Secret Recipes From Famous Anguilla Restaurants and Chefs

Sunday, 14 March 2021 Blanchards dinner anguillian crayfish
“Anguilla is somewhat of a hidden gem. While nearby St. Maarten is dotted with fashion, nightlife, and high-end shopping, Anguilla is serene and secluded. It is home to what the Travel Channel boasts are the “best beaches in the world” – Mead’s Bay and Shoal Bay.  With over 33 of the world’s most beautiful beaches and a small year-round population, you almost always feel like you have the island all to yourself.

At first glance, you would never suspect that this quiet little island is known to be the culinary capitol of the Caribbean. With only about 30 square miles of island and over 70 restaurants, it’s said that Anguilla has more gourmet restaurants per acre than the island of Manhattan! Chefs, both locally born and raised and those classically trained and returned to the island, create some of the most ingenious plates in the region.”

We have highlighted a few quintessential Anguillan recipes in this series including award-winning recipes from Anguilla’s 5-Star restaurants.  We encourage you to try them out in your fully equipped granite kitchens while staying at Carimar Beach Club….or try them in your own kitchen to bring a little bit of beautiful Anguilla home with you.  You can find fresh fruits and vegetables at the local farmers’ markets and freshly caught fish at the docks or at the local fisheries.  Other ingredients including Caribbean spices can be found right down the road from Carimar at Best Buy Supermarket.

As our first installment of the series, we are excited to share some of Bob and Melinda Blanchard’s incredible desserts offered at Anguilla’s famous five-star restaurant – Blanchard’s – right next door to Carimar Beach Club.  You can try these in your Carimar kitchen first and then order them at Blanchard’s to see how well you did.  

These secret recipes were first shared on the Today Show in New York with Ann Curry in 2005:

Blanchards Cracked Coconut

Cracked coconut
Cracked Coconut
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 12 ounces semisweet chocolate
  • 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate
  • 8 small water balloons
  • shredded coconut (approx. 1 cup)
  • coconut ice cream
  • 1/2 cup Kahlua custard sauce or chocolate sauce
  1. Blow up the balloons, but not quite all the way. The diameter at the widest part should be about 4 inches. Line a sheet pan with parchment paper.
  2. Place both chocolates in the top of a double boiler and melt over simmering water on a low heat, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and let cool slightly. (If the chocolate is too hot when it touches the balloons, you could pop the balloons and the chocolate will splatter all over the kitchen.)
  3. Meanwhile, place the coconut in a dry skillet over a medium heat and toast until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes, stirring often.
  4. Holding the balloons by the knot, dip them into the chocolate and roll gently around until the chocolate covers the bottom third of each balloon.
  5. Sprinkle the coconut onto the chocolate, leaving no plain chocolate exposed. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  6. When the chocolate has hardened, pop the balloons with the point of a knife, and quickly peel off the deflated balloons.
  7. Return the chocolate bowls back to the refrigerator until ready to fill. Let the ice cream soften at room temperature and spoon into half of the chocolate bowls, filling each a little more than halfway.
  8. Place the filled “coconuts” into the freezer until the ice cream is firm.
  9. When ready to serve, scoop out a hole in the center of each about the size of a golf ball. 10. Position each filled “coconut” on a large plate and fill the hole with Kahlua Custard or Chocolate Sauce. Lean an empty shell against each to make it look like it’s just been cracked open.
  10. Serve immediately.
Serving Size: Serves 8


Key Lime Pie in a Glass
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 8 egg yolks
  • 2 14-ounce cans sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 cup key lime juice
  • Oreos, finely crushed
  1. In a bowl, whisk together the egg yolks with the sweetened condensed milk. Shake lime juice well and gradually add into mixture.
  2. Pour a layer of the key lime mixture into the glass. Sprinkle with a layer of crumbs.
  3. Pour another layer of key lime, then more crumbs and finish with a third layer of key lime.
  4. over with plastic and refrigerate for at least 6 hours allowing the key lime mixture to moisten the crumbs.
  5. Serve with whipped cream and a sprinkle of cookie crumbs.

