Menu: South Africa


There's an old South African saying which goes: "We begin with the meal before the water is boiling." - South African Proverb Wow. There is truth to these words. Mighty truth. Sure, preparation goes into everything we do, this South African menu is no exception. But that's not what this proverb is really about. This simple line draws attention to the work that goes into our meals before we ever set out to cook. Yes, we must go to the market. But even before that, someone had to grow … [Read more...]

About the food of South Africa

Landscape scenery in Kruger National Park, South Africa. Photo by Nicolas Raymond.

Ah, South Africa. Almost since the beginning of this Adventure I've been looking forward to our week in South Africa. I'm not sure why - certainly the fairy tale mountains that tower above the white-capped ocean is one part of it. As is the bustling city centers and even the dry interior.   But another is that my dear friend Janine is from South Africa. Whenever Janine speaks of her homeland, she gets a dreamy, lost sort of look about her face. She only goes … [Read more...]

Monday Meal Review: Somalia


httpv:// Keith falls asleep quicker than I can slip under the comforter and lay my head on the pillow. Most nights, I find myself staring out the window - watching the moon arc across the sky - while Keith snores next to me. I don't know how he does it. My mind rarely clicks off... each night my head hosts a cluttered, clamoring PARTY of thoughts. Just as with the most ruckus of house guests, I'm lucky if I can control one out of ten of these thoughts. There's no … [Read more...]

Recipe: Coconut Curried Corn | Galey iyo Qumbo

When I was a little girl, I'd sit on the back porch and shuck long ears of corn, the silk wrapping around my fingers, clinging to my dress, and falling onto my shoes. Similar scenes can be found throughout southern Somalia, where men, women, and children pull together to harvest their corn. To shuck the corn. And, eventually, to grind it in wide, stone bowls, to make porridge. If the kernels don't get ground, the whole cobs might be dressed up in curried coconut milk in a dish called … [Read more...]

Recipe: Beef Suqaar

Sometimes we need a meal that can fill every corner of our heart, one that can bump out those rough and tumble emotions that bog us down... the ones that keep us from being happy. Carefree. Enter Suqaar, from Somalia. Suqaar (pronounced sooh-car) is one of Somalia's most beloved dishes and can be made with any meat, from lamb, to chicken, to beef. Generally the meat is cut into very small pieces, about 1/2" cube or smaller. The meal is then rounded out with an assortment of veggies … [Read more...]

Menu: Somalia


Somalia quite the melting pot, and this week's menu shows it. The food is peppered with a little bit of Italy (hello, tomato sauce & garlic!), a lot of east Africa (howdy, stewed meat with veggies!) and a smidgen of India (hey there, yellow, yellow turmeric!). I made this menu while Ava was home from school, so I purposefully chose recipes that were easy to make. That way I'd have more time to wiggle and spin my way through a toddler dance party. Priorities. Even with such … [Read more...]

About the food of Somalia

Boats on the beach in Merca, Somalia. -tahir turk

On the easternmost edge of Africa, next to the Indian Ocean, lies Somalia. This long, lean country is shaped rather fortuitously like the lucky number 7. Or a boomerang. The arid land is a haven for wanderers -  rugged nomads who trace trails through the shifting sands and savannas until they can find a suitable spot to set up home for yet another night. Date-dotted mountains line the northern reaches of Somalia, while the south is known for farming treats like corn, sugar cane, … [Read more...]

Monday Meal Review: Solomon Islands

httpv:// Ava's been saying something disturbing lately. If a toy breaks, she says "let's buy a new one." If fruit sits too long in the basket and gets mushy, she says "let's go to the grocery store." She says these things, even with a father who shows her how to build and repair her toys in the garage ... Even with a mother who teaches her how to make apple pies with bruised apples. Maybe she says it less than some children, but I'm still concerned, and I'm at a loss with … [Read more...]