I like food and one of my favorite things to do while traveling is finding good ‘local’ restaurants and sampling ‘local’ foods. Of course this trip is unlike most I take, so it is impossible for me to do that here.
However I have had several opportunities to eat traditional meals with Afghan soldiers. The food is remarkably good and if you can block from your mind how it was prepared and sometimes served, it is actually enjoyable.
Let me explain a little…
First of all, the sanitary conditions are a far cry from what we expect in our dining facilities. It is best to not think about how dirty the dishes are that would be used to prepare food. It is best not to think about the Afghan cook that probably doesn’t have access to soapy water to wash his hands before cooking; if you thought too much of things like that, it would be more difficult to enjoy the meal.
Second, traditionally meals are served on big platters placed on the table and you just ‘dig in’. The Afghans use their fingers or chunks of bread (‘foot’ bread…you don’t want to know) to scoop up what they eat. I have had a few meals like that, but even then they have been gracious hosts and provided plates & forks for the benefit of us westerners that were uncomfortable scooping out of the community dish.
More often, the meals I have shared with the Afghans have been served like those in the pictures here. Of course, every time I have been given more food than I could possibly eat in one sitting, but invariably it has been delicious.
And in 9 months I have only gotten sick once…
So just don’t think about it & enjoy 😉
Click an image to see it full-size.
Thanks for looking!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.