It may be the middle of winter, but you can spend an hour in warm, sunny Jamaica simply by getting your lunch from TMT Caribbean Delights.
Although they don’t always have everything printed on the menu, such as the fried chicken we initially wanted, they generally have jerk chicken, curry chicken, oxtail, and a few varieties of meat patties. Your best bet is to ask what dishes they have that day, and while you’re at it, ask what type(s) of rice they have, too.
We ordered the jerk chicken for $10, but didn’t know they had coconut rice until the person behind us ordered it. Since they had already started putting our lunch together, we ended up with some rice and peas and some coconut rice. Not a bad outcome!
In addition to rice, lunches come with a small salad, and a slice of fried plantain for dessert.
There were two good-sized pieces of chicken — a breast and a thigh. Both had a nice amount of meat on them, with the meat still moist and juicy under the sauce. The chicken was also boneless — which we didn’t expect — but were pleased to discover.
Warning: Don’t get the hot sauce unless you really like heat. There’s a little bit of heat on the jerk chicken itself. You don’t really need to add more, unless of course that’s your preference.
Even with the hot sauce, we could taste the various herbs and spices coming through in the jerk sauce.
The coconut rice was a mild rice with the expected flavor of coconut. There weren’t pieces or flakes of coconut in the rice, so they must have made it with at least some coconut milk or coconut water.
Rice and peas is a Caribbean specialty where the peas are actually beans. The rice is liberally flavored with spices such as nutmeg and allspice, so it’s not as clean a taste as coconut or plain white rice. That’s probably where the nickname “dirty rice” comes from.
The fried plantain was a happy ending to this lunch. It was thick and starchy, and had just a slight amount of sweetness.
TMT Caribbean Delights doesn’t have a social media presence or a fancy looking truck, but they park at the usual food truck spots in midtown and downtown. If you run across a plain white food truck, check the menu. If it looks like this, we suggest you try them. The service is friendly, the food is very good, and lunch will not exceed $10.