By Barb and Ammu
Being in an international/multi-cultural vegetarian cooking group is a wonderful way to learn about foods from all over the world. Our groups offer amazing cooking and learning experiences to the members – for seasoned vegetarians and members who want to learn to cook vegetarian dishes from different countries. Every meeting turns out to be a feast in the true sense–to the eyes and to the stomach. The groups’ diversity makes it an interesting and fulfilling culinary experience.
How does this happen? About a dozen women from approximately eight different countries get together at different homes on one morning each month. We take turns showing each other how to make different foods, and we explain to each other how and when different foods are eaten in our countries. We learn about many different kinds of herbs, spices, vegetables, fruits, beans, sauces, breads, desserts, etc. We also learn about special festivals and holidays in our countries, and what people eat at those events.
We take turns bringing food for everyone to try and sharing information about what we brought. We usually also share the recipe for the foods we bring. Not all of us are vegetarians, but we all love to learn about different kinds of food! Sometimes we take a short trip to an international grocery store where we learn how to find the unusual foods we recently learned about. Once a year we have a picnic at a park, when everyone brings ‘picnic food’ to share with the group.