Making Contact

Retaining Rondon: Creole Food in a Changing World

retaining-rondonIn a world that increasingly seems to strive for uniformity, afro-descendant Creole people on the eastern coast of Nicaragua seek to hold on to their unique culture through their food. Incoming palm plantations are fragmenting traditional Creole farmland and making it difficult for local coconut oil businesses. Overfishing and pesticides from the palm fields are reducing stocks of fish in the lagoons, making it more difficult to access traditional protein sources. In the towns and cities along the coast, an influx of foreign products is setting a new standard for how you should look, talk and eat.

Rondon is one of the most celebrated traditional Creole dishes. Similar to a curry, it has a base of coconut milk in which you cook cassava, dasheen, breadfruit, baby corn and fried fish with fresh herbs and spices. It’s a dish with strong connections to Africa. For a people descended from freed blacks, escaped slaves and indigenous Americans, holding on to Rondon is holding on to heritage.

Miss Connie Tinoko, Kenneth Fox, Edward Fox, John Watson, Miss Gay Sterling and her family

Host: Marie Choi

Contributing Producer: Maria Doerr

Producers: Anita Johnson, Marie Choi, Monica Lopez, R.J. Lozada

Executive Director: Lisa Rudman

Web Editor: Kwan Booth

Organizations and Support: Bluefields Sound System, Mikel Britton, Stanford Storytelling Project, Jake Warga, Claire Schoen, Bruce Braden

Featured Music:

Take Dis Five, Run-Down Orchestra Bluefield Sound System 2009

Zion-O, Run-Down Orchestra, Bluefield Sound System 2009

Photo Credits: Maria Doerr


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