Ackee Stir-fry


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as a starter

Appears in

Caribbean Food Made Easy

Caribbean Food Made Easy

By Levi Roots

Published 2009

  • About

Wonderful ackee is one of the delicacies of Jamaica and a very special food (see The Caribbean Kitchen). It is best known for its role in the national dish, saltfish and ackee, but there are other ways to try it – and I recommend you do! Here it’s in a delicious stir-fry that features the bright national colours of Jamaica: red pepper, yellow ackee and green coriander.


  • ½ tbsp sunflower or groundnut oil
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 2.5 cm (1 in) piece of root ginger, cut into thin slithers
  • ½ red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 1 red onion, finely sliced
  • 1 red pepper, deseeded and cut into small chunks
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 540 g can ackee, drained
  • juice and grated zest of 1 lime

To Garnish

  • 100 g ( oz) peanuts (in their skins or dry roasted)
  • large handful of fresh coriander leaves, roughly chopped


  • Start by roasting the peanuts. Put the nuts in their pinky skins on a baking sheet in an oven preheated to 200°C/400°F/gas mark 6 for 10 minutes, or until they start to brown (don’t let them burn!). Leave to cool a little, then rub between pieces of kitchen paper, or in your hands, to get rid of the papery skins. Chop them quite finely, but not to a powder: they give a good bit of crunch to the dish. If you’re using dry roasted peanuts, leave out this step and go very gently on the soy sauce later in the recipe, as they are already salty.
  • Heat the oil in a wok and add the garlic, ginger and chilli. Stir-fry for a minute or so, then add the red onion and stir-fry for a couple of minutes. Add the pepper and stir-fry for another couple of minutes. Add the soy sauce, stir well and turn down the heat. Cover with a lid and cook for 5 minutes or so, until the pepper has softened.
  • Very gently stir the ackee into the vegetables. You want the delicate curds to keep their shape, so do not stir them in too much. Divide between 4 plates, squeeze over the lime juice and sprinkle with the grated lime zest, coriander leaves and chopped roasted peanuts.