The Marshall Islands are located in the Pacific Ocean, its closest neighbor being Hawaii to the northeast. This independent nation is made up of 1,225 islands, 870 reefs, and 29 atolls which spans over 750,000 sq miles. Sadly this country is facing the looming threat of global warming and is at high risk of being under water if the globe warms two degrees.
Cuisine of The Marshall Islands mostly includes ingredients that can be found locally including several varieties of fruit, seafood, and rice. The Marshallese take care with food preservation including fermentation. Dried pandanus paste which is made from pandan leaves can last several years if prepared properly. These leaves have a subtle vanilla flavor and were used when we made nasi lemak from Malaysia.
Today’s recipe combines all the island flavors including coconut and papaya. We opted to omit the sweet potato salad since we aren’t big mayo fans. You can find the recipe here
I found the cooking and preparation simple, but it didn’t look too appetizing. Looking back I actually forgot to bread the fish, that makes a HUGE difference in the end result. It would have given the dish the “face lift” it needed, especially if shredded coconut was added to the flour! We served up the concoction over a bed of jasmine rice. Meh
This was another dish that was really unique and unfortunately lacked contrasting textures due to my error and execution- I blame this on being a crunch meal during the work week. The elements of the dish all worked together and the mint highlighted the freshness of the fruit. It was a little too unique for us, but I guarantee if you follow the recipe you will have a better result. We rated this version 6.25/10.
Welcome back! Today we head even more west to the Solomon Islands! This sovereign country is made up of 900 smaller and 6 major islands east of Australia and close to Papua New Guinea and Vanuatu. The islands were first inhabited 3,000 years ago by the Lapita people, a group of prehistoric Austronesian people. Due to its location in the Coral Triangle the country is known for incredible diving experiences. Between three of the countries larger islands lies the world’s largest salt water lagoon, Marovo Lagoon. Below the surface Vangunu Island has the most active submarine volcano. The economy here is mostly made up of agricultural, fishery, and forestry resources.
Cuisine of the island like many others is made up of native plants, fish, and game. Fish is the most abundant resource and is prepared in a variety of ways. Coconut, cassava, sweet potato, plantains, bananas, rice, and taro roots are also very commonly used. Influence is made up of Indian, Asian, and Spanish along with Polynesian. Today’s dish combines a lot of the ingredients mentioned above and is an example of what a meal may consist of if your were to visit the island. The recipe of this dish can be found here.
I don’t known about you, but I have never had papaya before and neither has Ian. I thought the flesh was very similar to cantaloupe however the seeds were very unique and unexpected. I almost had my stove top maxed out while preparing the dish but overall it wasn’t too challenging and used simple and known cooking methods.
This dish was another unique one. We had never had papaya before and thought it would have been sweeter. Overall it was kind of bland, but it was colorful and had a good variety of ingredients. I would recommend playing around with Asian or Indian spices to jazz it up. The dish was rated 6.5/10 between the two of us.