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Video:Fruits and Vegetables Used in Latin Caribbean Food

with Ula Robertson Neumann

Latin and Caribbean cuisine utilizes a number of distinctive fruits and vegetables to give it its flavor and texture. This About.com video will go over some of the most popular fruits and vegetables in Caribbean and Latin cooking.See Transcript

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Transcript:Fruits and Vegetables Used in Latin Caribbean Food

Hi, my name is Ula Robertson Neumann and today I'm showing you some fruits and vegetables that are very important in Latin and Caribbean cooking.

Latin and Caribbean Fruits and Vegetables: Pineapple

So the first one is pineapple. Pineapple comes originally from South America and is very important in the cuisine over there, as well as in the Caribbean. Today, I fried it, topped it with some caramelized onions, alongside a chicken leg.

Latin and Caribbean Fruits and Vegetables: Yucca

And now for yucca. It comes originally from West Africa, but it came over with the slave trade to the Caribbean and is now very important in all the Caribbean and Latin countries. So we simply fried the yucca in oil, seasoned it with salt and pepper and some garlic, and it's a great replacement for any kind of potatoes and it would go well with the chicken we made earlier.

Latin and Caribbean Fruits and Vegetables: Plaintains

Our next fruit is plantains. Plantains come originally from Africa and they are very important today in Caribbean and Latin cooking. And today I used this very ripe variety, fried them and served them with shredded chicken.

Latin and Caribbean Fruits and Vegetables: Green Banana

Our next fruit is the green banana. Green bananas also come out of Africa and are readily available everywhere in the world now. Green bananas and plantains are very similar looking, but they have different textures and different taste.

Latin and Caribbean Fruits and Vegetables: Yams

Our next vegetable is yams. Yam is a root and I have it cut off here. It's a very long root, it's probably a foot long, comes from Africa and is grown all over the Caribbean.

Latin and Caribbean Fruits and Vegetables: Ackees

Our next fruit is ackees. Ackees are originally from Cameroon and with the slave trade, came over to the Caribbean. You find them all over, but only Jamaica harvests them.

Ackees are only available canned in the United States and the reason is, if you pick them before maturity, they are poisonous. So, once you buy them in cans, you can be sure that they are picked at the right time. Ackees are very important part of the Jamaican breakfast. Ackees and swordfish, which I have here. This is swordfish sautéed in onions and peppers and served with yellow yam, dumplings and green bananas.

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