All posts filed under: Malawi

peace garden

Monday Meal Review: Malawi

THE SCENE I look at the cooled, heart-shaped biscuits from Malawi. The electric, sunny color stuns me. But there is no time to dilly dally. I am late. Quickly, I tuck two of the hearts into a ziplock baggie and pour Ava into her oversized winter coat. The fur lining makes her look like a little lion. I roar at her as we jog to the car. She giggles. When I walk into the Global Garden classroom at Rosa Parks Elementary school twenty minutes later, a dozen 3rd and 4th graders look over. They are seated in a circle on the floor, shoes off. One student shows me to my seat – the furthest away from the exits. They’ve done their homework. We are about to sample Japanese “espresso jello drink”  (from back when I cooked Japan), except their version is kid-friendly (a.k.a. caffeine free), made with mocha flavored cocoa. I spend the next hour answering their questions about the blog and my family. I am moved and honored by their interest. The most touching part …

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Malawi Peanut Balls | Mtedza

I adore when this around the world culinary journey takes me by surprise. Here we are, the week of Valentine’s day, and I’m in Malawi – practically the heart of Africa. I had it in my head that I probably wouldn’t find anything particularly appropriate for Valentine’s Day. Turns out I was wrong. While I didn’t dig up any chocolate kisses or champagne mixers, I did find the lovely Sunrise Biscuits and today’s addictive groundnut cookie (that’s what Africans call peanuts). Thank goodness, because Keith prefers a good cookie to nearly any sweet. These cookies are dusted in a snowfall of confectioner’s sugar and, when bitten, give way with a satisfying crumble. The broken bits of peanut pretty much seal the deal – these are wonderful with a cup of tea or coffee. P.S. I’d be wrong not to tell you that, as with any good cookie, Keith made himself sick by eating most of these in one sitting. That’s a pretty good review, if you ask me. Makes 18 cookies Ingredients: 1/2 cup butter, …

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Dipping sauce with Chippies | Tsabola

Today’s fun recipe is a 5 minute African salsa.  You’ll need two accessories to make this snack completely Malawi, however: blue pastic bags and your most favorite potato wedges. Here’s how it works: simply chop up onions, tomatoes, hot peri peri peppers (I used Thai bird chilies). Mix it all around with loads of salt. While I normally go light on the salt, you need to use a heavy hand when making Tsabola … as Brittany (Be-ing Brittany), a Community Health Advisor in Malawi, tells me “Malawians eat a lot of salt to help stay hydrated with little water.” Traditionally Malawians eat Tsabola with Chippies (deep fried potato wedges), but I decided to go healthy and baked my “chippies” (just with a bag of frozen potato wedges). The choice is yours. For extra fun, epic bonus points, be sure to serve the “Chippies” out of blue plastic bags. That’s the tradition, Brittany tells me. A very pretty tradition, if you ask me. Happy Friday! 12345 Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Traditionally Malawians eat …

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Sunrise Biscuits | Mbatata

Valentine’s Day is for lazy mornings. For PJ’s all day. Breakfast in bed with your favorite cup of tea. Sunny smiles. And then there’s real life. Husbands go to work. Your cat uses your favorite chair as a scratching post. And, over the course of 45 seconds, your child has the following conversation with you, in regards to said cat: “I want to sit there” “It’s my turn to play with that toy” “He poked me with his paw” “Wahhhhhhhhh” The main difference between this and having two kids? I can put one of them outside to play. Unsupervised. Life as a mom might not be filled with roses on my bedspread and chocolates under my pillow, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. And, if I really am honest with myself, I can conjure up a few sunny smiles on Valentine’s Day… especially if I make these Sunrise Biscuits. This sweet potato biscuit from Malawi looks exactly like the cheery glow of a romantic sunrise. The vivid orange tuber, so popular and easy …

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Menu: Malawi

When I looked at the calendar and realized Malawi week at the Global Table led right up to Valentine’s Day, I thought how ironic. Surely Malawi’s only exposure, if any, to Valentine’s Day comes from tourists and international volunteers. I’ll never be able to find any food to fit this romantic season we’re in. Boy, was I wrong.  A quick peek online showed me that, in fact, many Malawians do know and think about Valentine’s Day. This video exploring the topic made me smile. So get ready for an African/Malawian Valentine’s Day menu… cobbled together by yours truly. All the recipes come together very quickly, so you can spend more time loving the one you’re with. What sounds good to you? Sunrise Biscuits (Mbatata) [Recipe] Spend a quiet morning eating these sweet potato biscuits seasoned with the slightest hint of ginger. If you dare to be super cutesy (do it!), use cookie cutters to shape the biscuits into puffy hearts. Dipping sauce for Chippies (Tsabola) [Recipe] A simple concoction for dipping potato wedges, very similar to salsa. The main …

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Lake Malawi. Photo by Steve Evans.

About the food of Malawi

Malawi undulates and ambles along eastern Africa – a collection of soft rolling hills and glistening lake waters, dotted with thatched villages, dusty courtyards, and a healthy array of vivid, green trees. The land is striking and, yet, completely new to me. When it comes to mealtime, I was immediately intrigued by the street food. First, there’s grilled mice, boiled goat liver, banana fritters (zitumbuwa) and chippies. The first two I witnessed in travel videos. I read about chippies on Be-ing Brittany. Brittany is a Community Health Advisor in Malawi. We emailed back and forth, during which time I learned that chippies are simply crisp, deep-fried potoato wedges, served with tsabola [Recipe], a firey dipping sauce (most street food is served with tsabola). Here is a typical chippies stand in action: While (select) street food is enough to make me board the first plane to Malawi, most people eat a simple diet of boiled maize called Nsima or Ufa (not unlike the papa we made for Lesotho), sometimes with peanuts added, beans, or fish from the giant lake. The …

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