An island getaway in Seychelles is always a feast for the eyes. From the sights of the ocean with its shades of blue and turquoise, the tropical lush green surroundings to the striking black granite rocks dotted along the coastline of soft white sand.
The cuisine in Seychelles is also delightful and full of exotic flavour. Influenced by a variety of cultures such as French, British, Spanish, Indian, African, and Chinese, Seychellois cuisine takes the best of these influences and serves up its own delectable cuisine, widely known as Creole cuisine.
Celebrity chef Siba Mtongana was recently in Seychelles on a well-deserved holiday with her husband Brian. The couple were holidaying at Club Med’s new eco-chic Indian Ocean Exclusive Collection resort, Club Med Seychelles on the private island of Sainte Anne. And other than thoroughly enjoying her time away in the paradise destination, as a bona fide foodie she shared her island food discoveries and took us on a culinary journey that exposed us to indigenous items such as soursop, rambutans and jackfruit.
In honour of her trip, for those considering a romantic or family getaway to Seychelles, we have put together a menu sample of our favourite dishes for you to try.
A staple in tropical countries, breadfruit has a similar taste to potatoes but with an amazing aroma of baked bread. In Seychelles, it is mostly made into mash or chips or roasted over an open fire. Grab yourself a pack of breadfruit chips to snack on and a glass of Buka rum to sip on while you explore the island.
A local dish that can be found all over the island from corner cafes, and street vendors to hotels, octopus salad is a fresh zesty dish made from fresh octopus (zourit) cooked with papaya and mixed with tasty fresh vegetables and fruit such as green mangoes, pineapples, onions, tomatoes, avocados and a splash of lemon juice. Octopus salad is served as an appetizer and can be eaten hot or cold. Enjoy a serving of Octopus Salad with a glass of Kalou wine.
Using the heart of palms, which is a soft milky white core surrounded by delicate flesh as the main ingredient of this dish, The Salad Palmis, also known as the Heart of Palms Salad or “Millionaire’s salad” due to the labour that comes with getting the palm hearts, is a local delicacy consisting of coconut, red peppers, green tomatoes, avocados, green mangoes, coriander and mint. A tangy sweet and sour ginger and line dressing finishes off the dish.
Being an island destination, seafood is a dominant feature on any menu in Seychelles and one of the most common and most loved dishes is grilled fish. Popular fish types include the exotic sailfish, snapper, jackfish, red snapper and believe it or not – barracuda. The fish is either first marinated in, or stuffed with, a simple yet delicious mixture of ginger, lemon juice, chilli and lime before being roasted over hot coals on an open fire. It’s the perfect ocean-to-plate experience best enjoyed with an ice cold Seybrew beer!
They always say try everything once and this is one of those dishes for the bucket list. Chutney is a condiment that is loved the world over, however, Seychelles has vamped it to create their own version of shark chutney. Made with ground shark meat, bilimbi, lime and turmeric, shark chutney is served with many of the Creole main dishes.
Sosis Sale (salted sausage) and Sosis Kreol (Creole Sausage) are two types of sausages found in Seychelles and they make up this popular household dish of sausage rougay. This tomato based stew has hints of thyme and garlic and is delicious served with rice.
FOR YOUR SWEET TOOTH
Two types of cassava are found on the island of Seychelles, a sour one and a sweet one called mayok dou which is the one used as an ingredient in making cassava pudding cake – a vanilla infused baked treat topped with coconut for some crunch. This gooey sweet treat can be enjoyed with or without custard.
This is versatile dish that can be prepared as a savoury or sweet dish and can be served hot or cold. When prepared in its savoury form it is mixed with salted fish and cooked with coconut, however as a sweet dish, the salted fish is replaced with nutmeg, vanilla pods, and sugar.
They say the best way to truly experience a destination and immerse yourself in its culture is through its cuisine.