Trinidad Coconut Drops
A favorite of Trinidadians, these little coconut candied-cookies need no baking. They're sweet and chewy.
In large sauce pan, bring water and sugar to boil, cooking until mix thickens into light syrup. When small bubbles begin to form, add coconut and cream of tartar.
Continue heating and stirring until the coconut pulls easily away from the sides of the pan. Remove from the heat and stir vigorously with a spoon (a good 4 minutes). Add the almond extract, mix again. Then drop by spoonfuls onto an oiled cookie tray. Allow to harden completely before serving.
Tips & Glossary
Caribbean cuisine is an exquisite blend of African, Asian, European, and Carib Indian (the area's original inhabitants) foods. Dishes are highly seasoned, either with a dry rub or marinade —or both. Below are some typical ingredients found in Caribbean food.
Callaloo: young leaves of either the taro root plant or amaranth; used widely in Caribbean cooking. Spinach can be used as a substitute.
Spices: Allspice, bay leaves, black pepper, chives, chili peppers, cilantro, cinnamon, coconut, curry powder, escallion, garlic, ginger, lime, mace, nutmeg, onion, oregano, sugar, thyme, orange, tomato paste, vanilla, cayenne (red) pepper.
Jerk: Jamaican cooking method in which meat is rubbed, prior to grilling, with a blend of seasonings, often firey hot.
• 1 T each—onion powder, garlic powder, dried chives, brown sugar; 2 tsp. each— (ground) allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon; 1 tsp. each—sage. thyme, salt, black pepper, cayenne (or more to taste). Mix thoroughly and store in a tightly covered jar.
There are thousands of versions; figure out what flavors you like most and add or subtract accordingly.
Typical meats: goat, pork, chicken, and some beef (though beef has tended to be expensive).
Fish: varieties that abound in surrounding waters, some familiar to us—grouper, cod, tilapia, blue marlin; others not so—200 species of jack, chip-chips (tiny clams), casadura (primitive armored catfish).
Native plant foods:
More familiar foods:
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