is a term used by Rastas, derived from "vital", which
means a natural and healthy way of life. One aspect of Ital
is the Ital food: because the body is a temple, you should not
eat unpure food. Also you must take care of your body, cause
it is Jah creation. Body is the Chapel. Ital is generally a
vegan diet, even if some Rastas eat fish. Some prohibit salt,
some not. In all cases, Ital prohibits pork, preservatives,
chemical ingredients. Ingredients have to be the most natural
Jamaica, Ital cooking is most often inspired from Indian and
African cooking. But lot of recipes can be "Italized"
if prepared only with vegetables and natural ingredients.
are some. You can also contribute to this page by sending
us your own recipes.
1/4 cup chickpea flour
3/4 cup water
salt to taste
pepper to taste
1 or 2 potatoes (depends how hungry you are)
1 broccoli stalk (or other vegetable; You can experiment)
1 tsp olive oil
This recipe sounds kind of gross, but you have to make it to
appreciate how wonderful it is.
Make a mixture with water and chickpea flour in such a proportion
to get an 'egg-like' batter. Start with 1/2 cup of water, add
the chickpea flour, stirring constantly, and progressively increase
the amount of water and chickpea flour until you get about 1
cup of batter. The amounts I have indicated above are approximate.
Season it with salt and pepper. Boil the potatos 'al-dente',
In a pan, stir-fry the onion (sliced) in 1 TSP. of olive oil.
Add the sliced potatos and stir until golden. Add the broccoli
florets and pour the batter along the vegetables. Put a lid
on top and simmer until the bottom is golden, then turn (a plate
can help - if the pan is non-stick it will make the turn a lot
easier) and cook the other side.
Serve hot or cold.
lentils and sweet potato in coconut sauce
a big bunch of spinach or callaloo, 1 big sliced onion, garlic
and put them in warm vegetal oil about 4 minutes.
Add enough coconut milk, chopped sweet potato and cho-cho, aubergine,
carrots, or vegetables of your choice, hot pepper, black pepper
according to your taste. cook until done and the sauce thick.
Then, add cooked lentils. keep 5 minutes on the fire. it is
Glazed Beans (Ras Ansel and Queen Lily contribution)
1/2 lb. Green Beans
1/2 cup water
1/2 red bell pepper julienned
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. saltless sesame oil (dark)
1 tbsp. sesame seeds
slightly cook beans w/red bell pepper then combine all other
ingredient and pour (as sauce) over the beans at a simmer, allowing
to thicken. When thickened a bit, drizzle with the sesame oil,
an top wit seeds (or ganja seed, which are very good for the
Enjoy with rice or whatever....
Pot-Stickers (Ras Ansel and Queen Lily contribution)
3 tbsp. veg oil
2 tsp. mince fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups radish
1 cup carrot, grated
1/3 cup crumbled extra-firm tofu
2 tbsp. soy
20 Wanton (saltless soy) skins
In a large skillet, heat one tbsp of oil. Add ginger and garlic,
add the radish and stir at a constant (very important!!!) for
two minutes. Then add grated carrot. Stir constant for one minute.
Add the tofu and soy. Take skillet off and allow to cool. Lay
out wanton skins and place one tbsp. of the filling you've made
in the center of each skin. Wet rim of the skins and fold, forming
a triangle. Deep fry to the I's likeness (InI prefer a light
brown fry), and allow to cool, then enjoy!
Stew (taken from http://www.reggaefestivalguide.com)
2 C dried beans (any kind)
2 medium Idaho potatoes
1 C diced yellow yams
2 medium sweet potatoes
12 medium okra
2 C fresh corn (cut kernels off cob)
3 medium carrots
3 stalks of scallions
3 cloves fresh garlic
1 small green Scotch bonnet (habanero) pepper
3 C natural coconut milk
1 T soya margarine
7-12 pimento seeds (allspice)
7-12 pimento seeds (allspice)
3 pieces fresh thyme
2 C whole wheat flour
Fresh cilantro (garnish)
Soak beans in distilled water overnight to remove the gas. Chop
garlic and thyme and dice remaining vegetables. Put beans to
boil with scallions, pimento seeds, thyme, garlic, and pepper.
