Snacks and Appetizers
Bajans serve local produce as appetizers and snacks in a variety of ways. For example pumpkin, which is similar to an American squash, is made into fritters sprinkled with sugar and spice. Plantain, a member of the banana family but quite unpalatable uncooked, is served fried or wrapped in bacon and baked.
A famous Bajan dish is fish cakes, made with salted cod, imported from the maritime provinces of Canada. The importation of salted fish and meat goes back to the colonial days when these foods, which could be stored for moths were seen as a cheap source of protein. Fish cakes are made with salted cod, flour, herbs and pepper and are served in rustic rum shops and elegant cocktail parties alike. As health conscious as everyone is trying to be, a dish of freshly fried hot fish cakes passed around at a gathering with some pepper sauce or sauce marie rose goes faster than a snow-cone melts in the sun.
A popular snack or lunch is a fish cutter - a fried flying fish or fish fillet sandwiched between a Bajan salt bread, especially served with chips - breadfruit and potatoes cut into wide wedges or thin fries. Cutters can have a variety of fillings - cheese, ham or chicken are also popular. Chicken necks and gizzards are popular street food and its wings or drumettes are often fried or oven barbecued for finger food at parties. Then there's minced beef, chicken or vegetables patties or rolls - these ingredients are well seasoned and spiced and stuffed into a thin, crispy golden crust and are definitely more-ish (i.e. you always want more once you've had them. Other pastry snacks include jam puffs and currant slices, which are quite good with a cup of tea for breakfast.