Kallaloo: A Caribbean Tale


Kallaloo: A Caribbean Tale by David and Phillis Gershator

‘“Lunchtime,” said Granny, “and me belly bawling.” But her cupboard was bare. No flour on the shelf. No sugar. No salt. “No money in me purse either, and no one in Market Square giving away free food,” Granny said.”

Kallaloo: A Caribbean Tale is a fun story based on the classic tale of Stone Soup. It is set in the West Indies which is indicated by the strong dialect in the text. Granny goes to the beach to find some food but instead, comes across a shell.

In a heartbeat, Granny runs off to Market Square to share this magic shell that is going to make a soup. 


“Show the folks what you can do,” she told the shell. “Make a pot of kallaloo!”

As the people from Market Square gather around the pot waiting to see if this shell could really make soup, Granny began to speak to the shell. 

“What you say, Shell? The soup also ready? But you say it need a bit a salty meat to help the flavor?”

This was a problem, because as Granny said “no one in Market Square giving away free food.” But in a heartbeat, the lady who sold salty meat threw in a ham bone and dried beef straight into the pot. 

When asked if the soup was ready yet, the shell had the same response. And over and over, the people in Market Square were willing to give free food away to make this soup. 




…fish and crab

 …green leaf vegetable

 …okra, garlic, hot pepper

Pretty soon, everyone in Market Square was able to enjoy this delicious dish of kallaloo.

Using a popular tale such as Stone Soup was a great way to introduce West Indian culture. Kids would enjoy the vibrant colors on each and every page. For teachers and/or parents who would like to expose their children other cultures, an important aspect that must be included is the dialect used in this book. Because it is a difficult one, I would suggest the use of audio books. Furthermore, children would be able to enjoy this story a lot more with background knowledge on the tale it was based on – Stone Soup. Stone Soup would be a great book to either read before or after Kallaloo.

Read this colorful book and learn how to make a unique West Indian dish. But wait, I think I forgot the most important ingredient to this Kallaloo dish…can you figure out what I missed

Happy Readings!



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