Rural Missouri - January 2021 - 28
Another popular dish highlights Rex's and Colin's ability to impart their island flavors into a Missouri mainstay.
" Traditionally back home we don't do pork steak, " Rex says.
" The cuts are more sophisticated here. "
The 1 1/2-inch pork steaks get the same seasoning and
marinating treatment as the other meats before spending
a little more than an hour on the grill. Upon service, the
steaks are cut into strips. " Some people think they might
be ribs when they see how it's
served, " Rex says.
with a sauce Rex says resembles a traditional barbecue
sauce with a little sweetness and a little heat from the
Scotch bonnet pepper.
Other items to whet your whistle include the Curry
Chicken, Rex's favorite, or the oxtail which is braised for
3 hours with beans and sliced carrots. Appetizers include
Jamaican Johnny Cakes and Jamaican Beef Patty.
There are a handful of sides from which to choose, but
the most popular is the coconut red beans and rice. " We use
kidney beans and cook it in coconut milk and add in ginger,
scallions and a lot of spices. It's kind of a seasoned rice. "
A visit to one of the Jerk Hut's two locations or mobile
trailers wouldn't be complete without their signature drink:
Rasta Lemonade. When the truck first opened, they were
continuously running out of $1 bills. They thought the idea
of a menu item available for $1 might solve that problem.
" Jamaicans are famous for remixing stuff that everyone else does, but doing it a little differently, " Rex says.
" We decided to do the lemonade, but do it our way.
That's what a Rastafarian would do back home. "
Their creation includes far more than the
typical water, lemon and sugar lemonade you
might be used to. It's a combination of sweet
and tart with an explosion of tropical flavors,
including the unique taste from mammea
apples that Rex and Colin import from
The Jerk Hut has continued to grow
since that first Lincoln homecoming
appearance in 2001. In 2018, they
added a brick-and-mortar location
just off of Interstate 70 in Columbia. They added a second location in Jefferson City in 2020 to
go along with both food trailers.
While a majority of their business is takeout, they do have a
few tables in Columbia and even
more in Jefferson City.
Rex says he loves sending
customers home with delicious
food but the restaurants and
food trucks are about more than
just their delicious fare.
" We're just a small snippet of
the Jamaican diaspora and we
consider what we do an extension
of ambassadorship to a certain
degree, " he says. " We hope it can
give you a window into Jamaican
culture, and we use food as our
vehicle for that. We'd like to say that
you come for the food, but come back
for the good vibes. "
Left: Braised oxtail is served over a bed of
coconut red beans and rice steamed cabbage.
Opposite page: The grilled pork steak at the Jerk
Hut is their interpretation of the Missouri staple. The
steaks are seasoned, marinated and grilled before they
are sliced and sauced and served alongside coconut red
beans and rice and potato salad.
RURAL MISSOURI | JANUARY 2021
12/10/20 11:46 AM
Rural Missouri - January 2021
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Rural Missouri - January 2021
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Rural Missouri - January 2021 - Contents
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Rural Missouri - January 2021 - Cover3
Rural Missouri - January 2021 - Cover4