Caribbean Feast

Nick and I took a family cruise over New Years the first year we were married.

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It was our first time to ever take a cruise or see the Bahamas!

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One of the best things about that trip was the lunch we bought on Nassau island.

We didn’t want more cruise ship food and we didn’t want anything from a chain restaurant – we all wanted to find real, authentic food that the locals ate. While walking around, we saw a couple of trucks parked in a random parking lot and a huge group of construction workers hovering around them.

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As we walked closer, we could smell something delicious. We followed our noses and instincts and had the best meal of that trip. It just so happened that it came off the back of a truck.

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I think we paid like $5 for lunch that day, and it was a HUGE tray full of food! The ladies running the truck made everything at home and brought the food in hot dishes like what is used for catering to keep it hot for the locals.

They had everything: fried plantains, spicy mac’n’cheese, jerk chicken, jerk pork, curried goat, oxtail, rice and peas…you name it.

As soon as we got back home, we scoured the internet and cookbooks for recipes that would make something close to what we had that day.

And while nothing we’ve tried is exactly right, we found a few things (and made some tweaks) to get as close as we can.

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So every now and then, Nick and I just want a huge Caribbean feast to remind us of that lunch.

The first “feast” was a bit over the top – we made coconut shrimp, jerk pork, peas and rice, spicy mac and cheese, AND a coconut cake…just for the 2 of us. We were eating leftovers from that meal for almost a week!

We have scaled it back a bit, but it’s fun to taste those flavors again.

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And there’s no set recipes for this – they’re ever changing and we still haven’t pinpointed them exactly. But every trial tastes better and better ;)

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Tonight’s plate was jerk pork loin, peas and rice, and some broccoli.

I may not be sitting on the beach or a cruise ship, but this meal made it feel a bit less like a Thursday night.

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I’ve got a long day tomorrow and I still have to finish packing!

Plus, The Office season finale is on tonight so I better hurry ;)

 

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7 comments

  1. Making fun food memories is great. I like to make Spanish food from my study abroad.

  2. What a fun tradition! And the pork loin looks AWESOME.

  3. Our family goes on a couple cruises every year, we love them too!!! My parents/sister just got back today from Bermuda actually – can’t say I wasn’t jealous that I couldn’t go with them ;) Love how you’ve recreated the flavors of your trip, so fun!!!

  4. omg that so fun!! ive never been on a cruise but i have been told if u get on a good one its REALLY AMAZING! i am a tad jealous tho.. lol <3 xoxo

  5. How fun!!! I think food memories are some of the best kind of memories. :) I complain about African food so much, yet I know that within a month of being home I will be doing my best to recreate it back in the States, just for memory´s sake!

  6. How fun–I’ve always wanted to take a cruise!

  7. That is such a cool story. Some of my favorite food is from rinky-dink places.

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