Gravy the dumpling eating champ - Man eats 13 pounds of flour
Jeremy "Gravy" Brown's ability to devour huge portions of starchy foods, particularly boiled dumplings, at one eating, has led him into a part-time career in entertainment as a 'food-eating racer' and one of the most popular characters in the town of Lucea.
Gravy, who is from Retrieve in Hanover, told the WESTERN STAR that he has been booked to participate in numerous food-eating marathons at entertainment events across Jamaica ever since his 'talent' was uncovered at a show in Lucea. He said that his 'craw stretching' introduction took place at the Brownsville All-Age School's canteen at Cascade in the parish.
"Mi used to ongle go register, and den mi always deh lef and go a di canteen go wash up di plate dem and go clean off di floor, and after dat, mi find miself can't stap knead dumpling. Mi would a set on di ginnal pot pon di pilot stove weh in deh and knead dumpling, chop up di chicken back and wash off it, and clean up ... den mi wi go out and go rake up di schoolyard," Gravy told the WESTERN STAR.
"When di food ready, di cook wi gi mi like 40 dumpling - 20 fi me and 20 fi mi other bredrin name Reds - and den mi go a ball grung go play cricket. When wi have class party, mi used to do like 19 and 20 dumpling. All when nobody naw teck it, mi used to load up mi plate wid it and do all 22 and 25, and mi realise say mi a get betta and betta inna it," he added.
The construction worker became the talk of the town during a birthday party in Lucea one afternoon, some 10 years ago, when he stood alone on stage and ate more than 25 dumplings, bringing traffic to a virtual standstill as scores of schoolchildren and adults watched in amazement and roared with laughter.
His biggest feat came several weeks later when he journeyed to Ocho Rios and ate a record 13 and a half pounds of dumplings at one sitting. For his troubles, Gravy took home a trophy and cash.
"Mi tell dem from Hanover say mi deh go up deh go carry dung di trophy, so dem come Ochi. Mi no really tek Johnny cake pon fork when it big and cut and swallow so. Mi jus chip-chip it an tek mi time," he explained.