To get straight to the point — yes, seaweed is underrated. I loved this dish! The seaweed was carted back from Atauro Island where it was sold at the Saturday market for $1. The bag, bigger than the backpack I’d brought for 3 weeks in Timor Leste, weighed enough to topple me when I first picked it up. Nonetheless, I carried it home, just, as I thought about Berta and other friends telling me that seaweed from the Atauro market was a must.
The seaweed is washed to remove some of the salt, given a quick dunk in boiling water, and dressed with chilli, vinegar, onions and tomatoes. Sour, but like the simple Portugese Pasta, a perfect match for the other platters of flavours spread across the table for a festive night.
This oh-so-simple pasta dish is a favourite for festivities in Timor Leste. It’s subtle flavours are a perfect accompaniment to foods with stronger flavours such as Tukkir and Seaweed Salad. Berta and Casamata prepared this wholesome dish as part of my farewell party.
On Thursday 23 October YWCA Canberra celebrated the Changemakers Festival by hosting a panel discussion featuring three of their Great Ydeas grant recipients, and their projects that are driving social innovation and change.
Panellists included Caterina Giorgi, Caitlin Sandercock and Cooking Circles very own, Heidi Zajac. Find out more here.
More about Caitlin’s initiative, Development and Aid Workers Network can be found here.
As I lay on my bed and stare at the corrugated iron ceiling I can almost see the ripples of heat radiating downwards onto my face. I’m sweating. The pigs and roosters (always roosters) just outside my window don’t let me sleep. Somehow though, when I think about paying good money and using up precious holidays to get here, I smile.
Food has been an essential part of our lives in Timor Leste and shapes our modern day gastronomy. Without nutritious food, we can’t grow to be healthy or even survive. The first time I worked with Mana Heidi was a unique experience, especially when talking about food and how much she loves the food in Timor. In the first few weeks of our conversation about food was fantastic and for Heidi, the food in Timor Leste is something special. Trying out the food in a restaurant in the corner of Dili provided us a delicious meal, and gives tourists like Mana Heidi the opportunity to taste local food.
My last night in Timor Leste. I imagine it is not the last night I’ll ever be here, not now that I’ve fallen madly for this country. Tonight we sat down to a farewell dinner feast of seaweed salad, a tuna and tomato pasta, and a delicious dish called tukkir. Tukkir cemented my curiosity of Timorese cuisine on my trip two years ago, and it is a dish that is as special to cook as it is to eat. Continue reading “Farewell…”
The sun has slipped over the horizon. It takes me a full minute to realise this, even though I’ve been watching the sky change colour. Now the sky is a delicate blue and pink. I’ve done nothing but swim, eat, snorkel and read historical fiction. My skin is dry with salt and my skin is browner than it was three days ago. There are tan marks on my feet from my Birkenstocks and the scalding Timorese sun.