Escoveitched Fish


SourceThe Real Taste of Jamaica
Prep time45 minutes


Escoveitched Fish

Escoveitched Fish is eaten in Jamaica for breakfast, lunch, and supper. I saw it served at the Norman Manley Airport as I was waiting to board my morning flight home, but I had been admonished to wait for a better version on my next visit.

This simple recipe is a cook's delight because it is so amenable to modification both in preparation and in presentation. You can use different types of fish, vary the marinade ingredients, and dress it in any number of ways. 

It's strange, too, in that the fish is cooked and then marinated without refrigeration. That, of course, makes it an excellent choice for a picnic or for a lunch on the beach. I fully expect to prepare this again in the summertime.


2lbfish (almost any kind!)
1⁄2cFlour (seasoned for dredging)
3cVegetable Oil
1cCider Vinegar
1⁄2ccarrots (julienned)
1⁄2cchayote (julienned)
2eaonions (sliced thinly)
6eaAllspice Berry (crushed)
1⁄4eaScotch Bonnet Pepper (sliced very thinly)


  1. Heat the oil in a heavy pot until hot enough for frying.
  2. Cut the fish into chunks, dust with seasoned flour and fry until done. Drain on paper towels.
  3. Bring the vinegar and water to a boil, then add the salt and sugar and turn off the heat.
  4. Stir the julienned vegetables, sliced onions, and crushed allspice into the vinegar.
  5. Put the cooked fish into a stainless, glass, or ceramic dish and then pour the vinegar-vegetable mixture over it. Do not include the peppers unless you really like your heat!
  6. Cover the dish and let it marinate until ready to serve. This should be several hours or even a day, and it does not get refrigerated. Note that if it is not refrigerated in Jamaica, then your own kitchen is probably not too hot for it.
  7. Garnish with thin shreds of Scotch Bonnet Pepper at serving time, if desired.


The Scotch Bonnet Pepper is optional. Remember to wear gloves and to never touch your eyes after slicing one of these little monsters! Use Cane Vinegar instead of Cider Vinegar if you can find it. Experiment with different types of fish, vinegars, sweeteners, vegetables, garnishes, etc.
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