#BlackHistoryEats / Day 18 / Ackee

HISTORY /

  • Ackee (Blighia sapida) also known as achee, ackee apple, ayee, or isin is a tropical fruit that has origins in West Africa
  • It made its way to Jamaica via the Trans Atlantic Slave Trade and eventually became the national fruit of Jamaica 
  • The name "ackee" comes from the Ghanain (Twi language) word "Ankye"
  • Ackee is the national fruit of Jamaica

NUTRITION /

  • Ackee is very rich in dietary fiber, protein (which isn't as common for a fruit), is exceptionally high in vitamins A and C as well as zinc
  • Seeds are always discarded because of their toxicity (alternatively, when the fruit is fully ripe, it splits open allowing for the black seeds to be naturally discarded). Eating the seeds (and unripe ackee) is very dangerous and cause "Jamaican vomiting sickness" or toxic hypoglycemic syndrome (THS)
  • However, some parts the ackee tree have been used medicinally as a remedy for parasites and severe diarrhea

PREPARATION /

  • Ackee is often cooked and treated like a vegetable (when cooked in most dishes it is closer to scrambled eggs (or tofu!) than a fruit)
  • The most common dish that it accompanies is with saltfish (salted cod fish) and is an important dish in Jamaican cuisine. Here is a video of how to prepare it 
  • But here is a also a vegan Jamaican version of ackee with "cod fish" made out of tempeh! I can't wait to try to recipe, which was created by a Jamaican woman name Simon from Life After Oxtail, so be sure to check her out #BlackGirlMagic

 

Taylor Johnson-GordonComment