Monday, January 3, 2011

Cooking Lunch

For about a month now, our beloved cook here at the Lighthouse Community Center has been on vacation. We have all been taking turns cooking meals for everyone eating here and today it was my turn to cook!
At the moment we have about 20 people eating all their meals here at the Lighthouse.  We have a DTS team from England of 8 people and then a few members of the Lighthouse team (who are here working and not away for vacation).  Today I  succeeded in making a typical Brazilian lunch, but I had lots of helpful tips from my teammates. It can be quite challenging to cook for such a large group of people, but I am happy to say, "I did it!"

My hair net is now in place and I am preparing the meat to go in the oven...
I was most worried about making a large quantity of Brazilian style rice.  Here I am preparing the seasoning for the rice by frying a garlic and salt mixture in some oil.
Next I added in the rice, which had been rinsed in water.  I then fried the rice a bit in the oil/garlic seasoning.
My friend Andreia then helped me put the perfect quantity of hot water over the rice.  I then added some salt and put a lid on the rice and let it cook on low.
 I was super happy that my rice turned out really nice in the end!  Luckily there were already beans cooked that I just had to defrost and heat up.  I did not have to make Brazilian beans in a pressure cooker today...
 AlmoƧo (or lunch) is the largest meal of the day here in Brazil.  Every day for lunch Brazilians typically eat beans, rice, some type of meat, and depending on the person or region of the country, there may be a salad or vegetable.

Dishing up the yummy rice and beans!
Today for lunch we had the following;
Rice and Beans
Pork Sausage
Green Beans
Salad - with carrot, mango, and tomato on the side
Leftover pasta as a side
As our lunch hour was approaching, things were quite busy.  I was finishing up lots of little details all at once.

It can be stressful cooking for a large number of people and also trying to time everything to be finished and hot at exactly noon is quite tricky.  Today the sausages weren't cooking the best in the oven so my teammate Aldenito helped me cook them right up until people were loading their plates with food.  I was thankful for his last minute help. He came to my rescue and I sure needed it!

In the end we all enjoyed our quite "normal" Brazilian lunch, and I went from being focused on getting about 20 people fed to getting my sweet Sophia fed.  It was a good morning!


  1. This is so cool Laura! I still haven't mastered getting a small quantity of rice just right on the stove top! (Our rice maker broke and I'm determined to do without it!)