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Barbados Week: West Indian Pumpkin Fritters (Recipe)

November 22, 2010

Wow what a month. I am in my final stretch of MOFO ing. Thanks to everyone who found my little corner of the web during the month and I thank you all for your feedback during last week and lovely comments. I will be hopefully getting around to some of your blogs this week.

This week i wanted to show a slice of Barbadian food culture with you. I know I know I always do it but the significance is that in Barbados we will be celebrating 44 years of Independence on the 30th of November and I wanted to  dedicate my week to my place of birth. This week you will get useless pieces of trivia maybe useful to those who want to visit and also look into Barbados in more detail. Next month we will actually take a tour to Barbados as there will be photo and video coverage of the food culture and life in general in Barbados so during the holidays look forward to daily post from me.

Todays Barbados Trivia

We were an ex British colony.

The population size is around 300 000 and it is considered a densely populated island without the filth associated densely populated countries

People always say the island is very clean so that is something positive even if I think they can always do better!

The size of the country is 166 square miles

It is considered a developed country in terms of human development

The literacy rate is number 4 in the entire world…so I better spell check well today right?:)

The population is 95 %”black” and 5% white and of course school is compulsory

Education is free even at tertiary level WOOT! I got it for free and I use it!:)

Health care is free” ish ”

Sports include cricket, football(soccer) and road tennis which is a tennis that Barbadians play with a board racket and the court is flat on the road and the net is on the ground.

Barbadians are very proud people and may come across as standoff ish at times but when you made a friend from Barbados they would do good things for you.

We drive on the left and we speak English but we have a dialect called Bajan (Ba jan) dialect which is spoken widely which is English that is broken but they are some unique words that are Barbadian.

Tomorrow we will look at the flag of Barbados and what it means and learn about the real way of life…not the life some people think we live…meaning NO HAMMOCKS AND GRASS SKIRTS INVOLVED!!!LOL. If you do not know me by now…my sarcasm gets me places…..eek!

Pumpkin Fritters from Caribbean Vegan Copyright Taymer Mason (meaning potential thieves I do not want to see this on your site along with any photographs of this either. If you make the recipe and want to post it link back to the blog or ask permission! This is directly out of the book so do not even try to steal it this time around( to  all with a strange look on your face I have lots of issues in the past so I am addressing them now as this is the most widely searched recipe on this blog so I know how it goes!)

PUMPKIN FRITTERS (EGG FREE) VEGAN

Copyright Taymer Mason

1 cup (250 g) finely grated calabaza squash, pumpkin,
or other winter squash
1 tablespoon nondairy milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2⁄³ cup (85 g) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon cornstarch
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon or cassia
¼ teaspoon salt
Canola oil
Granulated sugar

Mix the calabaza squash, nondairy milk, vanilla, flour, sugar, baking powder, cornstarch,
nutmeg, cinnamon, and salt together until well combined. The batter should
be fairly soft but still stiff. Refrigerate for 20 minutes to help the batter thicken.
Heat about ¾ inch (2 cm) of oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium heat. Test if the
oil is ready by spooning a little batter into the oil; it is ready when the batter sizzles
vigorously and floats to the surface. (Do not forget to remove this small piece of batter
from the oil.) Carefully spoon the batter into the oil, using about a heaping tablespoon
batter for each fritter. Cook for 35 seconds, then turn the fritters over and cook
for 30 seconds. Turn the heat down to low and cook the fritters, turning often, for
about 5 minutes, until the fritters are golden brown.
Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle with granulated sugar and serve warm.


Pumpkin Fritters Copyright Taymer Mason

Pumpkin Fritters( click on the photo to see how beautiful these look) are a Barbadian Breakfast carb that is made with West Indian Pumpkin aka Calabaza squash NOT Halloween pumpkins. It is sometimes considered as an old time food since there was a decline in it as only a grandmother would make this for the children but, I am seeing a comeback  recently and some places that sell breakfast offer pumpkin fritters. Before I go on you can click here to read up on Calabaza squash and I also was kind enough to show you a piece I have.

Calabaza Squash Copyright Taymer Mason

You see how nice and orange that looks? Sometimes Calabaza Squash are like a hot guy they look good and fresh but the taste does not deliver so sometimes I like to cut a piece of my pumpkin and taste it slightly cooked to see if it is sweet enough. This time around my pumpkin delivered! Good news for the sad faces feeling disappointed they cannot make this recipe. Winter is here so if you do not live close to a West Indian market you can use a winter squash. The best substitute for Calabaza squash is Kabocha squash or any other sweet winter squash. Oh, if you do live  near a Latin or Mexican market they would have this because they use it a lot in their cuisine as well. Remember you must grate finely so those with those one faced graters that you use to use when you ate cheese get rid of it and invest 2 dollars in a box grater or if you have an attachment on your food processor use that because what you want to do is make your pumpkin turn into a pulp almost.

