Here's another one of those classic soups you'll find being made on a Saturday throughout the Caribbean, with each household putting their own personal twist on things. While it's loving known as Red Peas Soup, the key ingredient in most cases is usually red beans (Kidney Beans). And though in this recipe I didn't use any ground provisions (I explain more in the demo video) it's also customary to add stewing beef and/or smoked meats as well. I went pretty basic to keep it simple for you to duplicate, while giving you maximum flavor and heartiness.
One of my favorite soups to look forward to on "Soup Saturdays" was when mom would have a massive pot of saltbeef (salted beef) soup, packed with ground provisions bubbling away on the stove. Due to the price and the fact that sourcing 'good' salted beef was difficult, we didn't have saltbeef soup often. I still get a chuckle when I do thick heavy soups during the summer months here in Canada and people would say "isn't it too hot for soups?". For the most part the Caribbean is always hot and it's tradition throughout the Caribbean that on Saturday's we enjoy a piping hot bowl of soup.
Take us away from the Caribbean, but you CANNOT take the "Caribbean" from US! Soup and Saturday is like the blue shirt and khaki shorts uniform you'd see next generation island boys smartly dressed in as they make their way to school. You expect to see it, without question. In my time on the islands anyway! We love making a massive (no matter how hard you try, the pot never seems big enough) pot of soup, rich and thick with wonderful flavors and textures. Guaranteed to be found on a Saturday bubbling away in homes across the region.
Callaloo, the delicious soup-like dish of the Southern Caribbean is traditionally made with the inclusion of fresh ocean crabs for it's unique and rich flavor. If one cannot source that wonderful 'blue' crab, we then look for that layer of flavor from salted meats like pigtails and beef, and I've seen some people use smoked meats on some occasions. I must point out that the traditional recipe for making callalloo (not to be confused with Jamaican Callaloo) are the tender leaves of the dasheen or taro plant. However, sourcing those in Canada is almost impossible, so we'll be using baby spinach with brilliant results in this vegetarian version of Callaloo.
That bone chilling cold is back and with a vengeance. Over the Christmas holidays it was relatively mild by Canadian standards, but this morning the mercury dropped to -28 C (-18.4 F). Like a true son of the Caribbean soil, I'm battling back with a hearty beef with sweet potato and pumpkin soup to warm up the mind, soul and body! We'll start off by roasting the pieces of beef (with bones) in the oven, something which is not traditional in Caribbean soup making, but that roasted flavor will elevate this soup to a HIGHER level! Then we go in with pieces of pumpkin and sweet potato, followed by fresh herbs and other flavor ingredients.
It’s one of those soups you really have to try before passing judgement. Like so many traditional dishes from the Caribbean (and globally), you’ll find people will be cautious and at times have negative comments, even though they fail to give it a try. You’ll notice that in the Caribbean we tend to use most of […]
About 10 years ago I had my first culinary encounter with tomato and rice soup while visiting Caron’s grandparents and though I wasn’t (so I thought..silly me) a fan of tomato soup, the plump grains of rice in it got my attention. I could not believe I was asking for seconds even though my bowl […]
I must mention that I used chicken broth in this recipe and you’ll find it’s listed under the vegetarian section of the website so please use vegetable stock to make this fully vegetarian as I didn’t have any left in the pantry when I was putting the recipe together. If you can’t source Jamaican callaloo […]
This soup follows on the North American way of roasting root vegetables during the colder months to intensify their flavors and to bring out the natural sweetness. I’ve been calling Canada home in excess of 20 years, so it’s only natural that I use this technique, but with a Caribbean twist. You’ll see me add […]
Ladies and gents, I must confess that I’m not a fan of cow heel (cow foot or bull foot) soup and if it were up to me, this recipe would not have been found here as I normally don’t cook this. However, a fan on the CaribbeanPot.com Facebook page sent in a request and being […]