Sunday, August 19, 2007

What's Cooking in Tweeling

We get together with the Motales for a “Big Dinner,” which is exactly what it sounds like, at least once a week. It started out as a part of Wednesday night soccer night, when the Orlando Pirates, the Motales’ favorite soccer team, plays. In the soccer off season, though, the event has taken place whenever we declare it time for a “Big Dinner.” Someone in the family will suggest a Big Dinner for the upcoming week, the motion is immediately seconded, and plans are made. When it’s time for a Really Big Dinner, a representative will be sent to buy a chicken at the farm.

In this picture, Kagiso and Ntefeling ham it up while working on side dishes.

There were several Big Dinners when we had our American visitors. We recently told Kagiso that our parents were coming to visit in September. His response: “Oooh, there will be LOTS of Big Dinners!”

All members of the family help out when it’s time to prepare a Big Dinner.

The strike left Kate with loads of free time and dependable internet access, so she started getting creative with the online recipe websites. The results were impressive, attracting attention from all over the neighborhood. The neighborhood kids are big fans of my banana bread (they call it banana cake) and the first time that I tried out the new banana bread recipe it was so good that it was stolen right out of our kitchen.

The desserts have, of course, been big hits. There have been requests for Toll House Cookies (people here call them “Cooks”) and the Arizona Daily Star’s brownies (people here call them “Browns).

One thing that we really can't get here in South Africa is Latin American food and I’ve been missing it very much. The second recipe that I tried out was spicy spinach empanadas, which developed serious fans. On Kagiso’s birthday, I asked him what he would like me to make him for dessert, thinking Cooks or Browns. His answer? Empanadas.

Kate taught Kagiso to make empanadas and he started brainstorming on how much he could sell empanadas for.

We hosted “Pizza Night” at 19 7th Street last week, where Kate taught Kagiso and Lerato to make pizza from scratch, including the dough and sauce (despite being Irish, Kate has become very good at making pasta/pizza sauce). The boys spent the rest of the evening trying to keep the rest of the family from devouring their pizzas.

It was a battle that they lost.

Two of Kate’s students, Mapaseka and Malehlohonolo, caught wind of her recent endeavors and wanted to come to the house to try out their skills. The first time that they came to the house we made Cooks, but we happened to have some leftover samosas that they saw in the kitchen. I promised them that next time they came to cook we would make samosas, which we did last week. I gave the girls a samosa for each member of their household and asked the next day if their moms had liked the samosas. Their response: “YEBO!”

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