The Jamaican Annotto is a native of the Caribbean, Central and South America. It has been around in Jamaica for centuries and was a main ingredient in many dishes in the past. The Jamaican dish “run dung” is not complete without the annotto seeds which lend its delicate sweet and peppery flavor while enhancing the colour.
The Jamaican annotto seed surrounded by a bright orange-reddish coat which produces the beautiful color and flavor. In times gone by when Jamaicans used to make their own cooking oil from coconut milk annotto seeds were added to give the oil its golden colour. In many parts of the world it is also use as a natural coloring for cheeses such as Cheddar, Red Leicester, Gouda and Brie.
Perhaps the first use of the multipurpose product by the indigenous people of the Caribbean and South America for body painting. It is also believe that it was used as an insect repellant also to ward off evil. It was also used in the Mexican manuscript some 500 years ago.
Today not many Jamaicans are making good use of this mystique natural product. The uses are many while the flavor is delicately sweet.
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