Walk into any Jerk shop in Crown Heights and you'll be overwhelmed with savory scents. Now, you might have opened that door planning to purchase the namesake dish, but let me point your nose in another direction. See that sultry, bubbling, brown tray? That's stew chicken, and I think you should give it a try. Brewed from the devilish flavors that make the Caribbean so intoxicating (lime, allspice, sugar), it is the sort of thing you never knew you needed in the depths of winter.
Why do we turn to cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves throughout the colder months? And how do spices impart their flavor to various dishes? This segment is all about the flavors of winter!
It is now the time of year most firmly associated with dark spices. You know those of which I speak, the oily powders we keep hidden away through the summer only to find perpetually at our side as the days grow shorter. Cinnamon, nutmeg, mace, cloves, and allspice; these are the spices that keep our hearts smoldering like coals through wind and snow.
I miss many things about NYC, primary among those cravings are my local jerk joint. The well-known neighborhood favorite is The Islands, but for my tastes Fever Grass takes the gold medal (never mind that their storefront was directly across from the crimson entryway to my apartment building).