Trinidad corn soup is a popular street food in T&T made with corn, yellow split peas, provisions, veggies, and Caribbean seasonings. Flour dumplings and fresh coconut milk are also must-haves in the soup.
What is in Trinidad Corn Soup?
As with any Caribbean recipe, there is no fixed way for making the soup. You can substitute many ingredients with what you already have in your fridge.
Corn on the cob, split peas, flour for dumplings, fresh seasonings, and coconut pieces are my primary ingredients. Any others are added bonuses.
In my most-recent corn soup, I used:
- coconut oil
- culantro (chadon beni)
- cilantro (we call it celery)
- Spanish thyme
- pimento peppers (use your pepper of choice)
- corn on the cob
- sweet potatoes
- yellow split peas
It’s a long list to deliciousness.
You can add meat to the soup. Chicken and pig tail are commonly used.
How To Make Corn Soup Trinidad Style
Prepping the ingredients
The first thing I do when making corn soup is to boil the yellow split peas (dhal) separately with salt and turmeric. The peas take about 30 minutes to soften so it is better to get that started first.
Next, peel and prep all the other ingredients. Cut the corn kernels off two cobs and cut the other into smaller 1-inch pieces.
Knead the flour with salt to form a stiff dough. Cover and set aside.
Crack open the coconut and remove the white coconut meat. Blend half of the meat with one cup of water. Freeze the rest of the meat for another soup.
Making the soup
To a heavy pot, heat oil on medium heat.
Sauté onions until translucent. Add in grated garlic and chopped pepper and cook for 2 minutes. Repeat with grated ginger.
Add half of the fresh seasonings. These are from my backyard garden so they’re fresh and organic. If you don’t have fresh seasonings, substitute with Caribbean green seasoning. Cook for another minute.
Now, it’s time for your choice of veggies. Add sweet potatoes, carrots, and pumpkin. Give everything a stir and pour in water so the seasonings won’t burn.
Pour in the corn kernels and corn pieces.
By this point, the yellow split peas should be soft enough. Drain and add to the soup.
Don’t forget the salt.
Next up – the dumplings! There are a couple shapes you can make. I usually take a 1-inch piece of the dough and flatten between my fingers and palms before adding to the soup. You can also roll the dough between the palms to form a ‘log’ and add that. Or you can cut the ‘log’ into ¼-inch pieces. The choice is yours.
Cover the soup and boil on low heat for 20 minutes.
Remove the cover and stir. The pumpkin should be almost melted and the sweet potatoes, carrots and corn should be softening.
Add the rest of the fresh seasonings and coconut milk. You can strain the milk so you won’t have coconut bits in your soup. I don’t strain it though; the extra fiber is good and the bits eventually melt into the soup.
Cover and cook until the dumplings and veggies are completely cooked. This could take another 10 to 20 minutes.
The soup is so delicious you don’t need another side dish or bread or anything. It’s so, so good!
Trinidad Corn Soup Recipe
Delicious Trinidad Corn Soup Recipe
- 2 tbsp coconut oil
- 1 onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 2 inch fresh ginger
- ¼ cup culantro (chadon beni)
- ¼ cup cilantro
- ¼ cup Spanish thyme
- ¼ cup chives
- 2 pimento peppers
- 3 corn cobs
- 3 cups sweet potatoes
- 2 cups pumpkin
- 2 medium carrots
- 1 coconut
- ½ cup yellow split peas
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 1 cup flour
- 2 tbsp salt
Cook Split Peas Separately
- In a small pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil.
- Add yellow split peas, turmeric and 2 teaspoons of salt.
- Boil for 30 minutes.
- Strain once softened.
- Peel and dice onions, sweet potatoes, pumpkin, and carrots.
- Chop seasonings and pepper.
- Grate garlic and ginger.
- Hold a corn cob vertically on a chopping board and slice the kernels off. Repeat for the second cob.
- Cut the third into 1-inch pieces.
- Mix flour and 1 teaspoon of salt.
- Knead the flour to form a stiff dough.
- Cover the dough and set aside.
- Crack open the coconut.
- Remove the coconut meat.
- Blend half of the meat with 1 cup of water.
- Strain and set aside.
- Place a large pot on medium heat.
- Add oil and allow to heat up.
- Sauté diced onions until translucent.
- Add grated garlic and chopped pepper.
- Cook for a couple minutes.
- Stir in grated ginger.
- Add half of the fresh seasonings and stir.
- Add sweet potatoes, carrots, pumpkin, corn, drained yellow split peas, and salt.
- Add enough water to cover all ingredients.
- Flatten 1-inch dough balls to form flat dumplings and add to soup.
- Cover and cook on low heat for 20 minutes.
- Add blended coconut milk and the rest of the fresh seasoning.
- Cover again and cook until dumplings and veggies are completely cooked.
- Serve hot.