Bethel’s Ethnic Food Fest celebrates tastes from around the world

Tasty gourmet food filled the Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center during the Ethnic Food Festival last Saturday. Above are Guada Thatcher and Sheila Waters with their table full of Filipino cuisine. photo by Kelly Lincoln

by K.J. Lincoln

The delicious aromas of curries, Greek gyros, fried taquitos, chicken adobo, and enchiladas wafted out of the Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center and out into the parking lot last Saturday.

It was the Celebration of Diversity Taste of Bethel Ethnic Food Festival, and the food was absolutely amazing.

There was Creole chicken jambalaya, sausage e’touffe’e, gumbo, and Italian crème cake.

There was not one but two Filipino vendors featured pansit and lumpia, flan and sweet rice, mango delight and lumpia Shanghai, empanadas, barbecue chicken, pan de coco, a chocolate mousse trifle, cassava cake, and chicken adobo.

At the Thai table customers could choose from curry chicken, red curry beef, or green curry pork, with fresh and fried rolls, watermelon, tofu noodle, and Thai tea.

The Albanian baklava came dripping with honey with a gyro smothered with tzatziki sauce and lamb.

There was also Iranian vegei samoses and kotlet; Mediterranean shakshuka, garlic-infused hummus, pita bread with feta cheese, and dolma (stuffed grape leaves); Greek yogurt with honey and walnuts; Mexican pasteles de Canne Cebada and tostada con salpicon; Welsh pasties from Cornwall United Kingdom; El Salvadorian poposas and orchata; Korean chicken wings and kimchi pork buns; and Italian lasagna and desserts.

Hundreds of foodies of all ages flocked to the festival to savor the delicious fare offered by the vendors. Local musicians serenaded the diners as they socialized and had fun sampling the diverse cuisine.

Tickets were sold at the door for $5 a taste/sample with the proceeds going right back to the cooks.

By 6:30pm hungry folks ate up most of the food, making it a successful food festival.