Margarita's International Recipes

Calypso Chicken

There are many recipes for Calypso Chicken in the West Indies, but I'm glad I chanced upon this one from Dominica. It was incredible. It includes flavors I wouldn't have thought about putting together - ginger and mushrooms, for one - but that meld perfectly and transcend each other. This dish didn't taste particularly Caribbean to me, it was probably the addition of mushrooms that made it seem very European but Caribbean food is fusion food at its best, and this dish is a perfect example.

Note that this dish requires a 3 hour marinade (I ended up marinating it for a couple of days)

Calypso Chicken


  • 5 - 6 lbs chicken parts
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • pepper to taste
  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 tsp. thyme
  • 2 Tbsp. red or white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. pureed ginger
  • 6 green onions, sliced
  • 1/2 lb. mushrooms, sliced
  • 1/3 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • vegetable oil for frying
  • 1/2 lb. cashew nuts, halved or coarsely chopped


Rinse and dry chicken, place in a large bowl. Season with salt, pepper, 2 cloves garlic, thyme and vinegar. Mix well and marinate for at least 3 hours.

Melt butter over medium-high heat in a wide cooking pot large enough to accommodate all the chicken. Add sugar and stir until dissolved. Add chicken pieces and cook on both sides until browned, you may need to do this in batches. Remove chicken and set aside.

Add the green onions, mushrooms, ginger and remaining 2 cloves crushed garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are soft. Add wine and water and mix. Return chicken to the pot, bring to a boil, then cover and simmer over low heat until the chicken is cooked through, about 25 to 35 minutes, depending on the chicken part.

Dissolve flour in 2 Tbsp. warm water. Mix into the chicken sauce and cook until it thickens slightly, about 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat a thin layer of oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the cashews and fry until they start to brown. Set aside.

Sprinkle cashews over the chicken and serve.

Adapted from this recipe at

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