RECIPE FOR SALMAGUNDI/SALAMAGUNDY
(pirate food: Caribbean, Atlantic, Indian Ocean 17th-18th centuries)


The colloquial French name for a highly seasoned cold salad. Salmagundi was a favorite food of the Caribbean Buccaneers, who carried it north to the Atlantic and east to West Africa and Madagascar. Bartholomew Roberts was eating salmagundi for breakfast when he was rudely interrupted by the British Navy off the coast of West Africa in 1722.

The strong seasonings and added variety to a diet of dried and smoked foods. Meat of any kind, including turtle, duck, or pigeon, was roasted, chopped into chunks, and marinated in spiced wine. Imported salted meat, herring, and anchovies also were added. When ready to serve, the smoked and salted meats were combined with hard-boiled eggs and whatever fresh or picked vegetables were available, including palm hearts, cabbage, mangos, onions, and olives. The result was a stirred together with oil, vinegar, garlic, salt, pepper, mustard seed, and other seasonings.



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