Greenhouse gardeners Fadumo Khiere and Rahma Farah led friends, neighbors, and cooking enthusiasts in a cooking class about Somali food on Saturday, February 25 in the kitchen at The Food Project's office in Dorchester.
Fadumo and Rahma are gardeners from the Refugee and Immigrant Assistance Center (RIAC) who have been tending three garden plots in the Dudley Greenhouse for the past five months. In their plots, they are growing a variety of cold weather crops, including lettuce, spinach, collard greens, broccoli, cilantro, and cauliflower. Recently, they planted peas and green beans to be harvested in the coming months.
On Saturday, the two women led 12 participants in preparing two Somali dishes. The first, injera, is a spongy, pancake-like bread that is eaten with most meals in Somalia. At breakfast, it is eaten with honey, and at other meals it is served with stew. During Saturday's class, each participant took a turn spreading the injera batter in a hot frying pan to make their own bread, and then used it to soak up a beef stew with cilantro grown in Fadumo and Rahma's greenhouse garden plots.
After eating the injera and stew, participants turned their attention back to the rice, which had been soaking in water since the class began. Somali rice is a colorful dish, made with bright yellow onions and green bell peppers, and fragrant with the scents of cumin and cardamon. Participants filled their plates with rice, chicken, and bananas, and gathered at large tables to enjoy their meals together.
Saturday's workshop was the second installment in a series called "Cooking with Your Neighbor." For more information about the "Cooking with Your Neighbor" series or the "Grow Well, Eat Well, Be Well" initiative at the Dudley Greenhouse, please email Greenhouse Manager Danielle Andrews.