Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Return to Wadadli - Antiguan Food 101 (Part 2)

Hello New Followers!!

Happy Belated Independence Day to Antigua! Can you believe it's only been 3o years of independence? That means I was born a British subject. I guess maybe that explains the Anglophilia? ;)

Just a few more bits of Antiguan food that might interest you. You can find Part 1 of Antiguan Food 101 here, in case you missed it.

Often you'll hear Antiguans mentioning dishes such as goat "water" (sounds appetizing, I know) or even fish "water". Water is really code name for a broth/cooking things in their juices and creating a soup. At least this is my interpretation. (Mom, if you are reading, let me know if I got this right.) I have found that goat water is really just goat cooked in a curried broth-like soup.

I got this fish water below at our hotel, Sugar Ridge. By the way, they offered lots of local dishes on their menu in the short time I was there, and I appreciated that.

chunks of white fish, okra, squash, carrots and celery in a clear broth

Since I haven't been back to Antigua as much as I'd like in the past ten years, I did like to see the growth of beachside restaurants. I still think that all-inclusives stifle the growth of restaurants on the island resulting in higher prices for tourists and locals alike (less people leaving the resorts means less customers which means less restaurants which means high prices at the ones that do exist); but that's just me mouthing off.

Of all of our non-resort restaurant meals, I enjoyed Turner's Beach Bar & Grill the most. Imagine eating with view like this.

I could not resist having a lunch of curried conch (pronounced "conk"). Conch is essentially the meat found in those pretty shells you find on the beach. Well, not really, but they are actually sea snails, so imagine this being Caribbean escargot. :)

An actual conch shell

Here's my curried conch from Turner's. I was very happy to see some steamed veggies and a small side salad. Pretty plate, isn't it?

Here's a close up of the conch meat.
Conch can be a little chewy; but when cooked well, it should be perfectly tender as this was.

Husband J was having a burger or something, but we did share conch fritters. I guess I was in a conch mood that day.

Conch fritters are what you might think they are. Flour, eggs and milk or water are combined to make a dough. The conch is added as well as cayenne and other spices to give it some kick. The uncooked fritters are fried to a golden brown color with the outside being crispy and the inside usually a little chewy.

Close up of the conch fritter

Even with these two posts, I haven't even scraped the surface of what's eaten in Antigua (there's so much more to talk about). Either way, I hope you've enjoyed learning a little more about Antigua's local cuisine and that you'll seek out some local food on your (next) trip to the Caribbean.


Lauren said...

When we were Trinidad & Tobago a couple of years ago, my husband & I had conch for the first time and loved it. My dad was so excited that we both liked it so much since he grew up on it.

Oneika said...

The conch fritters look delish, but I'm a sucker for fried food!

Daphne said...

Conch is awesome, particularly conch fritters.


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