Ikea Did No Research Into Their Jamaican Rice and Peas Dish

I'm almost speechless.

As the daughter of a Jamaican, I just laughed out loud when I saw this: Ikea is offering a “Jerk Chicken and Rice and Peas” dish at their restaurants in the UK.

Jerk chicken with white rice and green peas. Photo: Ikea

Listen, we call it “rice and peas” but it’s not supposed to be white rice and green peas. Oh my goodness! Did no one on the culinary team ever eat at a Caribbean restaurant? Chuh!

Let me explain: Rice and Peas is a rice dish traditionally made with gungo peas (aka pigeon peas) or kidney beans.  The rice is cooked with coconut cream, thyme, scallion and garlic. Some people put scotch bonnet peppers in their rice. There are definitely regional variations. BUT NONE LIKE IKEA’S!

If you asked my mother for her recipe she would shrug and give you somewhat vague measurements for her rice, which is perfection, by the way. I’ve tried to make it like her and I fail. BUT NOT AS BAD AS IKEA’S FAIL!!

Lorena Lourido, Country Food Manager, IKEA UK and Ireland told Metro.co.uk. ‘Our intention was to create a dish for many people to enjoy but we appreciate that we may have got it wrong. We apologise and we are now re-looking at the dish.’

So, now I wonder what the jerk chicken tastes like.

Thanks for the laugh, IKEA.  I’ll see you soon. Just not for Rice and Peas!