Ragout Martiniquais

A tasty and filling family meal, Ragout Martiniquais (rah-goo mahr-ten-eek-ay) is easy to prepare and should, ideally, be left to marinate overnight. Potatoes may be substituted for the yams or sweet potatoes used in this recipe. Ragout

Martiniquais is traditionally served with boiled rice.


1 X 4 lb. chicken, cut INTO 16 pieces

8 oz. belly of pork, cut INTO 2-inch pieces

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 tablespoon sugar

1 lb. yams or sweet potatoes, peeled and diced

3 carrots, scraped and thinly sliced

3 tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and chopped

10 fl. oz. chicken stock

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 large onion, thinly sliced and pushed into rings

4 spring onions , finely chopped

6 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon dried thyme

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

First make the marinade. In a large mixing bowl, combine all of the marinade ingredients, beating well to blend. Place the chicken and pork pieces in the marinade, and stir and toss with a wooden spoon to coat well. Marinate the meat at room temperature for 8 hours or overnight.

Remove the chicken and pork pieces from the bowl and pat them dry with kitchen paper towels. Reserve the marin-ade.

In a large, flameproof casserole, heat the oil and sugar over moderate heat for 3 to 5 minutes, stirring constantly, or until the sugar becomes dark brown. Reduce the heat to moderately low. Add the chicken and pork pieces to the casserole, a few at a time, and fry, stirring and turning frequently, for 8 to 10 minutes or until the meat is lightly and evenly browned. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to a plate. Fry the remaining meat in the same way.

Add the yams or sweet potatoes, car-rots and tomatoes to the casserole and fry for 5 to 7 minutes or until the vegetables are lightly browned. Return the meat to the casserole. Pour in the reserved marinade and the chicken stock. Increase the heat to high and bring the liquid to the boil. Cover the casserole and reduce the heat to low. Simmer the meat for 1 to l hours or until the chicken and pork are very tender when pierced with the point of a sharp knife.

Remove the casserole from the heat. Serve immediately, straight from the casserole.

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