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Recipe: Jamaican Festival

Chef Jason McCrellis shares his recipe for Jamaican Festival (Fried Caribbean Dumplings).


• 390g Self-Raising Flour

• ½ Teaspoon Salt

• 4 Tablespoons of Castor Sugar (plus extra for rolling the dumplings in after)

• 45g Margarine

• 240ml Full Fat Milk

( may not need all of it)

• 1 Teaspoon Mixed Spice

• ½ Teaspoon cinnamon

• 5ml Vanilla Extract

• Vegetable oil for frying


Place flour, salt, four tablespoons of sugar and spices into a mixing bowl mix to incorporate together.

Next, add the margarine and mix with clean hands until a breadcrumb stage.

Add the vanilla extract into the milk and pour a little at a time until the dough comes together. It should not be too sticky or to dry.

Knead the dough for about 5 minutes until a soft, smooth dough has formed.

Place in a clean bowl and cover with cling film and leave at room temperature for about 30 minutes.

The dough now should be nice and soft and supple, pinch about 30g pieces off and roll into cigar shapes between your hands. Then place onto a clean work surface and roll out the tips to a slight point.

Lay onto a plate with a little sprinkling of flour, so they don’t stick.

Place the oil into a pan. You want a good 2-3 inches of oil, so the dumplings don’t stick to the bottom, and they can easily be moved around and turned.

Once you have about 5-8 dumplings and your oil is around 160c -170c start to fry the dumplings in batches and continue to roll the rest of the dough out.

You don’t want the oil too hot as the outside will burn. If the oil is too cold, the dumplings will be greasy.

In batches, the dumplings should take around 3-5 minutes turning once one side is lovely golden brown. Lift it out the oil, and carefully give it a tap on the top. It should sound hollow like when baking bread.

Drain on kitchen towel once done then roll in the extra sugar.

Serve straight away.


Jason McCrellis is Senior Sous Chef at Gather & Gather. Previously he worked at Riverbank on Trent Bridge, Queens Head in Little Eaton, Tom Browns Brasserie, Wollaton Bar & Kitchen and internationally at Rockpool in Sydney.

Twitter @jason_mccrellis

Instagram: @mccrellis

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