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With tropical drinks in hand and reggae music in the background, our hosts created an island escape with a delicious Jamaican-themed menu for our seventh gourmet group dinner.  The menu was carefully planned to recreate the flavors our hostess remembered from her two years living on the Island as a child.  We feasted on flavorful jerk chicken, fragrant coconut rice and Caribbean vegetables, and a rich chocolate rum cake.  My assignment:  Jamaican Carrot Soup with a pear relish and plantain chips.  I suggest making the soup at least a few hours ahead of time to allow the complex flavors to really come together as it’s refrigerating.  And don’t skip the pear relish – it adds texture and freshness to the warm, spicy soup.  This soup would also be amazing on a cold fall day!

frying plantainsfried plantainscarrot soup