Bahamian Turkey Souse with 18th Century Johnny Cake 

Jan 30, 2023All Recipes, Main Courses

AS SEEN ON CITYLINE – Turkey Souse (pronounced sowse) is a tasty chili-lime soup-like broth with a zesty flavour profile. Souse is a method of preserving meat that dates to European Middle Ages. It is essentially known as Caribbean Soul Food with medicinal properties. 

Serves 2 

Ingredients 

½ onion, sliced and cut in half 

1 stalk celery, chopped into ½ -inch pieces 

1 large white or yellow flesh potato, cut into 2-inch cubes 

1 tsp (10 mL) allspice berries, crushed 

1 tbsp (15 mL) whole allspice berries 

3 sprigs fresh thyme leaves 

2 Scotch Bonnet chili peppers, divided or homemade pepper sauce (preserved chilies & lime juice) 

Juice of 8 limes, divided 

2 skinless turkey thighs, cut into 1-inch pieces 

1 bay leaf 

1-2 lime or lemon leaves (optional) 

1 tbsp (15 mL) fine sea salt 

Lime wedges for garnishing 

Kaffir lime leaves for garnish 

Celery leaves for garnish 

Place a 4-quart (4 L) pot over medium heat, add the onion, celery, potatoes, 

crushed and whole allspice berries, thyme, 1 whole Scotch Bonnet chili pepper and half of the lime juice, position 

turkey over the vegetables. Cover tightly with a lid and let sweat for 5-10 minutes (this is the base for a flavorful broth). 

Add about 1 litre of water, stir, and bring to a boil with lid slightly ajar to release steam. 

Add remaining lime juice, bay leaf, lime leaf, salt and diced Scotch Bonnet chili pepper if using for a spicier broth. 

Adjust seasoning with salt and lime if necessary, ladle into bowls and garnish with lime wedges and leaves, serve with a side of pepper sauce (optional) and buttery Johnny cakes for dipping into the broth. 

18th Century Johnny Cake 

The origins of johnny cake dates to the 18th century. Fishermen and sailors made this bread on the decks of their vessels by building a fire in a box that was filled with sand to keep the flames from spreading to the craft. It was originally called journey cake because it was quick to make and sustainable while travelling. 

Ingredients 

2 cups (500 mL) all-purpose flour 

2 tbsp (30 mL) baking powder 

1 cup (250 mL) granulated sugar 

1/4 tsp (1 mL) salt 

1/4 cup (60 mL) butter, cubed 

1/2 cup (125 mL) shredded coconut (optional) 

2 Tbsp (30 mL) canola or vegetable oil 

1 cup (250 mL) whole milk 

Preheat oven to 350˚F (180˚C). Grease an 8-inch (20 cm) square baking dish or loaf pan with butter. 

In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, sugar and salt and mix together. 

Add butter and, using your hand, combine with flour by breaking up into smaller pieces. Add coconut if using, oil and mix. 

Slowly pour in milk while mixing with your other hand to form dough into a ball (the dough should be soft and pliable). Dust a clean surface with flour and knead dough a few times. 

Place dough in the baking dish, spread out and level with your hand. Pour 1 tbsp milk over top of dough and bake for about 35-40 minutes or until the top is golden or a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Serve as a complement to soups and stews, or as a snack serve warm with butter, guava or mango jam. 

More Recipes from Island Gurl Foods

Jamaican Pepper Shrimp

These shell-on shrimp with a subtle spicy flavorful heat is the perfect appetizer or snack at the table. Serve over pasta for a scrumptious meal. MARINATING TIME: 30 MINUTES | COOKING TIME: 6 MINUTES | SERVINGS: 4 Ingredients 1 lb. large shell-on shrimp, preferably...

Smoky Mango Jerk Chicken

A wonderful balance of traditional Jamaican Jerk spices with a subtle hintof tropical mango to balance the flavourful heat. COOKING TIME: 20 MINUTES | SERVINGS: 4 Ingredients 4 chicken leg quarters (or 1 whole chicken,cut into quarter pieces)seasoned salt to taste...

