The Callaloo, or Pepperpot Soup, is a traditional dish in the West Indies that dates back to the Arawak Indians. It was basically a stew that kept going on the fire and you just kept adding some new bits and bobs to it every day.
At the plantations this soup was later made by the slaves who would get scraps of meat and had to make the most of it to get food that was as tasty and nutritious as possible.
These days we can choose what meat we put in our pepperpot, and you will find that there are as many versions as there are people cooking it. This is a cheap but nourishing meal that keeps you warm and happy on a chilly day and I strongly recommend that you try it. Why not make a big batch and put some in the freezer for one of those days when cooking is not on the menu.
There’s shrimp in this recipe, but they are of course optional. And the meat is not carved in stone. Take what you have or what you would prefer. Fresh, salted, smoked etc – anything goes. And it doesn’t have to be the same, you can mix beef, pork, sausage etc. The same goes for the veggies – the only thing you must have is the callaloo and even that can be substituted. With spinach. So go ahead and make your own pepperpot! =)
- 450g stewing beef, cubed
- 125g salt pork, cubed
- 2litres water
- 450g (2 small or 1 big tin) callaloo
- 450g dasheen, chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves chopped
- 1 hot pepper, chopped
- 225g yams
- 225g malanga
- 12 okras
- 115g cooked shrimp
- 1tbsp creamed coconut
- 1tbsp butter
- salt & pepper to taste
- Simmer the meats in 1,5 litres of water in a large covered pot for an hour.
- Add all the other ingredients but the okra and the butter and simmer until the veggies are tender and the soup appears to be thickened.
- Saute the okras in butter for 5-10 minutes
- Gently stir the okras, the shrimp and the creamed coconut into the pot.
- Cook for 5 minutes