Callaloo (sometimes calaloo or kallaloo) is a popular Caribbean dish served in different variants in across the Caribbean. The main ingredient is a leaf vegetable, traditionally either amaranth (known by many local names including callaloo or bhaaji), taro or Xanthosoma. Both are known by many names including callaloo, coco, tannia, bhaaji, or dasheen bush. Because the leaf vegetable used in some regions may be locally called “callaloo” or “callaloo bush”, some confusion can arise among the different vegetables and with the dish itself. Outside of the Caribbean, water spinach is occasionally used. Trinidadians primarily use taro/dasheen bush for callaloo, while Jamaicans and Guyanese use the name callaloo to refer to amaranth, and use it in a plethora of dishes and also a drink (‘callaloo juice’). It should be understood that the ‘callaloo’ made in Jamaica is different from the ‘callaloo’ made in Trinidad and Tobago in terms of main ingredient (the leaf used) and other ingredients included (for example, Jamaicans tend to use only callaloo leaf, salt, onions, escallion and simply steam the vegetable, while Trinidadians use okra and coconut milk to make an entirely different dish with a different taste and consistency).
Callaloo is widely known throughout the Caribbean and has a distinctively Caribbean origin, created by enslaved Africans using ideas of the indigenous people along with both African (okra) and indigenous (Xanthosoma) plants (See Palaver sauce for the West African dish). African Americans also invented a version of the original West African dish known as collard greens.
in Jamaica, callaloo is combined with saltfish and seasoned with tomatoes, onion, escallion and butter/oil and steamed. It is often eaten with roasted breadfruit and is a popular breakfast dish.