South African Bobotie

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Bobotie’s origin goes back to the recipe for Patinam ex lacte of Apicius, who lived in Rome some 2000 years ago. He packed layers of cooked meat in a dish. He added pine nuts, whereas South African add chopped almonds these days. Flavourants mentioned were pepper, celery seeds and asafoetida. The liquid was probably wine or grape syrup. These were cooked until all the flavours had blended, when a top layer of egg and milk was added. When the latter had set, the dish was ready to be served.[3] C. Louis Leipoldt, a well-known South African writer and gourmand, wrote that the recipe was known in Europe in the seventeenth century.[4]

The origin of the word Bobotie is contentious. The Afrikaans etymological dictionary claims that the probable origin is the Malayan word boemboe, meaning curry spices.[5]Others think it to have originated from bobotok,[6] an Indonesian dish which consisted of totally different ingredients.[7] The first recipe for bobotie appeared in a Dutch cookbook in 1609.[7] Afterwards, it was taken to South Africa and adopted by the Cape Malay community.bobotie1-1024x880

Today, bobotie is much more likely to be made with beef or lamb, although pork lends the dish extra moisture. Early recipes incorporated gingermarjoram and lemon rind; the introduction of curry powder has simplified the recipe somewhat but the basic concept remains the same. Some recipes also call for chopped onions to be added to the mixture. Traditionally, bobotie incorporates dried fruit like raisins or sultanas. It is often garnished with walnuts, chutney and bananas.[11] Although not particularly spicy, the dish incorporates a variety of flavours that can add complexity.

The Bobotie recipe was transported by South African settlers to colonies all over Africa. Today, recipes for it can be found that originated in white settler communities in KenyaBotswanaZimbabwe and Zambia

Food History: Tamarind

1024px-Tamarind21024px-Tamarind_candyTamarind (Tamarindus indica) (from Arabic: تمر هندي‎, romanized tamar hindi, “Indian date”) is a leguminous tree in the family Fabaceae indigenous to tropical Africa. The genus Tamarindus is a monotypic taxon, having only a single species.

The tamarind tree produces edible, pod-like fruit which are used extensively in cuisines around the world.

Tamarindus indica is probably indigenous to tropical Africa,[1] but has been cultivated for so long on the Indian subcontinent that it is sometimes also reported to be indigenous there.[2] It grows wild in Africa in locales as diverse as Sudan, Cameroon, Nigeria and Tanzania. In Arabia, it is found growing wild in Oman, especially Dhofar, where it grows on the sea-facing slopes of mountains. It reached South Asia likely through human transportation and cultivation several thousand years prior to the Common Era.

In the 16th century, it was heavily introduced to Mexico, and to a lesser degree to South America, by Spanish and Portuguese colonists, to the degree that it became a staple ingredient in the region’s cuisine.

 

About Purple Yam (Dioscorea alata)

Dioscorea alata, known as purple yam and many other names, is a species of yam, a tuberous root vegetable, that is bright lavender in color. It is sometimes confused with taro and the Okinawa sweet potato (Ipomoea batatas cv. Ayamurasaki). With its origins in the Asian tropics, D. alata has been known to humans since ancient times.

Because it has become naturalized throughout tropical South America, Africa, Australia, the US southeast, D. alata has many different common names from these regions. In English alone, aside from purple yam, other common names include greater yamGuyana arrowrootten-months yam,water yamwhite yamwinged yam, or simply yam.[3] In other cultures and languages it is known variously as ratalu or violet yam in Indiarasa valli kilangu in Tamilkondfal (कोंदफळ) in Marathikachil (കാച്ചില്‍) in Malayalam, and khoai mỡ in Vietnam and for the Igbo people of Southern Nigeria, yam is called ji, and purple yam is known as ji abana.

Purple yam is used in a variety of desserts, as well as a flavor for ice creammilkSwiss rollstartscookies,cakes, and other pastries. In the Philippines, it is known as ube and is eaten as a sweetened jam called ube halayá, a popular ingredient in the iced dessert called halo-halo. In Maharashtra, the stir-fried chips are eaten during religious fasting. Purple yam is also an essential ingredient in Undhiyu.

South African Tripe Recipe- A Favorite of Nelson Mandela’s

South African tripe

Nelson Mandela’s favorite dish was tripe.  It was served on his 94th birthday.  Tripe is the stomach of the cow or sheep.  It is also prepared in many other cultures.  See a Mexican recipe for Tripe(Tripas).

Ingredients for Tripe and Tomato Sauce

  •  1.5 tripe, pre-cooked and cubed
  • 5ml (1tsp) salt
  • 15ml (1T) lemon juice
  • Tomato sauce:
  • 60ml (4T) oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, diced
  • 2 stalks celery, finely chopped
  • 1 x 115g can tomato paste
  • 1 x 410g can chopped tomatoes
  • 250ml (1 cup) dry wine
  • 30ml (2T) sugar

See Directions

Plantains and Sweet Potato Recipe

Plantains and sweet potatoes are natural fit.  Both are high in fiber and natural sweet.  Even if you have a sweeter tooth, just sprinkle a half cup sugar to accentuate the natural sugars.

