Creole Week-Breadfruit a starch worth adding to your diet
September 17, 2009
Breadfruit (Artocarpus communis) other names French Fruit à pain
This was bought to the Caribbean in 1789 by Captain Bligh of The HSM Bountyto feed the indentured servants and also the African slaves. There are reports that he bought the breadfruit from the Philippines. Why would he do this? Well the breadfruit is very cheap to produce. You can leave the breadfruit tree to fend for itself and it can produce many breadfruits. The breadfruit is also a high energy starch and you need all the energy you can get when you have to be cutting sugarcane all day right? Breadfruit is high in Vitamin C and is consumed frequently in the French West Indies or former colonies of the French. In Barbados it is consumed but I find a few people have an issue with eating it because they think that it is a food source for the poor. Some Barbadians especially my generation( the younger) can be too proud for my liking and they really do not know what is good for them. They would prefer to eat a plate of fries than this. ( By the way I love fries but these are more nutritious) Some of my Barbadian counterparts may disagree with this statement but this is what I saw when I was living in Barbados.
Breadfruit Chips ( After eating 4 of these babies you are full for a couple of hours)
This is the second time making these and this was my first time cutting and peeling a breadfruit on my own.I am an only child and my mom was always protective of me growing up and always peeled these root veg for me if I wanted to cook. I assure you peeling these was super easy. I did it outside on some newspaper and I cut it in quarters with a large knife and i took out the heart and took off the skin. My friends and family keep telling me make breadfruit chips they are so good and I held back because I could not find breadfruits around here. I made these for my husband and his friends in Guadeloupe and they were in love with it and so was I. You first need to remove the heart from the breadfruit and slice the breadfruit in lenghtwise slices and shallow fry in a neutral oil. I dusted these with some salt and lime zest. This is great with ketchup or creole sauce and just as tasty and less junky than French Fries or as we call them in Barbados Chips.
Breadfruit can also be substituted for potato and you can make a breadfruit salad with it very very good. My mouth is just watering writing this. You can roast it in a hole and stuff it with butter and sauce and meat but since I am vegan I would have to think of another stuffing for breadfruit. Any suggestions? You can boil it and eat it with margarine just like that. You can boil and mash in a dish called Breadfruit Cou Cou and, you can add some to bread to make a breadfruit bread. Something i am working on now. There is a small scale production of Breadfruit flour in Barbados and from reading some scientific food journals it is said that it can be used up tp 40 % in bread. Breadfruit flour is obviously gluten free. As a food technologist I am always looking for new products to create. I think the Caribbean needs to do some large scale Breadfruit chips production as it really makes a good chip and from reading some scientific journals it absorbs 40 % less oil than English Potato. That is really interesting and the taste is like wow and the good thing you can eat less of them as they fill you up really quickly. Breadfruit can be also picked like Green Bananas. Whewww.. Now for another Recipe. My all time favourite Breadfruit Cou Cou in Creole Sauce. Eating this was like a big taste explosion in my mouth. There is no poverty on my palate as this taste like very fine cuisine . I am serious. Ok before the questions start pouring from my international readers I have to tell you a joke about my grandmother. My grandmother has lived in Canada for the past 15 years and this woman is probably the only person I know who is eating breadfruit, dasheen and Caribbean root vegetables everyday even if she is in Canada. How she does this? She moved next to an Asian market just to be nearby for when the fresh produce from the Caribbean comes in. If you buy a breadfruit and it looks like intergalactic green stick it in the fridge and let the skin go brown for about 3 or 4 days before using it. I cannot stand the taste of very very green breadfruit or the too sugary taste of too ripe breadfruit.
Breadfruit Cou Cou and Creole Sauce
Half breadfruit peeled and de hearted ( is de hearted a word?)
1/2 tsp of salt
4 heaping tbs of a pretty salty vegan margarine
2 tbs green onion chopped
1/8 tsp liquid smoke (optional)
Boil breadfruit until soft but still firm. Immediately mash with margarine and green onion and smoke until smooth. You would feel like if you are mashing glue or some kind of dough . Butter a bowl and add a dolop of breadfruit cou “>cou cou inside and roll around until u have formed a ball. Make a well in your breadfruit cou cou and add you good tasting creole sauce.
**Traditionally Breadfruit cou cou is cooked with a piece of salted pork so that is why I said add some smoke but you really don’t need to**
Is an onion based gravy with tomatoes . I will just give a guide for this gravy as there is not strict recipe to say but I will still add a recipe for this in the book when I get around to the Sauces section.
1 onion chopped in crescents, sweet peppers of Vegetarian Pepper, 1 tbs of red butter ( if you cannot find that get some annato seeds and make some red oil with it),2 cloves minced garlic, black pepper, pinch of curry, can of tomatoes, a squirt of mustard and some salt. You just need to sautee you onions and peppers and add the spices and your water and the rest of ingredients. You need to cook it for about 15 mins so it gets slightly thick. You can add a little pinch of cornstarch if you do not see your sauce getting body.
Creole Week is sadly coming to an end only a few more post to go. Do not forget the giveaway is going on. I want to close it earlier as I am not getting anyone new to enter so I will close it sooner so people can get their jams and cheese.
A Note about Vegetarian Peppers. I need some help finding the scientific name for these chilli. These peppers have the same amount of heat as a Sweet Pepper but the flavour is like a hot pepper. I use to be scared cooking with them as I smell very strong pepper like a Scotch Bonnet coming from these but when u taste it no burn. That is great as peppers have such good flavours but people do not like them as they burn and ruin the dish. If anyone knows the name of these sweet peppers that grow in the Caribbean let me know so that I can update the post