Bradford Thompson’s jerk sauce is loosely based on his wife Kerry-Ann’s excellent family recipe; the couple is hoping to bottle it and sell it in stores. The mix of fiery Scotch bonnet chiles, scallions and spices creates a complex, deep-flavored paste that’s amazing on grilled chicken or game hens.
The spirit of Jamaica's popular jerk sauce comes through in this superspicy, fragrant grilled chicken. To punch up the flavor even more, let the marinade sit for an additional 24 hours before adding the meat. To lower the heat, swap out Scotch bonnet chiles (among the world's hottest) for jalapeños.
Inspired by Caribbean callaloo, this tropical, coconut-milk-spiked soup can be mildly or wildly spicy, according to your taste. If you like it hot, add some or all of the jalapeño seeds or a splash of Tabasco sauce.
This cellophane-noodle salad, with creamy avocados, crunchy peanuts and a chile-honey dressing, is an excellent showcase for Caribbean spiny lobsters. Also known as rock lobsters, they are sweet but can be slightly dense. This recipe uses Maine lobsters; they're more tender than spiny lobsters—and just as delicious.
Bradford Thompson created this recipe to balance some of the fiery Jamaican dishes he likes to cook at home. The chutney is made with a mix of fresh mango, papaya and pineapple, and it's deliciously sweet and delicately spicy.
Rundown is a classic Caribbean recipe that involves cooking foods like crab, mackerel or lobster in coconut milk. (The word rundown refers to the simmering down of the coconut milk.) Bradford Thompson uses chunks of lump crabmeat in this spicy, rich coconut-curry stew. Curry, which is popular in Jamaica, was introduced there in the 17th century by East Indian slaves who were brought to the island (then an English colony) by the British.
In Middle Quarters, a village on the southern coast of Jamaica, roadside stands serve sweet shrimp simmered in peppery broth. Inspired by this, Bradford Thompson simmers shrimp in a fragrant broth made with lager, chile and fresh ginger, then serves them with avocado and a light mango dressing for a great salad.
Pork tenderloin is leaner than skin-on chicken is and delicious in the spicy, smoky recipe here. Capsaicin, the chemical that makes chiles taste hot, can help boost metabolism; for extra fire, add the chile seeds to the marinade.
According to a Gosling's Rum tale, this drink was invented more than 100 years ago when members of Bermuda's Royal Naval Officer's Club added a splash of the local rum to their spicy homemade ginger beer. They described its ominous hue as "the color of a cloud only a fool or dead man would sail under."