Caribbean Easter meals to keep families together during covid-19
The Celebration of Easter 2020 will be one for the record books in the Caribbean since many families will have to find new ways to observe the resurrection of Jesus Christ due to social distancing policies imposed by Government to reduce transmissions of the novel coronavirus.
While large gatherings and traditional events, such as kite flying, may not be possible, food will be one tradition that will be upheld in a smaller setting.
Here dishes that Caribbean families will be enjoying this Easter season:
Hot crossed buns
This delicious treat is a reminder of the Caribbean’s colonial past.
Hot cross buns are popular amongst the English speaking Caribbean countries and territories.
How they are consumed differs from place to place.
In Trinidad and Tobago, most people consume their buns without any filling and it is accompanied by homemade chocolate tea.
While in Guyana, hot crossed buns are filled with cheese and are accompanied by a cold glass of mauby or ginger beer.
Bun and cheese
This spiced bread is a popular dish in many of the Northern and Eastern Caribbean islands, most notably in Jamaica.
Unlike its relative the hot crossed bun, the ‘bun’ loaf is heavier since it’s baked with molasses and laden with a mixture of raisins, cherries and citrus rinds.
Traditionally the bread was baked at home but now most are supplied by large commercial bakers.
Saltfish and ground provisions
The consumption of fish during Easter is another colonial/Christian tradition that continues in Caribbean households.
Most people give up eating any protein from land animals as a form of penance.
Every island has its variant of the saltfish and ground provision combo.
In Jamaica, the fish is combined with akee while Trinbagonians include a medley of veggies such as carrots and cabbage.
During Easter, Crabs are king on the islands of Martinique and Guadeloupe.
So much so that there is a festival, la Patte d'Or, which celebrates their tastiness and athletic prowess.
This curried crab dish dates back to the territories’ early days as French colonies.
Families usually purchase their crabs within a day of consumptions and the crustaceans are seasoned with fresh local herbs and spices.
Matoutou crab is usually served with rice and seasonal offerings such as avocados.