A Taste of Jamaica
Antoniette Gray and Delorse Dyer are bringing a mouth-watering taste of Jamaica’s flavorful dishes down to Crenshaw Blvd. when they set up their Wi Jammin Caribbean Restaurant at Taste of Soul on Saturday, October 13 from 10am – 6pm.
Full servings of brown stew chicken, spicy jerk chicken, oxtail, cabbage, rice and beans, and much, much more will be available to shock your taste buds with bursts of traditional Jamaica seasoning in every bite.
The tender meat of their brown stew chicken falls right off the bone and melts in your mouth. You can’t help but savor the flavor of onions, peppers and thyme in which the chicken was marinated for hours then fried and simmered in brown sauce.
A delightful accompaniment is the red beans and rice dish made with coconut milk, salt and onions.
Be prepared for an eye-watering experience when you take a bit of the jerk chicken, if you choose to douse it in the sauce so spicy you can see the bits of peppers.
Cooking in such a manner comes naturally for Gray and Dyer who have know each for years that they are now like family. Both originally from Jamaica, the two say that back at home everybody has to learn to cook. “You have no choice,” says Dyer. “When you’re young, you just watch your parents cook and then they make you cook.”
Now that they’ve been in business for 10 years, they are hoping to expose more people to a taste of Jamaica, which is why they are setting up a full-service booth at Taste of Soul.
Gray addresses those attending Saturday’s event and tasting the various foods saying “since you’ve tried the rest, now you can come taste the best.”
A Taste of Louisiana
Rachel Lyons has been passionate about food all her life. At 16, she began cooking for her family household, all the while reading about food, trying out recipes passed on from her aunts in Louisiana, and even studying at La Cordon Bleu Culinary Program in Pasadena. Today, at 27, she now runs her own catering company—She’s Catering—and is bringing a sample of her Creole specialty to Taste of Soul on October 13.
This first-time vendor will have a booth set up for traditional Po’ Boy sandwiches but with her twist. Lyons will be serving shrimp and oyster Po’ Boys on a Kaiser roll, dressed with lettuce, pickles and tomatoes, and topped with her secret Creole sauce.
“I didn’t want to do French bread,” said Lyons, “because I feel that it overpowers the seafood. The Kaiser roll has a French bread taste but the inside is very moist, so when you bit into it you’re really getting the seafood, not just a whole lot of bread.”
Every bite is a mouthful of crispy, fried seafood flavored with her special sauce. But her lips are sealed as to its ingredients. “I can’t really say what’s in it, only it makes my sandwiches original,” Lyons said with a grin.
And, when asked why patrons should stop by her booth, she makes her argument clear: “First of all, my food is going to be amazing. Second, me and the majority of the people working the front are beautiful women who will be very polite and friendly. Third, I’m going to make the booth very efficient so people aren’t waiting long, and the food is going to be reasonable.”