Guatemala /Nov 06, 2017

Tapado – A Taste of Livingston

Tapado Guatemala Fish Stew

Although most visitors view the boat journey in and out as the highlight of any visit to Livingston, for foodies it might be the opportunity to experience Tapado.

Tapado is a Garifuna dish and is essentially a seafood stew / soup with a base of coconut milk – think of it as a tropical version of bouillabaisse. Most restaurants in Livingston will offer a variation on this delicious dish (the fish seafood element can vary depending on what is in season / available) but the version below is a great starting point.

How To Make Tapado – Taken from

Make the Coconut Milk : In a 2- to 2 1/2-quart saucepan bring water to a boil and add coconut. Cook coconut over moderately high heat 2 minutes and remove pan from heat. Let mixture stand, covered, 10 minutes. In a food processor or blender blend coconut mixture until very thick. In a fine sieve set over a bowl strain coconut mixture, pressing hard on solids. Working over bowl, squeeze small handfuls of solids to extract as much milk as possible. Coconut milk keeps, covered and chilled, 3 days or frozen in an airtight container 6 months.

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Peel and thinly slice the onion (1/2 cup).

Core, seed, and cut the bell pepper into 1/4-inch strips.

Cut the fish fillets into 2-inch pieces. Peel, rinse, and devein the shrimp.

Heat the corn oil in a large skillet. Add the onion and red pepper and sauté over medium heat until softened, about 1 minute.

Add the Coconut Milk, oregano, achiote, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Bring liquid to a boil and then simmer over low heat until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.

Stir in the fish and the shrimp and simmer until seafood is just cooked through, about 10 minutes.

Peel and cut the banana into 1-inch slices. Cut the tomato into 1-inch dice and add it to the soup along with the banana. Simmer the soup until the banana and tomato are just cooked, 5 minutes.

Stir in the cilantro

Eat. Enjoy.


Tapado Ingredients

2 cups coconut milk (fresh)

1 small onion

1 medium red bell pepper

2 lbs red snapper fillets (or bass, or tilefish)

1 lb medium shrimp

1 tablespoon corn oil

1 teaspoon dried oregano

14teaspoon achiote (also called annatto) (optional)

12teaspoon salt

14teaspoon black pepper (fresh ground)

1 medium banana / plantain

1 medium tomatoes

3 tablespoons cilantro leaves (minced)

2 cups water

4 cups grated fresh cilantro / coriander


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