The idea of cooking the cow's feet, or cow foot as we call it, is not one of the greatest feats achieved in the Jamaican culinary tradition by any means. Even if I beg to differ on this subject, I still must conclude that my take on cooked cow's feet is very subjective and I stand corrected by any of my Jamaican compatriots who might challenge my notions.
However strong or strange disdain you might have for cow foot, I challenge you to try this fare...And, you won’t be disappointed. Yah Mon!
Well back in the old days, the 1600’s and 1700’s, you know during the plantation era, the upper classes would take the best parts of the cow when it's killed and leave the so called“fifth quarters”(head, feet, tail, internal organs, and skin) for the hired hands and slaves.
Notwithstanding, the workers took the "fifth quarters" and made delicious delicacies that are still enjoyed today by many people in Jamaica, including the upper classes…no blame intended. Easy Nuh Mon!
As a "fifth quarter" stew, cow feet stew was a kind of substitute for oxtail sometimes when oxtail was not available. Why? You should guess by now, the cow has but one tail and four feet. You don’t have to do the math to see the advantage the feet have.
Of course it was the kind of stew you would cook mid- week, because the weekends were reserved for chicken or beef soup, and other foods too.
I do hope you will like this recipe.
You can serve this delicious stew with bread, white rice, yams, dumplings, or potatoes.