Have you every been to Jamaica?! I haven’t myself (yet). From a European person point of view, Jamaica sounds like the island that everybody knows about, talks about, and dream-plans about, but not many of us actually go there for real. Accessing this small island of the Caribbean Sea isn’t the simplest plane journey of all, and Air France offering plenty other options in the same area, this is just not the place-to-be after all.
The first I heard of Jamaica, I was about 8 years old, and I had just been offered my first children encyclopaedia, a massive book (for my age) with a geography section in it. That is the time when I figured out that I later would not have to stay in my country forever and would be able to travel, because I understood for the first time that the world was wide and wild, and that it would be nice to go out there and see it. More than places and cultures, I found out about all the existing languages of the world and decided that I would learn them all, lol.
Jamaica was still this small island from my big book that I would not mention again for some time. Until the worldwide famous movie Cool Runnings (aka Rasta Rockett in France) came out on screen; you know, this story of Jamaican athletes who wanted to run in the Olympics so badly that they picked a winter sport that was never an option before in Jamaica, bobsleigh. This fun movie was a favorite in our home in the 90s, and with my parents and siblings we’ve seen it countless times.
The last I heard of Jamaica was recently… on Netflix. I have had a quick look at the show Tables with Views, in which a group of hot shot consultants from the hospitality industry travel the world to the most remote places in order to help restaurant owners give a new start to their business after they failed attracting or keeping their clientele. Despite offering their food in beautifully unique locations… with a stunning view. Now you expect me to say they did that somewhere in Jamaica, don’t you? Wrong! They found this restaurant in small town Newfoundland, Canada, where this owner of a small joint over the ocean is fond of exotic cuisine influenced from Jamaica, and the consulting chef created for the occasion a recipe that has largely inspired me today through the making of this beautiful and flavorsome Jamaican fish salad.
- 2 portions of white fish
- a handful of pineapple, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 3 cm of fresh ginger
- 1 lemon juice
- 1 avocado
- 1/2 red pepper bell
- 1/2 red onion or 2 shallots
- olive oil
- coriander leaves
- personal touch: a couple of fresh and crunchy lettuce leaves, roughly chopped
- white rice (and possibly a bit of coconut milk for a flavorsome coconut-rice)
- Dice the fish in a bowl and marinate in the fridge with minced garlic and ginger, the diced pineapple and about half of the lemon juice.
- In the meantime, prepare the rice and eventually combine a little bit of coconut milk for an extra taste from the island.
- Get to the salsa by nicely dicing all of the other ingredients, and combine. Drizzle with a little bit of olive oil, the juice of the half lemon, a bit of salt, and a generous amount of chopped coriander leaves.
- As for the lettuce, either keep them whole and display on a plate to “bowl” your salad in a lovely way, or… chop it and integrate to the salsa.
- Briefly seize the fish and grill the pineapple in a very hot pan with a tiny bit of olive oil, along with the other condiments from the marinade.
- Let it cool about 5 minutes.
- Assemble your salade by combining the fish and grilled pineapple with the salsa and lettuce.
- Serve with a bit of white rice, flavored or not with coconut milk.
Created and Written by Sophie Rebibo-Halimi. © 2020 All Rights Reserved.