Add coconut milk to boil along with beans until fully cooked,
then add vegetables to the pot. Knead flour with a little water
to make small dumplings (spinners). Add spinners to pot and
boil until cooked. When stew starts to thicken, add soya margarine
and simmer to flavor. Garnish with cilantro. Serve with brown
rice and a salad.
maffé (1 person)
sauce is inspired from a senegalese dish.
Cut 1 1/2 big onion and heat in vegetal oil until it become
transparent and lightly brown, but not burned.
Add one squashed clove garlic, 3 teaspoon of peanut butter,
3 teaspoon of tomato purée and some water to diluate. add pepper,
a very little paprika. Add done sweet potato, carots, turnip,
Serve with rice.
You can also add fried tofu in the sauce.
curry (1 person)
one half of a big carot in very little cube (about 5mm) Cut
half of a turnip in cubes too.
Slice one big onion and put all in a frying pan with vegetal
oil till vegetables are done.
Add one or two smashed clove garlic, curry, pepper, Sliced ginger,
Add coconut milk (about 1 1/2 glass) and heat till the sauce
Serve with rice and peanuts.
and coconut sauce
In a friying pan with vegetal oil, put sliced carots, sliced
onions, green gourd slices, and garlic, sliced plantain, paprika,
and grated coconut. Warm a little then add water, peppers, garam
masala or curry. Warm until doneand until the sauce is thick
. You can add tofu in it. Serve with rice.
soup (excerpt from the Rasta Cookbook)
A substantial soup that will satisfy the largest of appetites;
a true Ital feast which requires only fresh fruit
juice to complete the meal.
1 lb (450 g) yam: ½ (225 g) sweet potato
1 lb (450 g) pumpkin: 1 lb (450 g) callaloo
½ small cabbage: ½ lb (225 g) carrots
1 cho cho: 1 green pepper
2 cloves garlic: 2 medium-sized tomatoes
3 spring onions: 2 pts (1100 ml) water
First prepare the vegetables. Peel the yam, sweet potato and
pumpkin and cut into large die, removing the seeds from the
pumpkin. Carefully wash the callaloo, trimming away any thick
stems and chop. Coarsely chop the cabbage having carefully discarded
the outer leaves, peel and slice the carrots. Peel the cho cho,
cut it lengthways into quarters and remove the heart. Roughly
dice the cho cho and green pepper, peel and chop the tomatoes
and slice the spring onions. Place the pumpkin and root vegetables
in a large saucepan with the water. Bring to a boil and simmer
for ten minutes. Add to the pan the callaloo, cabbage, cho cho,
pepper and finally the chopped tomatoes and spring onions. Season
with plenty of freshly ground black pepper and simmer for twenty
minutes more until cooked. Serves 4-6.
style tofu (1 person)
half of a carot in small matches. Slice 1 big onion.
Slice 2 or 3 medium mushrooms (shitake ones). Slice some Bamboo.
Put in frying pan with some vegetal oil, till all begins to
brown lightly, add tofu cubes, soya sauce, pepper.
When hot, serve with rice or chinese pastas.
Raw Vegetable Summer Rolls (Ras Ansel and Queen Lily contribution)
ounces dried rice noodles, softened with water, in 2 inch lengths
1 1/2 cups shredded carrots
1 1/2 shredded cucumber
2 tbsp. fresh cilantro
3 tbsp. peanuts (crumbled/crushed well!)
1 tbsp. soy
1 tsp. fresh ginger
1 tsp. minced garlic
6-10 rice pancake wrappers (7-8")
In a large bowl, toss together noodles, carrots, cukes, cilantro.
In a small bowl, whisk the peanuts, soy, ginger, and garlic
until smooth, then add to veg mix and toss. Soften the rice
pancake in warm water (double them up!!!), and then wrap the
veg mix like a spring roll. Fry until golden in veg oil, then
refrigerate and enjoy!
