Saturday, October 15, 2016

Eating the Globe: Jamaica

Conundrum time.

I went to Miss Ollie's in Oakland yesterday for lunch. It is a much talked about Afro-Caribbean restaurant. Its chef-owner is from Barbados. But when I studied the menu, I couldn't find any definitive Barbados dishes. So I ordered salt fish and ackee, a signature Jamaican dish.

Ackee is an African vegetable that was brought to our hemisphere by slaves. My dining companion's Jamaican step-father doesn't think the version served at Miss Ollie's is authentic enough. Apparently, in California, ackee costs $14 a can. In Jamaica, where it is cheap and plentiful, the dish would literally be all yellow ackee, with no other vegetable "fillers". In any event, my dish was flavorful and definitely unusual. There were also two large plantains buried on the bottom.

The conundrum has to do with whether baked goods count toward my goal. My entree came with a "bakes", a Barbados bread. It is thicker, denser, and sweeter than a regular roll. So do I count this as a Barbados meal? If so, crossing Denmark off the list would be a lot easier as there are a few Danish bakeries but no Danish restaurants locally.

For now, I will not count the Barbados bread.

On Monday, I will have Mongolian with HouseOfCadillacs.

Countries tried so far:
Africa: Algeria, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Morocco, Nigeria, Somalia, South Africa
Asia: Afghanistan, Armenia, Burma, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Iran, Israel, Japan, Kyrgyzstan, Laos, Lebanon, Malaysia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Vietnam, Yemen
Europe: Bosnia, Czechia, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Norway, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden
North America: Canada, El Salvador, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico, Trinidad & Tobago, USA
South America: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Peru, Venezuela
Oceania: Australia, Fiji, Samoa, Tonga

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