Celebrating our ‘Kreolite’ with authentic Creole recipes | 02 November 2019
In commemoration of ‘Festival Kreol’, Seychelles NATION contacted Berthilda Walter at the National Heritage Research and Protection Section to obtain a selection of authentic Creole recipes which are an integral part of our tradition, some of which many of us have never even heard of.
Ms Walter is the principal research officer at the National Heritage Research and Protection Section (NHRPS) in the department of culture, where she has been working for the past 32 years.
She holds a post-graduate Diploma in Museum and Heritage studies from the University of Western Cape, South Africa, as well as a Master’s degree in Sustainable Tourism Management.
Ms Walter says that her background in our Creole culture, including Creole dishes, dates back to 1987 when she joined the National Heritage as a cultural assistant.
“During the years, myself and the National Heritage team conducted research on various aspects of the Seychelles cultural heritage which we turned into exhibitions and publications. Traditional culinary arts was among this research.
“I remember myself and my colleague, Julienne Barra who is currently the director general for culture, went out to elderly people and interviewed them on traditional recipes. We then carefully transcribed and typed all these recipes, and classified them into starters, main courses and desserts.
“In 1996, the NHRPS published its first book ‘Dekouver Marmite’ series one, under the direction of Marcel Rosalie who was the director of NHRPS at that time; in 2004, series two was published.
“At that time it was necessary to collect and publish traditional recipes. Seychelles was developing fast and people were getting away from their traditional food to experiment modern cuisine which was much easier to prepare.”
Authentic Creole recipes
1.25kg octopus, 2 tbsp vegetable oil, 100g onion (sliced), 1 tbsp vinegar, salt and pepper.
Boil the octopus until tender, allow it to cool and remove the skin. Cut the octopus into small pieces and place in a bowl. Soak the sliced onion in salted water and squeeze it to remove excess water. Place in a small bowl, add the oil, vinegar, pepper and salt, mix them well. Spoon the dressing over the octopus and serve with rice.
Green pawpaw salad with eggs
1kg green pawpaw, 8 eggs, 200ml oil, 100g onion (sliced), 25ml vinegar, salt and pepper.
Peel and wash the pawpaw. Remove all the seeds and slice it. Boil it until tender. Set it aside to cool. Boil the eggs and halve them. Slice the pawpaw and put it in a bowl. Halve the eggs and set it up on top of the pawpaw slices. Mix all the remaining ingredients together to make a dressing and pour over the pawpaw and eggs. Serve with rice and savoury dishes.
Clam curry with ‘bred mouroum’
500g clams, 250g ‘bred mouroum’, 200g onion (sliced), 120g curry powder, 25g root ginger (ground), 25g garlic (ground), 4 cinnamon leaves, 4 ‘karipile’ leaves, 100ml vegetable oil, 500ml coconut milk, salt and pepper.
Boil the clams for 10-15 minutes, drain and remove the flesh from the shells, and set it aside. Pour boiling water over the ‘bred mouroum’, soak it for 10 minutes. Chop the boiled clam and ‘bred mouroum’. Heat the oil in a casserole and lightly fry the onions, curry powder, ‘karipile’ leaves, garlic and ginger. Add the clam and ‘bred mouroum’, add the coconut milk, cinnamon leaves and simmer for 25 minutes. Season to taste and serve with rice or boiled breadfruit or cassava.
‘Sikore’ curry with cassava leaves and coconut milk
400g ‘sikore’, 500ml coconut milk, 20g saffron powder, 20g curry powder, 20g root ginger (ground), 20g garlic (ground), 250g cassava leaves, salt and pepper
Wash the ‘sikore’ and boil for 20 minutes. Remove the flesh from the shells. Wash the flesh and cut into pieces. Return them to the pan and boil again until tender. Wash the cassava leaves and soak them in boiling water for 5 minutes. Drain well and squeeze to remove excess water, chop finely. In a saucepan, mix together the ‘sikore’, chopped cassava leaves, garlic, ginger, saffron powder, salt and pepper. Add the coconut milk and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season to taste, serve hot with rice, boiled cassava or breadfruit.
Salted fish coconut curry with pawpaw flower
1kg salted fish, 250g male pawpaw flower, 500ml coconut milk, 20g saffron powder, 20g curry powder, 20g root ginger (ground), 20g garlic (ground), 2 cinnamon leaves, salt and pepper
Boil the salted fish, remove all bones and squeeze to remove excess water. Sort and wash the pawpaw flowers. Place the pawpaw flowers in a saucepan of hot water for 15 minutes. Pour away the water, squeeze excess water from the pawpaw flowers. Place the salted fish in a cooking pot, add pawpaw flowers, curry powder, saffron, ginger, garlic, pepper and coconut milk. Stir them well. Cook it for 15 minutes. Season to taste and serve with rice, boiled cassava or boiled breadfruit.
Jackfruit seed curry with coconut milk
1kg jackfruit seeds, 500ml coconut milk, 100g onions (sliced), 3 tbsp saffron powder, 5 tbsp curry powder, 3 cloves ginger (ground), 20g root garlic (ground), salt and pepper.
Wash and boil the jackfruit seeds. Remove the skin, then place in a saucepan together with the curry powder, saffron powder, garlic, pepper, ginger and coconut milk. Bring to the boil, stirring constantly until a creamy sauce is obtained. Serve hot with rice.
Grilled tomatoes chutney
1kg ripe tomatoes, 200g onion (sliced), 200ml vegetable oil, 100g chillies (ground), 20g garlic (ground), 50g thyme/parsley (chopped), salt and pepper.
