Following the 7.0 magnitude earthquake that hit Haiti on January 12, 2010, TouchGlobal swiftly responded and has continued to send crisis responders to serve in Haiti ever since. We have established a presence and plan on staying here for a long time, so we thought it wise to set up a blog that family, friends, supporters, and teams can check to find first-hand information about life and ministry at the Haitian Queen (the TouchGlobal Crisis Response headquarters in Gressier, Haiti).

This blog will be updated regularly by various team members and staff.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Cooking in Haiti

The Haitian Queen is beyond blessed to have Rosita cooking dinner for the entire house. She is insanely talented in the kitchen and can turn the smallest package of meat into enough to feed dozens--she really hast the gift of multiplying the loaves and fishes. Her pasta with meat sauce is deelish.

Not to mention the flavor she packs into everything she makes. Her banana bread is ridiculously addictive. I had planned on dropping a few pounds and certainly not gaining any in Haiti--and I'm getting concerned. Her fresh rolls rival even my mother in law's.

Rosita has four children, all girls: 17, 13, 6.5 (adopted) and 2.5 (surprise)! Her husband is a pastor, which as all Pastor's wives know can be really challenging, but Rosita says she does her best to be a good sport about it. Before coming to work for the Queen after the quake, she cooked for 200 people a day over at Christianville, a large school / mission just down the road. I think she's pretty happy to be cooking for a more manageable number as it allows her to show off the skills she honed in culinary school.

I love cooking and entertaining and wanted to pick up some recipes and tips from her! The first thing she taught me was how to cut up a mango. The mangoes here are TO DIE FOR. You've definitely never had anything this sweet or delicious in the states. Mango here is the perfect, stand alone desert. The basic technique is to peel one side at a time and then to carve a crash hatch grid into the cut side. Then she slices that grid off--it works because mango pits are really flat cylinders. And it works best when mangoes are just ripe.

I used some of the mangoes that had over-ripened in a white cake mix for dessert one night and it was really quite good. The only thing I would do differently is add the fruit half way through the baking so it doesn't sink to the bottom.

The land here seems exceptionally fertile and all of the produce is fantastic.
The tomatoes are really awesome. We buy produce at the local markets and then simply rinse it in water with a few drops of bleach to kill anything that might make us Americans sick... so far since we got here no one has gotten sick which is pretty surprising.

Much of Rosita's cooking is based on garlic and green onions mashed together. Rosita has one helper Miglan. I love the large wooden mortar and pestle they use.

I've told Mark that if Rosita ever needs a vacation I'd be happy to come back and fill in--hanging out in the Queen's kitchen was a real highlight for me.

Volunteers are on their own for the most part for breakfast, lunch, and snacks... for those times "missionary caviar" (aka peanut butter) is a must.

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