The essentials of Reunionese gastronomy

Focus on the essential specialities of Réunion's cuisine. A concentrate of flavours and aromas...

On Reunion Island, it is impossible to miss the curry, inspired by the Indian curry. A meat or fish stew that is quite spicy, curry is served with rice and legumes, lentils or well-cooked peas.

Vegetable chutneys and Reunionese corks

One of the must-try dishes of Reunionese cuisine is vegetable achard, served with meat or fish, or as a sandwich: white cabbage, green beans, carrots, onions and sometimes green fruit (lemons or mangoes for example) are marinated in vinegar, oil and spices (saffron or turmeric, cumin, etc.).

Other specialities of Reunion Island which are a delight for the aperitif: bouchons (small steamed meat bites of Asian inspiration), bonbons piments (split pea fritters with strips of chilli, coriander and onion stalks)... Fragrant, crunchy and melting at the same time!

We could also mention the gratin of chouchou (a subtle curcubitaceous), the avocado with shrimps, the green papaya salad, the plate of smoked fish from the Indian Ocean (sea bream, marlin, swordfish...), the palm heart salad... But the culinary emblem of the island is undoubtedly the sausage rougail.

Rougail made with chilli and tomato

Spicy, the rougail is a stew but it is also an artisanal condiment based on chilli and tomato, which can be found permanently on the tables of the island.

In the heart of the Indian Ocean, at the crossroads of the ancient spice route, Reunion Island has welcomed aromas from all over the world, such as turmeric, cardamom, ginger and allspice, which make up the aroma of its colourful and flavoursome cuisine. This is an additional advantage when staying on the island. And the sweet palates will not be left out, between the potato cake, the ti'son cake (with corn) and especially, the tasty tropical fruits (mangoes, kiwis, pineapples,...) juicy and full of sun, in particular during the southern summer from November to March.

Bourbon vanilla, rums and cane sugar

Bourbon vanilla (the island's former name) is used in pastries, but also in certain dishes, such as the famous vanilla duck and in punches or rums and, of course, in its coffee.

There are two types of rum: agricultural rum, made from the juice of the cane, which is directly fermented and distilled, and industrial rum, obtained by fermenting molasses. As for punch, it is prepared on a base of fresh fruit (pineapple, orange, passion fruit), possibly sweetened with cane syrup and enhanced with a variable dose of white rum.

The island is located in the Indian Ocean, east of the African coast and Madagascar, not far from Mauritius.