International Buffet brings a world of food

A Dutch wooden shoe wrapped in the colors of the flag of the Netherlands serves as a table centerpiece during the International Buffet at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, March 1. The annual event offered guests food from 12 countries.
F-16 Foreign Liaison Officers and their families pose for a group photo before the 2017 International Buffet at Hill Air Force Base, Utah, March 1.
Martijn De Boer fills cups at the Dutch table.
Indonesian Foreign Liaison Officer Maj. H. L. Tobing and spouse, Shinta, place food on the table representing their country during the International Buffet. Nineteen Foreign Liaison Officers and their families offered food and drink from 12 countries during the March 1 event.
By R. Nial Bradshaw
75th Air Base Wing Public Affairs
March 16, 2017

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — F-16 Foreign Liaison Officers (FLO) and their families shared food, drink and culture from 12 countries with colleagues and friends during the annual International Buffet here, March 1.

Culinary offerings from Belgium, Thailand, Denmark, Turkey, Japan, Poland, the Netherlands, Taiwan, Indonesia, Portugal, Korea and Israel were served from tables adorned with cultural and informational displays during the event.

“We have this event to share our culture, especially our food culture, but also our customs,” said Anouchka Boedt, organizer of this year’s event and spouse of Belgian FLO Maj. Loic Boedt. “Everyone here has something unique about their country and we don’t have a lot of opportunities outside of work for everyone to be together and share.”

A total of 19 FLOs and their families prepared a variety of authentic dishes, sides, desserts, candies and drinks unique to their country of origin. Each country prepared enough food to feed roughly 40 people. Some served guests wearing traditional clothing from their homeland.

Finne Van Denput, 9-year-old daughter of Belgian FLO Maj. Phillipe Van Denput, invited an off-base schoolmate with a family of nine children to come and experience the world of food and culture the venue presented.

“We open up the event to friends and family from on base, but also from off base,” said Boedt. “It’s really about people, meeting people and sharing with people.”

A silent auction and raffle were held to help cover the costs of hosting the gathering.

F-16 FLOs and their families are typically stationed at Hill Air Force Base for three years before returning to their home country.

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