Have you ever wondered what your sponsored child eats in an average day? What does dinner look like for the families we serve? Today, you can experience it for yourself! Join us on a culinary adventure, as we share recipes with you from around the globe!
MATOOKE – UGANDA
To start things off, here’s an appetizer for you from Uganda. Matooke (pronounced muh-TOE-kay) is the staple food in Uganda. It’s made from a type of starchy banana that is similar to a plantain. “Matooke” can mean either the dish or the bananas it’s made from. This is a dish that’s hard to recreate in America, but we’ll give it a try! You’re unlikely to find matooke in your local grocery store, but many international markets carry plantains, which work well as a substitute.
Traditionally, matooke is wrapped in banana leaves to steam, but you can use your regular stove top steamer instead. Most of our kids eat matooke plain, but you can dress it up with beans, peanut butter, onions, or tomato sauce: a recipe for an optional sauce is included below. Matooke is a favorite with the Ugandan Kids Choir and one of the foods they miss most when they’re on tour in the United States.
- 8-10 unripe matooke or plantains (make sure they’re green!)
- 2-3 banana leaves (optional)
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter
- 1 cup water
- ½ onion, finely diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- Peel the matooke and wrap it in the banana leaves or add it to your steamer. Steam for 1 hour or until soft.
- Mash the matooke through the banana leaves or with a potato masher. Rewrap and continue steaming until matooke is very soft.
- In a small sauce pan, mix the sauce ingredients together and bring to a boil. Continue stirring until peanut butter is fully dissolved and onions are softened. Pour over matooke to serve.
CHAPATI – KENYA
Next, make a tasty side dish from Kenya. Chapati is a type of flat bread that you can find anywhere in Kenya and East Africa. They also eat chapati in India (the dish originated there), but the Kenyan version is flakier and crispier on the outside because it’s fried in oil.
This recipe is very similar to the Chapati we sometimes serve as part of our school lunch program in Kenya. Best of all it’s delicious and easy to make.
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1 cup white flour
- 2 tablespoons oil
- ¾ – 1 cup of warm water
- Salt to taste.
- In a large bowl, mix the flour, salt, and oil together. Adding a little water at a time, knead for 10 minutes until you have a stiff, smooth dough. Cover and let stand for 30 minutes to 2 hours.
- Knead the dough again, then divide it into egg-sized balls. Dust each ball with flour, and roll them out into thin circles.
- Heat a lightly greased skillet over medium heat. Add the first chapati and cook until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Flip and brown the other side. Press the sides of the chapatti with a spoon until it puffs. Remove and wrap in foil to keep it warm. Repeat for the rest of the chapati, adding oil to the skillet as needed.
GRILLOT – HAITI
Our final course is from Haiti.
Grillot (or griot) is a hearty dish to feed a crowd. Many of our kids in Haiti might see this at family gatherings or big parties. For them, it’s a “special occasion” sort of treat that they look forward to. With its unique creole spices, we think it’s something you’ll look forward to also.
- 4 lbs pork shoulder, cubed
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 1 green or red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 2-3 shallots, thinly sliced
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons thyme
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 2 oranges
- 3 limes
- ¼ cup oil
- Mix all the ingredients except the oil together in a large bowl. Refrigerate and marinate for 4 to 24 hours.
- Preheat oven to 375°. Place pork mixture in a large roasting pan and cover tightly. Roast for 1 ½ to 2 hours, or until the meat is tender. Remove it from the oven, drain the excess liquid into a saucepan, and set it aside. Add the oil to the pan, stir, and then return it to the oven for another 20-30 minutes.
- While the meat is frying, boil the reserved liquid until it thickens. When the pork is done, mix it with the thickened sauce and serve hot.
We hope you enjoyed this brief taste of life as our kids around the globe experience it. Have you tried any of these recipes? How’d they turn out? Share your results in the comments below!
Childcare Worldwide is grateful to partner with generous people all over the world to build a better life for kids in need. If you’re interested in helping advance this mission, click here.