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braising Caribbean, Jamaican
Callaloo Default

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This abundant, leafy green has a firmer texture and fuller flavor (not bitter) than spinach. It is the main ingredient in Pepperpot Soup and can be found in callaloo loaf at patty shops. Mineral-rich callaloo is another staple vegetable in every Jamaican’s diet.

Yield: Makes 6 servings as a side dish


  • 2 pounds callaloo (see Note)
  • 1 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 whole scallions, chopped
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/3 cup water


1. Remove the small branches with leaves from the main stem and submerge the callaloo into a bowl of cold water. Let soak for a minute and remove, discarding the water. Repeat 2 more times. Finely chop the leaves and branches and set aside.

2. Heat the oil and butter in a medium-size skillet over medium heat until the butter is melted. Add the onion and scallions, stirring until the onion begins to soften, about 2 minutes. Add the callaloo, thyme, salt and black pepper. Mix all of the ingredients together, add the water and cover. Cook over medium heat until the stems are tender, about 8 minutes.


Swiss chard or mustard greens are suitable substitutes for this dish. Spinach can become too mushy.

© 2006 Lucinda Scala Quinn

Nutritional Information

Nutrients per serving (% daily value)

86kcal (4%)
166mg (17%)
108mg (179%)
804mcg RAE (27%)
5mg (2%)
234mg (10%)
3g (15%)
5g (7%)
2mg (13%)

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