In Memory Of Karen Nicole Smith, 1972 - 2016

An uncomplicated salad with some “bite”.

spicy-caribbean-salad-recipeDo you ever wonder how things get their name? I remember my mom had a kitchen garden at the back of our house, where she’d grow things that usually ended up on our plate..  Things like herbs, peppers, tomato, eggplant, ground provisions etc. One of the peppers she grew was called “bird” pepper, which is known as Thai chili or Tabasco peppers here in north America. Why “bird”? not sure, but as a kid I do remember when the trees were laden with those bright red peppers, we’d see birds coming to feed on them. You’d also find these pepper trees in the most out-of-place spots. Simply because the birds would feed, digest and then wherever their dropping fell.. there was the chance that a tree would grow there.

Here’s a salad I started making a few years back to satisfy my taste for something fresh and spicy!

You’ll need…

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
salt to taste
2 medium ripe tomatoes (cut in wedges)
1/4 red onion (sliced thin)
1 leaf of shadow beni (optional) (sliced thin)
1/2 seedless (English)cucumber (about 6 inches) Sliced thin with skin on.
dash of black pepper (fresh cracked is best)
3-5 chili peppers (Thai, Tabasco or bird)

To control the heat of the pepper, you can cut them down the center, then using a spoon scrape off the seeds. I love the heat so all I do is slice the peppers, including the seeds. Wash and slice the tomatoes into wedges. If you have an English cucumber, wash and slice.. if you have a common cucumber all you have to do is cut it down the center and using a spoon, scrape the seeds out. Slice the red onion into very thin slices.





In a bowl, combine the pepper, vegetables, olive oil, black pepper. I don’t add salt to my version of this salad, but that’s because I don’t eat a lot of salt and your taste may be different. Add accordingly. If you do have shadow beni or cilantro you can add it at this point as well. I also have to say that I’ve seen people add red wine or balsamic vinegar, but like salt I don’t care for vinegar.


Do show some respect for the bird peppers, as they will have a bite to them!

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  1. July 19, 2019 / 8:47 am

    here in South Africa we call it chutney and bird chill we also have I think because bird like to sit on that tree its small but too hot

  2. Stephen Tindle
    June 19, 2019 / 2:41 am

    Very similar to the Parsi Salads of India and Persia. You said you’re not a lover of vinegar, try it with a squeeze of lemon or lime juice to give it a bit of a zing.

  3. December 17, 2017 / 12:02 pm

    Nice. One of the salads for my New Year party.

  4. Maggie Ntuli
    April 11, 2016 / 10:10 am

    Dear Chris

    Salad is delicious good smell yummy Schris

  5. Lystra Charles
    February 13, 2016 / 10:34 am

    This salad certainly reminds me of a Greek salad with a touch of the Caribbean! Yummy!

  6. Jenny
    June 25, 2014 / 8:48 am

    Wow Chris this is an amazing salad.

  7. June 20, 2014 / 8:54 pm

    Your recipes are wonderful . Trini to de bone !

  8. cynthia
    May 15, 2014 / 5:10 pm

    Hi Chris,
    I am so in love with your salads!!!!
    Can’t wait to make it for my family for
    Looking forward to taste it!

  9. janet Bascom
    January 28, 2014 / 8:16 pm

    You know Chris after reading friends from Trinidad, I feel I should put my single name and maybe I may meet someone I knew from Trinidads at Pointe-a-Pierre, and my name is Janet Silvester. Like everyone else, I do enjoy your reciepts. though living in St Lucia, I still carying them on and also enjoy Naparmima Girls High School and they put out a very interesting book. Take care janet.

  10. Maureen Gibbons
    October 6, 2013 / 1:56 pm

    Hi Chris,

    I just love your salad recipe and am making one this evening.
    All these wonderful recipes of your country remind me of my Grandparents cooking.

    It sure is nice to have these dishes again. My older adult children enjoy them, too.

    Best wishes,
    Maureen Gibbons

  11. Anne
    September 25, 2013 / 8:39 pm

    Hi Chris, your receipts are just great, they bring back memories of my youth back home in Trinidad

  12. syntra maharajh
    July 29, 2013 / 4:35 pm

    Yummmm. Love de spicy piquante touch or should I say flavor!

  13. pja
    February 20, 2013 / 9:27 pm

    PA J Thanks Chris for all those recipes you put out there they are all great i tryed most of them and they came out great next time i do one i'm going to post a photo of it for you to see thank .

