Tablèt pistach, gooey beach treat
Imagine yourself on the road back to Port-au-Prince from a great day at the beach. The mountain is on one side of the open road in front of you while the ocean teasingly follows you on the other side as the sun sets.
Filled with nostalgia, you can’t help but reminisce. You’re thinking about this damn but dear ocean that won’t stop begging you to come back, and the great foods you had – a list, which, if you did it right, includes at the very minimum the items mentioned here.
You can still taste the salty water but, at the same time, your taste buds are longing for something sweet.
However, there’s at least one hour of driving left before you make it to the city. You need something to soothe the melancholy that’s trying to set in as you reluctantly bid farewell to this serene scenery.
Just fifteen minutes into your drive, right when the ocean finally gives up and abandons you putting an end to your reverie, you hit the buzzing town of Arcahaie.
Busy bees carrying metal bowls start tapping your window, startling you while bringing back a smile on your face. You don’t even need to ask; you already know what tasty adventure awaits your palate. These women are offering you bags filled with gooey tablèt pistach.
What do you do? Wait for an hour to hit Port-au-Prince for some store-bought treats or indulge into those gooey peanut goodies that have, just like you, been bathing under the sun all day long?
If you’re like me, you chose the latter. After all, you’ve just reached tablèt heaven, and those three speed bumps, which annoyed you so much on your way to the beach, turn into your favorite road bumps. They give you just enough time to pull out bills of 50 gourdes (about $0.70 US these days) without pulling out of traffic. The first lucky merchant grabs those bills from your hands in exchange for a handful of brown bags, which you grab almost as quickly as she took your money before stepping on it again.
As you get back into driving mode, you open your first bag and pop one tablèt pistach in your mouth. Another smile brightens up your face, washing away some of your nostalgia. Before you know it, you’ve eaten the first bag and downed your entire bottle of water that you drank help drown the high sugar intake you just had.
You’ve just been to tablet pistach heaven, and that is a perfect ending to your already perfect day. You secretly hope the loudness in Port-au-Prince won’t take away that feeling. But, just in case, you keep an uneaten bag near.
And that, dear reader, is how you wrap up a marvelous day spent basting under Haiti’s sun. You eat tablèt pistach in Arcahaie.
For more beach-related food must-haves, please read my 4 Haitian Foods to Try This Summer article published on the Cooking Sense Magazine website.