Apr 13, 2013 / 23 notes

Around the World: Martinique

Hey guys! I haven’t posted for a while! That’s because I spent the last 3 weeks in Martinique (quit hatin’).

For those of you who haven’t heard of Martinique (have you been living under a rock your whole life?), it’s a tiny island in the Caribbean and it is a French department (i.e. it is part of France like Hawaii is part of the USA). The official language is French but people also have their own dialect créole, which weirdly enough I fluently understand but don’t speak. Don’t ask.

I went there with my mother to visit my grandmother, and we also spent 4 days in the neighbor island of Saint Lucia, which was quite nice too!

So I thought I would make you discover a bit of what people eat in Martinique! 

In the first pictures you can see we’ve grilled langouste or lobster in English with some crevettes (prawns). It’s all super fresh because my grandmother lives in Le François and there is a harbour there so fishermen come back from the ocean and sell it directly on the market! We just let both marinate for a bit (30 minutes) in lime and olive oil along with some herbs and garlic. It was to die for!

That’s not something people eat everyday (it can be a bit pricey, though less than in Europe, and time consuming if you’re working etc.) but rather once in a while, when the family meets, during the weekend, for special occasions, etc.

I just remembered, we also had crab for Easter which is very typical in Martinique, everyone cooks it in the morning and then go eat it at the beach with their family! But I forgot to take pictures -_-’ sorry… Anyways, it’s very good but I kinda hate to eat it because it takes SO MUCH TIME! People usually don’t use seafood crackers (that child’s face represents my struggle, see link) so you have to crack it with your teeth. So first of all, OUCH! Second, you get bits of the shell in your mouth, which you then need to spit out and then for those of you who never ate crab, there is very little flesh inside so you need to eat many crabs to be full. Eating one crab takes me about 10 minutes, no kidding, so eating many? I don’t think so. But then that’s just me, the rest of my family appears to be professional at this, I’m just not gifted. This food is not for me. It IS delicious but I cannot be bothered to go through this. Too frustrating.

For dessert, people like to eat fruits. I’m lucky because my grandmother sells fruits and vegetables and my uncle owns a banana plantation so we always have PLENTY of fruits to eat! 

I love mangoes, here you can see I’m eating what’s called a mango Bassignac (sorry the link is in French, but you get nice pictures and you can always use Google Translate)

Did you know that mango in créole is the same as in English and not mangue like in French! Créole originates from many languages such as French and English, and I also think Spanish but you might want to check Wikipedia

You don’t cut it like other kind of mangoes (like mangues Julie, the most typical one sold in Europe) because it’s too filamentous. So guess what, you’ll need to use your teeth again! But it’s much much much easier than for crabs! You first wash the mango because you’ll need to rip the skin off with your teeth. After that you can just eat the mango like this. It does get very messy though and you can get juice everywhere, be careful, the stains are hard to come off! Luckily for me, I am a semi-professional mango eater (finally something I’m good at!) so I just get it all over my face and hands.

The next item on the list is a sapotille (sapodilla in English). It’s the brown fruit in picture 7. It’s not my favorite, but it’s quite tasty and sweet.

And then you have the passion fruit or maracudja in créole. You can also see it in picture 9. Pictures 8 and 10 show you what the flower looks like, so pretty! My grandma has a tree in her garden. I LOVE that fruit! I brought some back to make some fresh juice out of it!

Passion fruit juice:

•    As many passion fruits as you want

•    Water

•    Sugar cane

Slice the fruits in two. Pour the insides in a large recipient and add some water (for 5 fruits you can add about 500 mL). 

Whisk for a while and then sift it in a jar or bottle.

Add as much sugar as you want - remember sugar is not your friend people! For 5 fruits you can put 3 to 5 table spoons, just taste as you go and see for yourself when it’s sweet enough!

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