As people become more conscious about eating healthy, refrigerators are becoming drippy dens for organic spinach, locally grown Swiss chard and that bumpy “it” green—dinosaur kale.
But Jamaicans laugh at these neurotic hipsters who decorate their shelves with these limp greens that often expire before one can bear the thought of blending them.
Callaloo is a delicious green leaf that tastes like a hybrid of spinach and collard greens. While we don’t recommend adding it to your smoothie, you can certainly give it a jerk.
While the best callaloo recipes are simple tributes to its God-given fresh, mild flavor, my mother, a stalwart Manchesterian, puts dry and wet jerk seasoning on almost everything, and she inspired this jerk callaloo recipe.
- 2 large bags of callaloo
- 1 tablespoon unrefined coconut oil (or extra virgin olive oil)
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 3 whole scallions, chopped
- 1 large tomato, chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 teaspoon of your favorite dry or wet jerk seasoning (We like JCS Boston Dry Jerk Seasoning)
- 2 organic boiled eggs (optional)
Tear or cut small branches with leaves from the main stem and submerge the callaloo into a bowl of cold water. Let soak for about a minute and remove, discarding the water. Repeat at least one more time. Roughly chop the leaves and branches and set aside.
Fill pot with cold water, covering eggs by 1 inch. Boil eggs over medium-high heat until yolks are completely cooked. Set eggs aside while you prepare callaloo. Heat the oil in a medium or large Dutch pot or skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and scallions, stirring until the onion begins to soften, approximately 2 to 3 minutes. Add the callaloo, tomato and salt. Mix all of the ingredients together, add the water and cover. Cook over medium heat until the stems are tender, approximately 10 minutes. Note: If you want the greens to be al dente, cook for less time, approximately 5 to 7 minutes.
Pour callaloo into a bowl and mix in jerk seasoning. Remember a little jerk seasoning goes a long way, so do not add any more seasoning until you taste the callaloo. Slice eggs into halves and when serving callaloo, place one egg half at the center of the dish. Sprinkle or dab a little jerk seasoning on the egg for an extra kick. Serve with Basmati rice or Jamaican water crackers.