Maize - The Choice of the Nation

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Maize is one of the basic staple foods eaten across the entire continent of Africa! You will pass huge plantations everywhere on your travels.   Large green stems taller than a person occupying any available piece of earth.

Once it was picked, it was traditionally stored in a huge elevated grain store, or granary.   Maize can be cooked on the cob in many different ways, including being steamed, roasted or boiled. 

To produce the maize flour, firstly remove the kernels from the cob and dry them; then they are sent to the ‘posho’ mill to have the outer husks removed and then finally to be ground into flour.

Maize flour is consumed on a daily basis in most households; for breakfast it is boiled into a runny porridge and drank from a gourd or calabash, the flour is sometimes mixed with other flours such as millet, sorghum or amaranth.

For main meals it is cooked into a much stiffer porridge; to cook the flour is quite an art, the water must be boiling furiously and then the maize flour is added, the stiff porridge mixture quickly stirred to remove any lumps. It is then covered, the heat reduced and left to steam, being turned occasionally until ready, which is when the pan forms a golden crust on the bottom and a familiar aroma is given off. Cooked maize flour is known by many different names such as ugali, sadza, pap, fufu, sima and mealie meal to name but a few.

Once ready turn it out onto a plate and cover, let it sit for about 10 minutes before dividing into portions and serving. It's a great accompaniment to beef or chicken stew, lentils or just simply with a side dish of spinach or kale that has been cooked with onions and tomatoes.

Travel with Safari Joe and we will cook you a delicious traditional dinner including Ugali!

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