Fafa vs Philly
Matthew Emmons | USA Today

How Cooking is Helping FC Dallas Winger Fafa Picault Stay in Touch With His Family

FRISCO, Texas – Ever since he was a child, FC Dallas midfielder Fafa Picault has had a love affair with food. While TV time was limited to the weekends during his childhood, one channel never failed to pique his interest.

“As a kid, I was addicted to Food Network,” Picault said. “I wasn’t allowed to watch most channels.”

Sampling the different cuisines from his diverse background helped Picault stay close to his diverse roots. Ironically, though, Picault himself rarely cooked his favorite meals.

“I did enjoy watching cooking, but I never enjoyed cooking,” Picault said. “My parents cooked great food – a lot of traditional Haitian food and Latino stuff. Being around them and watching them cook, I did learn enough, but I never really desired [to cook myself]. I think the cleaning side of it bothered me more than the actual cooking.”

That all changed with Major League’s Soccer ongoing suspension of the 2020 season. With more free time on his hands, Picault began to put his cooking abilities to the test, often showing off his spreads on social media and challenging teammates. 

“Now that I’ve had this opportunity to show off what I did learn growing up, it’s fun for me. I’m starting to create new stuff on my own,” he said. “If I get stuck, I just call my mom and she helps me out over the phone. I’ve been doing a lot more cooking than I projected this year.”

The cooking lessons from his mother are just one of the ways in which Picault is making sure to keep in constant contact with his family in New York City. As coronavirus cases continue to soar, health is always a concern.

“Everybody is safe, thank God. I’m happy about that,” Picault said. “Everybody is over there, especially on my dad’s side. My grandpa is over there. As a few people know around the league, he’s up in age, but that guy is kicking it like he’s 40. It’s all good. Everybody is safe and we are all in contact.”

Picault has always enjoyed a consistent communication line with his family, including plenty of FaceTime calls and text messages. For an athlete constantly traveling for work, communication over the phone is often the best and only option. Today, it is as important as ever for the winger.

“We’re all not following our [usual] daily routines, but at the end of the day, we have to see this as an opportunity to reconnect with each other,” Picault said. “Let’s see what everybody has been doing with their lives [and] where their heads are at.”  

So, as Picault and his teammates continue to wait out the halt in play, he will continue to build upon his skillset in the kitchen. Although the midfielder is admittedly a carnivore, making sure to prepare plenty of chicken and steak dishes, there is almost always one constant found on his plates: plátano.

“I have to have it every other day, if not every day,” Picault said.

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