Students Cross Continents at International Potluck

Instead of heading to Paresky Commons for dinner last Saturday night, students filled the mailroom of George Washington Hall for iFood and dined on soft Swedish biscuits, tender beef short ribs and Korean delicacies.

iFood is a food bazaar set up during the International Festival (iFest), an annual event hosted by International Club (iClub). While both cultural affinity groups and individuals served delicacies at iFood, the clubs sold their food to raise funds.

“iFood is a great part of iFest, because students are able to prepare and taste foods from all over the world. Cuisine is a huge part of many cultures, and when you are far away from home, some traditional food can help with homesickness. It is also great to be able to bring this delicious, cultural cuisine to all of the students at [Andover], international or otherwise,” said Naomi Markman ’15, a senior board member of iClub.

iFood included sweet treats like brigadeiros (Brazilian truffles). Composed of unsweetened cocoa powder, condensed milk, butter and sprinkles, brigadeiros are made by boiling the ingredients in a pot until the condensed milk mixture has solidified.

“I chose to make brigadeiros with Kika [Weirich-Freiberg ’17] because they are important to our culture. Both of her parents and my step-mother are Brazilian citizens, born and raised out of the [United States of America]. Brigadeiros are a very traditional Brazilian dish, and we tried to emulate the desserts of our childhood here at iFest,” said Tucker Drew ’17.

The Chinese Taiwanese Student Association (CTSA) prepared a spread of succulent chicken drumsticks braised in soy sauce, steamed pork dumplings, bubble tea, fried rice and mantou, which are fluffy Chinese buns.

“We picked these dishes because they are, one, the most well-known, but, two, among the most misrepresented. The Chinese food in restaurants just doesn’t meet up with home-cooked Chinese food, so we wanted to introduce students to what ‘real’ Chinese food tastes like. Overall, I think people really enjoyed the authenticity of the food we had, so it was definitely a success,” said Victoria Bian ’15, a senior board member of CTSA.

Andover Japanese Connection (AJC) displayed their cooking process by rolling rice and cucumber into sushi at their booth.

“We chose sushi because it was very iconic and well-known for being a Japanese food,” said Maho Fujiwara ’18, a member of AJC. “Sushi makers take a lot of time to perfect their art and so what I’m demonstrating is definitely not perfection. But I think it does represent the Japanese culture because in some ways, the Japanese like to take a lot of time to make something.”

Andover’s Indian and Pakistani Society (IndoPak) sold chicken biryani, an Indian dish made up of juicy chicken, sliced potatoes and basmati rice prepared with spices such as coriander and fenugreek. Cooking and preparing for iFood provided members of IndoPak an opportunity for club bonding.

“Four of us went to the house of one of our board members to prepare the dish. We all took different jobs: cutting the chicken or onions, washing cutting boards and knives and preparing the rice. None of us were well-versed in cooking chicken biryani, so the process was arduous but fun,” wrote Aneesh Ashutosh ’15, Co-Head of IndoPak, in an email to The Phillipian.