicken with Rice and Peas x 2
- Curry Chicken with Plain Rice x 2
- Curry Goat with Plain Rice x 2
- Oxtail with Rice and Peas x 1
- Pepper Steak with Rice and Peas x 1
- Steam Okra with Fresh Vegetables x 1
- Ackee and Salt Fish with Plain rice x 1
Jamaica on Ice is a pioneering new business with a real family feel. And we think the first of its type in the UK. For more information and to see their story, and range, check them out…
Hey, it’s what a lot of people know The Caribbean for, right? So it would be remiss not to mention the delights of rum! Here are a few favourites to kick your summer off.
Rhum Barbancourt from Haiti. From arguably the best distillery in Haiti, aged in limousin oak casks for four years. You can enjoy it either on the rocks or with a mixer.
Appleton Estate 8 Year Reserve Rum, from Jamaica. Crafted by Master Blender Joy Spence to mark 25 years of the estate, this is a warm honeyed rum, with hints of vanilla, spice, and orange. Heaven.
Ron Barcelo from the Dominican Republic. We sadly haven’t tried this one but it comes highly recommended. For those who like tasting notes: Intense coppery amber colour. Brilliant coppery amber colour. Aromas of butter cream, dried cherries, intense vanilla, pineapple jam and caramelized nuts followed by a mild entry to a dry but fruity flavour. Medium and exuberant body with great depth and balance. Finish with a flavour of carrot ice cream cake, kola nut, Mocha and a strong toasted taste that gradually fades.
Mount Gay from Barbados. Who doesn’t love Mount Gay? The Eclipse is an absolute classic – some burnt sugar notes, plenty of vanilla and caramel, and event banana. A lush summer drink.
Black Tot from across the Caribbean. A broad sweeping taste from rums from Guyana, Barbados, and Jamaica, expertly blended for the tastes of today.
And last but by no means least, House of Rum, brings you Diablo Aged Rum. A sipping rum, born in column stills in the Dominican Republic and pot stills in Jamaica. There is also aged white rum, spiced rum and XO Reserve.
Diablo Aged Rum – £69 per 70cl bottle
Marshall and Brown
Marshall and Brown offer a wide selection of Caribbean themed food, plus, they have a couple of brands on their site that also offer Caribbean flavours to spice up your summer
If you fancy a wide variety of chutneys to accompany your cheese, meat or maybe vegan platters, look no further than the Marshall and Brown Chutney Collection.
Featuring six different chutneys:
- Apple cider
- Beetroot and orange
- Pear and ginger
- Sun-dried tomato and garlic
- Red onion marmalade
- Rhubarb apple and ginger
The collection is £39.95
One of their companies is Mama Brown’s, who make Jamaican rum cake in a variety of flavours. If you want to try a little of each, we suggest the Rum Cake Collection.
The buddle includes all six flavours:
- Key lime
- Golden original
This delicious collection is £35
And finally, their other company, The Jerk House which offers a variety of sauces to give your food a Caribbean kick.
The Jerk House Collection gives you on of each sauce to give you a variety of flavours, including:
- Caribbean hot mustard sauce
- Jamaican crushed red pepper sauce
- Jamaican jerk sauce
- Jerk seasoning
- Jamaican yellow scotch bonnet pepper sauce
- Jerk barbeque sauce
And this fiery collection is £17.95
So keep it tropical this summer
With these items and snacks, you’re sure to have a fiery summer that’ll perk up your taste buds. Of course you can try your hand at things from scratch and follow some online recipes. Fancy making your own Barbados Custard Ice Cream with Kitty Travers’ recipe?
Find some more Caribbean recipes here – BBC Good Food.
Lili works across all the channels; writing articles, taking photographs, creating content, and designing eye-capturing imagery. She’s an animal-lover who cries just seeing a picture of a baby sloth.