Since many people have asked “what do you eat there?” I thought I would post a little about the chakula (food) in our lives. Although we live on an island we can get a lot of things, especially compared to some friends that live in the bush and get tomatoes like once a month! Since there are tourist places here in town we can get many veggies and amazing fruits which for the most part I think are better tasting than at home, I think because of no hormones or preservatives. Some of the rare ones like broccoli will cost you so we only treat ourselves once a month to those if they are available. One of the major differences is using virtually nothing prepackaged and eating only things that are in season and therefore cheaper. This is vastly different than our previous lives of stocked supermarkets of options and a freezer full of convenience. We do not eat much meat but we eat lots of beans, fruit, and Mchuzi (curry with veggies, coconut milk, etc). Here is a bit more in pics….

many times friends bring us gifts of fruit.

The mangoes & grapefruit are amazing but some we could do without….
like a jackfruit…Yuck!

I hate it but Jason eats a piece or two and then we are usually happy to share šŸ™‚

we eat a lot of rice, like every day…

Almost every other day we eat mchicha (local spinach) This is why……. our backyard shamba full of enough mchicha to, well, make you sick & tired of mchicha (not Annikah though she LOVES it! ) I also make tortillas! I make them once a month (since the whole process takes about 4-5 hours) & then freeze them and we use them all month. Viva Mexican food!
of course on special occasions we do live it up a bit and eat some treats from home. Lasagna, tacos, or pizza are our favorites. I took this picture to commemorate my 3 1/2 hours of labor….making ricotta cheese, sauce, cooking questionable meat, etc. We do not eat this often (ok, once)!

One of the biggest differences is hardly any snack food and being American where snacking is considered a sport we miss it! Probably healthier but I would give up the benefits for some Doritoes and a box of Cheeze-Its any day!

of course there is always ice cream sold roadside from bike carts so we make do just fine!

Annikah is adjusting to the different palate here much faster than we are. One day when she was playing with her water cups outside I called her in for dinner and when she did not come (bizarre as my child loves to eat, she is MY kid) I found her outside our house doing this: (ugali is a cheap stomach filler made from Maize flour, kinda of like eating paste if you ask me but Annikah likes to join right in.)

http://i204.photobucket.com/player.swf?file=http://vid204.photobucket.com/albums/bb212/roxanne_engstrom/annieatsugali.flv

This video is mostly for the younger set as it is a bit long but I just love watching Annikah’s imagination at work. She loves to “cook” and many times she tells us that she is cooking local foods, of course that is until Jason suggests bacon, I guess he is living vicariously through play dough as well. You can also see of a bit of her Kiswahili skills in this one. Oh, and she is only wearing chupis and her apron because it is that hot and after lunch most days she does her mid afternoon strip down because she is sweaty and dirty. New clothes is just too much of an effort most days. Here is La Naked Chef Annikah with some background noise of the ever present roosters:

http://i204.photobucket.com/player.swf?file=http://vid204.photobucket.com/albums/bb212/roxanne_engstrom/annicookingsmall.flv

  1. Anonymous says:

    My favorite part is Anni blowing on the food! How precious. When I lived in Bangkok for 3 months, everyone LOVED jackfruit (durian). It was HORRIBLE! Disgusting. Sorry girl. Good for Jason for taking a few bites for the team. :0 Glad to see everyone up and about with some color in their faces. Is Jason out of the woods, for now?

  2. Anonymous says:

    i love the picture of anni and the mchicha!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Speaking of food, I made your salsa corn cakes with dinner on Saturday and they were so delish!!!!

  4. Anonymous says:

    Hey, I am finally getting caught up on your blog, I will be sure to show Joshie the pictures and video so he can say hi to Anni. We sent you guys a letter and hope you get it soon! He is actually taking a MARATHON nap today after not sleeping and preventing our sleep as well last night.

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