My Peace Corps Adventures in Cooking Part 2
Now if you read part one of my cooking adventures here in Uganda I am sure you are all worried about my eating habits, which isn’t probably entirely wrong. However, I do want to mention that I take vitamins every night to make up for the lack of nutrition in my diet. Anyway my real adventure here in Uganda has begun and I am actually experimenting with food. This past weekend I have cooked to dishes that I haven’t made before and it was quite the adventure. Basically my Top Ramen days are over. Okay not entirely over but other foods are also going to be cooked. However, from this point on it won’t be just Top Ramen, I will from now on add eggs and veggies. I am still figuring out how to get more protein, one step at a time I guess.
Now let’s talk about what I have cooked the past two days. Saturday night I cooked creamy white sauce Alfredo with veggies. Now here is how you cook this delicious meal. First you melt some butter and sauté the veggies. The veggies you add are up to you. I added green peppers, garlic, onions, and cilantro. I know cilantro in pasta might not sound good to everyone but it added great flavor at least in my opinion. Once the veggies are sautéed you add two tablespoons of flour and let simmer for two minutes. Once that is finished you add about three fourth cups of milk and chicken broth. I couldn’t find chicken broth at my local supermarket so I added Chicken Royco, which is basically powdered chicken flavoring. Once that is added you stir until it thickens. You can add salt and pepper to your liking. You can also add parmesan cheese to the sauce if you want. I don’t have access to cheese, which I don’t think the sauce needs cheese. Once the sauce is done you cook the pasta and then you mix the pasta and the sauce together and you enjoy.
Tonight I cooked gnocchi. Before I got started I was very nervous. It was a more complicated recipe than I am used to. Luckily each Peace Corps Uganda Volunteer received a cookbook which is where I found this delightful recipe. This recipe was actually really difficult. You start by peeling and boiling potatoes. Peeling potatoes have always been my least favorite because here in Uganda it’s even less of my favorite because I peel potatoes with a knife instead of a potato peeler. Once you have boiled your potatoes you mash them and set them aside. Now that you have cooked the potatoes you begin making the dough. To do that you begin by boiling milk and butter than you add flour to and begin to stir until you can roll a ball than you add eggs and any seasoning you may want to add. Once that is mixed together you add the potatoes. Once you have your dough made you roll it into a snake and cut it into half inch pieces. Once you have your pieces you boil them in water for about 3 to 5 minutes. Once that is complete you gnocchi is finished. I made a pesto sauce to add the gnocchi to. I made the pesto from a package my daddy sent me. To the sauce I added veggies; onions, green peppers, garlic, and cilantro. I mixed the gnocchi and pesto sauce together and I enjoyed. Now let me tell you it wasn’t my favorite dish and I probably won’t make it again. I guess the gnocchi is better in the chicken gnocchi soup at Olive Garden. Now even though it wasn’t the best meal I am glad I took the hour and a half adventure in cooking it.
The past two nights I my cooking adventure was accompanied by Ashley’s Podcast “I Don’t Get It” which is incredibly funny and a great addition to my cooking. Don’t worry my cooking adventure will continue and tomorrow with fried rice. Here’s to the many more adventure in cooking I will experience over the next two years.