As many other Caribbean countries, Haiti has a very rich cuisine. Haiti however, maintains an independently unique flavor.
Haitian cuisine is based on Creole and French cooking styles with strong pepper flavoring in many dishes. This island’s climate allows for tropical fruits that are unique around the world. Among those fruits are: mangoes, pineapples, coconuts, guava, quenêpes, oranges, grapefruits, lemons – just to name a few.
Such fruits are often used to make juices. But children especially, prefer to eat fresh fruit picked from the trees.
Fruits such as mangoes and quenêpes are eaten any time during the day as they are cheaper and more affordable for kids to buy.
In some families, mangoes especially, can be the sole meal that a child will have the chance to eat for the day.
Kids especially like the mango season that begins in April and ends in August, although some types of mangoes can found year round in specific areas of the country.
Mangoes are Davidson’s favorite snack.
Every morning before he goes to school, Davidson eats a few mangoes for breakfast. On his way home after school, he also buy mangoes so that he can eat before he goes to bed.
He loves mangoes because they are cheap.
Even when his parents do not have money to make a big meal at home, he will often eat mangoes and then he is ready for the day.
More than 100 types of mangoes are identified in Haiti. Davidson’s favorite one is “Mango Blan” but he does not mind eating any of them.
Quenêpe is Almy’s favorite snack.
Quenêpe is a of the rare tropical fruit growing wild almost everywhere in Haiti. Children like to eat quenêpe because of its funny taste.
Quenêpe is usually sweet and a little bit sour at the end which makes it funny. At its season, quenêpe can be found everywhere such as: market places and along the streets.
Some kids, like Almy for instance, like to suck the juice from the quenêpe seed.
And, papita is Alexi’s favorite snack.
Papita, or fried slices of plantain, is one among the most common snacks in Haiti. Everyone, children and adults eat papita as snacks at home, school or at work.
Papita is made of fried plantain and sold in plastic bags along the streets at the price of ten (10) gourds ($.25), which makes it affordable for almost every one.
Each plastic bag contains about ten (10) slices of plantains mixed with salt.
Sabrina likes to eat Papita while reading books or the Bible as it encourages her to spend more time reading.