Journey through the global food lanes
As someone who aspires to travel the world to just to taste different cuisines, the International Night at Smith gave me the opportunity to do that under just one roof. The Asian MBA Association organizes the International Night during the Chinese New Year Week, also called the International Week. The goal of the night is to educate the students from the different parts of the world about Chinese culture and also help them experience the true essence of global culture.
The week starts with an authentic Chinese Dinner on the New Year Day. The dinner includes Chinese delicacies, a dumpling making competition, fortune cookies, some Chinese icebreakers and a raffle.
Gorging of food is followed by a Lion Dance, a traditional Chinese dance where students got a chance to feed lettuce to the Lion. This is done to pray for happiness, luck and great fortune in the new year because the Chinese word for lettuce has the same pronunciation as “make a great fortune”.
Next comes the International Night, where Smith students from across the globe put up a food table. Some of the countries represented were Guam, Barbados, Israel, Japan, India, China, America (surprise surprise :P), Pakistan, South Korea, Vietnam, Russia, Poland among others.
The interesting part of the night was not the representation by the different countries but the quick acclimatization of our palate. We were able to eat the spicy Guam chilly, immediately followed by fish cakes from Barbados, sweet saffron rice from Pakistan and Polish vodka shots with blood sausage. Chocolate pop rocks and Matzah ball soup from Israel, spiced street food from India, rolls with peanut sauce from Vietnam, chicken and mac and cheese from America, Onigiri (rice ball), miso soup and sake from Japan were some of the things that stood out for me.
Through this event we did not only get to try global food but also understood the reasons for how the food is so deeply knotted with their culture. Also interesting was the marriage of geographic location, availability of ingredients and weather as an influencer to the food of a region.
After we devoured diverse food we prepared ourselves for a fashion show and terrific dance performances. It was a treat to my eyes to see my beautiful classmates dressed in costumes from places they have never been.
Yet again, Smith was able to show its diverse and collaborative culture through this event and that’s what makes Smith awesome.