So what is this in the photo below?!?! You may ask...
It's Sugar Cane (in Portuguese that's "Cana Doçe")! And this post is especially added for the enjoyment of Dr. Jackman. He is the dentist I worked for at home, and he is from the Islands of Trinidad and Tobago.
Often while working for him, he would bring up stories from his childhood, which often included the things he would eat. Mangoes, bananas picked ripe from the tree, and always sugar cane!
And here in Mozambique I get to enjoy all those wonderful things! We have mango trees all over the children's center, and when mango season comes, we eat them till we start looking like them... ha ha. And sugar cane is a big export here in Mozambique. Especially driving North there are fields full of nothing but pure, sweet stalks of sugar cane.
Now, let me tell you how this works. If you are a Mozambican, you hack off the sugar cane with a big machete. Then you sit down under a tree or on a grass mat, and with your teeth you start to peel back that light brownish green skin. Underneath is something like a woody fiber and you break off or peel off pieces of this. Chew on it for awhile and all the sweet sugary juice comes out. Then you spit the woody fiber bits on the ground (or more properly, in a bowl or the trash).
I sometimes sit and eat this with the girls and the dorm mothers. They have the hang of how to peel the skin off with your teeth. I don't. (I don't want to give you more work when I get home, by breaking my front teeth on sugar cane, Doctor Jackman! ). So today I took a knife, and my goodness is this stuff hard or what! But after about 10 minutes I had a nice little 3 inch piece peeled, and my friend Rahel and I sat and chewed on the juicy fiber. Yum!
(And I figure the sugar contents doesn't really matter, as you burn off at least that much just trying to skin the plant to eat it!)