Thursday, August 13, 2009

Tanzanian Dinner

One of my neighbors, Nick, is pretty skilled at making international cuisine. I'm a huge fan of his Moroccan chicken made with chickpeas, his Mexican food and another great French chicken dish.

The meal below is Ugali (a type of polenta) and cabbage soup. The seasonings in the soup are spicy on their own, but coconut water is added to the broth which cuts the intensity. The aroma while cooking is amazing, but the taste was a little bit of a let down. The flavors didn't stand out as much as I thought the would after smelling it (it smells a lot like Indian food - curry is used) and I think that might have to do with the combination of the sweetness from the coconut water. Adding plain water or a veggie stock may allow the intensity of the spices to remain in the flavor of the soup. As you can see from the picture, no silverware! You squish the Ugali into a spoon shape and scoop the cabbage with it. Not only is it tasty, but it's fun to eat! We complimented it with mango slices for dessert and coconut water for a drink (always from the young, green coconuts).

Nick made this meal in honor of his friend and former neighbor, Brooke. She was doing medical work in a village in Kenya and was killed in a bus accident in Tanzania. It is often that we gather with friends over meals, and seems a fitting way to quietly honor a life.

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