Apr 17 2008
There is no other place on earth you will find a culture as dynamic as the one in Jamaica. Its people are a mixture of the many ethnicities that have landed on the island’s shores over the past several centuries. Weathering oppression, the Jamaicans are survivors, and their past is full of fascinating stories just waiting to be told.
About Jamaican Food
The island of Jamaica is known for being one of the most exotic vacation destinations for it’s beaches, balmy weather, reggae music, rich coffees and rums, exotic fruits and cheerful people. But you haven’t experienced Jamaica until you have tasted the delicious food. Find free Jamaican food recipes for Jerk Chicken, Curry Goat, Beef Patties, and Jamaican Rum Punch and loads more from our recipe collection for you to pick from.
What is the history of Jerk Chicken?
The term jerk is said to come from the word charqui, a Spanish term for jerked or dried meat, which eventually became jerky in English.
Another origin is linked to the jerking or poking of the meat with a sharp object, producing holes which were then filled with the spice mixture. Like most Caribbean islands, Jamaican foods are derivative of many different settlement cultures, including British, Dutch, French, Spanish, East Indian, West African, Portugese, and Chinese. The origins of jerk pork can be traced back to the pre-slavery days of the Cormantee hunters of West Africa through the Maroons, who were Jamaican slaves that escaped from the British during the invasion of 1655.
Jamaicans take great pride in their artistic style which is influenced by the island’s unique culture as well as European, American, and African art forms. The nation has produced many famous artists including sculptor and painter Edna Manley, painter Albert Huie and the self-taught artist Kapo.
Jamaicans are also known for their willingness to dance and fuse the styles of Europeans and Africans into their own unique form. Some of the local dances are the”jonkonnu,” a dance practiced by slaves at Christmas time,”bruckins,” from the period after emancipation, and the newer”ska.” European dances like the maypole and quadrille are performed with”mento” music, while African dances like the”gerreh,”"dinki-mini,” and”ettu” were turned into commentaries on plantation living. New dances crop up constantly, but these older styles are the basis for new moves. Dance halls are the best places to find new styles, but the traditional dances of Jamaican culture are kept alive by organizations such as the National Dance Theater Company.
The most popular form of Jamaican music is reggae, which has a sound is so easy to enjoy that it has gained popularity throughout the world. Many reggae musicians have grown to international fame, most notably Bob Marley, who worked with and influenced many other local musicians before his death in 1981. The popularity of this genre has continued to this day. Dancehall, a variation of reggae, is also growing in popularity.
Reggae may be the most well-known style of music, but there are many more. Jamaican folk music has come from many sources over the years. The most notiable influence on many of the sounds found here is Africa, in celebrations of birth, death, and harvesting. However, the different types of music performed now fall into three groups: dance, religious, and work and entertainment.