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Jamaican bammy – Traditional gluten free, vegan and paleo approved flatbread made from cassava that is saturated in milk, fried or grilled and often served with fish.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with what bammy is, well that’s quite alright. In one of my previous articles entitled what is caribbean food I went into tremendous detail about the various ground provisions which are consumed by island people.
What is Jamaican bammy?
Bammy is actually a flat bread made from cassava, a starchy complex carbohydrate vegetable usually eaten with fish. This flat bread is something that goes back to the days of the original inhabitants – the Arawak Indians and is still presently consumed.
This dietary staple, is sold commercially in supermarkets as well as made from scratch. I prefer to follow my own paleo friendly Jamaican bammy recipe instead of purchasing it as I find the store brought kind to be high in refined sodium.
How to make Jamaican bammy?
In short the cooking process is as followed; grater the cassava — extract the liquid — add salt to the dried pulp — fry and form bammy into a circle in the frying pan — submerge in coconut milk and either — refry or grill the cassava flat bread.
In order to get the cassava to a stage where it resembles a mound of white pulp, will require some hard grafting with a grater. I’m sure there is probably a shortcut with a food processor, but I haven’t tried it yet.
Being the perfectionist that I am I don’t want to potentially ruin this recipe. At some point I will experiment with the idea of breaking down the cassava in a food processor and get back to you with the results.
Once I had grated the cassava I used a cheesecloth to extract the excess liquid and discarded it. I then added the salt and poured the contents into a large frying. Using the back of a spoon, I formed a circular shape and flattened the mixture, all the while goading the perimeter of the circle for depth and formation.
Next, it was time to flip the flat bread over and leave until brown.
When the bammy finally cooks, it is customary to saturate it in milk (I choose coconut milk). Followed by either grilling (I grilled mine on both sides) or re-frying the bread until brown.
How long should I soak the bammy for?
Once cooked the bammy can be soaked in milk for upto 20 minutes. Just as long as the bammy is left in the milk for a short period of time is the most important aspect.
What can you eat Jamaican bammy with?
Jamaican tends to be eaten with fish like steamed fish or this stewed mackerel recipe
- You can use any other plant based milk to soak the cooked bammy if you wish
- Cassava is also known as Yuca in Spanish
- Cassava can be purchased from any ethnic supermarket
- Paleo, gluten free and free from dairy too
Jamaican bammy recipe (paleo,vegan)
- 2 lb of fresh cassava
- 1 tsp of himalayan pink salt
- 2 tbsp of olive oil
- 1 cup of coconut milk
- Wash and peel the cassava.
- Grater the cassava on the fine section of the grater box.
- Use a cheesecloth to squeeze out the excess liquid and discard.
- Add the salt and break down the lumps of cassava pulp.
- In a frying pan, under low heat with 2tbsp of oil, add the contents and begin to flatten the cassava in a circular shape, use the back of the spoon around the perimeter to mould the shape and use a spring form baking tin to create the disc to make things easier. Rotate the pan to ensure the entire base of the bread is coated with oil and not sticking.
- Use egg spatula to flip the bammy over when golden brown and cook otherside.
- Remove from heat and pour milk onto the flatbread and leave to saturate for 15-20 minutes.
- Grill the bammy on both sides until golden brown