Top Chef: Ecuador

I’m happy to report that all nine PDs are back in Ecuador and accounted for. After spending our Thanksgiving holidays globetrotting to Nicaragua for the MPI 5-year reunion, Argentina, Venezuela and the good old US of A, we’re all glad to be back in the country we call home. Though we only have two weeks from today until winter break, there’s a lot to be wrapped up and more importantly, lots of brainstorming to be had envisioning new projects to start in January.

One such project is building a kitchen on the third floor of our library. As you may have read in previous posts, this space is now being used for English and natural science classes as well as women’s exercise. The focus groups that we’ve held have emphasized the importance of nutrition education in our community. Last year’s PDs also hosted two different cooking classes for the women in our exercise classes.

The goal of these classes is to increase the extent of which Ecuadorian produce is cooked with as well as how to maximize their nutritional value. In order to accomplish this goal, we plan to install a kitchen on our third floor.

We’ve compiled a wish list, in order of necessity below. Sonia and Krysta have spent the past month running around the valley pricing these items and compiling a comprehensive budget for this project.

Our Wish List:

  1. Stove
  2. Gas tanks (2)
  3. Gas hose (6m)
  4. Wood for gas tank cover
  5. Plastic table
  6. Water filter
  7. Dish rack
  8. Set of knives (2)
  9. Pans (3)
  10. Plastic mixing blows (4)
  11. Peeler (3)
  12. Measuring cups
  13. Measuring spoons
  14. Forks (12)
  15. Knives (12)
  16. Spoons (12)
  17. Oven pan (2)
  18. Metal grater
  19. Whisk
  20. Wood spoons (3)
  21. Strainer
  22. Rubber spatula (2)
  23. Laddel (2)
  24. Pot (26cm)
  25. Pot (22cm)
  26. Wood cutting board (2)
  27. Plastic cutting board (2)
  28. Metal spatula (1)
  29. Rolling pin
  30. Fine strainer
  31. Plastic shelves (3)
  32. Pot hooks (7)
  33. Spice rack
  34. Oven mits (2)
  35. Plates (10)
  36. Bowls (10)
  37. Plastic cups (10)
  38. Cake pan (2)
  39. Towel set

In total, our wish list items add up to an expense of $735.20. We plan to cover food costs from inscriptions or from asking our students to bring in items. Our short-term goal is to get this class up and running as soon as we obtain enough donations to cover our basic expenses. Any support that you would be able to give towards this project would be so appreciative; we literally can’t do it without you!

Checks can be made out to Manna Project International, with “Ecuador kitchen” in the memo. Checks should be mailed to the MPI headquarters in Nashville:

Manna Project International

P.O. Box 121052

Nashville, TN 37212

Additionally, support can be given online at Please click "donate here!" and when prompted, fill in “Ecuador kitchen” designated on under the‘support for.’

We're no strangers to the kitchen, cooking for each other 6 days a week

Only fresh from the local market produce in our kitchen!

If you have any questions, concerns, or wish to learn more about this project please feel free to e-mail me here.

Stay tuned to our side bar as we keep you updated on our fundraising status and project process!

Cheers, Jackie