Monday, February 9, 2009

GOOD Kenyan Food

In the past, I have been quite negative about Kenyan food. I am pleased to report that I have found a Kenyan dish that I think is delicious, and has no American equivalent. It’s a Kikuyu dish (Kikuyu is Kenya’s largest tribe) called mukimo. It looks like green mashed potatoes with bits of corn in it, which is almost exactly what it is.

The ingredients of mukimo are green maize, pumpkin leaves, Irish potatoes, and (sometimes) green peas. These ingredients are boiled, and although I took notes on how it is made, they are slightly confusing and I can’t quite figure out what should be boiled with what. It appears the Irish potatoes should be boiled separately. I’ll try to take the time to watch how it is made so I can make it myself. I’ve been meaning to do that with ugali and chipati as well but I haven’t gotten around to it.

The first time I remember having mukimo was at the Fun Day put on by the student council last term to welcome new students. We had a ton of food, of all different kinds. More recently I had mukimo at the Tamu Café, a little place on-campus that serves lunch for very reasonable prices (usually less than $3), and I had it with mbuzi choma, which is goat. Goat is pretty good, although I have found it very tough to chew, and my mouth is always sore afterwards. It was also served with kachumbari, which consists of chopped tomatoes, onions and dhania. Dhania is their name for cilantro. Basically, this combination of food is amazing. Goat I could substitute for another meat if goat is not readily available, although I do find something cool about eating goat, but this meal is one I would like to add to my future diet. So far the only Kenyan food I have any interest in adding to my future diet. There you have it: a good Kenyan dish.

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