Kreyolcuisine introduces its creole culinary lexicon.

Culinary Lexicon

To familiarize yourself with the common culinary terms, Kreyolcuisine presents its lexicon. Enrich your taste palette with flavors of Caribbean and Cajun and Creole world.


Ackee is the national fruit of Jamaica. It was imported from West Africa around 1778. Since then it has become a major feature of various Caribbean cuisines, and is also cultivated in tropical and subtropical areas elsewhere around the world. The fruit of the ackee is not edible in its entirety. Only the inner, fleshy yellowish arils are consumed. Ackees must be harvested, prepared and cooked properly. Ackee pods should be allowed to ripen and open naturally on the tree before picking. The ackee is generally boiled and can be served alone or accompanying meat or fish. Raw ackees and the inner red tissue of the ripe ackee arils contain potent alkaloid toxins which can cause vomiting, seizures, and death.


Puffy fried dough ball, made of a highly seasoned dough into which shredded salt fish or seafood has been mixed.


A sauce made of garlic and olive oil served over vegetables, fish and boiled eggs.


Mixture of pepper, grated nutmeg, clove powder and ground cinnamon (sometimes ginger). Used to enhance soups, stews and vegetables.


French in origin, the term was later brought to the United States through Louisiana by French immigrants. Andouille is a spiced, heavily smoked pork sausage.

Bouquet garni

The bouquet garni is a bundle of herbs usually tied together with string and mainly used to prepare soup, stock, and various stews. The bouquet is boiled with the other ingredients, but is removed prior to consumption.


Breadfruit is common in many tropical regions. They are very rich in starch, and before being eaten they are roasted, baked, fried or boiled.


Also known as star apple. It has round; purple-skinned fruit that is often green around the calyx, with a star pattern in the pulp. It is delicious as a fresh dessert fruit; it is sweet and best served chilled.

Callaloo (okra)

Small green vegetable and elongated, which is known in many English-speaking countries as lady's fingers. When cooked, its texture becomes gelatinous.

Chayote (Mirliton)

The chayote fruit is used in both raw and cooked forms. When cooked, chayote is usually handled like summer squash; it is generally lightly cooked to retain the crisp flavor. Raw chayote may be added to salads or salsas, and it is often marinated with lemon or limejuice.


Colombo is a spice blend that was introduced to the Caribbean by Indian and Sri Lankan laborers. The blend is, in equal proportions, ground spices, anise, coriander, cloves, turmeric, fenugreek, mustard powder, a couple of hot pepper flakes, thyme, of garlic, parsley, black pepper, saffron and a knob of grated ginger.


Flour ground from dried maize or American corn. There are 2 kinds, one that is coarse and another one ground with grindstone which is fine and a more subtle taste. In the United States, the finely ground cornmeal is also referred to as cornflour. Cornmeal is used to make cakes, breads, tortillas, fritters and cereals.


Dried black mushrooms that are soaked in hot water. The soaking liquid is used for cooking.


Fenugreek is used both as an herb (the leaves) and as a spice (the seed). It is frequently used in curry. The seeds are used as seasoning for many dishes or in powdered form to mix with rice. The young leaves and sprouts of fenugreek are eaten as greens, and the fresh or dried leaves are used to flavor other dishes.


The Giromon is a pumpkin variety, grown in the Caribbean’s. Its skin is green with dark spots and its flesh is orange. The pulp of giromon is used in salads, mashed, stewed or in soups.


Anise-flavored liquor. It can be replaced by Ricard or Pernod.


Fruit of the mamoncillo that ripens during the summer. The fruit, somewhat like a cross between a lychee and a lime, is classified as a drupe. It has a tight and thin but rigid layer of skin, traditionally cracked by the teeth. Inside the skin is the tart,tangy, cream pulp of the fruit, which is sucked by putting the whole fruit inside the mouth. Despite the light color of the fruit's flesh, the juice stains a dark brown color. The seeds can be roasted and eaten just like sunflower seeds or chestnuts.

Lambi (Conch)

The "meat" of the conch is used as food, either eaten raw, as in salads, or cooked, as in fritters, chowders, gumbos, and burgers. All parts of the conch meat are edible. However, some people find only the white meat appetizing.


Malanga is a starchy root vegetable that looks like a yam.


A marinade makes meat better by adding moisture, increasing tenderness and adding flavor.

Okra (callaloo)

Small green vegetable and elongated, which is known in many English-speaking countries as lady's fingers. When cooked, its texture becomes gelatinous.


Common food in the tropical regions of the world, treated in much the same way as potatoes and with a similar neutral flavor and texture when the unripe fruit is cooked by steaming, boiling or frying. When it starts to mature, it takes a yellow tint and is sweet in flavor.

Sugar cane syrup

Thick syrup that is created by evaporating the juice extracted from sections of sugar cane.

Sweet potato

Dicotyledonous plant that belongs to the family Convolvulaceae. Its large, starchy, sweet tasting tuberous roots are an appreciated root vegetable. The edible tuberous root is long and tapered, with a smooth skin whose colour ranges between red, purple, brown and white. Its flesh ranges from white through yellow, orange, and purple.