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Sand Island Beach Cottages

Diani Beach Road
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Cooking on Tiwi Beach Diani Beach  Kenya
Cooking on Tiwi Beach Diani Beach  Kenya
Cooking on Tiwi Beach Diani Beach  Kenya
Cooking on Tiwi Beach Diani Beach  Kenya
Cooking on Tiwi Beach Diani Beach  Kenya
Cooking on Tiwi Beach Diani Beach  Kenya

Cooking on Tiwi Beach

Turning off the tar and onto the dirt road leading to the Sand Island Beach Cottages, I notice a tiny roadside stand with some of the most enormous vegetables I've ever seen. My hosts tell me that there is no restaurant but I can cook my own food or hire a cook since the cottages contain fully stocked kitchens. Well, not fully stocked with food processors, microwaves, or other kitchen gadgets that I know how to work with. Most of the items require muscle power rather than electrical power and I don't know what they are for--graters, wooden utensils, a low stool f(or grating coconut), a woven mat (for squeezing the coconut), among other implements. I'm also not sure how to shop. I can purchase the vegetables at the stand, but I need to ask the men by the beach to catch me something. I hire a cook. She pushes me to the water's edge and asks the men what they are likely to catch. Do I like shrimp? Flounder? It all sounds good. My cook and I decide on a menu and a time to meet for my first cooking lesson. She brings spices and offers me another lime from her bag--clearly, I have not bought enough. I learn how to grate and squeeze the coconut for the rice, how make a vegetable curry, and how to fry the fish. It's delicious. I sit on my porch and write down the recipes (six US carrots equals one Kenyan carrot, etc.). Later, I will purchase the spices to bring home and cook a souvenir meal for my friends back home. We'll eat it by candlelight so they can have the full experience.