Our organisation often have yearly trips to Bario, a settlement deep within the Sarawak forest. Due to the massive trees and mountains, development of ground infrastructure such as roads and railways is very expensive. Therefore, the only convenient way into Bario is by small airplanes that take off from Miri Airport and lands in Bario Airport.
This time round (in 2010), Jeyaratnam, eHomemakers staff, went to Bario to teach the Bario ladies how to bake something new as well as to experience the beauty of nature. Jeya was very excited as well as nervous as this was probably her first time teaching the natives how to bake cookies. She packed all that she needed along for the baking class.
After they informed the village head of their wish, a number of Kelabit women assembled, interested in what these city people can teach them. Jeya taught them how to make Pineapple Tart. Pineapple grow in the surrounding forest of Bario. Its taste is uniquely sweet and during the pineapple season, the fruit is abundant. Jeya went there in hopes that the Kelabit folks would learn to use this to their advantage. In the beginning, the Kelabit women helped about in making the pastry as Jeya kneaded the mixture of margarine, sugar and flour.
When the pastry was prepared, Jeya encouraged everyone to give it a try and wrap the Pineapple Tarts with the pastry. The women were shy at the beginning but as Jeya managed to persuade a few to try, everyone started to join in the fun. With the final touches and decorative snips, the tarts were ready for the oven.
Once they were ready, there was nothing better to do than to munch on the hot, freshly baked pineapple tarts. The tarts texture turned out all right, the taste was good and the smiles on the Bario women faces... they were priceless.
Blogged by Chin Wei Jin