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Sip It Up
Since we will celebrate the last day of the holiday season, New Years’ Day, it is only
fitting to wish you a Happy New Year and hope you will be successful in all your
endeavors for the coming year…Nuff Success. Yah Mon!
And, I hope you made your Jamaican Christmas Cake and drink lots and lots of sorrel
and, or eggnog. The holiday season is the time to ‘eat till you belly buss’ and then some,
you know what I mean.
Anyway, I usually encourage you to make our traditional New Years’ Day soup (Gungo
Peas) because it is not only delicious, but it is also a change of pace out of the Christmas
season; a kind of finality to merry making and a fresh start to future good times, at least
for a year.
However, I am going to ask you to change from the traditional New Years’ Day dish to
one of our basic fish dinner. Even though you might not try this tomorrow, you may want
to include it some time this week in your Jamaican cooking.
Before I get to that though, I am going to be the bearer of some not-so-good-news for the
coming New Year. I will have to postpone the twenty-four hours emergency cooking help
for the coming year. I will let you know when Mavis and I will resume this service in the
That said, we Jamaicans have been at the forefront in the English-speaking Caribbean
when it comes to creating new foods and naming them, too. Of course, this is not an
attempt to upstage our fellow islanders, but over the years, I have noticed that Jamaica
has created, or recreated, some of our basic dishes through either renaming or changing
One such dish with which I am fascinated is the Jamaican Steamed Fish. A traditional
healthy alternative to the fried fish, this is the choice for all ‘article dons’ and the like, if
So, enjoy this little variation on steamed fish for the New Year, cool?
Sip It Up
2 lb. fish (Cleaned)
1 cho cho (Christophene) ( thinly sliced)
2 carrots (thinly sliced)
1 sprig thyme
¼ Scotch Bonnet Pepper
Pumpkin (thinly sliced)
Jamaican Water Crackers
Wash and clean the fish with a solution of vinegar and water. Wash the vegetables in
cold water. Add enough water to about half the skillet and bring the water to boil. Now
put the vegetables, except the okra, and salt into the boiling water. Taste the water to see
if you have enough salt in the pot…add salt to taste.
Turn the fire to medium and allow the vegetables to boil until they are soft. Add the okra,
fish seasoning, thyme, and butter to the pot.
Allow the ingredients to cook for ten minutes, while stirring the pot to blend in the
seasonings. Now, add the fish to the pot, turn the heat just below medium, and allow the
fish to simmer. While the fish is simmering, periodically use a spoon to pour the gravy
onto the fish…do this for about five minutes. Now cover the pot and wait for another ten
Remove the pot cover and place the water crackers on top of the fish and around the pot
in a circular style. Cover the pot again and wait another three minutes. Reduce the heat to
low, and then serve the Sip It Up on a large plate.
HAPPY NEW YEAR…ALL THE BEST FOR 2008
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