Garifuna food in the Bay Area?
Ever since reading about a Garfifunan restaurant in New York (which has recently closed) I've been curious about whether it's represented in San Francisco. The Bay Area has a scattering of Honnduran/Yucatan peninsula restaurants, which might be a place to look for this cuisine or examples of it. Some background on Garifunan cuisine can be found in this post my BrianS on the New York Outer Boroughs board:
I would suggest making the following dish at home: Hudutu is the Garifuna name (Machaca, in Spanish), which is a coconut seafood soup. Boil several plantains until soft and then mash them all together and make a ball out of them. This should sit in the middle of the table and guests pick small handfuls of the plantain to plop in their soup bowl like tropical matzo balls. The soup itself is basic seafood stock (you can use fish heads, crab shells, shrimp shells), plus coconut milk. Plop in some chunks of fish, shrimp and crab at the end, just long enough to cook.
Another classic Garifuna dish that can be approximated at home is pan de coco. Basically, these are just dinner rolls infused with coconut. Garifuna cuisine in Honduras is also rich on fried fish and plantain, again easily done at home. The plantains are either greenish and sliced like chips and then fried or very very ripe, sliced length-wise, and slow fried until soft.
If you are a brewer, you could also try making corn chicha (fermented corn) though I never tasted any in Honduras that I'd choose over beer.
I think if you want cuisine that is specifically Garifunan... you really need to search out Belizean & Honduran restaurants. The Yucatan... while some of the people in Quinta Roo are of partial African descent... and the food may exhibit such influences (particularly around Chetumal maybe as far north as Tulum)... its not necessarily Garifunan.
L.A. has a big Belizean community including those of Garifuna descent... they concentrate around the Crewnshaw & Jefferson area.... and you might want to get out there. You might also have luck at Guatemalan restaurants... but I doubt it... I have only met 1 person of Afro-Guate descent in California... I think they are a very isolated community back home and don't really have much opportunity to emigrate.
Honduran can be tricky. I dated a girl of Garifuna descent from Honduras... but her family hailed from San Pedro Sula for several generations... and while the mother did cook dishes that had perceptible African ancestry... to me it wasn't any more distinctive than other mainstream Central American & Souther Mexican food.... Yuca, Yams, Plaintains prepared in ways that we are all familar with.