Food, music and the arts.
The truth about Bahamian Johhny Cake with a bonus recipe;
Journey Cake Biscuits.
Google Johnny cake and undoubtedly you will run into a history that puts the orgin of these local favorites as somewhere on the Atlantic Coast of America. Go figure!
Seems as though they passed over a slew of indigenous Caribbean people, the African slaves, Spanish and English colonizers that were more likely responsible for this recipe.
Although I dare not claim that these delights are endemic to our region, I will say that all signs point to the Taino people and the regions invaders as the originals. Albeit in a different form that we see today.
One of the major differences of the original recipe from today is that it was most likely made with milled corn, pork fat and no leavening or rising agent. In fact, in some places, it still is. Also, it was probably made with mature coconut water or coconut "rush" which is fresh made coconut milk. Recipes and cooking time would have also been adjusted so that the shelf life on these treats would be longer. They were in fact called, "Journey cakes" because they lasted for days and were a staple for Bahamians tending cotton fields and gone on exploration up through the Americas. Later it became a side and because of the language and diction differences was called Johnny. cakes.
Chef notes: The three most important parts of culture are; food, music and the arts. Please help me share the rich food culture of The Bahamas not just to the world but first wiyh each other, especially our kids. They deserve it.
Journey Cake Biscuits.
3 lbs all purpose flour
4 oz organic cane sugar
3/4 oz fine sea salt
3 oz baking powder
1/2 lb cold unsalted butter
1/2 lb cold shortening or bacon fat
8 oz coconut milk
8 oz buttermilk
8 oz heavy cream
3 regular size eggs
Sift all the dry ingredients together. Mix all the wet excluding the butter and shortening. (Dice the butter and keep both cold.)
Cut the shortening and butter into the dry ingredients until it looks like wet sand. Add the wet and combine. Do not over knead. Mix gently until absorbed. Shape the dough and roll into a square about 1 1/2 to 2 inches. Cut the dough square into equal individual portions.
Add to a greased pan and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. Remove and bake immediately.
Bake for 12 to 14 minutes at 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
Serve with whatever you like. My favorites are;
*Boil or stew fish
*Any kind of souse
*Soft cooked eggs