Liberia Report: Cooking

The foundation of BESTWA’s ministry is feeding children. The Liberian people have so many needs besides, but the need for food is universal, immediate, and ongoing.

While visiting Buchanan, we learned quite a bit about how our resourceful friends manage, in conditions we thought primitive, to produce some pretty yummy meals.

First, to cook rice you gotta have water. Simple, right? Not here. This neighborhood water well is about a block from the cooking pavilion.

Of course, when the bucket was full,
Patience carried it back on her head.

Cooking over charcoal? Sure, we can pour some Kingsford briquets into the Weber, throw in some starter fluid and a lit match, and let’er rip. But the folks at the feeding sites light chunks of actual pre-burnt wood in a square basin, then park the giant aluminum cooking tub right on the burning coals.

That stuff is palm oil, veggies, and clams, simmered with
a bundle of fragrant palmetto leaves. Delicious!

Once the food is cooked, the ladies set up an assembly line to prepare and serve each dish of food. My new friend Nancy starts the process by dishing up an ample serving of rice.

“Dynamite comes in little boxes,” they say, and these tiny peppers sure were explosive! Back at the headquarters, Evelyn, BESTWA’s Liberian Assistant Field Director, made some tongue-searing salsa for the staff banquet.

A little of Evelyn’s salsa goes a long way!

Speaking of the banquet, here’s my dinner. So glad I thought to take a photo of this fresh fish before I devoured the rest of it.

I’m also glad I got a piece that didn’t include the head / eyes.

I hope I’ve whetted your appetite for learning more about West Africa.

Thanks for reading,

About Jan C. Johnson

Welcome! If you like food, reading, laughing over life's little disasters, and maybe thinking about the bigger things of life, you have come to the right place. Besides blogging, I write humorous fiction, though real life tends to leave fictional humor in the shade. But I'm not a total goofball. No, really. I'm also working on a biography project. I live in North Texas with my husband, Brent. We enjoy bicycling, Mexican food, and traveling to visit our kids and grandkids.
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1 Response to Liberia Report: Cooking

  1. Making my mouth water! The kids in the BESTWA feeding program get the best of the best!
    If you enjoyed Jan’s story, come hear more at the BESTWA Benefit Dinner on April 19th! It’s a free event, but you must register so we can save you a seat!

    Liked by 1 person

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