Chef defends Bajan food

Expert chef Henderson Butcher is staunchly defending the taste profile of Barbados’ food.

During the media launch of the 2024 Junior Chef Cook-Off Competition on Monday, the MIDWEEK NATION sought a response to claims that Barbadian food was bland in comparison to its regional neighbours.

Butcher, the executive chef for the upcoming Food & Rum Festival, said he had never heard of such and spoke of the quality of local cuisine.

“Barbados is special, unique. When it comes to our flavours, I don’t think there is anyone who can actually say we have bland food. We don’t do curry like Trinidad and Guyana or jerk like Jamaica but when it comes to our unique Bajan pot soup, our wonderful fish cakes, our [local] buljol, our ground provisions and the way we take saltfish and do so many wonderful things with it . . . .”

Butcher said he had never experienced something as simple nor as delicious as cassava with butter, onions and “a l’il thyme and marjoram” with a piece of salt fish anywhere except Barbados.

“When it comes to our conkies . . . listen. We have endless flavour profiles here and don’t let me get started on the drinks. When it comes to rum, no one can stand next to Barbados,” he said.

On X, formerly known as Twitter, there is a thread dated April 11 this year, where people, who mostly appear to be Caribbean nationals, are bashing Barbadian food. The initial question was asked: “Why people always saying Barbados has terrible food? Like how bad can it be?”

Some of the responses gave Barbados a “hard 1/10” while others said the food was “BAD BAD”, “horrible” and “absolutely awful”.

A poster with a Jamaican flag in their profile said: “Lived there for [eight] months for work. The boiled dumpling is sweet & I’m still traumatise [five] years later. First in my life me ever cook every day. [Two] restaurant visits and never again. Lovely people but the food and me couldn’t find a common ground.”

Not everyone agreed completely, however, as one poster said: “Actually, I disagree that [Barbados] has terrible food. While I will say the flavours aren’t as varied as ours, they’re much better at fish than we are! Any day!” ( CA)

The post Chef defends Bajan food appeared first on

Leave a Reply