Here is an easy five-ingredient, five-step recipe for Caribbean cornmeal porridge also known as cornmeal pap in Barbados and Jamaica because it is reminiscent of baby food.
Porridge is a staple in many Caribbean households and a variety of porridges is made including those with cornmeal, oats, sago (tapioca), plantain, flour, and barley. Cornmeal, oats, and sago are the most popular of the porridges.
Because of its stick-to-the-ribs quality, porridge is considered a bodybuilder and generally is made thick enough to eat with a spoon. Served in the morning or in the evening, it is considered a meal by itself. Each household has its own recipe. While cinnamon is the preferred spice of choice for this porridge, some people also use bay leaf.
- 1/2 cup finely ground cornmeal
- 2 1/2 cups water (divided)
- 1 (3-inch) cinnamon stick
- Sugar and milk to taste
- To a medium bowl, add cornmeal and 1/2 cup water. Stir and let stand undisturbed to soak for 5 minutes.
- While the cornmeal is soaking, add the remaining 2 cups of water to a medium saucepan along with the cinnamon stick. Cover and bring to a boil.
- When the water is boiling, pour in soaked cornmeal as well as any liquid in the bowl to the saucepan. Lower the heat to a simmer and whisk to avoid lumps.
- Cook covered for 15 to 20 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat, sweeten with sugar and milk to taste, stirring until fully incorporated. Serve hot in heated bowls if desired.