Haitian Eats in Florida At It's Best!

I got an itch for Haitian food when my husband and I eloped in Key West Florida.  After leaving the courthouse and writing just married in the sand whilst waving to Cuba, we headed to Mo's Caribbean for lunch.  This guy made the most amazing oxtail dish and a pumpkin pie ever had in life.  I mean I cannot eat pumpkin pie anymore without comparing to Mo's.  But was a bit curious as to the Haitian music video's he was playing and conversing with a bunch of French tourists who came in.

When returned to California I definitely did my homework on Haiti and it all started to make sense as to the language, the music, the food and subtle influences of the French here and there in Mo's dishes.  I had no idea of their history and a new found respect in my love of food of culture with Haiti!

I began to try to make Haitian recipes in which one of my #1 shared posts on Pinterest is actually Haitian Epis.  Go figure.  Hence it is hard to find pantry items for some of the Haitian dishes in California as do not exist in the markets here.  I.e scotch bonnet peppers, djon djon mushrooms, djon djon maggi cubes, specific rices.  So now when we head back to Florida to visit the mum in law, I hit up all the stores buying up items I cannot find on the West Coast.  I have a very understanding husband to be driving me to every grocery store I can find on Yelp to explore, buy and ship home non perishable items cannot find here.  I am still baffled as to why we do not grow scotch bonnets here but that is up to the farmers to realize there may or may not be a demand for it.  But we do love our chili's for sure.  

Recent trek to Ft. Lauderdale I had a list of restaurants wanted to check out.   California does not have the Haitian, Cuban, Dominican, Trinidad Indian and Cuban population as does the East Coast so it's always a must on my list to check out some of these restaurants.  'Alberte's' was #1 on my list for Haitian food.

We arrived and it was not too busy.  Hustled up to eat at the bar area and chatted up with the brother of the owner.  He mentioned the bartender had been a no show and we giggled a bit at him looking up recipes for the drinks.  "I'm just helping out.  I am a photographer professionally." he said with a smile whilst mixing up drinks on the menu.  We ordered the oxtail, chicken curry and fried goat.  Hands down that fried goat was the jewel in their crown.  Everything else was delicious as well and if you ever get there get the veg rice as it is a special type of rice that is so flavorful even over the other options.
Chicken Curry

Fried Goat (Tasso)

Oxtail (Queue Boeuf)

I was a happy camper.  Vacation, drink was on and Roland introduced us to Haitian 'Barbancourt Rhum'.  Yes how it is printed on the label.  He poured us some shots and I asked if there was a phrase in Kreyol of cheers or salud.  He said, "No, we just drink!"  hahahah   Bottoms up folks to the smoothest rum or rhum ever had in life!  So good we went and bought some bottles from a well known large liquor store to bring back to Cali!  

I shopped and shopped and plan to post some recipes as I can definitely get goat out here.  From Halal butchers but hey, we are all humans and despite where we come from, it is always great to learn new recipes!   Remember life is too short to eat badly!!


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