Matt Dodd

Matt Dodd

missionary sent out by Grace Bible Church

Food In Madang

Since we’ve only been here a few days, this won’t cover all the many varieties of foods that are in Madang, nor will it accurately represent what we will be eating in the coming weeks. But for those who are interested, here are some of the food items we have been consuming. God has been good to us in that the food here is good.

It’s expensive to go to the store, and you don’t know what everything is made out of or from, but there is a local market down the street where we can get pineapple, kau kau(sweet potato), bananas, peanuts, mango, squash-like items, coconut, and many other items. Here’s what we have been eating thus far:

Lunch the first few days was–wait for it– peanut butter and jelly…Apricot Jelly! Since then, however, we have been trying to get more creative and local, such as the below items.
Sweet potatoes are one of the main foods here–we have so far sliced them thin and baked them in the oven to make a sort-of sweet potato chip.
Another popular dish is to eat the leaves of Melon plants (kru pumkin). Below is a picture of that cooked up. We cooked it in coconut milk (which is what I heard they do here). It tasted like spinach!
Also, we were excited to get ‘pork sausages’ in town and Cameron was excited to make pasta with them…until it turned out that they were, in fact, the Papua New Guinea equivalent of hot dogs. Cameron still made pasta with them that night and the kids and I ate them for lunch today. I added lime juice and some of the Melon leaves to mine that I cooked up earlier.
The next two items came straight out of the back yard! Green beans, which were delicious when sautéed with oil and garlic salt. And then there are these large purple pods which you cut in half and take out a white seed. Also very tasty.
Our language helper (Julie) taught us how to make donuts! What’s great is whatever you do here, it’s always learning the language. Making donuts with our language helper we learn phrases like “put in the bowl”, “I like donuts”, numbers, quantities, how to give instructions, etc.
Finally, maybe one of the best kept secrets of the Pacific — powdered milk! Some don’t like it here, but I, and all of our children think it’s wonderful. The second day we were here we ran out of milk, and I went into the kitchen and came out with more, and Susanna responded with, “Dad, where are you getting all this milk from?” To which I showed her the secret! I have been telling our kids that when we move to PNG we will not be drinking any more milk — but we’ve actually drank more while moving here, because it’s so good!

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