Just as with Independence, there are specific dishes that definitely make it onto a Barbadian Christmas menu every year. Here, we introduce some of these dishes to you.
Green Peas and Rice
Very popular around the Caribbean. Barbadians tend to use brown pigeon peas to a large extent throughout the year, but at Christmas time, green peas are more popular.
No Christmas meal is complete without Macaroni Pie. In Barbados Macaroni Pie is whipped up with tubed macaroni noodles, cheese, and assortment of spices, milk, mayonnaise etc. and baked in an oven.
Sweet Potato Pie
The Caribbean version of Sweet Potato pie involves sweet potatoes crushed with pineapples and pineapple juice, spices and cheese, topped off with round pineapple slices and cherries.
Bajans love baking at Christmas as you could imagine, but they love nothing more than baked meats at Christmas. These include pork, turkey, lamb and of course chicken. At times, some of these meats are used in stew (to use with the rice) but usually, baked meats are the order of the day around Christmas time at the Bajan table.
This is the Bajan staple at Christmas. In every meat eating, pork eating home, you will be sure to find a good ole fashioned “Arnold” as some like to refer to it, at Christmas time. The ham is usual baked on Christmas Eve so it can be used in ole fashioned salt bread for breakfast, and placed at the side of the Christmas lunch.
Jug Jug is made from smashed pigeon peas in combination with pork, beef, hot pepper, onions and thyme and is more popular with the older generations of Barbadians. However, you will still see jug jug on some Christmas tables across the island.
When chicken or turkey is baked, Barbadians tend to “stuff” the insides with stuffing. Stuffing comes ready made in boxes today, but traditionally, Bajans take biscuits (locally made eclipse biscuits), crush them and mix them with spices and onions to create their own stuffing.
This is one drink that is certainly more popular around Christmas time than at any other period during the year. Made from Sorrel flowers, combined with various spices and of course sugar, it is perfect for washing down your 3-course Christmas lunch/dinner.
A huge fan favourite as Christmas. Rum punch is quite easily made at home by simply combining a fruit juice with a shot of our very own Mount Gay Rum, angostura bitters and lime juice (with spices if you so desire). In addition to this, Rum Punch is also sold commercially across the island.
Assortment of Soft Drinks
A popular Bajan tradition at Christmas time is to purchase large quantities of soft drinks, so you are sure to find some of these around the Christmas table.
Rum (Great/Black) Cake
This is the #1 delicacy served in Barbados around Christmas time. Rum cake or great/black cake as the locals like to call it, is made from a combination of fruits blended together, flour, egg (the basic ingredients in any cake) and of course, ole fashioned Bajan rum (although some households may leave out the rum due to religious or other preferences).
This is essentially a plain cake with fruits inside. Some Bajans bake it themselves, or purchase it from their favourite bakery.
A staple in the Bajan diet, sweet bread is an all year-round dessert enjoyed by all Bajans. However, you are sure to see some floating around the dining room table at Christmas time as well.
With a wide assortment of drinks, food and desserts around the table at Christmas time, it is no wonder persons usually spend the day with friends or family as around the Christmas table, there is enough food to feed many, many people. Such is the quantity and variety, that usually at the end of the day, persons have enough food left over for a few days to a week!
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