Staff writer - Nyasha Watson

I am sure this headline is going to be greeted with a lot of laughter. The writer can’t possibly be serious about demonstrating to someone the steps in preparing mackerel and rice. I mean even if someone can’t cook they should be able to prepare mackerel and rice. However, I am not going to take anything for granted.

And I have seen where a lot of persons are showing their concerns about the fact some Caribbean women can’t cook.  As the philosophical quote states, “evil is only constant if good men do nothing.” So I am going to be offering my service through a short series of mini-cooking lessons.

Now, mackerel and rice is a relatively easy meal to prepare. And seeing that we are still suffering from the aftermath of the global recession; this meal is also very inexpensive to prepare. Thus it is a very popular meal to consume in some households.

I will begin with the mackerel. First, you will have to let the oil hot in the pot for a minute or two. Then, you gradually add your sliced ground seasoning; onion, tomato, hot and sweet pepper and a peg of garlic.

Then you allow it to marinate for two minutes, then you add the powder seasoning which may vary depending on your taste. However, the two most important powder seasonings are the black pepper and the salt. Then you stir everything together for at least a minute.

Then you will add the tin mackerel and be sure to turn down the stove to the minimum. And if you like you can also add a little water and ketchup into the sauce. Then, let it remain on the stove for at least five to seven minutes before turning it off.

Now to the rice, which there are two ways of preparing it; depending on your preference? Personally, I like to prepare the rice shell; that is I use the least amount of water to cook it without it being tough.  However, if you wish you can use more water to give it a soft texture.

But first you have to wash the rice, and then put it on the stove with one or two cups of water depending on how you like it. Then you add a tea spoon of salt and a stick of butter and continually check on it until it is finished.

Basically, this is how you prepare one of the most consumed meals in Jamaica. Next week I will be demonstrating a more challenging meal; until then cook what you eat.

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