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Top ten Jamaican lunchtime meals


Anyone who grew up in Jamaica regard these 10 dishes are part of the country’s culinary DNA.  Few Jamaicans have an aversion to any of these dishes, unless they have allergies that prevent them from eating certain foods. These lunch time meals are among everyone’s top favourites. A cooked lunch is an ideal choice for hard workers and those who prefer to have a substantial meal towards the middle of the day. Most of these cuisines can also be found on dinner plates, except for patty and coco bread.

There are a few things that characterize lunchtime cuisines.  Meat is central, often chicken, beef, fish and goat.  Pork is a little controversial, especially among those who don’t eat this meat for religious reasons.  

Secondly, ‘ground food’ such as yams, sweet and Irish potatoes are important for most dishes. Raw vegetables are often used to decorate the plate, although that custom is changing, especially among those who are health conscious. Rice cooked with kidney bean and coconut milk, called rice and peas is the preferred choice to plain rice.  

Preparing most of these dishes are quite easy. Just remember to make them spicy. Here in Switzerland it is possible to find most ingredients, whether at larger supermarkets or speciality food stores.  Here the list of top ten dishes and links to recipes.


1.    Brown stew chicken with rice and peace

2.    Curried goat with plain rice

3.    Ackee and saltfish with johnny cakes, callaloo and breadfruit

4.    Escovitch Fish with bammy or festival

5.    Jerk pork or chicken with festival

6.    Oxtail with rice and peace

7.    Mannish Water soup

8.    Stew peas and rice

9.    Pepper Pot Soup

10.    Patty with coco bread

Also visit our art gallery of contemporary Jamaican/Caribbean fine art: EJ Gallery



October 2020