|Barry and Millicent Bucknor have a reputation for their
food. Millicent, a native of Kingston, Jamaica, loves cooking
for big gatherings of family and friends. Barry, who hails from
Montego Bay, Jamaica, makes a jerk chicken recipe that everybody
Now his dream is a reality with the opening of Jerk Hill
Café. And the passion that he and Millicent bring to their food,
as well as the thought and planning they have put into starting
the business, seem to bode well for this humble outpost of
Jamaican home cooking.
Fish is another of Jerk Hill’s specialties. In addition to
the Jamaican national dish that blends salted codfish and a
savory fruit called ‘‘ackee”, Millicent prepares a variety of
fish each day. Butterfish — Barry’s favorite because it’s a very
meaty fish with only one bone — as well as codfish, kingfish,
red snapper and other varieties are available fried and
escoveitched with vinegar, onions and peppers.
Jamaican Jerk History
The term jerk is said to come from the word charqui, a
Spanish term for jerked or dried meat, which eventually became jerky in
Another origin is linked to the jerking or poking of the meat with a sharp
object, producing holes which were then filled with the spice mixture. Like
most Caribbean islands, Jamaican foods are derivative of many different
settlement cultures, including British, Dutch, French, Spanish, East Indian,
West African, Portugese, and Chinese. The origins of jerk pork can be traced
back to the pre-slavery days of the Cormantee hunters of West Africa through
the Maroons, who were Jamaican slaves that escaped from the British during the
invasion of 1655.
Jerk is the process of spicing and grilling meats, poultry, and even
vegetables, although the most popular are
jerk pork and jerk chicken. The resulting food yields a
spicy-sweet flavor and a tender texture. Jerk is also used as a noun
when describing the dry or wet seasoning mix used to jerk a particular
food. Jerk shacks thrive on the side of the road in Jamaica as a local
Be forewarned, if you cannot handle spicy-hot foods, jerk may not be for you.
Deletion of the chile pepper vastly changes the end product, and it's just not
jerk without the heat! Take a look at the three most
important ingredients of jerk seasoning before trying an authentic
Jamaican jerk recipe.
The island of Jamaica is famous for its beautiful beaches, reggae music, Blue
Mountain coffee, exotic fruits, and its cheerful people with their beautiful
patois language. But, you haven't tasted Jamaica until you've tried Jamaican
Jerk, ya mon!