Thursday, 17 April 2008

Cooking Class

When accepting a request to provide a cooking session for the woman’s group, I was unsure what exactly that would involve. After extensive questioning in pijin, I continued to remain in the dark about how these sessions usually operate, how many attend, with the only expectation verbalised – make a fish curry.

Rising to the challenge I delved into my cookbook, searching for enticing, healthy recipes that can be made with readily available ingredients. Keeping in mind the local kitchen consists of a fireplace so usual forms of cooking are via frying pan, pot or steaming with the food wrapped up in banana leaves. Selecting four recipes I proceeded to translate them into pijin. I did try to have these checked by a local woman.

The anticipated day arrived. 30 mins before intended commencement time, the 3 recipes (one I had never made!) had been mentally sequenced; ingredients and kitchen had been prepared so I was able to relax with a book. 8 local women appeared as well as Kelly. And so the fun began. I launched off with sweet and savoury pinwheel scones, followed by the requested fish curry, and while it simmered created a stir fry. I had not written out the stir fry recipe figuring that it’s such a flexible dish. This was however asked for. I hesitate to suggest that the session will be recalled for its fine cuisine as I suspect the most memorable incident was when the lighter didn’t turn off, causing the container I threw it in, to alight. Blissfully focusing on the fish curry, I turned just in time to see Kelly putting the fire out! Oh well. . .

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