12 oz lowfat firm tofu
1/3 c red bell peppers; chopped
1/3 c scallions; chopped
1 tb fresh parsley; chopped
2 cloves garlic
2 ts fresh ginger root; grated
1/2 ts chili paste; or to taste
2 tb soy sauce
2 tb rice vinegar
1 ts dark sesame oil
the tofu using a wooden spoon or fork. Whisk the dressing ingredients
together. Add the dressing and the peppers, onion, and parsley.Mix
well. Serve at room temperature or chilled. This salad will
keep for 2-3 days.
Serving suggestions: Tusk the salad in a pita with watercress.
Or serve it on rice crackers, or with roasted vegetables.
Puri (give thanks to rakesh for this incredible recipe!)
2 medium potatoes or several small potatoes
Bombay mix - or anything similar
Chilly - hotter the better :-)
1 small onion
Fresh coriander leaves (coriander is best but if not available
use dill, parsley, etc)
Tamarind sauce - See below on how to make your own tamarind
If you can't get tamarind use a combination of mustard (i.e.
mustard) and tomato ketchup (yuck). Sounds awful, but it works!
Dice the potatoes into 1 cm cubes (I usually clean them but
leave the skin on)
2. Boil the potatoes, until cooked but not too soft (nice and
3. Put a few tablespoons of soya yoghurt into a large salad
4. Add half the tamarind sauce (or all of the alternative mustard/ketchup
mix) and stir well
5. Finely chop the chilly, and add to the salad bowl
6. Coarsely dice the onion, and add to the salad bowl
7. Add the potatoes and sultanas and mix. There should be enough
of the yoghurt mix to cover all the ingredients.
8. Just before serving, add copious quantities of the bombay
mix, and mix well. If you do this too early the bombay mix will
get soggy, which is not a problem, but it is much better if
it is crispy.
9. Serve on a plate as part of a meal or put in a bowl as a
10. When serving, pour some of the remaining tamarind sauce
and finish by garnishing with some finely chopped coriander
Making your own tamarind sauce:
Black salt (to taste)
Jaggery (unprocessed sugar). NB I once used molasses, and it
was horrible, had to add amchoor powder to rescue the sauce
All of the above ingredients are available at any Indian good
the tamarind seeds until you get a nice thick sauce
2. Strain off the pulp (NB don't throw the pulp away, as you
can reuse it several times - it is very strong)
3. Put the liquid back into the saucepan and keep boiling.
4. Add the other ingredients and keep boiling for 10 mins.
sweet, sour, chilly sauce will last for about 3 months in the
refrigerator. You can use it with many dishes. It's a great
way to spice up a reheated meal, i.e. to bring life back to
yesterdays left overs.
salad (1 person)
a sauce with hot pepper, according to your taste, black pepper,
lime juice and vegetal oil. Chop finely 1 shallot, chop 1 tomato,
chop some cucumber in little cubes.
Cook 1 part of brown lentils and wait until cold. Blend all
3 corn cob (maize). Make 1 medium sweet potato boil until done
and then cut it in cubes. Slice one big onion, 3 green onions.
Chop 2 green apples in little cubes, about 1 cm.
Prepare a sauce with arachid oil, lime juice, pepper.
Blend all the ingredients and sauce into a dish. A litlle curry
can also be added.
salad. Libanese style (1 person)
1 or 1 1/2 big carrot. Prepare a sauce with the juice of half
an orange, pepper, a little cinammon, and a little lime juice.
honey crisp (submitted by email@example.com)
1 cup of whole almonds
1/4 cup soya margarine
1/3 to 1/2 cup of honey
2 teaspoon unsweetened vanilla extract
Process the almonds in a blender for a few seconds to chop coarsely
In a bowl mix all the ingredience
Preheat owen to 375f
Put in a cake pan and bake till golden brown
Cut into squares while still warm
greens sauce (give thanks to Ras Ansel and Queen Lilly)
bunches coarsely chopped radish greens (or other if not available)
4 tbsp tomato puree (or other sub), or cider vinegar
2 tsp. thyme
1 cup water
2 tbsp. veg oil
1 tsp. smooth peanut butter
1/4 onion thinly diced
1 clove garlic, diced
1 tsp. black pepper
dash of crushed habanero
1/4 chopped/crushed red pepper with seeds
1/4 tsp. crushed cardamom
1/4 tsp. allspice
Mix all ingredient together and heat low until greens collapse.
