Monday, March 21, 2016



Since yesterday's post was all about food, I thought I would share the latest project from my Sudanese travel journal, which explains a bit about dining in Sudan. We ate several meals at Habooba's (Grandmother's) house when we were there, but she usually put out utensils for the Americans.  On the day of the wedding, however, when I came to her house to get my party hair done, I was led to one of the bedrooms where a group of older women were waiting to be introduced to me. We were then served a meal in this traditional, more intimate fashion. Despite the language barrier, by the end of this meal, I felt I was among friends.

Kisra (a.k.a. Injera in Ethiopia and Eritrea) is the sourdough-leavened circles of thin, sponge-like flat bread that is not only food, but also plate and utensil, perfect for picking up bits of lamb stew, bean dishes, or fresh salads made from cucumbers and tomatoes, then sopping up their juices.

I used a variety of colorful paper scraps to fill the bowls...

and saved up my used tea bags (some of which came from Habooba!) to make the Kisra.

To Break Bread Together: "Gathering over a meal is one of the most ancient forms of community process, as people sharing food appreciate each other at a profound level. Nourished bodies and relationships pave the way for better collaboration and higher quality work...When we relate simply as people, judgments and niggly issues can be dropped about "the other." Sometimes this is called primate food-sharing behavior, because of the deep biological roots this has in signaling group belonging and familiarity. It means you have relaxed enough to put your (physical or rhetorical) weapons down and trust each other. Eating with someone starts to make them a friend and not just a colleague. This particular pattern is cross-cultural, as everyone everywhere eats." from Groupworks

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