Hispanic Heritage Month Features Food Extravaganza

By Siobhan Sullivan, Currier Times Correspondent////

Food is set up at the Hispanic Heritage Festival. Photo courtesy of Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

September 30th was the Hispanic Style dinner event at Curry College.  This event was designed to honor and celebrate Hispanic Heritage month.  I was excited to attend because I wanted to have a better understanding of the Hispanic culture and also, I love the food. My high school has a large population of Hispanic students, and I always enjoyed the food, the music, and the colorful dress.  I was excited to go and knew I would not be disappointed.

            The event was held inside the marketplace in the Student Center.  When I arrived right at the start, I was one of the first people there.  The first thing I noticed was how the food was presented.  There were two tables that represented two islands. On the two tables were tons of food, all representing lots of different Hispanic cultures.  I have to say, rice and beans are a main staple in the Hispanic culture. 

Various food items are on display at the Marketplace for Hispanic Heritage Month food festival. Photo courtesy of Office of Diversity and Inclusion.

It started off with everyone going inside the kitchen with the chef, Christian King, introducing what each of the Hispanic food was. The dinner included braised pork belly, pollo, pisco, seafood paella, and serrano jamon. The seafood paella was most certainly my favorite.  On the side there was paprika rice and pastas bravas.

The two tables had decorations of Mexican Serape, Flower Cut Out Vinyl Pennant Banner, and Swirl Tassel Garland. Beside the food tables, they also had decorations on the walls that included Large Paper Picado Banner, Fiesta Fringe Garland, Wooden Maracas, Country Flags, Flores de Cempasuchil, and Fiesta Balloons.,

This event was put on by the Diversity and Inclusion Office. This is an office where they welcome diversities and show the value in creating a safe environment for learning. The differences among the groups include race, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin, and political or religious affiliations; differences in individuals are personalities, learning styles, cognitive ability, and life experiences; differences in thought are political, though, or opinion. 

The chefs were asked to put on an event exploring diversity and food is the perfect way to do it.  Food is a huge part of any culture.  By sharing many different recipes students were able to experience the Hispanic culture. As we ate many different dishes, spicy is what came to my mind. The wide array of food was deliciously displayed and tasted just as good.

According to the executive chef, Christian King, he wanted us to feel more connected. He made us feel more connected by bringing us in the kitchen. We were able to see what some of the chefs do every day and the tools they use. Sometimes you can even create a strong bond with the chefs.

Chef King’s goal is to get students to eat better.  He feels he can do this by connecting with the diverse culture at Curry and using food as that connection.  Learning to cook and eating healthy is one small connection Chef King can give back to the students.  Personally, I love to eat healthy. It is the cooking part I have yet to figure out.

All in all, it was a very fun time.  I learned a lot and met some amazing people.  I look forward to the next food event at Curry. 

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