Food, food, food

Yesterday was market day. We sent Yonese to Saint Marc because there were a few things that we can only get there. When she got back and we started unpacking it was a bit overwhelming. See, most weeks we don’t need a lot, but usually about once a month she does a bigger shop for us, and those days, those days are overwhelming. We look at stuff and think that there is no possible way that a family of three can consume all of it. The truth is that a bunch of it will last us a couple of weeks, like potatoes and carrots. Other things she buys not quite ripe so we can eat them as they ripen, not waste them because we can’t eat it in time.

So, what did she bring home?

  • 1/2 gallon fresh milk to be pasteurized
  • 1  gwo marmit* of rice
  • 1 gwo marmit of popcorn
  • 5 godet** fresh french peas
  • 4 godet dried black beans
  • 5 heads of garlic
  • 10 radishes
  • 8-9 green peppers
  • 1 1/2 doz. tomatoes
  • 1 bunch of green onions
  • a dozen scotch bonnet peppers
  • 10 carrots the size of cucumbers
  • 5 small heads of lettuce
  • 5 lbs of potatoes
  • 10 onions
  • 1 big yam (not like North American yams – bigger, much bigger)
  • 1 very large papaya (bigger than my head)
  • 2 abricot (round fruit that tastes like apricots crossed with strawberries)
  • 2 pineapples
  • 1 small watermelon
  • 1 honeydew melon
  • 6 avocados the size of baseballs
  • 6 grapefruits for juice
  • 1 plastic shopping bag of passionfruit for juice
  • a dozen or so sitwon (keylimes)

*a gwo marmit is a measure used in the market that is the size of a large can. Think of a Costco size can of coffee.
**a godet is a measure the size of a large coffee cup.

All of that cost us about $60 US. All of it together would have filled a laundry basket and a half.

Sooo, what do I do with all that food? Well…

  • Yonese made juice with half of the passionfruit. I’ll add the grapefruit and limes to it today. That will use those up.
  • The french peas went in the freezer so I can use them as needed in rice and other stuff. They aren’t really sweet so we won’t eat them just on their own.
  • The avocados are still hard and won’t start ripening for a few days, so we’ll eat those as they’re ready on sandwiches, or just plain. I never used to like avocados until about two years ago when we had a really good season. Haiti has amazing avocados.
  • I made a jar of jerk seasoning yesterday and used all of my green onions in there. Gone.
  • I used 5 of the scotch bonnet peppers in the jerk sauce too. The sauce can now sit in the fridge indefinitely and we can rub it all over every kind of meat, but more about that in a moment.
  • Chris is a snacker and is the one that eats most of the fruit in our house. He’s already broken into the honeydew and will keep whittling away on it. I’m sure the same will be true for the pineapples and watermelon.
  • We had papaya shakes for breakfast, and used half the papaya for those. Did you know papaya is a natural way to fix digestive issues? If you’re blocked, it loosens you. If you’re loose, it tightens things up a big. If your tummy is just hurting, it seems to kill that. Great fruit!
  • Carrots, potatoes and onions will get used over the next couple weeks. Same with garlic.
  • Lettuce, green peppers, radishes, tomatoes etc will get used in salad. We’ll be eating a lot of salad this week…
  • Rice, beans, popcorn…those are all dried and might last a few months. Except the popcorn. That’s one of our favorite snacks so we eat that up pretty quick.

Sometimes Yonese will just pick up a few “extras” or the ladies in the market will throw in a little something extra if they don’t have the right change. Yesterday an extra was all the radishes. We’re not big radish eaters, so i need to find a way to use them up. Suggestions welcome.

About the jerk sauce. Chris spent 6 months living in Jamaica before he moved to Haiti. We also got to go for a visit in 2007 and my culinary bug went into overdrive. We both love Jamaican food. It’s a wonderful mix of simplicity and flavor. When we were leaving Jamaica we stocked up on jerk seasoning, but obviously ran out. I’ve been wanting a good recipe since then. This week I stumbled upon a Jamaican food website and I’m in love. Last night I whipped up a big jar of their jerk seasoning and it smells exactly like what we brought home. We’ll be giving it a try tonight and I’m excited.

The jar of jerk. The "Jerk Sauce" recipe made enough to almost fill a pickle jar.

To check out all the great recipes go HERE.

I’ll be trying their “Rice and peas” for sure because it’s very similar to rice and beans here (in Jamaica “peas” are beans), and the “festival” recipe. Festival is this sweet fritter type thing. Like a donut almost. And they’re SO good. The thing we love about Jamaican food is that all of the ingredients are available here in Haiti too. I don’t have to substitute. And it’s basic food. So excited!

Today is pleasantly cool. We’ve already had a sprinkle of rain this morning and I’m anticipating more :)

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About Leslie

I'm Leslie. Wife. Mother. Missionary. In the day to day my husband and I are responsible for running Clean Water for Haiti, a humanitarian mission that builds and distributes water filters to Haitian families. Living in Haiti full time provides lots of stories, and as I tell my husband, our grandkids probably won't believe most of them. Maybe writing them down will give me some credibility.

2 thoughts on “Food, food, food

  1. How did Yonese bring back all those groceries by herself?
    I miss those papaya shakes and the grapefruit juice. Your list makes me want to come visit again. :-)

    • Yonese usually gets help from someone like Jean Frantz, her nephew. She’ll go and start the buying and send him back with a sack of something and have him drop it off. Sometimes she’ll hire a moto taxi to transport her, and other times if she’s coming from Saint Marc she’ll take a tap tap to the top of the driveway and then come get a wheelbarrow to bring things down.

      You should come visit again… ;) I promise I’ll make you juice. We can try to have a pep talk with the banana garden so they give us some little bananas for you.

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