“The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined nonconformists who are dedicated to justice, peace, and brotherhood.” – Martin Luther King Jr.
United World Feast: Martin Luther King Jr. Day, 2018
Martin Luther King Jr. and his father Martin Luther King Sr. both shared the name of the Martin Luther of 1517, who tacked his 95 thesis on the door of the Wittenberg Church in Germany, launching the Protestant Reformation. Martin Luther King Jr. like his name’s sake, was influential in standing for the truth of equal rights for African Americans amidst the dissension and persecution of the 1960s. Mr. King encouraged peaceful protest and nonviolence. His “I have a dream” speech has made its mark on history and continues to be an inspiration to each new generation.
I have been always been curious about cultural history, especially holidays. This curiosity has been growing with each American Girl doll that comes to live in my family. With the launch of my blog, I realized that I have an opportunity to share what I have learned about the festivities of different cultures.
When I researched the best way to celebrate the birthday of Martin Luther King Jr., I discovered the idea of doing a meal involving different kinds of ethnic food. So I set out to make a buffet of different snacks based on each of the cultures represented by my American Girl dolls: Kaya, Felicity, Josefina, Addy, Samantha, Nellie, Rebecca, Melody, Julie, and Chrissa.
For Kaya of the Nez Perce Native American Indian tribe, 1764, I stumbled across a recipe for Pemmican, which is a mixture of different food like fruit, seeds, and meat. (Nez Perce National Historical Trail) I did not have access to all of the ingredients, so I improvised:
-Dried cranberries (or crasians)
Felicity recipe called for ingredients I did not have on hand so once again, I improvised:
Here’s a tip if you wish to make these yourselves: DO NOT wait too long to remove the pecans from the pan! Wait no longer than five minutes; otherwise, pecan bits will also be flying like missiles across your kitchen!
Another recipe that I found in the from the American Girl Club book were Josefina’s Mexican Wedding Cookies!
-Coconut Oil + Water
Note: I actually used coconut oil instead of butter. If you want to do coconut oil, remember to add water as well. Coconut oil is all fat and water will help your dough from being crumbly.
Letter Sugar Cookies
This recipe is from a scene in the Addy series where she and her mother learn to spell by using leftover dough to make letters.
-Stick of pre-made sugar dough
Roll out the dough and cut it into strips. The cookies are thin and crispy…Yum!
-Frozen pound cake
Petite Fours seemed simple at first. However, my pound cake was too small and wasn’t frozen enough! I struggled with the icing However, I need continued practice to improve my frosting skills and try this again in the future.
I attempted to balance out this feast with appetizers, not just desserts. For Nellie, I found a recipe for Irish Nachos. I am still not sure this is a traditional dish, but out of all the recipes, this one turned out to be the best.
-My Dad’s classic guacamole
The recipe called for sour cream and pico de gallo, not guacamole, but I love my Dad’s guacamole too much to pass up the opportunity to have him make it!
Rebecca provided a wonderful opportunity to make Latkes! Unfortunately, they didn’t turn out quite right! I was not focused on the recipe and ended up making potato pancakes! I plan to try again next Hanukkah.
-Applesauce or sour cream to dip the latkes in
Peanut Butter Candy
For Melody, I decided to access her African heritage. I found a recipe for African Peanut Butter Candy, which is like peanut butter balls, except with honey.
The recipe called for shredded coconut, but I used what I had: powdered sugar. It worked out well. These are probably one of my favorite snacks. They are sweet and yet full of protein. Delicious!
Kool Aid and Hawaiian Punch were popular beverages of the 1070s and perfect to represent Julie!
In conclusion, I enjoyed making all these goodies. It was fun and I practiced my cooking skills. With hope and a lot of praying, I should be able to improve and make more quality dishes in the future! But for now, I’m going to take a break from cooking and focus my attention on vlogging for my YouTube channel. Happy (LATE) Martin Luther King Jr. Day!