Diaspora

Meet the Instagramer: @tchakayiti on the cuisine of Haiti – National Geographic UK

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A hot habanero (or Scotch bonnet) sauce — with a mixture of vinegar, salt, pepper, shallots and onions.
Typical homemade Haitian food, which mostly consisted of meat (poultry on Sunday), plantain or root vegetables, and rice and beans.
It’s a fusion of the cultures we’ve come into contact with — French, Indigenous, African and Middle Eastern. Our spicy Haitian cuisine is a labour of love and patience. We spend hours prepping food, which we season heavily with epis, our spice blend, and scotch bonnet. We find every excuse to host extended family dinners.
Dishes that take hours to prepare and are rich in flavour, like tchaka (corn, bean and pork casserole) and kalalou djon djon (beef or pork okra stew with djon djon, a mushroom endemic to Haiti).
Locally. Street markets for organic vegetables and fruits, and grocery stores for everything else.
Lambi boucane. It’s fresh conch grilled in its shell and served with a hot sauce only the fishermen know the recipe for. It’s hot, spicy and vibrant, just like our cuisine.
My great-grandmother. She shared her love of food culture with my grandmother and her sisters, and then it was passed down to me.
Street vendors for fried shrimp or pate kòde (Haitian empanadas), Magdoos restaurant for my Middle Eastern cravings, and Le P’tit Creux restaurant for Haitian food.We’re following Annick Mégie, from Port-au-Prince, Haiti, whose blog champions the cuisine of her homeland.
A passion fruit mousse topped with caramel and seeds.

1. @jecuisinecreole
Leslie’s recipes from Guadeloupe have helped me see many ingredients in a new light, and also inspired many of my creations.
2. @jessicainthekitchen
Jessica’s mouth-watering vegan food always leaves me hungry, even though I could never be vegan.
3. @thebiteshot
Joanie Simon is a food photographer and educator who shares her tips and tricks. She’s helped improve my photography skills.
4. @cheflemaire
Haitian chef Lemaire does great work in elevating our cuisine. We’ve never met, yet he’s one of my main supporters.
Follow Annick on Instagram
Published in Issue 11 (spring 2021) of National Geographic Traveller Food
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