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 Trinidad and Tobago Recipe

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by Dave DeWitt and Mary Jane Wilan

Depending on the cook, this rather amazing stew can contain up to nine starchy ingredients, including yams, tannia, eddoes, taro, cassava, bananas, potatoes, pumpkin, and plantains. But since many of these ingredients are both hard to find and have similar tastes, we have adjusted the recipe somewhat. The name derives from South American stews called sancochos, and other names for it include "plantation stew."
The great Creole chef, Jean de Boissiere, noted: "This is the all-filling, midday meal of rich and poor alike on the plantations of Trinidad." It is particularly popular for Saturday lunch in Trinidad and Tobago.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings


  • ˝ pound corned beef, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 pound beef, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 large onions, chopped
  • 2 quarts beef stock
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 cup yellow split peas (or substitute blackeyed peas)
  • 1 cup Coconut Cream
  • 1 pound sweet potatoes or yams, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 green plantains, peeled and sliced thick
  • 2 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 Congo pepper (Habanero), left whole
  • salt and pepper to taste

Sauté the corned beef and the other beef cubes in the oil until slightly browned, then add the onions and sauté for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the beef stock, the herb seasoning, and the split peas, cover, and simmer for 1 hour.
Add the remaining ingredients, cover, and simmer until the potatoes are tender, about 30 minutes. Add more water if necessary.
Remove the Congo pepper, add salt and pepper to taste, and serve hot.

More recipes by Dave DeWitt and Mary Jane Wilan

Dave DeWitt's website:

Callaloo, Calypso and Carnival: The Cuisines of Trinidad and Tobago
Dave DeWitt & Mary
Jane Wilan



Recipe © Dave DeWitt & Mary Jane Wilan, 2002 - Copyright © CaribSeek 2002 - All Rights Reserved.
Web Published: August 21, 2002