This is a vegan take on Jamaica’s national dish. Full of colour and bursting with flavour, the dish includes peppers and spring onions, with chickpeas and tofu which are full of protein, and of course the fruit ackee. Deliciously served up with plantain (a big savoury banana) and fried or boiled dumplings.
This recipe serves 4.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan. Once hot, add the onions and fry until translucent.
Add the spring onions, garlic, bell peppers, allspice, fresh thyme, salt, pepper and scotch bonnet (if using). Cook for 5-10 minutes on a medium heat.
Add the chickpeas and cook for another couple of minutes. Then crumble the block of tofu into the mix. Cooke for a further 5 minutes.
Lastly, add the ackee. Ackee can break up easily so stir gently to keep the form of most of the beautiful pieces.
If the dish is looking a bit dry, you can add a dash of extra water, or oil.
In a separate pan slice up some plantain and fry in olive oil until a bit brown and cooked through. Alternatively place slices on a baking tray with a little oil and bake for 20 minutes.
Sieve the self-raising flour and polenta into a large mixing bowl.
Add the salt, pepper and allspice, and mix in. Add the sultanas (if using).
Slowly add the water bit by bit, mixing in with your fingers until you get a smooth dough. You may not need all the water, as you don’t want a dough that is too sticky.
Knead the dough. Then break dough up and roll into golf ball sized pieces.
If deep frying, heat sunflower oil in a large pan. Test it is hot enough by dropping a small piece of dough in – if it is hot enough it will sizzle. Drop the balls into the oil to cook for a several minutes, flipping over half way so they are cooked all over. To make sure they are cooked, stick a fork through them and it should come out clean. Alternatively, for a healthier option, boil the dough in water for 15 minutes.
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