Published in Washington City Paper
The Dish: Mannish Water
Where to Get It: Sweet Mango Cafe, 3701 New Hampshire Ave NW; (202) 726-2646; sweetmangocafe.com
What It Is: Jamaican goat soup made with all parts of the animal—head, hearts, brains, tripe, sometimes even testicles—as well as vegetables and dumplings.
What It Tastes Like: More delicious than Viagra and arguably more satisfying. The pale green color is alarming at first, but that’s just from the green bananas. Savory with a heat that builds in the back of your throat, the long-simmered stew is sweet from carrots and bananas and thick from potatoes and zesty whole peppercorns. It tastes like chicken soup but with a slightly stronger funk.
The History: Believed to be an aphrodisiac, this popular Jamaican soup is served at weddings, parties, and even funerals. “It’s good for you,” says chef George “Lenky” Beckford, as he flexes his biceps.
How to Eat It: Take a big spoonful, then thump your chest, naturally.
Photo by Mary Kong-DeVito