What do we need to do to take Haitian cuisine to the next level?
Taste Atlas came out with a list regarding the best 95 cuisines in the world. Haiti made it on the list as number 57. Although many were up in arms about the fact that no Caribbean or African countries made the top 50, there are some great takeaways from this. Taste Atlas let it be known that the list was driven by the voices of real people that took the time to go and rate dishes from their favorite countries. Pushing our culture is not an outside job. It starts with us. It starts with, in this case, creating an account, providing ratings on your favorite Haitian dishes, and continuing to educate others about our cuisine. Some of our main dishes did not even have a description present on their website. It’s not their fault, rather it’s an opportunity to step up and show them what we are truly made of.
As a Chef, I love to educate others on our cuisine as well as our culture. As a consumer, some ways that YOU can help push this initiative are listed below:
- Attend Pop Ups curated by Haitian Chefs
- support Haitian Chefs on social media (like, comment, share posts)
- Hire Haitian caterers for your events
- Respect the effort that is given to provide quality and excellence by Haitian Chefs
- Support those who are reinventing and elevating how Haitian cuisine is presented
- Share in the joy when other cultures want to emulate our best local dishes
- Provide feedback on websites of our cuisine
We know that our voice as a people is strong and deserves to be heard, however, the one way that change comes is if we take the time to actively and consistently promote our food. This push should also transcend to other fields as well. We are a very artistic culture. We should promote the Arts that Haiti has to offer. Artists, Authors, Illustrators, and the likes thereof.
So for 2023, I challenge you to be even more present and positively promote the culture and help it elevate its stamp on the map of the world and of others’ taste buds. We do this for us, not them. Therefore, it starts by us. Not them.