The Caribbean Islands are some of the most popular destinations for travelers seeking a relaxing vacation. Turks and Caicos, a beautiful group of islands in the turquoise Caribbean Sea, have much to offer those visitors are looking for warm weather, outdoor activities and amazing seafood. The island flavors truly come alive when paired with the fish that are harvested daily. The islands have access to the freshest seafood out there, much of which is caught and cooked on the same day. This means simple flavors and high-quality ingredients can be turned into a dish to remember. Due to environmental concerns, there are several places in the Caribbean where fish are caught or harvested in a sustainable way so as not to affect the local ecosystems that are the treasures of the islands. Seafood enthusiasts are in for a treat when they try island seafood for the first time.
Mahi mahi is a popular fish for island cooking as it has a mild flavor and works well with the spices often associated with dishes from the Caribbean islands. Many of the popular seafood restaurants put their own spin on mahi mahi, so you can try it at many local dining spots and never have the same dish twice. Grilled mahi mahi is very popular with locals, and visitors who try it are amazed that such a simple process makes the fish so tasty. It’s often served with a fruit garnish that helps add some island flair. mahi mahi is a populous fish that isn’t being over harvested, so it can be enjoyed regularly with no real concern for its environmental impact.
While not technically a fish, lobsters are also a very popular in the Caribbean and are featured in many island dishes. The Turks and Caicos area has a lobster fishery that focuses on sustainability, allowing seafood lovers to enjoy lobster without affecting the local environment in a negative way. The Caribbean Spiny Lobster is one of the most popular lobsters for chefs and for diners. The lobsters are raised in the fishery, and when ready, they are caught, harvested and shipped to local restaurants very quickly, often on the same day. This freshness translates well to favorite island dishes like Caribbean lobster stew, grilled lobster tail or lobster salad with tropical island ingredients. Travelers who have never experienced the freshness of sustainably farmed lobster prepared within a day of harvest may never return to traditional lobster dishes.
*Lobster Season is August 1-March 31.*
Bay scallops and shrimp are popular seafood varieties that are readily available on the Caribbean islands. Bay scallops offer a sweetness to counter the spicy flavors of the island food. When caught fresh, as they usually are in most of the area, they are moist and tender. They are often broiled and served with butter but can also be used in salads and pasta. Bay scallop ceviche is also a popular island dish that allows the citrus flavors to shine. Shrimp dishes are popular in island cuisine because shrimp are easy to get from sustainable farms. Shrimp can be used in many different ways include being grilled or used in a fricassee, which is a unique island dish for those who’ve never had it before.
When visiting the Caribbean islands and exploring the local cuisine, consider a vacation rental on the islands of Turks and Caicos. TC Villas offers rentals of all sizes with amenities to please any island traveler. Many of our rental units have ocean views and private pools. All rentals are well appointed, spacious and a great place to rest during your island down time. Even better, all villas have a BBQ Grill perfect for grilling fresh fish!