Meet the Queen of Martinique's Creole Cuisine, Chef Yanic Malidor

Chef Yanic Malidor, La Chaudière

Jesson & Co / MNI Alive

Release Date

Thursday, March 28, 2024


On the island of Martinique, where French roots run deep, one would expect to find gourmet offerings at the top restaurants. But it is Creole-inspired cuisine which temps the palate of discerning diners on “The Island of Flowers”. First, visitors have to learn a new lexicon to recognize dishes which go by different names than those they are used to. A passing knowledge of French helps, but fear not: we’ve prepared a little primer.

For example: accras are fritters and morue is the traditional island salted cod, which is soaked to remove the salt and soften the preserved fish. Accras de morue are cod fish cakes or fritters served as an appetizer, perhaps the most popular starter in the French Caribbean.

Chatrou is the Creole name for octopus, which can be found in many island specialties. Chatrou fricassee adds a rich sauce to the tasty cephalopod, made with a tomato base and added allspice leaves, chilli pepper, chives, garlic, lemon, onions, parsley and thyme, served with a traditional side of rice and beans.

We share these culinary tidbits with you to tantalize you. Travellers to Martinique are in for a gourmet delight when they arrive in Morne-Rouge, where the family-owned restaurant of La Chaudière is famous for its Creole cuisine. Chef Yanic Malidor rules the kitchen as she has done for more than 25 years. Her husband Gérard tends the gardens and provides the kitchen team with homegrown chilli peppers, cinnamon, cocoa, coffee, lemons, lychee fruit, peppers, vanilla and all manner of fresh vegetables and exotic flowers. Before or after their meal, diners can take a guided tour of the beautiful private gardens, or simply enjoy the view over the greenery from one of the two dining terraces.

Yanic was hard-pressed to pick from her vast repertoire of popular Creole dishes, including her legendary coconut flan, but she was persuaded to part with the recipe just for you. Have a taste of Martinican Creole for yourself with this flavourful family recipe:

La Chaudière Restaurant, photo courtesy of Martinique Tourism Authority

Lobster Fricassee with Old Rum
Courtesy of Chef Yanic Malidor, Restaurant La Chaudière, Morne Rouge, Martinique


4 beautiful lobsters 2 bay leaves

2 onions 1/2 tsp cumin

4 cloves of garlic 1/2 tsp paprika

2 green peppers 2 Tbsp of oil

2 red peppers 2 Tbsp of butter

3 tomatoes 1/2 cup of Old rum

2 sprigs of thyme salt & pepper to taste

  • Start by cutting the lobsters in half.
  • Chop the onions, garlic and peppers into small cubes.
  • Heat the oil and butter in a large frying pan. Add the onions and fry them over medium heat until they are translucent.
  • Add the garlic, peppers and tomatoes and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the thyme, bay leaf, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper, mix well.
  • Add the lobsters and cook them for 5 minutes over medium heat.
  • Pour the rum into the preparation with the lobsters and tomatoes previously prepared, let simmer for 10 minutes.
  • Serve hot with white rice and a good local chilli pepper.

Bon Appétit!


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