Hi everyone! My name is Katherine O’Brien and Bellyfull Bajan is my blog! I live in a lovely apartment with my awesome housemate in London and I love food! I have trained and worked as a chef, but to cut a long story short I have decided that the life of a chef is not for me. Nonetheless, my passion for food and for sharing it with others keeps growing and I don’t expect that to change any time soon.
I was born and raised in the beautiful island of Barbados. It is known for being every beach and sun lovers paradise. However, there is another side to my island, or rather my region, the Caribbean, and that is its food culture. Food possesses a very strange and beautiful power not just in the Caribbean, but throughout the world. It has evolved drastically from being simply a means of sustaining life to a multi-sensorial experience bringing about feelings of pleasure and comfort.
My sister came up with the name Bellyfull. It is a West Indian term expressing feelings of contentment after a big meal. Food has always played quite a large role in my family. Sunday lunches offered us a chance every week to sit down as a family and eat an assortment of homemade dishes together. They offered a platform over which we could discuss issues in the island, such as political, religious, agricultural, you name it! And then, of course, there was the food. On being served it would almost immediately cool the heated discussions and keep the noise of screeching children at bay. This would be followed by a slight frenzy, as food made its way onto plates strategically and then by a calm as the array of delicacies were passed from plate to mouth. The essence of the term “bellyful” could be seen on all the faces of those who had just partaken in the glorious feast. It could also be heard in the slow and deep sighs or slight snores of contentment that echoed from those sprawled over one piece of furniture to the other.
I was always happiest at home in the kitchen with my mother and grandmother. That is where I found my passion for food. It is derived from that human need for community and life’s sustenance. And it is through this blog I hope to share that with you.