Guys, I need your help. I’ve been having a hard time actually making dinner and breakfast for myself to eat here. Most of the reasons involve me getting home and being exhausted and I’m not really a breakfast person (more like chug a cup of coffee and go kind of person). Also, living alone means I have no one to hold me accountable for my actions so if I eat cold, 3-day old boiled potatoes for dinner there’s no one to judge me but me (and now you). The school provides lunch for the teachers, which means 3 days a week I eat rice and beans (and a lot of bread–we eat bread for snack in the morning, and with tea in the afternoon). The other two days I either eat fruit and whatever’s in the fridge (could be anything from soggy fries to potatoes) or I go to that coffee place in town and get a muffin (I know, I know, so not good for me!). So, complete honesty, that’s where I’m at. In terms of a healthy, balanced diet, not great.
Food here isn’t like in the US. It’s super fresh which means it’s delicious, but goes bad super fast and isn’t consistently available. This is horrible for my meal-planning skills which are basically non-existent, plus I haven’t found any Tupperware yet so no making food ahead of time for me. If you go to the grocery store they don’t have things like vanilla extract or baking soda, you have to go to Kigali (a 2 hour bus ride) for that. What I usually end up doing is sautéing whatever veggies I have in the fridge with onions and garlic (fast, easy, simple), which is great for a while but is slowly starting to get old.
Food they do have:
- Canned beans
- Green beans
- Giant carrots
- Meat (Chicken, beef, goat)
- Fruit (bananas, tree tomatoes, pineapple, mangos, apples, oranges, lemons, watermelon)
- Peanut butter
I will take any and all suggestions for eating a healthy, balanced diet with the limited options I have. Right now I’m looking into casseroles but I don’t have any oven dishes to cook with yet and my oven doesn’t have the temperatures labeled, just high, medium, and low so I’m leaning towards PB&J or banana and honey sandwiches. But a trip to Kigali is in the making so I will make a list of kitchen things to get while I’m there.
- What are basic food staples I should have at home?
- What are basic kitchen supplies I should have at home?
- What are your go-to easy dinner recipes that I can make (or adapt) here?
Adulthood is hard. Glad I don’t have to go it alone!