Thursday, September 19, 2013

Vegan Mofo #15 - Taymer’s Bajan Seasoning...

Vegan Mofo #15 - Taymer’s Bajan Seasoning 

The Region - Barbados
The Book - Caribbean Vegan
The Author - Taymer Mason
The Recipe - Bajan Seasoning
Page # 19
Difficulty - Easy
Duration - About 15 minutes

Ordinally I only made this seasoning because it was called for in another recipe in Taymer’s wonderful book “Caribbean Vegan” but since it turned out so wonderful, and tastes so great I thought this little seasoning deserved a Mofo post all it’s own.

Bajan is a word that means ‘from Barbados’ and according to Taymer this seasoning - or some variation of it - is found in every kitchen on the Island.  From what Taymer says in her book, and from what I’ve read online there is no real set recipe, no ‘authentic’ ‘traditional’ recipe, as each family and each chef has their own blend, and puts their own creative touches or twists on it. I kind of like the fact that there’s no set recipe, that’s the ‘real’ Bajan recipe. I like that you can play around with it as long as you follow a few basic principals.

At least as far as my experience with Caribbean food goes Taymer’s version of Bajan tastes, smells and looks pretty authentic to me, as well it should since she’s a Caribbean woman. Her version uses a ton of green onions, a whole yellow onion, garlic cloves, Scotch Bonnet Peppers - though you can sub habanero which I did because I’ve never seen Bonnet’s in my area. - Lime juice, thyme, marjoram, parsley, curry powder, salt, black pepper, paprika, clove and white vinegar. None of these ingredients are cooked, they’re thrown right into a food processor and processed until you get a course sauce. After that your Bajan seasoning is ready to use in whatever creation you like from soups and stews, to tofu, tempeh or seitan. I originally made this seasoning to go into the Caribbean Split Pea Soup I was planning to make, but I can’t wait to try marinating some tofu in it and then firing up the grill.

Now, be cautious, anyone with a low tolerance for spice might find this to have too much kick, and if you’re not real sure about how much you can handle I would recommend using 1 small habanero or even a half habanero. I used 1 pepper, rather then two, and my sauce packs a punch, but the flavor is just so good, and really adds a new level of depth to meals. The other great thing about this recipe is that it makes quite a bit - about a medium sized pickle jar’s worth - a little goes a long way, and it can keep in the fridge for up to a year. How awesome is that?

1 comment:

  1. Taymer is so brilliant. I have Caribbean Vegan, but have yet to make the Bajan seasoning. Since I've made recipes with one jalapeno pepper that were to hot for me; I have a hard time with the thought of scotch bonnets/habaneros. I think I'll make one batch with half a scotch bonnet and a second batch with no hot peppers so I can mix them and control the heat level until I learn how much scotch bonnet to use.