Grade Level Equivalent:
Guided Reading Level:
Functional and How-To, Multicultural, Realistic Fiction
Cooking, Family Life, Friends and Friendship
When Carrie's little brother is late for supper, she is sent to look for him, and takes a delicious tour through her neighbors' kitchens. Tasting as she goes, Carrie discovers that, indeed, "everybody cooks rice!" Mr. and Mrs. Darlington, from Barbados, are sitting down to a dinner of rice with black-eyed peas, bacon, and onions. The Diazes are having Puerto Rican rice cooked with turmeric and pigeon peas, and Madame Bleu is making Haitian rice and beans. Lucky Carrie gets to sample Vietnamese, Indian, and Chinese cooking as well, before returning home...where she finds her elusive brother, and an Italian meal of risi e bisi on the table.
Folksy pictures in strong, primary colors give readers a peek into the fascinating households of this multicultural neighborhood, while descriptions of the meals on each table will leave readers with their mouths watering. For good measure, recipes are given at the end of the book for each of the rice dishes mentioned in the story.