Wednesday, March 5, 2014

真的吗:Home in a Suitcase

I'm not sure if this is just a Caribbean thing, but generally when we prepare to leave home for a long period of time, we are loaded blessed with many gifts and essentials of food and the like. Kind of like young Maroon warriors on their first hunt after passing the Coming of Manhood ceremony. Kind of like maybe we may never see home again. Or just in case we land on a deserted island, we have all that we need. Smoke signal who?

I don't know about you but for the most part I'm grateful. Once I accomplish carrying those heavy logs of suitcases to my abode and receive a restorative Chinese massage, I go straight into promotion mode. Start marketing my goods as organic, untainted and the best tasting in the world. It also brings out the collectivist in me as I ration my treats to last as long as they can. Two minutes on a packet of ginger fudge seems long enough. Okay, I'm just kidding. But it takes muscles of control not to.

This time around my 'Home in a Suitcase' contains...

  • Confectioneries like Coconut Sugar Cake, Fudge, Tamarind balls and Guava Cheese

Cocconut Sugar Cake
Tamarind Balls and Guava Cheese 
Milk Fudge

  • Definitely Cocoa balls for cocoa tea. Also spices and herbs for all my cooking and baking needs like nutmeg, cinnamon, mint, rosemary, curry. Food never taste like home without condiments from home.

  • Angostura Bitters for sure. As a kid, before there was rum and coke, there was bitters and coke for all your diarrhea needs. It took me years to distinguish the taste from the memory and it's maybe the reason why I have never had Coca Cola cravings. However Angostura Bitters has proven to add that kick to any recipe and is quite the kitchen wing man.

  • Without Clarks Court Pure White Rum, my Sorrel Drink is incomplete. And it doesn't hurt to share with friends.

  • Saltfish for a finger-licking saltfish souse. To be welcomed by warm Coconut Bakes or Dumplings.

  • Farine which is a Cassava cereal has a variety of uses. Porridge, dumplings, baking and best of all mixed up some granulated sugar and eaten raw ( I'm an 80s baby). 

  • Snacks play a pivotal role in how long I spend in the books. There has to be some scientific explanation as to why one must snack while studying and why it is so effective. I will get to the bottom of this.

  • Fruit Cake and Bread from the Aunties to make up for missing Christmas.

  • Cheese. Real Cheese. Foreigners who live in China will understand.

  • Jam and jellies from De La Grenade. This brand is synonymous with nutmeg in Grenada for quite some time. Quality product from a quality source.

Nutmeg syrup, Nutmeg Jam, Nutmeg Jelly

Sometimes I worry that 20 years from now, most of these foods won't be available and my tummy will go into withdrawal. If you had a choice, what local food item would you carry into the future?