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Martinique - Cooking and Food Edit

Overview of Martiniquais Cuisine HistoryEdit

Martinique is located between the Caribbean Sea and North Atlantic Ocean; in the south it borders Trinidad and Tobago. Martinique is a French colony even since 1635. Being for such a long time under French occupation, Martinique maintained elements from French religion, language and cuisine. Most of all Martinique cuisine combines various culinary influences like French on one hand, as well as East Indian and Southeast Asian on the other hand. As a result local dishes combine French delicate cuisine with African condiments and Southeast Asian recipes. Seafood and fish represent the base of almost every meal. The humid soil supplies a big variety of tropical fruits and vegetables such as yellow squash, avocados, cassava, calabash, spring onions, pineapples, tomatoes, peas, chili, peppers a great range of citrus fruits such as oranges, lemons, limes, grapefruits, bananas and plantains, sweet potatoes, yams and mangoes. Martinique cuisine represents an amazing illustration of approaching the natural resources which the isle possesses.

Cuisines of Martinique Edit

Map of Martinique

Map of Martinique- Click to enlarge

Martinique cuisine is a mouth-watering combination of French, African and Indian influences. Exotic seasonings mix with fresh seafood and poultry make the base of such a varied culinary style. Generally Martinique cuisine a large variety of fish dishes such as shellfish, smoked fish, stuffed land crabs, balaou, freshwater Crayfish, stewed Conch and lobster.. Most meals are very spicy and they are served with bread named pain which moderates the spicy taste. Before many meals people in Martinique serve a glass of their local rum or a glass of French wine. Because the islands is abundant on exotic fruit, vegetables there are plenty used in Martinique cuisine such as local pumpkin or Squash, fiery avocado, carambole which is a star- shaped fruit, eggplants and pineapple. Other important dishes in Martinique cuisine include accras, boudin which is a spicy blood sausages, cabri , chadron which is sea urchin, small octopus, columbo prepared with curry, dashene a nutritional root, shrimps and lobsters.

Preparation Methods for Martiniquais Cooking Edit

Because the fish is the main source of protein for most inhabitants, there are lots of preparation methods for it as well as for other dishes. Martinique cuisine uses elements from various cooking traditions borrowed from their neighbors and developed from their own traditional dishes. While there are no specific or unique preparation methods for Martinique cooking, we should point out that attention to detail is important in the Martinique cuisine. Using the right amount of spices for example is essential – either for spicing up the taste or for coloring the dish. The diversity of vegetables and cereals found in Martinique is also noticed in the delicious dishes belonging to their cuisine. The visual attractiveness of the dish is also important, and a balance between colors and proportion differentiates. Each traditional dish has a special cooking method, which is more or less general in all of Martinique regions. Meat is one of the main elements of most Martinique dishes and cured and smoked hams are often parts of delicious dishes.

Special Equipment for Martiniquais Cooking Edit

To cook most dishes in Martinique cuisine you don’t need any special equipment. Ranging from cake pans, can openers, colanders, egg rings, poachers and holders, food dishers and portioners, food pans and food containers to other kitchen utensils, such as food scales, food scoops and fryer baskets and accessories, the Martinique cuisine needs a diverse cooking equipment set in order to produce the most sophisticated Martinique’s dishes. You should consider insulated food carriers if you are transporting the food and a full set of kitchen linens and uniforms if you wish to look like a pro. Here are a few other items that will come handy while cooking Martinique food: juicers, kitchen knives, kitchen slicers, and kitchen thermometers, measuring cups and measuring spoons, miscellaneous utensils, mixing bowls and skimmers and strainers. Essential utensils like serving spoons, spatulas, forks, turners, scrapers and tongs should also be part of your cooking "arsenal".

Martiniquais Food Traditions and Festivals Edit

There are many festivals and traditions held in Martinique such as New Year's Day, Lundi-Gras, Mardi-Gras, Ash Wednesday, Good Friday, Easter Monday, Ascension Day (May 12), Pentecost, Bastille Day, Assumption Day, All Saints' Day, All Souls' Day, Armistice Day (Nov. 11th), and Christmas Day. On holidays there are served traditional dishes such as Bananas Flambees, Salads of fruits which combines exotic fruits like bananas, kiwis, apples, grapes and pineapples fresh or boiled; Gratins des bananas jaunes and Court bouillon.

People in Martiniquais Food Edit

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In Martinique are many chefs who creatively use the basic ingredients and cooking method for traditional Martinique’s dishes and create original and delicious food variations. Martinique chefs are passionate about their traditional dishes and they enjoy presenting them to dumb foreigners who have never tasted them before. Whether they are cooking dishes that go back in time for centuries or brand new, modern dishes, Martinique chefs take pride in what they do, and this is readily noticeable in the unforgettable taste of their cooking.

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