Instead of the usual tomato salsa try jazzing it up with mango and papaya. This mango and papaya salsa is refreshing and goes well with fish, chicken and tortilla chips.
- 3 ripe mangoes, peeled, pitted and diced
- 1- 2lbs ripe papaya, peeled, seeded and diced
- 1/4 cup freshly shredded coconut
- 1/4 cup cilantro or basil
- 1/4 cup slivered almond
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise
- 1 1/2 tbs lemon or lime juice
- Mix fruits well; sprinkle with the coconut and slivered almonds. Put in a refrigerator for an hr
- In a small bowl, blend the mayonnaise, cilantro and lemon juice
- Top the salad with the dressing just before serving.
Served on top of fish or rice
Serves 4-6 people
Plantains are used a lot in Belizean cuisine as a snack or side to most meals with fish, chicken or rice. A plantain looks like a large banana but if you taste one you can definitely tell the difference. They are a lot larger than a banana and harder to peel. However, they are healthy and delicious.
Here’s a recipe for healthy plantain dish:
- 4-6 yellow ripe plantains with black spots.
- Coconut oil
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Grease sheet pan with coconut oil.
Cut the ends off of the plantains and peel.
Cut each plantain on the diagonal into 1/2 inch slices.
Arrange in single layer and brush the tops with coconut oil.
Bake, turning occasionally, for 10-15 minutes, until plantains are golden brown and very tender
Instead of having potato chips try plantain chips. They are delicious, easy to make and healthy. You’ll find most Belizeans eating plantain chips as snack or a side to fish.
Here’s a recipe:
- 1 1/2 tsp lime/lemon zest
- 1 lemon/lime
- 1 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/4 teaspoon smoke paprika
- 6 cups coconut oil (Or any cooking oil)
- 4 green plantains
Mix together lemon/lime zest, salt, and paprika in a bowl.
Peel the plantains and then slice them about 1/8 inch thick. Then soak in hot water and 1 lime/lemon juice for 5 minutes, drain and dry with paper towel. Fry in hot coconut oil until golden brown. Drain on paper towels and add salt mixture to taste.
Serve as a snack or with fish or chicken.
Heard the saying everything is better with butter? Well, to me, everything is better with rum. Rum raisin bread pudding is the ultimate Belizean comfort food. Of course, the rum makes this bread pudding, heavenly. In Belize, rum is used to make cocktails but it’s also used a lot in desserts.
Here’s a delicious Rum Raisin Bread Pudding recipe:
16 slices of stale white bread
3 tbsp butter
1 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup dark rum (Belize Traveller’s rum preferred)
1 14oz can of evaporated milk
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup coconut milk (1/2 a can)
1 pinch allspice (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Soak raisin with 1/4 cup rum prior for 2 hours until hydrated. In large bowl tear sliced bread, in separate bowl mix evaporated milk, water, brown sugar, eggs, cinnamon, all spice, nutmeg, salt, and coconut milk. Blend with mixer or blender until smooth. Combine with bread add raisin and butter let set for 2 hours.Place in greased oven proof casserole dish and into a pan of water.Bake at 350°F for 50 minutes until golden brown.While still warm, add remaining rum on top.
Serve hot or cold.
Great with whipped cream or ice-cream.
Johnny Cakes are a favored breakfast item for Belizeans. It is a cross between what American people know as biscuits and muffins. Johnny Cakes are so favored by Belizeans that they are also consumed during their lunch and dinner meals. They go well with refried red or black beans, melted cheese, scrambled eggs and stewed chicken.
Here’s one of many recipes:
3 cups all purpose flour
1/4 -1/2 cup either butter, shortening, lard, margarine or coconut oil (Butter is preferred to me)
1/2 tsp salt
1tbsp of white sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 – 3/4 cup coconut milk
1. Sift flour, baking powder, sugar and salt in a bowl.
2. Add the egg, butter, shortening or coconut oil, mix well.
3. Add the coconut milk gradually to form a dough.
4. Roll out into small balls, flatten slightly and prick with a fork.
5. Bake in a hot oven 375°F for 15-20 mins
6. Slice and butter while hot and enjoy.
Makes about 8-12
If you talk to any Belizean they will tell you that their best breakfast must consist of some Fry Jacks . A Fry Jack is a flour tortilla dough mixture that is deep fried. It’s perfect alongside refried beans and scramble eggs. Yum!
Here’s one of many recipes:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/4 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking powder
1 pint of cooking or coconut oil
1. Combine flour, salt and baking powder.
2. Add coconut milk and mix.
3. Knead dough for 1 min until smooth. Cover and set aside for 15 mins
4. Separate into balls (about 8) and roll out thinly into a round tortilla shape. (The thinner you roll them, the puffier they will be.) Cut in slits.
5. Deep fry in hot cooking or coconut oil, turning once until golden brown on both sides.
A panades is like an empanada which is filled with either fish (Like Red Snapper or any white fish) or red or black beans. It is usually served with a cabbage, onion and pepper salsa topping. It’s filling and delicious. Try it and you’ll like it.
Here’s a recipe:
- 3-4 cups corn flour (Maseca brand preferred)
- 1/4-1/2 cup water
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp of ground red recado (Achiote rojo seasoning) or 1 packet of Sazon for color
- 2-3 cans tuna, sardines or refried red or black beans
- 1 medium onion chopped
- 1 cup cabbage
- 1/2 cup of chopped cilantro
- 1 Habanero or Jalepeno diced (Optional)
- Salt & Pepper to taste
- 1 pint of cooking or coconut oil
- 1 limes
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup of vinegar
- 1 tortilla press
- 1 ziploc bag or sandwich freezer plastic bag
Sift together salt, baking powder, ground recado and corn flour. Pour water slowly and knead to form a moist dough (Careful, not too wet). Let dough sit for about 10 -15 minutes, then form into small balls.
Warm tuna, sardine or refried beans. Season to taste (optional)
Using a tortilla press flatten corn mixture balls of dough between 2 plastics (Cut Ziploc bags in half works well) to keep the dough from sticking to the surface. Remove top plastic, add stuffing and fold over the dough into a semi circular shape. Heat the remainder of the oil for about 10-12 minutes on medium high heat. Slide panades into oil. Remove from oil when golden brown and put on paper towel to drain excess oil.
Chop cabbage, onion and cilantro. Mix together and add the lime juice, 1 tsp of coconut oil,vinegar, water & habanero or jalepeno pepper(Optional). Add salt and pepper to taste.
Spread salsa over panades before serving. Serve warm.