Add water if needed (but careful not too much!). Allow to cool
after thouroughly heated w/greens readily collapsed, then bottle
and refridgerate. Pour over rice, greens, or anything the I
and tomato sauce
a red pepper and put it in a oven (grill position) until slightly
brown. Remove the skin and cut in very little bits (or mix).
Then, warm in a pan with olive oil, hot pepper, sliced onion
and tomato puree.
Use with pasta, rice or what you want.
a courgette, cut it in little cubes, about 1 cm, and warm in
a frying pan with olive oil. Add smashed clove, thyme, basilic,
pepper. When done, mix all and add black olives.
Serve with rice or pastas.
3/4 litter of carrot juice with the juice of 3 limes. In 1 glass
of water, put 2 tsp cinammon and about 1 finger of fresh sliced
ginger, according to your taste. Make it boil 10 minutes and
mix with carrot and lime juice. Add sugar, and refrigerate.
kola nut is a nut used in Africa for energy (and sexual prowess
;). It can be used shewed, but is very bitter. The infusion
is much tasty: grate half of a kola, infuse 5 minutes in boiling
water. Add sugar or honey. It can also mixed with tea or ginseng.
You won't feel tired anymore!
a dry pan put sesame seeds, cumin seeds, or the seed of your
(hemp, crushed peanuts...) and warm until light brown, so the
exhale their flavors. when done, reserve.
-Make then a paste using half corn flour and chickpea flour,
yeast, water, pepper. you can also add herb such as thyme. add
order to have a classical bread paste. add the seeds.
-knead about 15/30 minutes and then leave 2 hours. Knead again
and leave 2 hours again
-when ready, oil very lightly a big pan, warm it (my position
is 3 on 6).
add the paste a make it plate. add a liitle flour and project
a little water
with wet hands. cook aproximately 10 min per face, until brown.
-Note: you can also use this past inna oven like usual bread.
Pancakes (submitted by Robert)
1 cup boiling water
1/3 cup cold water
1/2 cup sesame oil
Oil as needed for greasing
Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl. make a well in the
center and add the boiling water, a little at a time, incorporating
the flour by stirring it into the water with a wooden spoon
-Cover bowl and let sit for 5-minutes, then add the cold water,
-Turn the flour mixture out and work with your fingers to blend
until a dough is formed. Cover with a dampened towel and set
aside for 15 minutes.
-Remove dough to a board and knead for 10 to 12 minutes or until
-Divide dough into 4-equal portions. Roll each part into a rod,
then divide each dough rod into 10 equal pieces.
- Grease an area of the kneading board about 10 inches square
with oil to prevent sticking. Flatten each piece of dough into
a 2-inch round and brush evenly with sesame oil on the surface.
Place another round on top, forming a 2-layered round. Roll
into a thin pancake about 6 inches in diameter and 1/8 inch
thick. Grease the board with more oil if needed.
-Roll 2 pancakes, then proceed with the cooking. Continue to
roll and cook, 2 pancakes at a time, until all the dough is
Set a griddle (or heavy skillet) over medium heat. Pan-fry each
pancake for 1 minute or unti lthe surface bubbles and brown
spots appear on the bottom side. Turn to brown on other side
for about another 30 seconds.
- Remove pancake and pull the 2 layers apart while hot. Stack
pancakes on a platter and cover with a lightly dampened cloth.
-Finish pan-frying the remaining pancakes.