Food Designer Arlene

Trendy Caribbean Cooking

Passion for Food

I started cooking at the age of 7 years. Taught by my mom and grandmother, I cherish the memories of growing up in an extended family home, where food was the vessel used to show love.

In The Kitchen

Check Out My Latest Recipe Videos.


Trendy Caribbean Recipes


Still Baking!

My Story

I discovered my true calling years later in 2008 when I committed all to pursue a catering business with a difference. Determined to give my clients a culinary adventure, ‘Intriguing Ideas’ was born.

This then fueled my ambitions of becoming a restauranteur, to further expand my creative energy. The proud island girl spirit channeled her focus on the use of local ingredients, creating what I now describe as trendy Caribbean cuisine.

Love for creating Food 

My love for creating food never wavered and has found expression in other food projects. I created executive private chef services, as well as catering services for both intimate and major events.

Welcome to the Gourmet Lifestyle

Trendy Caribbean Recipes

Christmas Ham (Pineapple-Guava) 

Christmas Ham (Pineapple-Guava) 

Christmas Ham (Pineapple-Guava) 

Here’s what you need 

  1. 6lb Smoked Pork Ham (with bone) 

15 -20 Cloves 

1 Whole Pineapple 

½ c Guava Jam 

1 Cinnamon Stick 

1 tbsp Ginger powder 

Let’s make it 

  • Remove the ham from its packaging and pat dry 
  • Using a small knife, make small holes and insert cloves all around the ham 
  • Remove the top of the pineapple and cut the skin off in long pieces 
  • Prepare a baking dish by placing the pineapple skin in the base of the dish 
  • Place the ham over the skins with the skin /fat side down of the ham 
  • Cover with foil and bake in an oven 300degrees for 1 ½ hours 

Note- Ham cook time is 30 mins per pound

  • Cut the flesh of the pineapple into smaller pieces and add 2c to an emulsion blender along with guava jam and ginger powder – Blend into a puree 
  • In a sauce pan, place the puree to simmer on low heat and allow to thicken
  • Once the ham reaches 1 ½ hours bake time, remove the foil and baste with the puree 
  • Return ham to the oven and finish baking until fully cooked 
  • Let sit for at least an hour before cutting 
  • Happy Holidays! 


Sorrel Glazed Duck

Sorrel Glazed Duck

 Sorrel Glazed Grilled Duck 

Here’s what you need 

1 whole duck – cut down the middle into halves 

4-6 fresh limes 

1c Sorrel concentrate 

¼ c Brown sugar 

3 Bay leaves 

¼ c Balsamic vinegar 

6 Garlic cloves (smashed)

5 Ginger slices 

2 tbsp Salt 

½ tbsp Black Pepper 


½ c Sorrel concentrate 

2 tbsp Balsamic vinegar 

1/8 c White rum 

¼ c BBQ sauce 


Let’s make it 

Prepare the glaze 

  • In a sauce pan on low heat, add bay leaf, cinnamon, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, sorrel concentrate and white rum.
  • Stir and let reduce 
  • Add salt and black pepper to taste 

Grill the Duck 

  • In a large bowl, place the duck and cover with water 
  • Squeeze the lime juice in and mix well 
  • Let soak for 1 hour 
  • Remove duck from the lime water bath and place in a large pot on medium heat – cover with water 
  • Add sorrel concentrate, bay leaves, balsamic vinegar, garlic and ginger 
  • Allow to steam for 10 – 15 mins to absorb flavors 
  • Remove from mixture and pat dry 
  • Season with salt and black pepper 
  • Preheat grill to 280 degrees 
  • Place duck bone side down for about 30 mins and allow to cook 
  • Flip on the other side for another 30 mins 
  • Turn and glaze on both sides 
  • Remove duck from the grill unto a board or tray and pour remaining glaze over the entire duck 
  • Let sit for 30 mins before serving 
  • Good anytime of the year! 
Chadon Beni Honey Chicken

Chadon Beni Honey Chicken

Chadon Beni /Cilantro Honey Grilled Chicken (Sandwich)

Here’s what you need 

4 Boneless chicken breasts

Sandwich Bun or Hoagie (your choice)

¼ c Lime or lemon juice 

1 ½ tbsp Salt 

½ tsp Black pepper 

1/3c Olive Oil 

¼ c Garlic (minced)

8 Pimento Peppers 

1c Chadon Beni /Cilantro 

½c Honey 

Let’s make it 

  • In a large bowl add chicken breasts and lemon /lime juice and cover with water  
  • Let soak and rinse after a few minutes 
  • Remove from the lemon water and cut into thin, flat slices and keep in a bowl 
  • In an emulsion blender, add olive oil, garlic, pimento, chadon beni and honey 
  • Blend well and season with salt and black pepper 
  • Add the mixture to the chicken, mix well and let marinade for 3- 6 hours 
  • Preheat the grill to medium heat 
  • Once the grill is hot and ready, place the chicken flat down and let cook for about 4 mins on each side or until fully cooked- set aside 
  • To create the sandwich, gently toast the bread of your choice 
  • Layer the chicken with your favorite veggies and condiments unto the bread base and cover 
  • Press down and take Big Bites Only !
Frying Ripe Plantains

