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I just DEVOURED a grapefruit. [by jesse]

And it reminded me that I’ve never liked grapefruit. Especially when I was little and picked them from our tree out back.
I thought they were really sour and gross.

But the grapefruit here is delicious, seems sweeter than the ones in Florida-I don’t need to put sugar on top. I’ve always known that it’s a great, healthy fruit to eat. This got me thinking of all the foods I have learned to enjoying eating and cooking in Jamaica during Peace Corps service (granted, I’m not listing the ones I dislike):

FRUITS like ackee, otaheite apples, tangerines, limes, guineps, guava, avocado pear, plaintain, sour sop, lychee, naseberry
VEGGIES like pumpkin, sweet potato, callaloo, cho cho, pakchoy, ginger, okra, scotchbonnet, breadfruit, eggplant
ASSORTED–bulla, patti, bammy, whole chickens, festival, fritters, rice & peas, soups, coconut oil, crayfish!!!

As usual, we as humans always seem to crave the foods we don’t have at our disposal instead of the ones in our refrigerator.  I’ve really missed all natural fruit juices (but we’ve learned to make fruit teas from boiling the peels) and the foods we can’t get here (like berries, sweet mint, good beef).  However, I think I’ve broadened my cooking and eating horizons quite a bit while here!

I remember when I thought cooking was as abstract as starting a painting–just so many choices and variables…too many.
Now, meals seems manageable.  I wonder if I’ll ever really enjoy cooking, because I still don’t consider it a hobby.  What I DO enjoy is feeding myself and my family healthy, delicious meals that don’t take a ton of time.  I enjoy using the same basic ingredients in clever ways to spice up our tastebuds.  I enjoy fresh ingredients and minimal grocery waste.

Thank you, Jamaica.


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