As they travel around the United States, trying new American food is one of the Ugandan Kids Choir’s biggest adventures. It can sometimes be a challenge to help them balance trying new things and providing them food they like. But usually it’s just pure fun to watch them experiment!
Some new food items they’ve discovered and loved so far include fruit snacks, popcorn, S’mores, bacon, and spaghetti. Food items that haven’t gone over quite so well include oatmeal, pretzels, fruit pie and potato salad.
It’s fascinating how many things that seem so normal to us, are so strange to them (and vice versa)!
Tour Leader Emma is still amazed by the quantities of salt the kids want to use. “I cannot get over how much salt that these children consume!” she says. “Every single one of them will watch me out of the corner of their eye, trying to see how long it will take for me to cut them off as they shake mounds of salt over their meal. It doesn’t matter if we are eating Mashed Potatoes, Spaghetti or Grilled Cheese, there always has to be salt on the table.”
It is also quite entertaining to see the new food combinations they come up with. For many meals, they don’t know what things are “supposed” to go together. So, they get very creative, making it up as they go. One memorable picnic saw the creation of a ketchup/coleslaw/salsa/macaroni/potato salad hamburger!
But some of their creations are pure genius. “Can I put my bag of potato chips in my beef soup?” Angel asks. Yes, Angel! You sure can – that sounds delicious.
Certain foods are so confusing to the kids, they decide they won’t like them before they even try them. The tour staff works hard to make sure they at least try it before they knock it. Often whatever the “funny looking” food is winds up being a hit. Sometimes though, it doesn’t work out so well. As a treat, the Choir was allowed to try root beer floats one day. Individually, each of the kids walked over and whispered to Emma, “Aunt, it tastes like my Colgate.”
Then there was the time they tried cotton candy, with varying reactions. We’ll let this video speak for itself!
Needless to say, trying new food is always entertaining.
Language differences can also create hilarity around the dinner table. Most notably, the kids can’t stop giggling whenever they’re served tacos. Why? The word taco sounds an awful lot like a bad word in Lugandan meaning ‘rear-end’. Kids being kids, this means tacos are automatically the funniest meal.
As you can guess, the kids really do miss their familiar Ugandan-style cooking. So, every once in a while, the staff are sure to cook up a delicious Ugandan meal. Oh how happy the kids are to eat a simple meal of white rice and Ugandan beans, with a little avocado and ‘Matooke’ plantains on the side!
Whatever they’re eating, sharing a meal with the choir kids is one of our favorite things to do! Have you had a chance to eat with them? If so, I’m sure you have some great stories of your own to add to this list! Let us know in the comments!
The Ugandan Kids Choir travels all over the United States bringing a message of hope, and sharing the power of God’s love through traditional song and dance. To support them on their journey, find a performance near you!