Tuesday, October 24, 2000

Rice, always rice, as in most countries. There are different types of rice. In most restaurants, you will get standard white rice. But most Malagasy eat “red rice”, which is unprocessed (remember? The earth is red here) and sometimes still contains gravel and sand. Secondly, meat. I’m 100% sure that there are no Malagasy vegetarians in Madagascar unless it is for health reasons. It is typically zebu (beef), pork, or poultry, fried or cooked. For 80% of the population, that’s about it - with some variations, such as seafood at the coast or even turtles or grasshoppers in some places. The traditional meals in the capital include maniok, beans, and vegetables. In restaurants, however, you don’t usually get typical Malagasy food. You get steak with green pepper and fries or grilled fish filet with potatoes (potatoes are rather uncommon). Most restaurants also offer Chinese dishes now, such as Won Ton soup.

I kind of grew up on that stuff so I already know it. But if you ever go to Madagascar, try to order some of the “plats malgaches” (Malagasy plates) if they’re on the menu or just ask for it. Or maybe you’ll also be able to have a meal with a Malagasy family.