Welcome to Dr. Frederick Douglass Opie's personal website

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The Best Cashews I've Eaten To Date

Toasted Cashew Spinach Salad, this and another cashew recipe below

I will be reflecting on when I did field work in Guatemala as doctoral student in history at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School in the 1990s.  On my first trip, I rented a room as boarder in the town of Retalhuleu on the Pacific coast of the country. The food at the boarding house had been terrible.  To survive I resorted to hunting down bananas, baked goods, and frozen fruit pops. At the time I was vegan which made the situation to tougher to endure particularly trying to find proteins. One day I learned about a farm nearby that grew and roasted cashews. I went and purchased a couple of pounds of the best tasting cashews I’ve had to date. Over time learned that local magistrates had shipped area records to the Archivo Nacíonal in Guatemala City. I felt like the guys sent to find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq! Before I packed up for Guatemala City, Don Tirso gained access to a private photo collection of one of the elite families in Retalhuleu for me to scan copies. The photos did add value to my project and made me feel a bit better about my field work in Retalhuleu. In the final analysis the sun had made me three shades darker and the lack of vegan food options, and lots of walking resulted in a loss of about 10 to 15 pounds!


Maya Angelou Through the Lens of Food

Feasting in Antigua, Guatemala