by Marisa Grey
A proud mother of three boys who love her meals, Marisa’s cooking has taken on a new twist from her days at Midwestern State University in Texas. Although her studies in Mass Communications and Public Relations was demanding, she made time to prepare delicious meals, especially as her cousins and his friends were appreciative diners at her table. She admits that she never gave any consideration to cooking when growing up on the Caribbean island of Grenada. Her grandmother and mother were the ones to prepare meals while she enjoyed a carefree childhood of playing outside or reading endlessly for hours. However, at University, reality demanded adjustments and this marked the birth of a previously unknown talent.
This discovery came to light at Midwestern University, but blossomed while at Norfolk State University as she pursued a Masters degree in Communication and Public Relations. It took flight thereafter. The new-found passion for preparing meals was fueled by the many times Marisa was questioned by co-workers about Caribbean cuisine. She would share her meals with them so they could try it. They loved it and a catering business resulted, with Marisa serving a variety of Caribbean meals throughout her community every Friday.
This was a steadily growing business until the Covid-19 pandemic started, which made delivering meals to schools and businesses in the area a risky procedure. Transition was necessary and an idea was presented by her brother-in-law, who suggested that the flavourful sauces and seasonings which she made with care for her catering business can be sold online!
Welcome, SaucesNSeasonings, by Marisa Grey.
As she now works on her flourishing business, Marisa always remembers the author of the idea and, the accompanying thoughts are tear-filled. The day of that discussion was the very last time she spoke with her brother-in-law. News of his untimely passing followed shortly after. He too had concocted a delightfully flavour-infused seasoning and Marisa used HIS famous Grenadian Seasoning and Pepper Sauce recipes to start her line of SaucesNSeasonings. As customer enquiries about Grenadian/Caribbean recipes and seasonings to be used in their cooking increased, Marisa identified an opportunity to expand, and her product line has grown to include other flavours of Grenada.
Grenadian Green Seasonings ~ a blend of green herbs, ginger, garlic, a variety of peppers but most importantly it is infused with local Grenadian spices. It is what most Grenadian households use as a base to season their meats and seafood.
Grenadian Pepper Sauce ~ in Original, Pineapple and Mango ~ an infusion of Scotch bonnet peppers, seasoning peppers, pineapple and mango to create a sweet and spicy pepper sauce.
Mango Sauce ~ this versatile sauce is made with fresh mangoes and Grenadian spices and can be used not only as a dipping sauce but also as a wonderful marinade for chicken and seafood dishes, and as a spread on warm bread, biscuits or bakes.
Tamarind Sauce ~ one of Marisa’s favorites is made from the pulp of the tamarind fruit and is a great dipping sauce, or marinade and pairs well with any curry dish or over a nice hot bake and shark with coleslaw.
All-in-one Browning ~ the name says it all. It is a twist on the traditional Browning Sauce used to make brown stews like chicken, pork or everyone’s favorite oxtails. All that needs to be done is to add a few tablespoons to your meat, marinate and slow cook for that flavorful brown stews.
Seamoss ~ raw, wild crafted Seamoss available in individual packets and in bulk order. This comes directly from Grenada.
Seamoss Gels ~ this is an infusion of fruit flavors in the Seamoss after it cleaned and prepared into a gel. She also has ginger and turmeric gels as well.
Seamoss infused Tea ~ in local parlance (bush tea with seamoss)
. Trifecta ~ Ginger, Turmeric and Seamoss infused with pineapple and citrus
. Moss Boss ~ Seamoss, Spices and citrus blend
. Power Duo ~ Hibiscus (sorrel) and Seamoss infused with local Grenadian spices
. Moss Berry ~ Strawberry, Seamoss, Citrus and local Grenadian sauces.
Spice Blend Dry Rubs ~ a variety of Grenadian spices and dried herbs used to season chicken, fish or any other meats.
Curry Paste ~ a mix of turmeric, curry plus a variety of herbs and Grenadian spices. It is a one stop shot to creating a curried dish. It is also available with a coconut infusion.
Jerk Marinade ~ a traditional Jamaican seasoning, it has become a widespread favorite throughout the Caribbean. It is a spicy mix of herbs and peppers. Marisa offers the traditional version or the mango-infused version to bring a sweetness to this spicy seasoning blend.
Breakfast Boost~ Oats, Grenadian spices and Seamoss. Can be eaten as a breakfast bowl or infused into a morning smoothie.
Marisa’s top-selling products so far has been her Grenadian Green Seasonings, her Tamarind Sauce, followed closely by the Seamoss-Infused Teas.
The driving force behind Marisa’s business is her determination to make it successful, because within it is the memory of her beloved brother-in-law. “It was his words and inspiration that got me started on this venture, so every sale, share or like is, to me, homage to him,” she said. “Additionally, I also I’m seing a growing curiosity in authentic Caribbean cooking. Many people love our dishes and want to attempt to recreate it. The products I make are easy, one-two step options for them to try.”
She views the business as her fourth baby. “I get to create and share something I love – our home food – with people from a variety of cultural and ethnic backgrounds, but I hope to inspire my children, to help them connect with their cultural heritage through food, and to also help them to see that it is okay to go after something that is not on the beaten path, or a traditional career, but to use what inspires and motivates.”
Marisa believes that “food create connections.” Visitors to her booth at Pop Up events are curious as to what her products are and how they are used. Through communication with them, she gets to share tid-bits about Grenadian food, culture, language and her heritage. “I love creating that link between our food, history and culture. Many people are not familiar with our spices and it is amazing to spark a little curiosity within them about Grenada, known as the Isle of Spice.”
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Ships only to the US. Canada will soon follow.