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5 Bahamanian Foods Every Bride Should Consider for a Reception

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I visited the Bahamas when I was 11 with my family, and I’ve been dying to go back ever since. One of the most vivid memories I have of the islands is the food – it all tasted exquisite and fresh, and it’s a taste I crave. I knew, even when I was 11, that I wanted to have my wedding in the Bahamas, just so all of the people who get to come can sample the amazing cuisine that the Bahamas have to offer.

1. Conch Conch (pronounced “konk”) is a very large mollusk. Many indigenous island people have rituals where a prominent member of society “plays” the conch by blowing in to it. However, musical uses aside, conchs are an amazing part of Bahamanian cuisine. The meat of the conch can be eaten fresh and raw, seasoned with lime juice and spices, or it can be deep fried. For a reception, I would probably feature it raw, along with some sort of oyster bar.

2. Stew In terms of a reception, it’s probably important to have some sort of soup or stew. The Bahamas are famous for fresh fish stews that are spicy and are similar to gumbos. Like most foods in the Bahamas, the stews tend to be spicy and flavorful.
3. Fish Fish is, of course, going to be the main event at any Bahamanian wedding reception (other than the newlyweds, of course). The fish courses in the Bahamas tend to be simple, and just showcase how fresh and light the fish is. The fillets are usually broiled and served over grits or a peas and rice pilaf. Crabs are another Bahamanian specialty, and they can be served broiled or baked, with similar sides to the fish dishes.

4. Chicken If for some strange reason, there are people at the wedding who don’t eat fish, it’s always a good option to have a chicken dish available. Chicken in the Bahamas is usually featured in a stew called “souse“, but that might not be the best option if there is another soup dish on the menu. Another way that Bahamanians serve chicken is grilled with a dry rub of spices. Like the fish, the chicken is going to be spicy and served with a rice side.

5. Dessert Now, for all that Bahamians love spicy, they balance it out with a range of wonderful, fresh desserts. A favorite of mine is fresh key lime pie (I’m actually pretty good at making it too!) Other desserts are rum cakes, which might not be the best option for kids, because they’re usually pretty saturated with the rum. For something more local, sapodilla is a fruit traditionally grown in the Bahamas. It’s sweet, pear-like taste makes it a staple in many Bahamanian desserts.

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