Frying Ripe Plantains

Frying Ripe Plantains


You will need 


Coconut Oil

Salt – optional 

For cinnamon plantains 

1 tbsp Cinnamon & ½ Cup Brown Sugar


This is how 

  • Peel plantains by cutting off the top and bottom stems. Using a sharp knife cut along the back of the plantains lengthways in 2 places and remove the skin
  • Cut into ½  inch round slices or ½  inch sliced on the bias (slanted) 
  • Using a frying pan, cover the base with coconut oil and allow to heat on medium
  • Using a bamboo skewer insert in hot oil, if bubble form around the stick oil is ready for frying
  • Gentle place plantains in a single layer in pan, without overcrowding
  • Fry 2-3mins on each side until golden brown or darker if desired 
  • Using thongs, remove and place on a plate lined with paper towels, to remove excess oil
  • Optional: Sprinkle with salt or toss in Cinnamon-Sugar mix




There are different stages in ripeness of plantains 

  1. Bright yellow skin including the stems, firm but slightly soft to the touch when squeezed gently 
  2. All dark skin and soft to the touch – these are naturally sweeter when fried and should be fried in a little more oil 


 Talking Points 

  1. It was served black …I don’t know why 


Smashed & Fried Green Plantains


 You will need 

Green Plantains 

Vegetable oil 



This is how 

  • Add vegetable oil to a large pot for deep frying and heat on medium heat 
  • Peel plantains and cut into 1-inch-thick slices 
  • Fry in heated oil for 5 mins on both sides 
  • Remove from heat, unto flat surface (cutting board) and smash using the back of a spoon 
  • Fry for another 2 – 3 mins on either side until light brown color forms 
  • Remove from oil into a bowl and sprinkle with salt to taste 

Talking Points 

  1. My Jamaican friend made this for me a lot. I’m not sure if this is truly a tradition with the recipe but I loved it when she made it so this is our version to share with you. 
Banana Beetroot Smoothie

Banana Beetroot Smoothie

Here’s what you need 

½ Banana (frozen)

¼ c Beetroot cubes (cooked and frozen)

½ c Yogurt (your choice) 

¾ c Milk of your choice (whole, almond, oat, soy)

¼ tsp Vanilla essence

2 dashes Aromatic Bitters 

1 pinch Cinnamon powder 

½ tsp Nutmeg (finely grated)


Let’s make it 

  • Add all the ingredients to an emulsion blender and blend until smooth 
  • Serve over ice if desired 
  • Have a healthy day! 


Scalloped Cassava 

Scalloped Cassava 

Scalloped Cassava 

Here’s what you need 

1 kg Cassava /Yuca (peeled)

¼ c Garlic Butter (recipe available on website) 

¼ c Pimento peppers (sliced thinly)

¼ c Carrots (shredded)

 ¼ c Chive (sliced thinly) 

1c Onions (diced)

¾ c Evaporated milk 

1½ c Whole Milk 

1 ½ c Cheese (grated and separated)

Salt and black pepper to taste 

Margarine to grease baking dish 


Let’s make it 

  • Prepare a baking dish by greasing generously with margarine 
  • Slice cassava /yuca thinly and arrange in layers into the dish 
  • In a sauce pan on med to low heat, melt garlic butter and sauté pimento peppers and onions for 2 – 3 mins – season with salt and black pepper 
  • Add evaporated milk and whole milk, stir and let simmer 
  • Once this is heated stir in 1c cheese until smooth 
  • Pour over the cassava and shake the dish a little to let the mixture go through the layers 
  • Top with cheese and bake in the oven at 300 degrees until cassava is cooked and top is golden brown in color 
  • Let cool down to warm before serving 
  • Enjoy with peas ! 
Gulab Jamun (Fat Kurma)

Gulab Jamun (Fat Kurma)

Gulab Jamun

Here’s what you need 

2c All purpose flour 

½ c Margarine

¼ c Powdered milk 

1 tsp cardamon powder 

½ tsp cinnamon powder 

1 tsp ginger (fresh grated or powder) 

½ c Condensed milk 

¼ c Evaporated 

Vegetable oil for frying 

Margarine to grease surface of plate or tray 

For the sugar topping

1c Granulated sugar 

½ c water 

1 Cinnamon stick 

½ tsp Cardamon 

½ tbsp ginger (finely grated) 


Let’s make it 

  • In a mixing bowl combine all dry ingredients and ginger together 
  • Cut margarine into small pieces and combine into dry mix until a crumbly consistency is formed 
  • Add the condensed milk and evaporated milk and using a spatula, mix into a soft sticky dough 
  • Light grease hands with vegetable oil and smoothen the top of the dough
  • Cover the dough with a light cloth and allow to rest for 30mins 
  • Using approx. 1 ½ tbsp measure, form the dough into almond shapes and place on a greased surface. 
  • In a heavy pot for frying, heat vegetable oil low to medium heat 
  • Place a few julab jamoon at a time to fry – do not crowd the pot 
  • Fry until a golden-brown color forms and remove from oil into a bowl – keep uncooked dough covered. 
  • To make the sugar coating – in a small pot add all ingredients and allow to simmer on med heat until a syrup is formed.  
  • Pour syrup over julab jamoon and stir to coat 
  • Enjoy with a glass of your favorite milk 


