Join twowildtides on the country challenge. Each week, we’re going to be heading to a new country (in spirit). Primarily, we’ll be cooking a meal from each country; but we’ll also be watching travel documentaries, reading travel blogs, and listening to music. During the global pandemic, travel is largely inaccessible. We want to reignite our wanderlust, satisfy our travel bug as much as we can, and learn some new things along the way. I have a feeling our bucket list will have a number of items added to it through this experience as well. We created a simple alphabetical spreadsheet with all the countries of the world, and each week we will draw a random number that corresponds with a country on the spreadsheet.
Last week, for our first country, we travelled (figuratively, of course) to Uzbekistan. For our second week, we’re moving down south to St. Vincent and the Grenadines. To my disappointment, the sweet and tangy liqueur, grenadine, does not come from the Grenadines. So that dream was squashed pretty quickly. What we did make, however, was pretty great.
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines are an archipelago (we discussed that term in our article about St. Pierre and Miquelon) in the southeast Caribbean, just north of South America. While Saint Vincent is the main island and the largest, the Grenadines are made up of 32 smaller islands. Reading about this place made me crave a Caribbean vacation.
Compared to last week, it was tougher to determine what dish best represented Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. The country’s national dish is roasted breadfruit and fried jackfish, but in my small northern Alberta community, fresh breadfruit was near impossible to find. I could have opted for a dried version that could be ordered online, but that didn’t feel nearly as authentic. I found two bloggers that cooked Cod Blaff to represent this country and a few other articles that confirmed that this type of dish would be commonly served in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, so I was satisfied. I followed this recipe:
Luckily, Mack’s mom had just sent us a special delivery from Newfoundland. Among other treats, she had sent us fresh codfish from home. The timing was perfect.
I knew this meal was going to pack a punch when I read that the fish would marinate in fresh lime juice with onion, garlic, and hot peppers. Marination is a basic process, however, I rarely marinate my food. I was so impressed with the flavours in this meal, I’ll certainly be trying to incorporate marination more often.
I let the fish marinate for 24 hours. I wanted to maximize the flavours in this meal because it was so unlike anything I had tried before. Adding the wine, oil, and spices to the stew created such a strong aroma throughout my house. At first, I thought the allspice and cloves would clash with the limes, but it definitely worked out in the end. The taste was so rich.
While I cooked, I listened to a Saint Vincent and the Grenadines playlist on Spotify. It was essentially music you’d expect to hear on a Caribbean resort–no complaints about that here.
This dish was surprisingly easy to prepare for such an incredible flavour payoff. It is unsurprisingly tangy but I was caught off guard by just how refreshing it was. Despite having an unattractive name, Cod Blaff is such an exciting dish. I can just imagine drinking that broth when I have a cold and immediately feeling better. The rice ensured that the meal was filling, however, I definitely could have eaten the cod on its own.
We’ll definitely be making this meal again. Have you had anything like it before? Have you been to Saint Vincent and the Grenadines? Stay tuned for next week’s country!