Blackened Rainbow Trout with Strawberry Salsa

Get your pan sizzling hot for this sweet rainbow trout spicy makeover. Paired with a sweet, tart and crunchy Strawberry Salsa, for a go-to fast weekday meal. Leftover salsa would be delicious tossed with greens or spooned over...

Tropical Mango Cheesecake

Mango is hands-down my favourite fruit. With nuances of orange, peach and melon, it’s like no other fruit. Ripe Kent, Palmer or any other type of non-fibrous mangoes are preferred for this bright and citrusy cheesecake. Serves 8 INGREDIENTS Crust 4 cups (1 L) honey...

MAD MAC & CHEESE PLEASE!!!!!

Mad Mac & CheeseBahamian mac and cheese (aka macaroni) is the most rich,luscious and cheesy baked dish. Every family takes pride in theirrecipe. However, my girlfriend, Maddie, makes the most illustriousmacaroni in the Bahamas. I’ve added a few ingredients to put...

Pigeon Peas & Dumpling Soup!!!

No better way to shake the winter blues than diving into a bowl of this luscious, protein rich soup filled with yummy dumplings! Follow me as I guide you step by step, and instruct you on how to make this wonderful recipe from my childhood. Watch my video...

Guava BBQ Beef Ribs

Tropical sweet guava BBQ enhances the flavor of smoky grilled meats. Serve these ribswith your favorite sides and make new memories with these next level BBQ ribs. COOKING TIME: 2 HOURS 30 MINUTES | SERVINGS: 4 Ingredients 2 racks Beef Grilling Back Ribs(about 7 ribs...

Spicy Maple BBQ Rainbow Trout

Real maple balances the heat of citrussy Habanero chilies a perfect glaze for tender, flaky Rainbow Trout. COOKING TIME: 8 MINUTES | SERVINGS: 4 Ingredients 4 Rainbow Trout Fillets (4 oz/125g each)fine sea salt to taste (optional)3 Tbsp (45 mL) vegetable or canola...

Bahama Steamed Chicken

A tasty dish with a zesty tomato-based sauce that complements all proteins and vegetables. It’s paradise in a bottle. COOKING TIME: 30 MINUTES | SERVINGS: 4 Ingredients 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs(4 oz/125g each)Salt and pepper to taste3 Tbsp...

Caribbean Three Milk Cake

Caribbean Three Milk Cake 1 ½ cups (375 mL) local Ontario Milk 1Tbsp (15 mL) Ontario Butter, softened 1 Tbsp (15 mL) All-purpose flour, for dusting 2 cups (500 mL) All Purpose flour ¼ tsp salt 2 tsp baking powder ½ cup (125...

Mexican Turkey Tortilla Soup

Turkey takes a Mexican twist here.  Use your leftover turkey to create this flavourful festive soup.  Preparation Time: 15 minutes Cooking Time: about 30 minutes Serves 6 2 tbsp (25 mL)        vegetable oil 2        ...

Carrot Cake Smoothie Bowl

All the flavours of carrot cake in a bowl for breakfast! Choose your favourite toppings or stick to the traditional walnuts, pumpkin seeds and finely chopped apples. Freeze Greek yogurt in an ice cube tray to make it cold and slushy.  Preparation Time: 5 minutes...

Bircher Muesli

Oats are soaked beforehand instead of cooked in the morning, making it an ideal healthy breakfast for time-starved cooks. While the recipe originates in Switzerland, it makes use of Ontario’s apples, honey or maple syrup and calcium-rich dairy. Preparation Time: 5...

Roasted Sweet Potato and Beet Sunflower Salad

This salad of sunny-coloured vegetables with Ontario sweet potatoes and beets, tossed with an enticing sunflower butter dressing, brightens up a winter day. Roast the vegetables and whisk up the dressing the night before and you’ve the makings of a lunch. Preparation...