My Food Journey started like most people at home with my mom and hanging out with my Grand Parents
I grew up on a small Caribbean island in the Lesser Antilles. I was 19 when I left the island for America, I went there to study. Big leap, by 2007 I was in Australia and married, now I’m mom (well step-mom) and I have to organise meals and groceries.
This Blog is an artisitc outlet for me, I love preparing food for the people I love.
Growing up on the island, there was no fast food for the majority of my life there, nor was there any ready-meals in the freezer isles of the grocery store. Anything you wanted to eat, you had to prepare yourself or get from a street vedor in town. We had gorcery stores and restaurants and street food on the island, but that was all focused in the city areas, I lived in the west coast one hour away from the city by car. Food in itself is a journey from that location, and if you couldn’t make your own, you would be hungry. We did have little eatteries in the village, but it would rely upon if the vendor decided to make what you liked that day.
Street vendors would sell snacks and treats, and restaurants catered for only occasional local visitors, and mostly for tourists. Food was great but on our salaries, buying ready made food was a luxury. Everyday food came from home, from mom or grand mom and grad dad. In my family, My grand pa was the cook, he loved adding chillies to every meal to my shegrine, I don’t like chillies or spicy food, but I endured the pain because his food was so good. He was a farmer, so all of the produce was always fresh, and he would carry it home by foot for miles from where his farm was. He never had a vehicle his entire farming life. There was alot of sweat that went into his meals.
The island’s first KFC arrived in early 2000s, but it was a luxury food as most of us did not earn enough to endulge in KFC every day like some first-worlders do. KFC was a treat, but it was not better than what mom made at home.
Mom made every meal, and if you were old enough, and female, you had to help whether you like it or not; with that you also learn how to cook. I took that skill for granted until I moved away and saw other people my age struggle in college to prepare a simple meal for themselves. Not knowing how to cook rice, or when meat was actually cooked, and being ‘grossed out’ from touching raw meat; and not knowing what the vegetables were when they fresh. My American counterparts were reliant on fast food, while my fellow internationals my age was missing mom. The ones who could cook, struggled to find ingredients that they were used to and refused to adjust.
Moving to Melbourne Australia was eye-opening food-wise. My first introduction was being take the La Porceta’s “Italian Food” restaurant very often to meet up with friends and family. Your basic pizza and pasta dishes filled with cream and cheese. Chips seemed to come with everything in Australia. I found out that my breakfast of custard back home, was used as an accompanyment to desert pies and cakes. Cream, cream, cream for everything. Lots and lots of Beef and butter. I developed many stomach discomfort issues which I went to many doctors for. The change in my diet was impacting my health. I had to learn to merge the caribbean with America and Australia.
To enbrace my new home, I endulged in Australian Food. Mostly fusion Asian, Greek, Italian and Indian foods, and traditional Aussie foods. This started my interest in foods from other cultures, Australians love to eat foods from other cultures. I personally, will try to cook anything, and that’s what this blog is about, staying close to home, but not being closed minded.
To resolve my stomach issues I had to go back to the caribbean, where we eat mainly fish and chicken and mostly in soup form, and keeping red meat to a minimum. To keep things interesting, trying to used the same ingredients with recipes from other places.
Caribbean cooking is mainly fusion Indian and other Asian cooking mixed with European cooking due to our history. That would include foods like, chicken curry with baked macaronie and cheese. Fish sancocho (Spanish) and some of our own inventions, example Callaloo.
Through out this blog you will find that I will post something Caribbean, and the next post might be something American or Aussie or something from Nepal. Always a surprise, so expect the unexpected. This is a blog for everyone.