This past week we were in Trinidad visiting G’s family and one local dish which cannot be missed is doubles. Doubles is a street food in Trinidad and Tobago which is a sandwich made with two fried breads called ‘bara’, hence the name doubles, and is filled with curried garbanzo beans or channa. It is served with pepper sauce, ‘slight’ (a dash) to as much as you want! It is one of the most popular fast foods in Trinidad and is typically eaten for breakfast or as a late night snack.
The ‘bara’ is a quick bread made of flour, split pea flour, salt, yeast, and a little curry powder. A good ‘bara’ should be light, chewy and have some elasticity. The dough is shaped into 4-5 inch rounds and deep fried and then filled with the channa. The channa is a simple curry of garbanzo beans, onion and sometimes potatoes. Curry powder in Trinidad typically includes coriander, cumin, clove, turmeric, peppercorns, and mustard seeds.
Doubles are thought to have originated from the North Indian dish of ‘chole bhature’. The chole is the curry garbanzo beans and the bhature is the fried bread. It too is a street food often eaten breakfast. The Trinidadian’s have perfected the portability of the same items by making a sandwich!
These dense, filling, little sandwiches are a hearty way to start a long day of going to the beach or playing cards with the family!