  14. R.S.
    January 21, 2013 / 2:01 pm

    Hi Chris…was married a Trini and after 20 years enjoy the favours of Trindadian Food. Your recipe help me to create a dish that has the full essence of the Caribbean. I only wish that key ingredients like shadow beni and pudina leave were easier to find. Love all your recipes.

  15. Bert
    January 18, 2013 / 8:18 pm

    Hi Chris, man those bird peppers are becoming somewhat rear back here in Trinidad, I still love them an get them in the markets. Keep up the good work.

  16. Elma
    December 18, 2012 / 7:49 am

    Chris you are always on point, thank you so much for all your great recipes!!!!!!

  17. Frank Feurtado
    August 30, 2012 / 1:10 pm

    Absolutely delicious, Chris! In the Bay Islands we use the mutton pepper, lots of flavor. Of course I enjoy all the recipes you share with us. Thanks a lot and keep up the good work.

  18. Carole
    August 24, 2012 / 8:29 pm

    Your recipies send me back to the days when I was growing up in T & T., God I miss those good ole days!

  19. Ros
    August 18, 2012 / 12:41 am

    Absolutely fabulous your recipies!

  20. Haslington
    June 20, 2012 / 5:43 pm

    Just love this salad with a kick and a lick.

  21. janet james
    June 15, 2012 / 7:18 am

    Love this salad recipe….I also add a little lime juice to it.

  22. Frances
    May 29, 2012 / 2:17 pm

    Thanks Chris, my late dad used to make this salad for me often. Yummy!!!

  23. Jennifer
    May 8, 2012 / 8:26 pm

    Thanks for the wonderful recipe…we grow it all here in Las Vegas! Very light & healthy….we also loved the mango chutney…..can't grow mangos here……sad to say. Keep up the great site!

  24. Charlene Ramsey
    August 11, 2011 / 8:10 pm

    You done it again, I actually made this tonight and added some slices of mango to it and had it with a bit of steamed salmon. Man it was good…

  25. Peggy
    August 8, 2011 / 8:41 am

    Thanks for another great sounding recipe Chris, I can't wait to try it. Have a great day. Peg

  26. Lena St. Omer
    April 30, 2011 / 7:14 pm

    Chris, in St. Lucia we make our cucumber salads with a squeeze of lime juice and lots of fresh garlic, plus the ingredients you mentioned. One can smell it a mile away. We use scotch bonnett peppers, which are very hot.
    I enjoy all your recipes. Thanks.
    Lena St. Omer
    St. Lucia

  27. Alf G
    March 22, 2011 / 4:18 am

    I will try that salad also. Looks very delicious. Thanks Chris.

  28. Cassie
    April 11, 2010 / 9:43 am

    i love this!!!!

  29. Brittany
    March 23, 2010 / 1:28 pm

    Thank you so much! I can’t wait to try it.

    • admin
      March 26, 2010 / 10:22 am

      Brittany, do let me know how it turns out and if you like it or not.

      happy cooking


  30. Brittany
    March 10, 2010 / 10:27 pm

    I love all your recipes! My boyfriend is Jamaican and he eats rice and peas with almost you have recipe for this? Thanks!

  31. Wendy
    February 1, 2010 / 5:59 pm

    Looks really delicious! The bird peppers are quite common and are useful. Yes, the birds love them, so you don’t always get the ripe ones. Thanks, Chris

    • admin
      February 3, 2010 / 6:21 pm

      Wendy, as a boy my parents had a kitchen garden at the back of our home and I used to love it when the pepper trees were covered with the ting ripe red peppers. I’ve now seen similar plants sold as “ornamental” plants here in North America. Not sure if there’s any heat to them though.

      happy cooking


  32. Vids
    January 26, 2010 / 11:54 am

    Thanks for the receipe for the salad it came out great. I look forward for some more Salad receipe … trying to eat on the healthy side these days .

    • admin
      January 31, 2010 / 3:37 pm

      Vids, we all are or at least we should all be trying to!

      Thanks for leaving your comment.

      happy cooking


    • cheryl
      June 17, 2011 / 7:07 pm

      Hi Chris am looking forward for some more vegetable and salad recipe . I need to lose 15lbs my friend and i is doing a weight lost competition starting from June 20th to labor day weekend

  33. Sheri R.
    December 30, 2009 / 1:06 pm

    Do you have the receipe for coconut drops w/cherry on top and plantain salad and breadfruit salad?

  34. August 6, 2009 / 11:02 pm

    I love how you showcase of food is such a simple and delightfully tasty manner!
    .-= Cynthia´s last blog ..Eating at the Table =-.

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