Featured / Mosaic / February 1, 2017

I-Fair shares food culture


Sophomore Keara Crook is served food by Junior Joseph Loh Wei An from the Filipino Club. (Theresa Murphy/TKS)


Members of Allied Blacks for Liberty and Equality, A.B.L.E., served fried chicken, candied yams, collard greens with ham shanks and “Slap yo’ mamma” sweet potato pie. They wanted to represent African American culture by serving family staples in an African American household. Senior Parker Adams said that members of the club came to a consensus on the dishes they were to serve during the fair. They described that club members were asked to talk about what they have at home. Members suggested dishes that are normally served during the holidays or special occasions, as well as common household food that is served on any given day of the week. The dishes served are relevant to the African American culture as comfort food, but also food that is traditionally served at holidays and family events.

Filipino Club

Members of the Filipino Club served Chicken Adobo, Puto and Pancit. Puto are small rice cakes that are subtly sweet and can accompany other savory dishes, such as Pancit. Pancit is a dish consisting of very thin noodles, with a variation of meat and vegetables depending on the recipe. Group members based their decision on a number of factors, including the cultural relevance and the ease of cooking. Senior JJ Nawrot mentioned that the dishes served were all commonly made for family gatherings, and are also easy to make in large proportions that serve many people in one batch. Nawrot also noted that the group wanted to appeal to the widest variety of people, including options for vegetarians. While meat is often included in the Pancit, it is not uncommon for it to be made with just vegetables. The dishes served are commonly found in households and are commonly prepared in groups.

Korean Club

Members of the Korean Club prepared Kimchi-jeon, which is a Korean pancake made from sliced kimchi that may also consist of other vegetables and ground pork. They said that kimchi comes from the people of Korea, and is made from fermented cabbage. Kimchi is considered a staple food in Korean culture, and the members of the club wanted to include an integral aspect of the culture. The club also served bulgogi, which is often considered Korean barbecue; bulgogi is marinated with soy sauce, sesame oil and various additional ingredients before being grilled. Sikhye, a dessert beverage, is usually the residue of cooked rice and pine nuts in some occasions, and is traditionally served after meals.

Top Right: Two kitchen workers grill food together in preparation for the I-Fair dinner. (Julia Mondschean/TKS)


The Harambe Club served Chin Chin, Beef Suya and Chicken Suya. Chin Chin consists of flour dough that is fried until it reaches a crunchy consistency. It is most often served as a snack, and can include other ingredients and spices as well. Beef and Chicken Suya consist of spiced meat that is skewered, and isn’t held to a standard of what must be used to prepare the dish. The dishes served are important aspects of Nigerian and West African culture, and are commonly served during the holidays and festivals. Members of the club felt that the International Fair was grounds for celebration and festivities, and wanted to represent that aspect of the culture through the dishes they served. They wanted to celebrate their culture as well as appeal to as many people as they could, just as they would do for a traditional family party.

Japanese Club

Japanese Club members served Okonomiyaki, which is a Japanese pancake made from cabbage and batter that also includes green onions. Members of the club mentioned that the dish is common street food, and can consist of a variety of ingredients including pork, seafood, vegetables or cheese. The dish is a common staple for Japanese culture, and is frequently served in casual family gatherings and parties. Club members based their decision to serve the dish on its convenience and importance to the culture. The dish takes a minimal amount of time and effort to prepare, and is relatively simple to make.

Lo Nuestro

Members of Lo Nuestro took a vote on which countries they wanted to represent, and then decided on the dishes from each respective country. They chose to prepare Bunuelos, which are fried dough balls from Colombia, and Gallo Pinto, which is a rice and beans dish originating in Nicaragua. Members of the club chose to prepare these dishes because they are relatively simple to prepare, and are commonalities among the cultures’ traditions. Bunuelos are versatile in the sense that they are often served as snacks, but are also a traditional aspect of holidays and other festivities. They also come in many forms, and can be made with fillings or toppings that can be sweet or savory. Members of Lo Nuestro chose to serve Gallo Pinto because it is made very quickly and is an integral aspect of Nicaraguan culture. Club members mentioned that the dish has its roots in Nicaragua, and has since then been adopted by other countries and regions. Both dishes are commonly prepared during family get togethers or holidays.


Aaina represents South Asian culture on campus, and served Chhwela and Kashmiri Chai for the food fair. Chhwela, a common dish in Newari culture in Nepal is usually made from grilled buff, chicken or duck mixed with spring onions and various spices. For the fair, the club decided to make it with chicken due to its availability. The dish was chosen by the club due to its convenience and simplicity for the preparation process. Kashmiri Chai, a beverage originating in Pakistan and India, is a tea consisting of ground cardamom and its seeds and bicarbonate soda. It is also known as Pink Tea due to its color after the milk has been added to the blend of boiling green tea. Ground pistachios and almonds are used to garnish the tea. The club chose the beverage as it represents South Asian culture very well.

Sam Jacobson, Co-News Editor
Sam Jacobson is a junior majoring in philosophy and potentially minoring in creative writing or psychology. She started volunteer writing during spring term of her freshman year, and worked as a staff writer during her sophomore year.

Tags:  aaina able cuisine Filipino Club food harambe I-Fair International Fair Japanese Club korean club Lo Nuestro

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