Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Kumida na Cabo Verde

Some exciting food finds include Philadelphia cream cheese (which although was expensive was worth every penny) and mozzarella cheese (which I made a calzone with mushrooms, onions, peppers and olives). I also made a pizza last night with musrooms and put a few malageta pepers (veryOne day this fresh fruit market with the nicest ladies had Hass avocados, which was close to the best things I’ve found here yet. Although they do have some avocados here, they are different and kind of watery, so therefore don’t have as great of a flavor as the avocados you find in the states. So anyway that is why it was so exciting to find Hass avocados which made an awesome guacamole. I still need to perfect my tortilla making skills so hopefully I will be able to find some more good avocados. Random tidbit about avocados here: Cape Verdeans put sugar on them, and not just a little bit of sugar but so much sugar that you can’t even taste the avocado. While living with my host family I can happily report that I convinced my host father to try avocado with salt, and he now loves it and doesn’t eat it any other way.

Katxupa: traditional Cape Verdean stew made with ground corn, beans and meat.

The process of making katxupa is a big task. Each member of my host family took a role in the making of it. I decided after failed attempts of helping that I would be official photographer for the day. The process begins with putting dried corn in a container and smashing it. This takes out a part of the corn that is white and hard and I’m not sure if inedible but regardless is regarded as a necessary step. To the left you can see my host brothers (Sondri and Kinu) doing such. This is a hard task, because not only do you ne

ed to be strong but you also have to be precise with your aim because you don’t want to corn to fly everywhere when you are trying to break it down. I lacked both grace and strength in this task and after losing most of the corn in the container I decided that it was best to opt out. After you smash the corn you need to get the part of the corn that you donºt want (sorry that I canºt currently recall any of the names of this process), so you put it in a basket and do this crazy thing where you can get all the white part out. This was another task that I was completly incapable of doing, but it was amazing to watch my host mom do this with such ease, as you can see above. I missed the making of the katxupa after this step but below is a picture of the final product and my host father who actually made the katxupa (they are a very modern family with the boys cooking and doing laundry)

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