How to make Jamaican Festival (Fried Dumplings)

Aerial view of Jamaican Festival (Friend Dumplings) with dip on side
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If you ever enjoy eating Jamaican food, you must try their Fried Dumplings, also known as Festival. It is an excellent snack on its own but also goes great alongside any of your favorite jerked meats. The recipe uses a sweet cornmeal dough that is fried until golden brown. These delightfully sweet nuggets are the perfect snack for dipping into your favorite homemade jerk sauce or garlic sauce. Try this recipe with your next Jamaican grill-up for a lip-smacking good time. 

Author: Rachel Ottier-Hart
Average: 4.3 (8 votes)
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
20 mins
Total Time
35 mins



In a bowl, mix the dry ingredients flour, cornmeal, baking powder, salt and sugar.
In a separate bowl, mix the wet ingredients milk and essence.
To the dry mix, incorporate the butter by mixing it with your hands until the butter has been thoroughly blended into the dry mixture.
Add the wet mixture, and again use your hands, combining all the ingredients thoroughly and forming into a large ball.
Place a damp towel over the top of the bowl and place it in a cool place to rest undisturbed for at least 15 minutes.
While the dough is resting, prepare a cooling station with either a rack or a tray with paper towels. This is where you will place the dumplings after removing them from the hot oil.
Prepare your frying oil in a heavy deep saucepan or fryer at 375 C/190 F. If the temperature is too hot, it will burn the outside, and the inside will be raw. If the temperature is too low, the dumpling will cook too slowly, absorb the oil and taste funny.
Take the ball of dough and shape it into dumplings. The shapes and sizes can be up to you as long as there is enough for six people to eat. If you like bite-sized snacks, we suggest making them into thumb-sized shapes. However, some people prefer larger sausage-sized shapes. Have fun and be creative.
Once you have shaped all your pieces, place them into the hot oil in batches according to the size of your frying pan or fryer. Allow to fry for about 5 minutes or until the outside is golden brown.
Remove from the hot oil onto the cooling station until you finish frying them all.
Serve on a tray with dipping sauces or as a side dish to your meal.

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Jamaican Festival, Jamaican Fried Dumplings, cornmeal dumplings, sweet dumplings, Doughboys, Jamaican Dumplings

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