A typical Bahamian Saturday or Sunday morning involves recovering from the previous nights’ festivities and one way to do is to have a heaping bowl of souse (rhymes with house). Souse is a very simple Bahamian soup made with meats like chicken, turkey, pig’s feet or sheep’s tongue in a clear broth made of lime juice, onions, carrots and potatoes. Goat peppers or bird peppers are added for the extra kick. Whole all spice and bay leaves add an aromatic flavor. Souse can be served with johnny cake, grits or even toast. Although I’m currently on a year-long vegan journey, I bought frozen sheep’s tongue so that I can learn to make it for my fiance and buying a bowl can range $10-$16 depending which island and restaurant you get it from. I also feel that it’s important for young Bahamians to learn how to make out traditional dishes and make them at least once in your life but I digress. Anyway, finding a recipe for sheep tongue souse on the internet was harder than finding a chicken souse recipe because sheep’s tongue has a few additional steps in the cleaning and preparation process. Since I could not find a legit recipe, I decided that I will write and post my own recipe. Please bear with me because I honestly don’t like writing recipes.
- 4-6 sheep’s tongue
- 1 medium onion
- 2 medium potatoes
- 3-4 bay leaves
- 1-2 tbsp. whole all spice
- lemon juice and/or limes
- optional ingredients: carrots, celery, goat pepper
Begin by heating a pot of water with lots of salt until comes to a boil. Add the sheep’s tongue and let it boil or scald for 10-15 minutes. You can use this time to prepare a johnny cake or bread to go with it or peel and dice the potatoes and onion.
Drain off hot water and run the tongues under cold water. You’ll need to be able to handle them with your fingers so allow to cool for a few minutes. With a filet knife, remove the rough, white external layer on the tongue that has the taste buds. Try to cut as close to the skin as possible to avoid throwing away meat. Dice into small bite size pieces and set aside in a bowl.
Return the pot to the stove with fresh water and allow to come to a boil. Add potatoes, onions, all spice, bay leaves and optional ingredients. Add the sheep’s tongue and continue cooking until potatoes are done. Season with salt and lemon juice to taste.
Serve while hot.
Note: For my first time, it came out pretty good. My fiance said it was decent. The meat needed a little more salt during the scalding process so that it could begin absorbing some flavor and not just be surrounded by the flavor of the souse water. The next time I make it, I would even throw a few of the all spice balls and a bay leaf in the pot during step 1. Of course, soups and stews always taste better the next day after the flavors have had time to meld together. If you’ve made sheep tongue souse before, do share your experience!
It’s been quite a long minute since I’ve written anything on this blog but I’m back for good this time and willfully directing my life in a direction that involves maintaining this site, sharing more stories and hopefully creating dialogue between myself and readers in the blogosphere. Sometimes I go on long hiatuses from writing and blogging because of things going on in my life and also just not feeling inspired with words or things I think people would be interested in reading. I’ll continue with the things I used to share but I’ve also added new topic areas and I’d also like reader feedback. What sort of topics or stories are you interested in reading about The Baha (mian) Life? I want to make reading this blog worth your while!
Here’s a little bit about what I’ve been up to since March 2014:
- Traveled to 14 countries to recruit students for my university.
- Started graduate school (school counseling) at said university.
- Started a 1-year vegan journey which I also blog about.
- Gained 2lbs.
I’d say those ventures have kept me pretty busy and still not busy enough so I’m tackling a few other things as a part of my self development. I often joke with my friends that I’m going to be a forever student but I truly enjoy learning and getting the opportunity to apply the things I’ve learnt.
Anyway, cheers to more blog posts and I want your feed back!!
For the past few months in Bahamian news, besides waves of crime and gun violence, there has also been the issue of VAT or value added tax and how it will affect the individual Bahamian pocket. A lot of talk has been as to whether it will do more harm than good for The Bahamas in the long term and comparisons have been made to other countries that have a VAT system in place. I’m no expert on any of it so I’ll post a few links below that breaks down all the dirty details because unfortunately there are vast groups of people at home that don’t know or don’t care about what’s going on around them .
Bahamas government website
Straight Talk Bahamas
Occasionally when I think, I’ll have a pretty decent idea for a business and immediately imagine the successes it could have if the right amount of work and effort is put into it. Then I’d have to remember the reality of where such an idea could work in the Bahamian market I envision it in because I have to remember how stubborn our people tend to be about sticking with the old traditional way of doing things.
When you venture off to college abroad, you’re exposed to so many new things and ideas and you feel so inspired and motivated to bring all these great new toys back home. But when you get there you realize that no one else knows how to play with your new toys or want to learn and thus you’re stuck playing with the old ones until they open their minds to do learn.
It makes you reconsider the desire to rush back home and show everyone your new toys and skills and I’m sure many of my fellow Bahamian college graduates face this challenge every fall and winter as they too decide what is the next step for their life.
Growing up in a “third world country” and going to school in a first world country is sometimes challenging to connect the two worlds in a way that speaks to your talents and passion. I’m sure if you Googled, you won’t find many Bahamian ballet dancers or neurophysicists. Point is, until we can grow to a place where the two worlds meet in the middle, there’ll be more and more graduates not rushing to go back home with their new toys because they have no one to play with.
I know it’s been an awfully long time since I’ve posted anything, but I’m back! Since November which was my last post, I have graduated with my bachelors degree in communication and I am now working for my school as an international student recruiter. How cool is my job!? It’s pretty cool.
With all the adjustments, there hasn’t been much time for blogging but last night, I was inspired. I was given the opportunity to speak to a colleague’s class about the Bahamas and Nassau in general because they’re planning to take a trip this summer to work with an organization there.
It was great to talk about home and go beyond the touristy experience and even discuss things that locals would take for granted. Like eating a whole fish. If you’re accustomed to only eating fillet tilapia, discovering that people eat the head of fish can seem a bit creepy. And yes, there are some people that eat even the fish eyes.
So with that said, I hope to get back into regularly posting blogs. I will try to post 1-3 new blogs per week. This is no guarantee as there will be times I’m travelling for work and will simply not have the time.
So, here’s to a new year of adventure’s from this Bahamian girl and I hope to share them with you.