My Global Food Challenge

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Zip Facts about Kiribati:

  • Kiribati, can be transliterated to “Gilberts”, which is the British colonial name as in the Gilbert and Ellice Islands Colony. Inhabitants of Kiribati are sometimes referred to as I-Kiribati or I-Tungaru, the Kiribati name for the Gilbert Islands in Tungaru
  • Part of Micronesia, Kiribati is composed of 33 islands including the only real island of Banaba (Ocean Island) and three major atoll and reef chains, the western Tungaru, the Line Islands, and the Phoenix Islands
  • Not surprisingly, the primary food source is fish, supplemented with the hardy plants including coconut, swamp taro, native figs and breadfruit. The vitamin rich toddy or sap that comes from the coconut flower spathe makes sweet drinks or syrups, and can be soured or fermented for a variety of uses
  • Traditional culture still has women in subordinate roles, despite the democratic and egalitarian society in Kiribati. Women are usually in charge of domestic activities, may cultivate crops and sometimes fish and collect shellfish
  • There is a real threat of the country vanishing completely if overall global sea levels rise about two meters with appeals to Australia and New Zealand to take in the 105,500 refugees

Kiribati WhiteRobin White (b. new Zealand, worked in Kiribati for 17 years), “Michael is asleep on the bed” (1984), woodblock

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Zip Facts about Monaco:

  • There is only one university in Monaco, the International University, which is a business school that was founded in 1986
  • As the second smallest country in the world, it takes on average less than one hour to walk the entire width of the country
  • The flag of Monaco and the flag of Indonesia are identical
  • France is responsible for Monaco’s defense, there is no navy or air force and a small military contingent slightly over 100 troops
  • You need to be 18 and not a local resident to be a guest of the Monte-Carlo casino, which was the site of several films including three James Bond flix; Casino Royal, GoldenEye, and Never Say Never Again

Monaco ClerissiHubert Clerissi (1923-2000)

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012614_1803_Alphabetica152.gifFor anyone looking for recipes from Nauru, there isn’t a wealth of information out there on the web, except probably for the coconut fish.  Most of the food in Nauru is imported and there are strong German, Chinese, Australian, and British influences in Nauruan cuisine.  Fresh fish and rice are basic staples, along with pineapples, bananas, citrus, and certain spices.   So, for lack of an “authentic” recipe, I chose to modify some citrus rice and fish dishes and added a tropical and, hopefully, “Nauruan” flavor.


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 Zip Facts about Nauru:

  • Nauru, sometimes called the Pleasant Island, is a single, almost circular island of 13 square miles (21 km2) and shaped like a hat. Nauruans make up 6000 of the total 9300 inhabitants, with the remainder of the population made up by other Pacific islander
  • Nauru is the only independent republic in the world to have no capital city
  • The staples of food and drink on the island are coconuts, rice, and kava, although the most popular alcoholic beverage is beer. There are certain expectations during dining, even under informal circumstances, such as bringing food to a dinner is considered an offense, eat at the same pace as everyone else, try every dish offered as a sign of respect, and eat with your hands if everyone else does.
  • Nauru is a phosphate rock island, phosphate strip mining both saved and ruined the island
  • There is not much nightlife on the island but you could always watch the locals with lassos on the beach trying to wrangle the noddy terns as they return from their foraging at sea

Nauru GetInline-1Jorge Mañes Rubio (Spain) for Nauru – collaboration on “The Nauru Project”

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