Serving Size: Makes 4-5

Very Intense Chocolate Slab
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 12 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped, plus more for garnish
  • 6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

  1. Cut a piece of parchment paper to line the bottom and long sides of a loaf pan. It should hang over the sides by a few inches. (You’re going to use this like a sling to remove the slab from the pan.) Don’t worry about the short ends of the pan.
  2. In a large pot, bring the cream to a boil. Make sure to use a pot that’s large enough so that the cream does not overflow. Remove from the heat as soon as it boils. Whisk in both chocolates until they are completely melted. Add the almond, vanilla and butter and whisk until smooth.
  3. Pour the mixture into the prepared pan, being careful to keep the paper in place. Chill in the refrigerator for at least six hours or overnight.
  4. When the slab is very firm, run a knife around the ends to loosen and lift out by holding the ends of the paper. Slice into 3/4-inch slices using a long, thin knife. It will be easier to slice if you have a damp cloth or paper towel handy to wipe the blade clean in between slices.
  5. Place each slice on a dessert plate and pour enough of the sauce around it to cover the plate. Grate or shave some semi-sweet chocolate onto the sauce and serve.

Serving Size: Serves 8-10


Coconut Cheesecake
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1 1/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Filling:
  • 3/4 pound cream cheese
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup shredded coconut

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low heat and mix in the cracker crumbs and cinnamon.
  3. Press the crust mixture firmly into an 8-inch spring form pan as evenly as possible. It only needs to go about halfway up the sides and don’t worry if the top edge is not exactly even all the way around.
  4. Using a mixer, beat the cream cheese and sugar together. Scrape down the sides and bottom several times to ensure thorough mixing.
  5. Add the eggs and vanilla and beat well, scraping sides and bottom again.
  6. Pour the filling into the crust.
  7. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes, or just until firm. Do not over bake.
  8. Wiggle the pans gently — as soon as there is no loose batter, they are done.
  9. Remove from the oven and increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees.
  10. In a small bowl, whisk together the sour cream, sugar and vanilla and pour the topping gently over cake. Bake for 5 more minutes.
  11. Sprinkle the cheesecake with coconut while still hot.
  12. Cool completely and serve chilled.
Serving Size: Serves 6

Sautéed Apricots and Cranberries with Lime, Rum and Cream
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup dark rum
  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 1/3 cup (packed) light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 12 ripe apricots, cut into thin wedges
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  1. In a large sauté pan, melt the butter over low heat and add the rum, lime juice, brown sugar and cranberries.
  2. Cook until the sugar is dissolved.
  3. Add the apricots and coat with the sauce.
  4. Simmer until the sauce has thickened slightly, about five minutes.
  5. Spoon the apricots into dessert bowls or glasses.
  6. Drizzle with the sauce and then with the cream.
  7. Serve immediately.
Serving Size: Serves 4

Warm Summer Fruit Compote with Vanilla Ice Cream
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 8 cups assorted thickly sliced summer fruit with skin (use whatever is available: peaches, plums, apricots, nectarines), approximately 12 pieces of fruit
  • 1 cup blueberries
  • 1 cup raspberries
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1-1 1/2 pints premium vanilla ice cream
  1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Arrange the sliced fruit in a 12-inch au gratin baking dish.
  3. Top with berries and sprinkle with the sugar.
  4. Bake until the fruit is tender and berry juices are bubbling, about 20 to 30 minutes.
  5. Scoop ice cream into dessert bowls and spoon the fruit with some of its sauce over the top.
Serving Size: Serves 6-8


Blanchard’s Corn Bread
Bob and Melinda Blanchard

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup cornmeal (such as Arrowhead Mills)
  • 2 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup sugar, scant
  • 4 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups cream style corn
  • 1/2 cup (small can) crushed pineapple, drained well and squeezed
  • 1 cup shredded jack or mild cheddar cheese
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Butter and flour a 9″ square baking dish.
  3. Whisk together the flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt and set aside.
  4. In a mixer, cream the butter and sugar.
  5. Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.  (The mixture may appear curdled at some point, and that is OK.)
  6. Add the corn, pineapple, cheese, and mix to blend.
  7. On low speed, add the dry ingredients and mix until blended.
  8. Bake until a tester is clean and the cornbread is golden brown on top, about 1 hour and 10 minutes.
  9. Serve warm.
  10. To freeze, make sure the cornbread is at room temperature, then double wrap it with plastic wrap.  If you are looking to make a double batch, you must use a larger pan than 9×13.
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