If you manage to leave your resort in St Lucia, one of the neat places to explore the heritage, culture and beauty of the island is at Greenwood Terrace. This historic home has been converted into a museum, garden, cooking school and offices of local tour company, Barefoot Holidays.
When you first enter the 2-story building, you will see artifacts and items donated by St Lucians dating back 100 years. Some of the memorabilia show documents of the first black seaman from St Lucia, pictures of nobel laureates, top chef Nina Compton, past presidents, women leader, actors & cricketeers.
You can also try on the St Lucian national wear for women – Mouchew/ Madras. The headpiece is designed out of a square or rectangle material cut specifically for this purpose. Worn over the forehead, it is creatively folded with a peak extending from the base. You can tie up to four peaks based on your courtship availability. One Peak – I am single. Two Peaks – I am married. Three Peaks – I am widowed or divorced. Four Peaks – I am up for anyone!
Outside there are over 260 types of flowing plants, fruits and traditional herbs and 23 species of birds on the property premise. Marketing manager, Shirlyn shows me trees full of moringa, avocado and mango, which she often picks after her office hours for a quick snack.
In the back, there is a traditional St Lucia village hut, the kind her parents generation lived in, she tells me. You can also see a clay baking oven, a chicken coop, and platene – a large traditional cooking pot used for making sugar and farine (a by -product of cassava – an Amerindian dish).
Of course, I had to taste some of fruits and herbs I had seen earlier, so Shirlyn presents me a Lucian snack box with candied fruits, nuts and spiced rum. There is a cooking studio setup for those who want to learn Creole cooking and classes are held couple of times a week or on request.
The resident chef shows me how to make Accra (fish cakes) made with cod that are very popular for breakfast and appetizers.
Here is the recipe for you to try this St Lucian dish at home courtesy of Barefoot Holidays.
Fish Cakes (Accra) Recipe
- ½ lb. Saltfish (or dried salted cod)
- 2 cups flour
- 2 tsp. Baking powder
- 2 tbsp. Finely chopped green seasonings (combination of fresh thyme/oregano, chives/spring onion/green onion, shadon beni/cilantro)
- 1 tsp. Minced garlic
- 1 tsp. Finely chopped onion
- Hot pepper to taste
- ½ cup water (approx.)
- Salt to taste
- 1 cup vegetable or canola oil for deep frying
Scald saltfish, remove bones and flake fish finely. Keep aside.
Combine flour, baking powder, green seasoning, garlic and onion in a large bowl. Mix the fish with the flour. Add pepper and water to make a soft mixture and mix until smooth. Add salt to taste.
Heat oil in a large frying pan until really hot. Drop the batter into the hot oil using a large spoon and deep fry for 3-4 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm with hot sauce or banana ketchup.