This recipe was a little difficult to come up with because you have to get the texture right when there is no egg in the recipe and this is one recipe where the egg did something significant. I actually use to make these a lot during a strange part of my teenaged years and I would make about a dozen of these on weekends and just enjoy. I got the recipe from my fathers mother who is my grandmother and even if we are not very close as my other grandmother this and a few other recipes I will be featuring this week actually were inspired from the ones she use to tell me over the phone when  I was growing up in Barbados. Now I can only afford two as these are fried morsels of goodness so it does not mean you should eat all but they really taste great. My recipe does not have a lot of sugar as I depend on the sweetness of the Calabaza but you can add an extra tablespoon if you like sweet stuff or sprinkle them in the sugar afterwards like a pumpkin donut!

Here is how it looks inside when it is piping hot when it cools down you can see the true fritter texture and there is a lot of pumpkin goodness coming out. I cannot stop going on about these they are so fresh tasting and you are not tasting flour or anything you just taste fresh sweet pumpkin and spices and it is a really a treat so make these when you can.

That is it for today’s post. The post will be a little late this week as I taking my french driving test in a few weeks so I have to come home shoot edit and stuff so it takes about 2 hours to write this post and edit the photos so…

Tomorrow I may do Cassava Pone and take away some of your fears about cassava because I may have communicated something wrong to people where cassava being poisonous is concern! We will be looking at a gluten-free dessert which is flour free of course and I will pair it with an unfamiliar and borderline unusual frozen treat!

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15 Comments leave one →
  1. November 22, 2010 12:48 pm

    You did what we do with our calabaza. We call your fritters “Tortas de Calabaza” in PR. I have a post on these tortas on my blog and I love when I make them. Though you cannot eat just one…they are too good. Nice job Taymer…I love your blog.

    • Taymer permalink*
      November 22, 2010 12:59 pm

      I remember your post back then yes. Of course you make these in PR ..like who wouldnt I like the name in Spanish I find you cook your pumpkin which some ppl do in Barbados but when I did the vegan version with it cooked it had no taste due to the poor tasting pumpkin! so…i am doing it raw and it cooks as it fries

  2. November 22, 2010 1:07 pm

    I’ll be in Barbados Wednesday! And will enjoy the festivities on November 30…until I go to the airport 😦 My hotel assures me they will accommodate my vegan diet and I can’t wait to see what they come up with! (staying at an all-inclusive)

    The pumpkin fritters look AMAZING! So hungry!

    • Taymer permalink*
      November 22, 2010 1:08 pm

      I hope they dont screw you up..direct them to my blog if they do anything silly;) I am guessing u are at TB or ABV….when u get back let me know what they offered you!

  3. November 22, 2010 1:25 pm

    Thanks for sharing these fun facts, Taymer. I’d love to visit someday:-)
    Your fritters look awesome.

    • Taymer permalink*
      November 22, 2010 1:40 pm

      hey i tried to post on ur blog last week and i would not even bring up the page to post the comment! Check that out I am all over that cucumber salad

  4. November 22, 2010 5:58 pm

    Thanks for sharing facts about your hometown with us 🙂 They look fantastic, Taymer, I am going to make them with some leftover pumpkin I have!

  5. November 23, 2010 8:32 am

    I enjoyed reading the facts about Barbados – up until I got to the fritters and couldn’t take my eyes off them. 🙂 Thanks for sharing the recipe!

  6. Gauri Radha गौरी राधा permalink
    November 24, 2010 4:41 am

    Those look very good!!

  7. November 24, 2010 9:58 pm

    love your site! glad to see some HEALTHY Bajan recipes although the traditional ones are tasty too.

  8. erin permalink
    June 3, 2011 8:22 pm

    Greetings! First off, I love your blog! I stumbled across it recently and have since ordered your book and plan to make good use of it in the near future. My partner (and baby’s daddies) is from St. VIncent so its fun to read things that he says, like a yam is not what Americans call a yam, etc. , and Lord knows – can use all the help I can get in learning how to cook Carribean style. Anyway, I notice in this post (pumpkin fritters) you give measuements for flour and such in cups, but in later posts you use weights. Any reason? I should probably invest in a bakers scale since I love to bake, but old habits are hard to break and it sure is easy to just grab the measuring cups. Thanks!

  9. Ivette M. permalink
    October 6, 2013 8:43 pm

    my husband said this was the best fried thing he’s ever had. better than any zeppole, fried dough, pancake or whatever. i also was amazed and have never had anything like it. the texture is perfect.
    i couldn’t find calabaza so i used delicata. I tried grating it but cut myself. So i gave up and just steamed it in the microwave and mashed it before i mixed it with the rest of the ingredients. i also only used like 1/8 inch oil in the pan because what would i do with all that leftover oil… But they came out dense but creamy. . just perfect. I’ll prolly be making these for ever, Thanks!

  10. Anonymous permalink
    December 26, 2016 6:43 pm

    I like your attitude

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