Thursday, July 14, 2011

Cooking from the heart of Africa

We've had many, many people pass through this summer as a part of mission teams or simply to see us and our ministry which has been great. One of the things most have been surprised about, is the fact that when it comes to cooking--and I've done a lot of it recently--everything has to be made from scratch.

And I mean everything!

Because many recipe books included ingredients that I can't get, I have a long list of meal ideas that I use along with a computer file filled with recipes that I can make here. And I'm always searching for more.

So what do we eat? Here are a few examples.

~Sausage pizza means making the dough, sauce, and even the sausage. (No, I don't make my own cheese)

~Soups are all made from scratch. We love butternut, carrot, and potato.
~Peanuts for snacking are bought raw and roasted.

~Chili and cornbread means no mix for the cornbread and a favorite chili that is said to have been served on the Union Pacific Railway.

~Any brownies, granola bars, or desert items are all made from scratch.

~We eat a lot of fruits and vegetables from the market including my favorite breakfast, a fruit smoothie with papaya, oranges, bananas, and passion fruit (my very favorite). Passion fruit also makes some fabulous deserts!

I think I get the most complaints from my kids for the lack of variety. I mean, there are only so many ways to serve chicken and rice. They also miss snack food (ie junk food.) Over all, though, it's just something you get used to. Personally, I think food from scratch typically tastes better and is better for you which I like.

The photo below is a "snack food" they enjoy, though I don't know what it's called other than a pea/bean they eat in the village.

There are some convenience items I try to have on hand from South Africa, but everyone knows that when they are gone, they are gone. Some we can find here in Moz, but they are often very expensive.

Peanut butter
Salad dressing
Cheese/sliced cheese
Lunch meat

Our last group arrives tomorrow night, so I've been preparing today for their meals over the weekend that will include Brazilian beans and rice with yummy farina which is dried and grated manioc--like a potato--cooked in bacon, oil and onions. Yes, this is so good!

They will spend next week at our annual English Camp (where I don't have to do the cooking!). We will also show the Jesus film Saturday night and dedicate the well in Masavana on Sunday, so there are lots of exciting things ahead. I'll be sharing photos and updates throughout the week.

So what about you? Do you like cooking from scratch, (even if you don't have to)?


  1. LoL, I used to get a box of American cereal and a jar of peanut butter for Christmas. :)

    We had to cook from scratch like that and when we came back to the States the food was (is!) so full of preservatives that's all I could taste. I still taste them, but then again, we usually cook from scratch so...

    Glad someone else is cooking while they're at camp. ;-)

  2. My kids favorite is boxed Mac and Cheese, but over all I think you're right about scratch tasting better. And yes I'm quite happy someone else is cooking at camp. :-)