Trinidad Paime (recipe)

This entry is part 8 of 9 in the series Trini Christmas


As promised, here is a recipe for Paime (pron. PAY-me)! Paime is basically a sweet version of the savoury pastelle. I only recently discovered that Paime is also a traditional Xmas dish. Well that explains why it seemed I never could find it lol! No one in my family makes this traditionally, so I have only been offered/given it by acquaintances of myself or my family. It is definitely a favorite of mine, being sweet (yet not candyish) and slightly chewy in texture (like a pone).

Naturally vegan and gluten-free, it traces its origin to our First Peoples heritage and, although as mentioned, it’s a traditional holiday treat, I actually get searches for it year-round! Although its a fave of mine, I constantly run into people who either aren’t aware of it, or only vaguely remember it. I think it’s high time that paime made a resurgence!

Several years ago I learnt from a fellow blogger,  Titilayo,  that in Barbados they also have a dish that is similar to paime, but they call it conkie and eat it around the time of Guy Fawkes day (I hadn’t even known that anyone in the Caribbean observed it!). Unlike paime it includes milk, flour and eggs. Jamaica also has a similar dish to Paime, but there they call it by several different names, some of which are Tie-A-Leaf, Blue Drawers (no don’t ask me why!), and Duckanoo …. we’re an interesting lot us Caribbean types! 😀

Want more Caribbean recipes? Why not take a look at some of my favourite Caribbean Cookbooks!

Trinidad Paime (recipe)
Author: Sarina
Serves: 12
  • 1 grated coconut
  • 1 lb. cornmeal
  • 1 tsp. black pepper
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 4 oz. dried fruit
  • banana leaves
  • 1 lb. pumpkin
  • 1 oz. shortening
  • 1 oz. margarine
  • sugar to taste
  • (I used 1 1/2 cups)
  • 1/2 pt. water
  • twine for tying
  1. Grate coconut and pumpkin
  2. Add all other ingredients
  3. Stir in enough water to make a dough of dropping consistency (I think 2 1/2 – 3 cups in all will do)
  4. Wipe banana leaves and heat them to make them pliable (or use foil if you’re lazy like me :P)
  5. Cut into pieces about about 8″ by 8″
  6. Place about 2 tbsp. mixture on each piece
  7. Roll up, fold over and tie. (Click here for a video on how to fold the leaf/foil)
  8. Place in boiling water and boil for about 20-30 minutes.
  9. Test one to see if it has set, if not, cook for a longer period of time, depending on size of paime.

Spelling variations: paimee, paimie

Series Navigation<< Trinidad Pastelles (recipe) now with Delicious Vegan Option!Punch de Creme (recipe) >>
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