Callaloo (sometimes called amaranth) is a spinach-like vegetable with large, heart-shaped leaves. Jamaicans cook it in water with oil and seasonings to make a silky stew eaten at breakfast with ackee (a Caribbean fruit) and saltfish, or as a side dish. Bradford Thompson likes to use pork fat in his version, which he serves alongside his spicy jerk hens. Callaloo is available at many Caribbean markets in the U.S., but spinach is an easier-to-find substitute.
How to Make the Ultimate Umami-Bomb Vegetarian Demi-Glace
3 ounces salt pork, cut into 3 pieces
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 teaspoon annatto powder
1 large Spanish onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup water
2 pounds callaloo, thick stems trimmed, or spinach
Salt and freshly ground pepper
In a large soup pot, cook the pork over moderate heat, turning frequently, until it begins to brown and some of the fat is rendered, about 5 minutes. Add the butter and annatto and cook, stirring, until the butter is melted. Stir in the onion, cover and cook over low heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the water and bring to a boil. Add half of the callaloo, cover and cook until just barely wilted. Add the remaining callaloo, cover and cook until fully wilted, about 5 minutes longer. Discard the salt pork, season with salt and pepper and serve.