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Thursday, July 14, 2011

Bula Fiji

Every year Pete heads over to Fiji for a month for work and I get to join him for 2 weeks.  This year we spent 5 nights in a local village!!!  Talk about a different way of life and a different way of COOKING!
Lanianna - my beautiful 'homestay' mother and cooking companion.
I had the delight of spending some time in the kitchen with these beautiful Fijian women laughing and sharing together.  Let me explain this is no traditional kitchen, we are talking a small gas burner and a small convection oven (only some people have these), no counter space and no refrigerator (some people have them but not everyone).  It was great fun, we sat on a simple mat in the very simple kitchen with no measuring cups or spoons, just eye balling everything!  I was taught how to make a Fijian style pumpkin pie (very different to the tradional American pumpkin pie I am uses to) it was a pretty interesting recipe with more of a cake like base and then pumpkin that we boiled and then mashed spread over it and then topped with condensed milk mixed with lime juice.

The next day I taught them how to make peanut butter cookies, a good old classic, I think peanut butter was a bit of a luxury because it can be expensive to buy.  The cookies seemed to be a hit, I wrote down the recipe for them. 

It was so interesting spending this time with these women, who have probably never even looked at a cook book but they are just passing on recipes verbally and doing what they have been taught from the generation before them.  I can't really imagine life with no cookbooks!  So when I get back to Australia I am going to send these ladies a little care package for the kitchen with some measuring cups, chocolate chips and a cookbook.


Anonymous said...

Sounds great Leila!! Praying 4 u guys & looking 4ward 2 ur return! xox Jules, Dave E & Ev

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much, Leila, for visiting together with your friends our café yesterday, as well as for sharing with us your Blog address. That July 25 Nosh's menu is really impressive and soooo tantalizing. We wish you will stay here, in Lautoka, so that we also can benefit from your creative and amazing talents!
Hope to see you for that special Affogato if you have still some time left before leaving Fiji, of course!
Thanks again for sponsoring our little café as we are going to miss you.
All the best,
from all of us at Blue Ginger café & bar.
Serge & Beth

Leila Nelson Gunning said...

Serge & Beth, It has been a pleasure and you have made my stay in Lautoka that much better (the coffee's have been a real treat)! I am certainly hoping to see you again before I go. And thanks for convincing me that something good can be made out of Kasava!!

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