Tambran (Tamarind) Fish
The Caribbean's tropical climate is ideal for growing tamarind, or tambran as it is colloquially called in Trinidad. Often thought of as a native Indian fruit, tamarind is actually indigenous to Africa but was likely brought to India via trade routes millennia ago. Once transplanted to the subcontinent, tamarind quickly became a staple of Indian cooking and is used in sauces, drinks, desserts and stews. It came to South America and the Caribbean with European colonizers in the 16th century, so was already on the scene when indentured East Indians arrived in the West Indies.
Scotch bonnet chiles are a common ingredient in Trinidadian cuisine. They are some of the hotter peppers on the Scoville scale. Keep white vinegar handy to wipe down surfaces that the pepper has touched—including your hands—before washing with soap and water.Much stronger than cilantro (a cousin), culantro is a long-leafed herb that's widely used in Latin American, Southeast Asian and Caribbean cooking. Buy it fresh at international markets or dried online.