Dasheen Pie

Dasheen Pie

Dasheen Pie

Here’s what you need

3lbs Dasheen

½ c Butter

½ c Onions (diced)

1/8 c Garlic (chopped)

¼ c Pimento Peppers(Diced)

1c Whole milk

½ c Evaporated Milk

3 ½ c Cheddar cheese (divided)

Salt to taste

Black pepper to taste

Let’s make it

• Peel dasheen and cut into ¼’s or small enough to hold to grate

• Place in a pot and cover with water

• Let boil on med to high heat until cooked

• Allow to cool and grate using a box grater or shred using a food processor

• In a large saucepan on medium heat, add butter, onions and pimento peppers – allow to sauté until the onions become translucent

• Season to taste with salt and black pepper

• Add both whole milk and evaporated milk and mix

• Add 2 ½ c cheddar cheese and stir

• Once the cheese starts to melt, add shredded dasheen a little at a time and mix well

• Prepare baking dish by greasing with butter and pour the dasheen pie mix into the dish, making sure the pie is spread evenly in the dish.

• Top with remaining cheese and bake in the oven at 375 degrees for 35-40 mins or until the cheese melts and top becomes golden brown.

• Allow to cool before cutting and serve

• Hail King Dasheen!


Tandoori Spatchcock Chicken

Tandoori Spatchcock Chicken

Tandori Spatchcock Chicken 

Here’s what you need 

4 lb Whole Chicken 

¼ c Lime Juice (Fresh)

3tsp Ginger powder 

4 tsp Paprika 

1 ½ tsp Saffron Powder 

¾ tsp Cinnamon Powder 

1 ½ tsp Nutmeg 

1 tsp Cardamon 

1 tsp Geera /Cumin Powder 

1 tbsp Salt 

½ tbsp Black pepper 

Olive Oil to coat Chicken 

The Yogurt Dip 

1c Greek yogurt 

¼ c Parsley (chopped finely)

1 Tbsp Garlic (minced)

½ tsp Black pepper 

Salt to taste 

2 Tbsp Basil (chopped finely) 

1c Cucumber (grated finely) 

Hot sauce / Pepper sauce (optional)


Let’s make it 

  • In a large bowl, place the whole chicken and cover with water and mix in lime/ lemon juice 
  • Let the chicken soak for a few minutes, wash and remove from the water bath
  • To spatchcock the chicken – 

Remove the back bone using a sharp knife or kitchen shears 

  • Place chicken on a meat board, breast side down, turn the legs and the wings inward and press down on the breast to make it flat. 
  • Using a clean cloth or paper towel, pat dry the chicken and coat generously with olive oil. 
  • In a bowl add all the dry ingredients and mix well to make the rub 
  • Cover the chicken with the rub 
  • Prepare a baking tray by greasing lightly with olive oil 
  • Place chicken on tray bone side down 
  • Pre heat the oven to 375 degrees 
  • Bake for 40 – 50 mins or until chicken is completely cooked 

Let’s make the Yogurt Dip 

  • Peel and shred the cucumbers 
  • Place in a clean cloth or lay on paper towels to remove excess liquid 
  • In a bowl, mix together yogurt, parsley, basil and garlic 
  • Fold in shredded cucumber and season it with salt and black pepper to taste
  • Add hot sauce to spice it up if you desire 
  • Perfect! 

Grilled Corn & Vege Soup

Grilled Corn & Vege Soup

Grilled Corn & Veggie Soup 

Here’s what you need 

½ c Margarine (melted) 

1/8 c Parsley 

1 tbsp Brown sugar 

½ c Onions minced 

1c fresh chopped seasoning (see recipe) – divided 

2 ears of corn on the cob 

3c Caribbean soup base 

1 med Sweet potato (diced)

2 med Potatoes (diced) 

1c Carrots (diced)

8-10 Cauliflower florets 

8-10 Broccoli florets 


Let’s make it 

  • To prepare the butter mix – in a bowl combine butter, onions, parsley and brown sugar 
  • Preheat the grill on medium heat 
  • Place the corn on the grill and baste with butter mixture turning occasionally  
  • Keep turning and basting until the corn is cooked and slightly charred 
  • Once the corn is cool cut into 1inch slices and set aside 
  • In a large pot, add soup base, sweet potato, potato, carrot, ½ c seasoning and corn 
  • Cover with water and let simmer on medium heat for 20 mins 
  • Add cauliflower and remaining seasoning, stir and let simmer for 2 mins 
  • Add salt and black pepper to taste (hot sauce if desired) 
  • Remove from heat and add broccoli when ready to serve
  • Serve in your best bowls!

Arlene Pereira



+1 (868) 330 4138