Candied yams are a classic soul food side dish.  Plantains are popular in African and Caribbean cuisine.

Try this combination as a great vegan side for the holidays.  Click Here for recipe.  

African Restaurant Week- DC,Maryland and Northern VA

 

2012 Inaugural Restaurants Participating in DMV African Restaurant Week:
– CHEZ AUNTIE LIBIE
– NECTAR LOUNGE & RESTAURANT
– LANGANO RESTAURANT
– KITCHEN NEAR YOU
– ROGER MILLER RESTAURANT

– GLOBAL CAFE AFRICAN GRILL

-And So Much More Tasty African Cuisine

*Special African Restaurant Week Discounts will be available*

The African Heritage Food Pyramid

The research, provided by a conglomerate of experts, nutritionists, and culinary historians, is said to connect individuals with their roots of African Diaspora that they may not have access to regularly. Featured foods on the pyramid include watermelon, mango, various types of greens, and plantains in the fruits and vegetable category. The pyramid includes a section exclusive to herbs and spices. Chicken is particularly highlighted in the meats category, and a slice of sweet potato pie is suggested as the dessert of choice. The pyramid also shows Africans playing basketball for exercise.

At first look, these food pyramids could be offensive. However, after examining the offered information, the diagram only appropriately categorizes foods regularly consumed by the ethnic group from a cultural perspective. Like the USDA food pyramid, the African Heritage Food Pyramid is meant as a tool to illustrate how much Africans should consume of the traditional foods they may already eat–while celebrating their roots in African American cuisine.  READ MORE

Tunisian Fire Chicken Kebabs Recipe

Some spice blends deliver an intoxicating fragrance. Some are brilliantly colored. And some tantalize your tongue with kebabs_1spiciness. Tunisian

Fire gives you all of the above. Roam through a Tunisian bazaar, and piney caraway, gingery cardamom, and citrusy coriander will engulf your senses. Red saffron and golden turmeric radiate the color of fire. We add crackling crystals of Moroccan sea salt to launch it all on a head-spinning voyage to North Africa. Scatter this unique blend on spit-roasted lamb, swirl them into couscous, and massage them into grilled chicken, fish and vegetables. Forget the burgers and steak, try something unique and different.  This recipe makes four.

  • 2 tablespoons and 4 pinches Tunisian Fire Chef SaltTM
  • 1 container (6 oz) plain yogurt
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 pounds boneless chicken (breast and/or thighs), cut in 2-inch chunks
  • 1 large sweet potato cut in 12 chunks
  • 4 12-inch flat metal skewers
  • Olive oil for coating kebabs

Mix the Tunisian Fire Chef Salt, yogurt, and water in a large zipper-lock bag. Add the chicken, press out air and seal; refrigerate 2 to 4 hours.

Meanwhile boil the sweet potato until tender, about 7 min; drain.

Light a grill for medium heat. Remove the chicken from the brine and pat dry. Thread 4 chicken chunks alternating with 3 sweet potato chunks on each of 4 skewers. Brush with olive oil and sprinkle with a few pinches of Tunisian Fire. Grill until chicken is resilient and sweet potatoes are soft and browned, 10 to 12 minutes, turning twice.

Tunisian Fire Quick Chef Tips:

  • Rub Tunisian Fire on sautéed chicken breast and simmer in cilantro, salsa and lemon for b’stylla-style braised chicken
  • Mix Tunisian Fire with yogurt, garlic and olive oil into a marinade for lamb or poultry.
  • Blend Tunisian Fire, unsalted butter, and orange marmalade and serve with grilled chicken or seafood
  • Rub Tunisian Fire on grilled salmon steaks
  • Mix Tunisian Fire with ground lamb or turkey for exotic burgers or meatballs
  • Steep couscous with Tunisian Fire, toasted almonds, and golden raisins.
  • Sprinkle Tunisian Fire on grilled bananas, serve with ice cream
  • Sauté Tunisian Fire and shrimp, simmer in tomato sauce, serve over rice
  • Melt a pad of Tunisian Fire butter over baked sweet potatoes

Recipe can be reprinted with the following:
Recipe copyright Andrew Schloss and David Joachim, www.ChefSalt.com.

 

West African Spicy Scotch Eggs Recipe

My dad was good friends with a Liberian gentleman and after coming home from a party he would bring my sister an I plate of African cuisine.  I loved the Scotch egg, at the time I didn’t know the name, but only that it was good.  However, the Scotch egg has its root in London and it is quite possible with an influence from India.  The spicy take on Scotch eggs has the West African influence as this dish is a staple in many of the countries of West Africa -Crystal J, MCCN Editor

Ingredients

  • 3 hard-cooked eggs – chilled
  • 1-cup spicy breakfast sausage meat
  • 1/4-cup flour
  • 1 eggs, beaten
  • 1/4-cup fine bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of Chilli sauce
  • Vegetable oil for frying

See Directions