By Chris De La Rosa
I remember being in Jamaica with one of my best friends for a quick break. His wife had gone to the local grocery in Ocho Rios, to get us stuff to prepare for dinner at our condo that night. She came back and with a joyous shout, she screamed: “I got you your favourite — bun and cheese.”
My guy could not control himself. Suffice it to say, he didn’t share any either. As a kid growing up in the area, he mentioned that his grandma would make this for him, and it’s been his favourite, since then.
3/4 cup sugar (golden brown is preferred)
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 tablespoons molasses
1 tablespoon browning
2 tablespoons honey
1 3/4 cups Guinness (stout)
1 cup raisins
1 cup mixed fruit (peel)
3/4 cherries (chopped)
4 tablespoon butter (melted)
3 cups all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 egg (beaten)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon ginger (powder)
Please note that this is my version of this classic Jamaican recipe.
In a saucepan add the Guinness, vanilla, molasses, browning, honey, raisins, cherries, sugar and mixed fruit. Place on a medium flame, stir well and, as soon as you start seeing bubbles on the edges, turn off the stove and set aside to cool.
Now it’s time to mix the dry ingredients in a large bowl. In goes the flour (sift if you want), salt, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, ginger and baking powder. Stir well to incorporate. Now add the melted butter, egg and everything from the sauce pan. You’ll have some work here. Mix into a dough, but try your best to not over-work.
Place the dough into a greased, flour-dusted baking pan (about 11 x 5) and set aside, while the oven preheats to 350 F.
Place on the middle rack of the oven and get ready to have your entire house smell like the Caribbean, around Easter and/or Christmas time. The allspice, cinnamon and nutmeg will definitely perfume your house.
It will take about one hour to fully cook. Stick a toothpick through the middle of the bun and, if it comes out clean, it’s fully cooked. Set aside to cool. Then brush with a simple syrup (equal parts water and sugar) to give it that classic shine. Don’t slice until it’s fully cooled.
This recipe is courtesy of Gourmand Award winning cookbook author and founder of CaribbeanPot.com, Chris De La Rosa. With over 450 printable recipes with step by step cooking instructions and demo videos, PLUS over 1 million social/fan connections globally every month, CaribbeanPot.com is the world’s #1 resource of Caribbean Culinary Culture. Connect with Chis on Instagram: www.instagram.com/caribbeanpot/.