What better day to write a post about Bazar Labrin than today, a Wednesday 🙂
Every Wednesday evening, a group of Seychellois (pronounced seychelwa) food vendors gather by Beau Vallon beach on Mahe island to sell their homemade Creole food. Known as Bazar Labrin, this market is a popular haunt for both locals and tourists alike. According to a friendly cabbie I once met, Bazar Labrin means ‘sunset bazar’ in Creole.
For the duration of my stay in the Seychelles, this bazar was my mid-week dose of food, friends and festivities. Seychellois Creole cuisine is a remarkable blend of African, Indian, European and Chinese influences and this fusion cuisine goes way back to Seychelles mixed roots.
The main island of Mahe is believed to have been uninhabited for most of its known history and was colonized by the French only in 1770. The first settlement party consisted of about 30 people – French colonists, some African slaves and a few Indians. From this mix of original settlers was born Seychellois Creole cuisine.
Coconut based curries, grilled fish, black pudding, banana/breadfruit/sweet potato/cassava chips, fiery chatini (made with fresh, crushed chilies), raw sliced mango or shredded papaya salad – all ultra-fresh, hearty and simply delicious!
My favourite was the chapati stall. Chapati is an Indian flatbread and in this case, is served as a wrap, with a filling of meat or vegetable curry. The lovely ladies there, on my request, ensured they added a generous dash of the chili paste to my order 🙂
The heady kalou (fermented palm sap), also known as toddy or palm wine in other parts of the world, is great to wash down all that yummy Creole food! But before you consume copious amounts of kalou, please ensure you have a friend to take you home.
The folks managing the stalls are friendly and generous with portions. By the end of my stay in Mahe, I knew several of them on a first name basis 🙂
So if you happen to be in Mahe on a Wednesday, don’t forget to make your way to Bazar Labrin. Add the spectacular sunset at Beau Vallon and you have the recipe for a fabulous evening!
For now, I’ll let you enjoy these pictures of Bazar Labrin! Bon appetit!