All posts filed under: Kiribati


Monday Meal Review: Kiribati

THE SCENE I wanted our Kiribati Global Table to go perfectly. I had visions of something out of Norman Rockwell. Loving family, smiles all around, big appetites. My two year-old eating $35/lb lobster and loving it. Yeah, right. “Ava, you want some lobster? It’s like… fish.” “Uhuh” she said. The first bite went in. Is it good? “Uhuh.” Approximately 13.3 seconds later she spit it out. “Weird.” I died a little inside. That teeny bite probably cost $5.50. Okay, maybe only $3.50. As the dinner moved on, Ava never changed her opinion, although she thoroughly enjoyed dipping her rice into the coconut curry. Hey, I’ll take what I can get. As our quiet meal wrapped up, I looked at my husband and daughter, trying to memorize their faces. In the morning, I flew to California for the Homefries retreat with Joy the Baker and her crew. It was my first time away from Miss Ava and while it was only for two nights it was so, so, so, so difficult. Hoping to postpone the inevitable I: – Ate my …

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Sweet Coco Pumpkin with Pandan Leaves

If you’ve been to the grocery store lately you’ve seen it. Mounds and mounds of pumpkins. They’re bright fire orange, forest green, haystack yellow, cloud white, and even sorceress gray. Some are bumpy and some are flat out gnarly. They’re all saying hello, strutting their stuff, hoping you’ll take them home. Every year I take a few more home than the year before. I can’t help it. I like the teeny weeny ones best. The kind Ava can practically palm in her small 2 year-old hand. I also like to grab weird ones I haven’t tried before as well as ones that look a little forlorn and forgotten. What can I say – I love all pumpkins equally. That being said, let’s focus in. Today is all about the Kabocha pumpkin. The skin of these smallish gems are mostly green and with a flare of orange. You’ll find them all over Asia and Oceania, including this week’s Global Table – Kiribati. Technically I think they’re a squash – like butternut. The inside looks just like …

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Spam you very much! (w/ poll)

The thing about living on a coral atol with no good soil, waaaaay out in the middle of the Pacific ocean is … well, you’re a wee bit stuck when it comes to what you can and cannot eat. Bottom line, if nothing grows where you live, then breakfast, lunch and dinner all begin to take on the same appearance: Which is okay, since fish is the bees knees. And, as for breadfruit – it apparently smells like freshly baked bread – and pandanus fruit is said to be very sweet and juicy; they both sound like winners. Even still, the importance of imports in a country like Kiribati cannot be underestimated. Fresh deliveries of rice, colorful produce, and canned goods are much anticipated. I’ve even read that the chicken is imported. Now, time to get serious. Any ideas for what two of the most enjoyed canned goods in Kiribati are? …. wait for it…. …. Spam and corned beef. Are you into it?

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Roasted Lobster Tails with Coconut Curry Dipping Sauce

We’re all friends here, right? I need to tell you something important. I’m learning to step out of my comfort zone. Not just once in a while. Once a day. It’s scary but also rewarding. Sometimes, though, you can take too big a step. I’m learning that baby steps are better. Let me put this into context for you. Deciding whether or not to make this recipe caused quite the dilemma. You see, the last time I made lobster was traumatic. Have you ever made live lobster? It’s stressful. It makes me sad just thinking about it. Here’s the reality: I put on a brave face and went for it, but stepped too far out of my comfort zone. The result? I secretly vowed to never make lobster again. Then Kiribati skips into my life and, like a breath of fresh air, Kiribati tells me lobster is normal. That lobster is a way of life. And Kiribati tempts me with a 1 step coconut curry for dipping. <deep breath> Time to step out of my …

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Menu: Kiribati

What is it about Wednesday’s? They’re such a transitional day. A day when the weekend is too far away. From both sides. Listen, I want to tell you a secret. Although I like people, I’m rather shy. I don’t do a good job of being myself around new friends. Sometimes I trip and other times spill things on myself.  Sometimes it happens all at once. Kiribati is a new friend. I’m trying hard not to trip. I hope you’ll understand if I take it slow. We’re getting our feet wet with two dishes in the hopes of dissuading any big messups. Still, I think you’ll like them. After all, Kiribati – all the way out in the great, big, wild ocean – is all about really simple food with big flavor. That’s something I can get behind. What sounds good to you?* Roasted Lobster Tails with Coconut Curry [Recipe] Here’s the most ridiculous thing. Earlier on this Adventure, I vowed I would never  make lobster again. But I did. Thanks to Kiribati. True story. More on this tomorrow. …

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Inspiration for our Global Gingerbread Contest? The Former Kiribati House of Assembly. Photo by Roisterer

About the food of Kiribati

Every country has a distinct personality. Think of Kiribati as a distant relative – one you might not have even known existed. And I don’t mean your grouchy Aunt Lola. Nope. I mean an upbeat and exotic cousin – one that somehow also manages to exude simplicity and thrift. At her most basic, Kiribati’s a hodge podge of 33 teeny weeny coral atolls in Oceania. Translation? Kiribati’s landmass is so small that “island” is not an appropriate way to describe her situation (although the grouping is officially called the Kiribati Islands – confused yet?). To be honest, I had never heard of Kiribati before GTA. It only took a few internet searches to realize I was not alone. Most of the information about Kiribati was sparse and – as I was to learn – completely wrong. The little good information I could dig up was found in World Cookbook for Students and on a neat web site called 12 Months in Kiribati (about a guy and gal volunteering in Kiribati for – you guessed it – twelve …

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