"It’s very important to me that I use fresh ingredients in my food"
Klik her for dansk.
Sara is a part of Trampoline House's catering service Sisters' Cuisine. She is also one of the chefs behind Sisters' Cuisine's cookbook, Recipes Without Borders, where she shares her favourite recipes and tells about Iranian food culture.
When I was a child, I really liked cooking because my mother is a very, very good cook. There are a lot of good cooks in my family. I inherited it. My mother’s brother was a chef. He opened a food shop, and he taught me a lot of things. He was a very good chef.
But my mother didn’t let me cook! When I was around eight or nine years old, I would hide ingredients and when my mother was out I would run to the kitchen and make cakes. I learned how to cook on my own. I was 14-15 when I started cooking, but my mother still didn’t let me. And it didn’t go well; I kept destroying things. But slowly, slowly, I learned.
My parents are from southern Iran, so I especially know food from that region. In Iran, there are different foods in the south, the north, the east, and the west. I know a lot of vegetarian food and seafood, because southern Iran is close to the sea and we always ate fish in my home.
I cook for myself here in Denmark, especially food from my country. I know a lot of very healthy soups, which are good for winter. I try to make healthy food. I use ginger a lot in my food, and garlic. They’re good for this weather in Denmark. The weather here is not so cold for me, because I didn’t live in southern Iran, which is very hot. My city is in the middle of Iran, and cold. It’s not so different from here, but here there’s a lot of wind. My city is near the mountains, but here it is flat and windy.
It’s very important to me that I use fresh ingredients in my food. I know about the vitamin content in the ingredients I use. For example, ginger is good for your immune system. This knowledge is in my culture. Everyone in Iran knows about what the vegetables contain. Which spices are good for chicken, which spices are good for red meat, and which spices are good for fish. We have a lot of different spices and some spices are very good for the body. For example, turmeric is very good for the body. It helps prevent coughing and is good if you’re swollen up.
There’s an old culture of knowing what goes well with what in Iran. What you should eat with what. When we have yogurt, we put mint on top because the yogurt is cold for body and mint is warm. It regulates the body temperature. We don’t eat fish and yogurt. Two cold dishes together are not good for the body. When we have salad, we don’t use yogurt, because yogurt has calcium and calcium kills vitamin C.
When we eat fish, we use cumin. We make rice and add the cumin at the end. This kind of rice goes well with fish, because fish is cold and cumin is warm. And after eating fish, my mom would give me dates because dates are warm. This is good for the body. And it’s old culture.
I have been in Denmark for around one year. I was in Jutland until I was moved to Korsør asylum center three months ago. It’s far away, but I really like it here. I come to Trampoline House regularly, and I also have an internship at the swimming pool in Korsør. I taught swimming in Iran.
My son likes it here a lot and I feel very safe here. I really like Denmark. My son is four and a half years old and goes to a regular kindergarten. He speaks a little Danish, but he’s learning more. His last kindergarten was a camp kindergarten just for refugees, but here in Korsør all of his classmates are Danish.
I didn’t choose Denmark. I came here on a very, very hard trip. During the trip, my son was so sick. I wanted to go to Sweden, but Sweden closed the door. I had to wait some days outdoors, and wait, and I couldn’t because my son had a high fever. So I stayed in Denmark, and I’m really happy to be in Denmark. God chose for me. Sometimes you choose one way but God brings you another way!
Since Sara shared her story, she and her son got asylum in Denmark.
Click here to read more about Sisters' Cuisine's cookbook Recipes Without Borders.
We’re looking for a Counseling Coordinator – apply by November 1st.
Everyone who comes to Trampoline House now have the possibility to get help to find a job. Every Wednesday at 10am–12pm, volunteer job counselors arrange a job workshop that will strengthen the participants in their pursuit of the job market.
David is originally from China and now volunteering in Trampoline House. He has written a poem about hope.
Support from Novo Nordisk Fonden, Lauritzen Fonden og private donationer, has made it possible for Trampoline House to hire a Children’s Club Coordinator. "The Children’s Club is to function as a nice place, where these children can find ease, security, positive relations, predictability and happiness," says Sara Ipsen
We’re looking for a Children’s Club Coordinator – apply by August 7.
We’re looking for a Fundraiser (in Danish only) – apply by August 15.
“The kids with citizenship got all that is needed, but not children who are growing up in the camps. I'm just sorry they don't have the same rights as Danish citizens. Also, they don't have the same opportunity, freedom, house, food, generally normal life.”
“There is discrimination on both sides. She wasn’t completely comfortable telling us that she was from Dansk Folkeparti. That’s why it’s an important thing for us to go to People’s Meeting and talk with people that are different from us.”
“If someone would ask what I miss the most from home, I would tell them I missed the smell of my mother and my brother. And the voice of the man I loved.”
“Before I started coming to Trampoline House, I was just in Roskilde. Sometimes I went shopping for maybe half an hour, and then I returned home to watch TV.”
“There’s a different atmosphere out here. It’s not about learning Danish or getting help with your legal issues.”
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"There were politicians who came and spoke with local people, something that is the opposite of in my country, and I think Danish people should be proud of their democratic culture"
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"It’s a pleasure to be involved in a dynamic environment where everyone is part of a big family"
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"We try hard to teach with a focus on how to get by in Danish society in everyday life"
"I unfortunately have had to realize that the politicians in this country don't want to finance a decent treatment of asylum seekers and refugees"
"It’s very important to me that I use fresh ingredients in my food"
In the beginning of April, Trampoilne House’s democracy class was invited by Humanity in Action and Roskilde University to participate in a workshop about the asylum system in Denmark.
"In my heart, I'm interested in helping people"
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