An Education in Caribbean Cusine

Whenever I travel I always try and take in the local cuisine, but on my recent trip to St. Thomas I was caught off guard by how much I would fall in love with the flavors of the Caribbean.  Aside from the Jamaican beef patty I had out of an NYC food truck, I don’t recall ever having real authentic Caribbean food.

After securing our red Jeep rental car we were headed straight to the beach.  I was traveling with my boyfriend Scott, who was familiar with the local St. Thomas hot spots including the beef pates of Highroon’s Mobile Truck along Brewer’s Bay.  Scott braced me for potential idea of eating out of a raunchy truck, how soon I reminded him that eating out of trucks in NY is part of a foodie initiation.

From the pictures you can see that the truck isn’t exactly up to health code standards but it didn’t bother me.  Once I took that first bite into the meat pate nothing seemed to matter except the juicy, meaty goodness tucked inside the deep fried dough pocket.  Highroon gave us each a chicken and and meat, both were delicious but the meat was clearly our favorite.

On the island of St. John right along North Shore Road, a popular tourist area sits Uncle Joe’s BBQ hut.  One man and about 4 or 5 other women (probably all family) run this roadside goldmine.   I’m not much of a rib girl, but this was fall-off the bone, sweet, tangy deliciousness that should not be missed.

While cruising the islands I picked up an abnormal amount of local hot sauces, a bottle of banana ketchup (which I’m still not sure what I’m going to use it for) and a bottle of spiced vinegar from Glady’s Cafe which I found purely on a whim from a tourist guidebook I got from the airport.  By the last day of our trip I was eager to get one last bite of some local flavor and Glady’s stewed chicken was the perfect send off.

At the airport newstand I was able to find a small recipe book which include both the pate, and stewed chicken.  I was happy to see that there were no foreign spices I needed to make these dishes at home, in fact they were everyday ingredients I already cook with!

Stay tuned as the little Italian girl gets her spice on, and re-creates these dishes at home.


Highroon's Mobile Truck

Chicken pate

Stewed chicken, spicy rice, mac and cheese and that little white potato is actually a sweet potato!

Me doing a taste test of Glady's hot sauces

Inside Glady's cafe, where the waitresses walk around singing Frank Sinatra


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