Years ago there was a television commercial for a popular spaghetti sauce —perhaps they’re still using the tagline, ‘Wednesday is Prince Spaghetti day’. I wouldn’t know, because at any commercial break (due to my advanced age) I usually have to answer the call of nature. The concept of having the same meal on the same day each week seems… old fashioned. Sort of like Monday being ‘wash day’. Even the old Catholic tradition — fish on Fridays — never got any play in my childhood home. The only fish we ate was tuna, Dad adored meatloaf, and we weren’t even Catholic.
But that all changed when Michelle and Ricky Joshua came to town, all the way from Capetown, South Africa and set up shop at Bernard’s Coffee Station right here in Globe. We live for Wednesdays now, and in particular, the ‘Wednesday South African Lunch’.
The meal is exotic without being scary, which means nothing stares back at you from the plate. Portions are ample and delicious, with a delightful mix of spices and textures. Biryani is the main dish — a terrific mix of pork, lentils, rice, and potatoes (Michelle mixes in broccoli, cauliflower and carrots for the Globe crowd). A vegan version is available, too. The biryani is rolled in a roti, which is the South African equivalent of a tortilla. A small soufflé cup of relish — apples, onions, vinegar and sometimes, green pepper — adds a satisfying tang to the dish, and on the side are dhaltjies, savory fritters made of carrots, spinach, corn, onions and chickpea flour, along with curry powder. A small cup of vegetables — tomatoes, carrot sticks and spinach — complete the meal.
Michelle and Ricky work through AIMI, the American Indian Mission. It’s a Christian-based, non-denominational mission based on respect, relationships and faith.
“Our philosophy is to create discussion and build communities, [and] not just on Sunday mornings,” she says over the phone in her delightful and slightly accented English. “Our support base is both here and in South Africa, and we work on the San Carlos Reservation.”
Through lunch receipts and a huge yard sale a few weeks ago (which netted them more than seven hundred dollars!) Michelle will return to South Africa to deliver a ‘dissertation’ — a report to their organization on the progress they’ve made.
Married for twenty-five years, the couple has a son and daughter, both in their early twenties. Michelle and Ricky plan to stay in Globe for at least another year, although she says she does miss the water.
“I could [travel at home] the twenty to thirty miles and then see where the Indian Ocean meets the Atlantic. There’s a fine line in the water, and it’s beautiful, very beautiful.”
The upcoming INTERNATIONAL FOOD FESTIVAL at Bernard’s Coffee Station begins at 12:30 this Sunday afternoon, July 7. With an exciting mix of Apache, Chinese, South African, Filipino and American food, it promises to offer something for everyone. Bernard’s offers a comfortable and homey environment, always perfect for a light lunch or a coffee date.
As a side note, Jimmy and I have had the South African Lunch every Wednesday for the last eleven weeks, though usually for dinner. Wednesday is our one day off together — with three dogs, a bird, and a prehistoric home with multiple ongoing projects, we look forward to a tasty supper at the end of a long day.
Wednesday is now ‘South African Lunch’ day at our house!
Bernard’s Coffee Station is located at 725 West Ash Street in Globe.
Call (480) 200-2865 for additional information and hours of operation.
Don’t forget the delicious cookies, brownies, scones and coffee!