I must have been a Jamaican in a past life because I love Red Stripe Beer, I love Jamaican music (i.e. reggae and dub) and I love Jamaican food. And like Jamaicans, who love their food hot, laced with a plenty of Scotch bonnet peppers (aka habaneros), the hottest chili on earth before the discovery of India’s ghost chili (which I have yet to try, by the way), so do I. Besides, beef patties, jerk chicken, rice & peas, fried plantain, callaloo, oxtails, and escoveched fish, I gotta say that my favorite Jamaican dish has got to be curry goat. No one makes it like the Jamaicans do, combining their unique curry powder with fresh herbs such as thyme and chives and coconut milk to make a fiery, tasty curry out of tender chunks of gamey goat meat (with the bones!). The best Jamaican food outside of JA itself has got to be in Brooklyn, at a little hole in the wall place in the hood, but since I live in Baltimore now (where, surprisingly, there are some decent Jamaican spots), I’m not able to enjoy my curry goat that often. That is, until now! Here is the secret recipe for an authentic Jamaican curry goat that you can make in your very own kitchen provided you can get some of the Caribbean curry powder. It goes perfectly with some rice and peas and stewed cabbage, but I ate mine with just a piece of naan bread. MMMmmmmm, MMMmmmmm, good!
4 1/2 lb. (2 kg) leg of goat, cubed
2 tbsp. finely chopped chives
2 Scotch Bonnet chilies, one chopped, one whole
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 tsp. ground allspice
1 small bunch thyme, chopped
4 tbsp. Caribbean curry powder
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 onions, finely chopped
1 tsp. fresh grated ginger
1 tsp. salt
1 2/3 cup coconut milk
1.) Season meat with chives, chopped chili, half the garlic, allspice, half the thyme, and 2 tbsp. curry powder. Cover and marinate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
2.) Heat oil in a large dutch oven and add remaining garlic, thyme, onions, and ginger. Cook for about 5 minutes.
3.) Mix remaining curry powder with 4 tbsp. water. Add to the pot stirring until all liquid has evaporated. Add the cubes of goat meat and cook on low heat for 5 minutes until meat is seared.
4.) Add the salt, whole chili and stir in coconut milk and one cup of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and cover and simmer for 2 hours until meat is tender.
5.) Remove lid and continue cooking for about 30 minutes until the sauce thickens.