Martinique’s gastronomy is varied and bears witness to the history of the island and its inhabitants, with influences from the Caribbean (such as buccaneer chicken), Europe, Africa (brought by slaves) and India (dating from Indian immigration), always adapted to the island’s produce. The ingredients are also the result of crops and varieties from other regions of the world and the Caribbean (cane sugar, cocoa and many fruits) and local species (such as queen conch and crab) and other foods which have been imported to the island since the colonial era to feed the population (such as rice and cod).
The starters and side dishes include specialities such as féroce d’avocat (an avocado and cod dumpling rolled in cassava flour), cod fritters (cod marinades) or tiriris (small fish fritters), dombré (flour and water dumpling with a few spices), Creole black pudding, kalalou (green soup containing callaloo leaves and okra) and pâté en pot (soup with vegetables, mutton offal, white wine and capers). The gratins are also varied, including christophine, yellow banana, papaya and bread fruit.
With respect to sea produce, chatrou is a dish with boiled octopus, rice and red beans, Lambi brochettes are cooked from shellfish (also called “conches”) and sea urchin dishes are eaten in the season they are gathered. Crabs are captured close to the sea and in freshwater and are eaten in dishes such as matoutou (cooked with rice and spices).Breadfruit migan is a sort of purée with large pieces of breadfruit and salted pork. Cod may be eaten with rice in the dish called “macadam”. Other dishes are prepared with green bananas, such as Ti-nain lanmori (green banana with cod, traditionally eaten at breakfast) and Ti-nain tripes (green bananas with tripe, mutton and vegetables).In the north of the island, trempage is a typical dish consisting of cod broth, bread, vegetables, fish and meet, all soaked in a sauce.
Meat is prepared in different ways, for example in a sauce with pork or chicken Colombo (recipes with spices including curry, originating from India) or over coals with buccaneer chicken. Chélou is made from beef offal, mutton and rice.
Chocolate butter bread also called “first communion chocolate” (chocolate drink with spices served with buttered bread) is served on this occasion. Blanc manger-coco is a popular dessert.