Did You Know? – Part I

There are many things about our country, Jamaica not known by tourists. So through this post, “Did you Know?” I intend to bring to readers’ attention some interesting things about our Paradise.

Ackee – A Traditional Jamaican Tree

The Ackee, named also as the Vegetable Brain is an evergreen tree, quite tall at this mature status of about 10 meters. To its original name: “akye” from Twi language of West Africa, the British scientist attribute a scientific one: ”Blighia Sapida” after Captain Bligh took the seeds toEngland.

This tree, native to the tropical West Africahas been first introduced to Jamaica in 1778 when the captain of a slave ship brought its seed here.

The fruits are not widely eaten and they have a pear-shaped and it is widely spread in the Carribean cuisine receipts. In Ghana, the ackee flowers are used to create perfumes, while the seeds are very good in catching fish.

The most popular dish here in Jamaica made from the ackee fruits is the “Ackee and saltfish”.  It can be served with yam, green banana, fried dumplings and Irish potato, I am sure that you will love it. Any traditional Jamaican restaurant will serve this wonderful food.

Spelling Jamaica

Even if this might be strange, the spelling of Jamaica was not standardized not even in the first period of British domination. Only after a long run, the name of our country appeared on a map designed by Bartolome Colombo, Christopher’s younger brother as Jamaicha. Before this, everybody was writing the name as it sounded for them. So, this is the reason why on some ancient documents it is appearing as Gemecoe, Gemegoe, Jamico, Jammaca, Mamecah, or Xaymaca.

Rundown – Jamaican Unbelievable Dish

The Rundown, a Jamaican dish, usually a mix between sauces made of coconut milk, fish, and different seasonings, but many Jamaicans prefer to eat this dish as a dip for roasted breadfruit. The sweet and nutty custard is making this dish to be so delicious.

The name of Rundown changed during the years from Dip to Fall Back, Round the Road Stew Down, Assistant, Bread fruit remedy, Duck and Shake Back, Elbow Grease, Johnny Run Down, Dip and Shake off, Dipidens, Remedy, and the list can go on till lucky number 36. At least this is the number of names that can be found as synonyms in the English dictionary.

Jamaican culture and traditions born as a mixed between other cultures and this is the reason that we have a such a large variety of nice and interesting things. You still have to discover more interesting things about Jamaica in the next post: “Did You Know?”.

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