Wash the tomatoes and grill them in an oven-proof dish. Peel and mash the tomatoes, add salt, pepper, garlic and chillies. Heat the oil in a saucepan and lightly fry the onion, add the mashed tomatoes and stir fry for 4-5 minutes. Remove from the fire and sprinkle with chopped parsley and thyme. Season to taste. Serve with fish and rice.
Breadfruit fish balls
2kg breadfruit, 500g fish (preferably ‘karang balo’), 258g flour, 25g parsley/thyme, 20g garlic (ground), 25g ginger (ground), 1 litre vegetable oil, salt and pepper.
Peel the breadfruit and cut into slices. Wash well and boil. Cut and wash the fish. Add salt and pepper and boil. When both the fish and breadfruit are cooked, cool them under running water. Remove all bones from the fish and break into pieces. Squeeze to remove excess water. Mash the boiled breadfruit to form a thick paste. Mix ground garlic, pepper, chopped parsley, thyme and onions, and then add all the spices to the fish and mashed breadfruit mix well. Add salt to taste. With floured hands, roll the mixture into small balls. Heat enough oil to cover the balls and fry until golden brown. Drain the balls on a cloth, or absorbent paper. Serve hot with a vegetable salad or as a snack.
1kg ripe jackfruit, 1 litre oil, 15g salt
Cut the jackfruit, use the cloves only. Remove the seeds. Heat the oil in a saucepan and deep fry the cloves until golden, then drain well on absorbent paper. Sprinkle with salt and serve as a snack.
Green bananas with fish
750g green bananas, 1kg fish, 500ml coconut milk, salt and pepper
Clean the fish and cut into small pieces, boil for 10 minutes. Peel the bananas. Boil for 15 minutes. Mix the bananas and boiled fish in a casserole, adding coconut milk, salt and pepper. Cook for 15 minutes, stirring and mashing the banana constantly. Serve as lunch or dinner.
Frikase lavyann sale ek papay ver
1 kilo lavyann sale, 1 papay ver, 1 zonnyon ase, 3 gous lay kraze, 20g zenzanm kraze, 25 ml delwil
Lav lavyann sale e met li bwi. Plis papay e lav li byen. Koup li an pti morso. Met lavyann bwi dan delo fre e koup li an pti morso. Met sofe enpe delwil dan en kastrol. Rousi zonnyon, lay, zenzanm. Azout lavyann sale ek papay. Rousi byen. Azout enpe delo e les kwi pour 10-15 minit. Gout disel. Servi so avek diri.
2 kilo papay ver, 1 kilo disik, 2 kwiyer lesans lavanniy
Plis ou papay. Retir lagrenn e lav li byen. Trans li byen mens, met trans papay dan en pe delo bwi dan en kastrol pour anviron 10 minit (pa les li kwi). Retir papay e pers li dan en sifon prop. Pran sa trans papay e tourn li enn par enn e met sek dan soley pour 20-30 minit. Met bwi disik ek lavanniy. Ler disik pe bwi azout papay tournen. Les ou ganny en lasos epe. Servi fre avek dipen, gato, oubyen pir koman deser.
Graten zourit ek friyapen
1.25 kilo zourit, 2 kilo friyapen , 4g diten , 4g persi ase, 100g zonnyon ase, 30g lay kraze, 30g zenzanm, kraze, 50g margarin, 200ml delwil, 70g lafarin, 2 dizef, 80g fromaz, 250g lakourt dipen, disel, dipwav kraze
Bwi zourit e as li fen. Plis e koup friyapen an morso. Lav li byen e met li bwi. Ler in bwi kraz li byen. Azout magarin, dizef e melanz byen. Sof en pe delwil dan en kastrol. Rousi zonnyon ansanm avek zourit ase. Azout zenzanm, lay, dipwav, persi, ek diten. Rousi li byen apepre 3 minit. Senm en pe lafarin lo en plak. Pran en pe lapat friyapen e met li lo sa plak, e fer li plat. Pran en pe zourit rousi e met lo sa lapat friyapen ki ou’n fer plat. Pran ankor en pe lapat friyapen e met lo sa zourit rousi. Pas en dizef ki ou’n bate lo sa lapat, azout lakourt, dipen avek en pe fomaz rape lo la. Met dan four e kwi pour 5-10 minit. Servi so.
500g bodanmyen, 250g disik, 1 kwiyer lesans lavanniy, 500g koko rape
Fonn disik dan en kastrol. Azout koko rape ek bodanmyen e melanz zot byen. Azout enpe delo e les li bwi ziska ler i sek. Retir li lo dife e les fre. Servi konman deser.
Bouyon fey piman
500g fey piman, 150g zonnyon ase, 20g zenzanm kraze, ½ lit delo, 10g lay kraze, 1dl dewil, 2g disel and 5g dipwav kraze
Triy ou fey piman. Met dan en bol, sof ou delwil dan en kastrol. Ler delwil in so, rousi ou zonnyon e azout ou fey piman, lay, zenzanm, dipwav ek disel. Rousi tou ansanm, azout delo so e les li bwi pou apepre 15 minit. Ou kapab manz sa bouyon avek diri oubyen koman en starter.
Bouyon bred zironmon
500g fey zironmon tann, 150g zonnyon ase, 20g zenzanm kraze, ½ lit delo, 10g lay kraze, 1dl dewil, 2g disel, 5g dipwav kraze
Rod en pe fey zironmon. Lav byen e sode. Sof delwil dan en kastrol e rousi ou zonnyon. Azout ou fey zironmon e vir li enpe, azout ou lay, zenzanm, dipwav ek disel. Rousi zot byen. Azout en demi lit delo so. Les ou bouyon kwi pou 15 minit. Gout disel. Ou bouyon bred zironmon in pare.
Compiled by F.P.