While it has been some time since my first recipe on Desert Island Whisks, unlike my ability to update the blog, I have not ceased in updating my culinary skills!
We have now been on the island for six weeks, and in that time I have cooked up several veritable feasts. I love creating new recipes with produce native to the island, that either isn’t readily available at home or that I haven’t thought to use before. I hosted my first business dinner a few weeks ago and cooked everything from scratch, including the bread! It was a hot day in my kitchen; let me tell you that much.
I am all about preparing healthy, elegant suppers that use as much fresh organic produce as possible. I am also very budget conscious as some of you well know, and as organic foods are often more expensive it makes for a challenging task.
There are many foods often overlooked (sweet potatoes, oats and pumpkins), which are not only superfoods in their own right, but are readily available all year round and inexpensive to buy. They are also great for bulking out suppers.
I like to incorporate at least one superfood into each meal to make sure I get as many key vitamins and minerals into my body as possible. Make no mistake people, it isn’t your £300 face creams that will have you looking young at 40, it’s ensuring that cell repair and renewal happens from the inside. Don’t get me wrong, surgery would do the trick and I’m not against it (just can’t afford it) but let’s start out carving pumpkins, rather than our faces, and see how that goes!
Initially, I thought sourcing fresh local produce was going to be a real challenge (as previously mentioned Barbados imports most produce and grows little of its own), but after going at it all guns blazing I am happy to report the following finds:
Holders Farmers Market (Sunday only) – This has become a firm fixture on the calendar. Founded by Jack Kidd (brother to supermodel Jodie), Holders market is set in the stunning grounds of the Barbados Polo Club. One of my favourite haunts, Holders boasts some of the best organic fruit, veg and homemade chutneys, though the best part is spent wandering around the stalls to seek out the tasters. I have to swap stalls in and out every week so they don’t catch on to me trying but rarely buying. It’s always delicious, but I just can’t afford the amount I can test.
Most Holders folk frequent the market every Sunday to eat brunch and listen to the live band, and there is a fantastic community spirit to the event. It is also a great place to hang out and drink beer at 10 in the morning. Hey, I don’t make the rules…
Speightstown Fish Market – Just a 5-minute drive from our house, you need to turn up around 10am to get the best fish. Their usual hoard includes Mahi Mahi (Barbadian dolphin but of no relation to Flipper), Bill fish, Red Snapper, Flying Fish, Tuna and Marlin. The fish is fresh off the boats and they happily fillet it for you as well, which is helpful indeed as the sharpest knife I currently own is a bread knife.
Fish markets are ten-a-penny in Barbados, but I choose this one as I love to visit the beautiful and historic Speightstown. I also owe the fish lady 50 cents (20p) and at the very least have to keep returning until the debt is cleared. It’s not a lot of money but Barbados is not a big place, and if the people with their tasters at Holders get together with this lady, they are going to think I have some cheek.
Speighstown veg man – A short walk up from the fish market (outside Courts), this chap is really friendly and grows his own produce, so if Holders doesn’t supply (or it’s not Sunday) this is the go-to-guy. He also gives tasters (I had a whole avocado last week) but only when I have purchased other goods. He has my cards marked.
So, in conclusion, it’s going swimmingly well for all. Except for the fish at the market…
For all my recipes, check out Desert Island Whisks