In the spirit of Valentine, we decided to give four foods the chance to write love letters to those they care about. This is Love Letters to Food.

Dear Fried Rice, 

We get pitted against each other a lot, so people don’t really know how close we are. You’re the best friend I can’t do without. They see us as two competitors always fighting about who’s superior, but it’s so crazy how people don’t see that all our fighting is just banter. Like when you drag me for dating chicken because no one else can stand my wahala. 

Every time I’m down or feeling a bit of self-doubt because one restaurant or caterer didn’t cook me well, you never fail to remind me I’m a bad bitch, that countries all over the world fight about which version of me is the best, and Nigerian households cook me anytime they get the chance. I don’t think I can be in a bad mood for too long when I’m around you because you always know the right thing to say to make me feel better. Even when you’re not physically there, one phone call to you and I’m all good. I couldn’t ask for a better best friend and partner. 

You always say all these amazing things about me, but have you met you? You’re sweet, the most exotic type of rice there is, and anybody who disagrees can kiss a burning pot. You’re so full of life — only you has carrots, green peas, spring onions, bell peppers, shrimps and more. That’s why you give people around you life, and that’s why you’re a celebratory meal. You may not be cooked often in Nigerian homes, but that’s because they save you for special occasions. You’re that special.

I’m so glad we’re served together at most events. It has brought us closer than ever because we get to gist and gossip a lot. I love how we notice the same things; all we have to do is look at each other. I always have to hold myself from bursting out in laughter, and that’s what makes events fun for me. Whenever I’m served without you, it’s always boring because there’s no one to gist or make jokes with. All chicken knows how to do is complain that people don’t eat its bone in public. No one understands me like you do. 

I can’t imagine what life would be like without you as my best friend. Who’d I complain to when one expensive restaurant adds too much curry to me? Remember the first time you met turkey, and he took you to a bukka for your first date? You thought turkey was one rich protein and that he was going to take you to an exotic fancy restaurant, only for you to end up in a bukka. It was such a hilarious experience. 

Thank you for being the best friend any food could ask for, for staying by my side in the good times and bad. I love you, and I look forward to more chaotic times with you. 

Happy Valentine’s Day, bestie.

ALSO READ: “I Feel Seen Because of You” – Love Letter From Gizzard to Dodo



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