Peanut Butter Rice
1 cup Rice
3 cup Boiling Water
1/2 Teaspoon Butter
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
2 Tablespoons Smooth Peanut Butter
1. In a deep medium sized pot, place rice, butter and add the boiling water.
2. Place on the hob and cook until rice is soft and almost overly cooked a bit.
3. Once rice is mashy, lower heat then add peanut butter and stir it in combining together using a wooden spoon. If rice is too dry, add a few drops of water and continue to combine.
4. Leave rice to simmer on lowest heat for 10-15 minutes, then serve alone or with any stew of your choice.
Growing up on a mission, we used to have so many visitors from all over the world. Some came for weeks and some came to stay and carry out certain projects they would have volunteered for.
Sometime in 1997, a white man from Norway came to visit us at the mission. Weeks before he arrived, my grandfather together with the mission workmen, began painting the guest house that was a few yards from our house. It was a two bedroomed house, with a medium sized kitchen, a standard sized living room and a luxurious bathroom and separate toilet. They did some renovations and upgraded a few things until the house looked perfect with freshly painted walls, with the lovely smell of fresh paint and a neatly arranged garden.
The day he arrived, we had all been waiting eagerly to meet him. He arrived, a tall, handsome looking man and introduced himself as Irvine Lindhurst. His perfume hit our nose, leaving us in a cloud of imagination of how it must be like where he’d come from. Wearing a pair of shorts, an extremely white t-shirt, tekkies (trainers) and a very expensive looking watch, he smiled hugging everyone expressing how glad he was to meet us. That night my grandmother prepared a special meal for the guest. On the menu, was plain white rice, peanut butter rice and to accompany the two dishes was coleslaw salad, fried covo greens, a boat of wonderfully cooked thick gravy , beef stew and a deep fried roadrunner chicken (those days broiler chickens were not very common in the rural areas and anyway my grandmother had a number of her own backyard chickens). The table was well set with all her best China ware, dinner plates, serving dishes and high quality -heavy stainless steel cutlery.
As we proceeded with dinner, my grandfather chatted with our guest, with him pointing out about how he studied agriculture and how he intended to transform the mission’s large orchard. It was interesting to see how my grandfather was engaging in conversation in his fluent English, even throwing in some jokes. We were all surprised to see him try out the peanut butter rice and he fell in love with it. (Throughout his stay at the mission, he would religiously ask my grandmother to cook him a bowl of the rice). That night before he retired to his new home, Irvine left, books and many gifts that he had brought with from Norway.
I remember being so attached to one book that had all the places to visit while in Norway. I must say, I had never seen places so beautiful in my life. The tall mountains and the deep valleys, the beautiful rivers and the breathtaking waterfalls, the tall green trees and beautiful colourful flowers that covered the evergreen forests. I could not imagine that there were places so beautiful in the world. I longed to visit Norway to witness this personally.
However the arrival of Irvine at the mission brought so much change. He began transforming the orchard, trying out new plants, and different types of fruits and seeds. I remember the unique red pear-shaped mangoes that he grew in the orchard along with strawberries and papayas. The orchard began to blossom and they began making a lot of profits from selling fruits and vegetables.
During the weekends the mission will be flooded with people coming from the villages to see the white man who’d visited the land. He was so approachable and loved people. He would invite people for tea and give out food. We always used to visit and play on the hammock that he had hung across the trees and it was great fun.
Irvine lived on the mission for over 4years and later left to go back to Norway. The day he left, the villagers brought so many gifts for him, the brought dried produce like nuts, maize, fresh and dried fruits. It was such an overwhelming time for everyone. Irvine had transformed the mission and touched many lives. It felt like he was now one of us and when he left, the gap he left was felt by many…