Trinidad Chinese cuisine is a popular style of food resulting from a fusion of Chinese and West Indian cuisines. Trinidad food itself is a mixture of African, British, Indian, Spanish, French and Portuguese cooking style.
Wondering why there is such diverse mixture of cooking styles in Trinidad? Well in 1834, the black British slaves working in the Caribbean colonies were freed. That eventually created a labor vacuum that was filled by indentured laborers from India and Africa. A sizable portion of these immigrants were destined for Trinidad, Cuba, Jamaica and Guyana.
The menus of Caribbean Chinese restaurants are widely attributed to this diverse culture and food that the immigrants brought.
One of the most popular Trinidad Chinese recipes is Chowmein. This is not the crunchy Chowmein known in the Armerican and Chinese restaurants or home kitchens. This version of Chowmein is actually boiled, so that it is soft and pliable, then stir fried with various meats and vegetables.
Chowmein is usually accompanied by fried rice, potato salad, macaroni pie and fried chicken. This was a normal Sunday lunch growing up for me. It is a staple in Trini kitchens. Literally hundreds of little mom and pop stalls in Trinidad sell this dish on a Friday and Saturday night to make a little extra cash.
In fact I clearly remember buying for lunch in school and Bread and Chowmein that cost $1.50. talk about a carb on carb meal! Sprinkle on a dash of hot sauce and OMG, literally brings back childhood memories, of the bigger kids cutting in line in front of me, with my short self to get their Chowmein sandwich first, while it was hot and fresh!
So today I am sharing with you how to make this traditional Trini-Chinese side dish of Chicken Chowmein. You can use any meat you like or even remove it. I did add a bit of MSG as that is the way we make it back home and it really does taste different, but feel free to use this optionally.
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Click here for Trini-Chicken Chowmein recipe.