St. Martin’s traditional and modern cuisine published – Yvette’s cookbook

From Yvette’s Kitchen To Your Table A Treasury of St. Martin’s Traditional & Contemporary Cuisine by Yvette Hyman has been released by House of Nehesi Publishers (HNP)

Author Yvette Hyman, with husband Felix, also founded the popular Yvette’s Restaurant in her native district of French Quarter, St. Martin.

Yvette Hyman with a bounty from land and sea. (Saltwater Collection file photo)

The new hardcover book is made up of 13 chapters, including Appetizers, Soups, Poultry, Fish and Shellfish, Meat, Salads, Dumplings, Rice and Fungi, Breads, and Desserts, said Jacqueline Sample, the book’s editor.

Among the book’s 312 colorful pages, classic favorites such as souse, Johnny cake, Conch Yvette’s, lamb stew, coconut tart, guavaberry and soursop drink are just a few of the over 200 recipes à la Yvette to be found in this Treasury of St. Martin’s Traditional & Contemporary Cuisine, said Sample.

This cookbook is an important and outstanding acknowledgement of Chef Yvette Hyman’s committed service to the culinary development of St. Martin,” said Gloria Ferris-Bell, a leading nutritionist.

The publication of From Yvette’s Kitchen is a “national and Caribbean happening for St. Martin” as well, said HNP publisher Lasana M. Sekou.

The 37-sq. mi. island of St. Martin, with over 350 restaurants from around the world, is known as the “culinary capital of the Caribbean,” according to award-winning Canadian travel writer Melanie Reffes travelintelligence.

The posthumous title has been in the making since 1989. As HNP’s projects director Sekou had approached Hyman over 20 years ago about publishing her recipes as a unique book of St. Martin’s cuisine and an aspect of cultural heritage, said Sample.

Sample served as HNP’s main editor on the manuscript since 1992 when Yvette gave the publisher her collection of recipes. Sample met with Yvette several times to discuss and test recipes before the popular chef passed away in 1999.
Between 2007 and 2009, Sample met with Yvette’s widower Chef Felix Hyman and daughter and cooking instructor Jewel Daal to discuss and detail recipes.

The book’s beautiful design by Angelo and Gina Rombley include photographs of actual dishes and drinks, both traditional and those developed by Yvette, said Sample.

From Yvette’s Kitchen, which will be launched as the “main book” of the 9th annual St. Martin Book Fair, June 4, 2011, is available at and, said Sekou.

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