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Purple Yam is one great place for Mardi Gras

Get the taste of the Caribbean this Carnival.

Next week, Purple Yam hosts a Trinidad and Tobago-themed dinner on March 8 — also known as Fat Tuesday or Mardi Gras.

The Christian tradition follows that you eat rich, fatty foods the night before the Lenten fasting season begins, and the Ditmas Park restaurant has you covered, as guest chef Ramin Ganesharm, author of “Sweet Hands: Island Cooking from Trinidad and Tobago,” cooks a savory three-course meal using ingredients and methods that are also shared in Philippine cuisine (this is a Filipino restaurant, after all).

That means such starters as soused lambie (pickled/escovitch conch salad), phoulourier (lentil fritters) and callaloo soup (taro leaves in chicken stock with pork and crabmeat); sancouche (a soup containing oxtail, vegetables and dumplings), shrimp creole, and buccaneer smoked quail for the main course; eggplant caviar and fried sweet plantains as sides; and soursop sorbet and coconut shortbread for dessert.

For authentic, fresh ingredients, the restaurant doesn’t have to look very far.

“We live and work in the Flatbush area, which is a thriving and bustling West Indian community,” said Purple Yam co-owner Amy Besa. “We particularly feel that this dinner is ultra special because it celebrates the Caribbean culture of Flatbush.”

Carnival at Purple Yam [1314 Cortelyou Rd. between Argyle and Rubgy roads in Ditmas Park, (718) 940-8188], March 8 with seatings at 7 pm and 9:30 pm. $55 prix fixe. Reservations required. For info, visit

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