Find your true life work in Africa.

Find your true life work in Africa. Africa is home to more unknown history than known. A map of Africa does not begin to show the vastness of people, culture, food, living and ancient history of the African continent. Established 2008 Chic African Culture is a learning tool to meet the demand for better education about the entire continent of Africa.


Find your true life work in Africa.

A lion that is caged will hate the one that is free. - with love from your ancestors

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Sweet Green Plantain Recipe

Explore Zimbabwe Food, South African Food, and more food of Africa

Sweet Green Plantain Recipe
Easy Green Plantain Recipe

Plantain leaves are widely used as plates and for lining cooking pits and for wrapping food for cooking or storage.

Green plantains are simply the younger immature stage of the plantain fruit. Nearly all edible plantain plant varieties are derived from two wild species, M. acuminate and M. balbisiana. Plantains are one staple food of Africa sometimes eaten with fish or meat. Plantains tend to be firmer and lower in sugar content than dessert bananas.

Sweet Green Plantain Recipe

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture
African food recipe
Making a delicious plantain recipe
Plantains are a staple food in the tropical regions of the world, treated in much the same way as potatoes and with a similar neutral flavor and texture when the unripe fruit is cooked by steaming, boiling or frying.

TV chefs around the world have helped promote the humble plantain into celebrity status.

Serves 4
African food

Sweet Green Plantain Recipe

3 green plantains
¼ cup rice flour
¼ cup whole milk
1/4 cup raw sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
5 cups water

Cut off the tips of each plantain and make an incision along the whole length. Slowly slide your thumb along the incision and remove the skin.

Chop the plantain place into blender. Add flour and ½ cup water blend for 2 minutes until smooth (add more water if needed).

Bring the remaining cups of water to boil in a large saucepan reduce to medium heat. Add the plantain mixture to the boiling water and stir for about 3 minutes or until your desired thickness. Add remaining ingredients. Let porridge simmer for about 15 minutes serve warm.

Plantain market in Africa

Did you know?
Plantain is rich in carbohydrates, vitamins A, C and B group as well as minerals such as calcium and iron. Plantains provide up to 35 percent of the total calories in the diets of Africans.

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Saturday, November 25, 2017

Swahili Proverbs on Acting Foolishly

Swahili proverbs
Swahili proverbs unveil real world concepts of being human in this world. African quotes on acting and thinking like a fool, the wise can learn more from a fool than a fool thinks they can learn from the wise.

African snake charmers

Swahili proverbs address subjects such as unity and cooperation, responsibility, conflict, obedience and disobedience, good and evil and acting foolishly.

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

War in Congo Africa
Swahili African Proverbs on Acting Foolishly

African Proverbs

If there is one person who is to be pitied most in life, it is the fool.

  • Foolishness precedes cleverness, cleverness follows.

  • The elephant can be tripped by creeping plant.

  • Fools may tell little lies small as a thorn but, they will grow to the size of a spear and kill you.

  • No matter how much you feed a lizard it cannot become a crocodile.

  • Mursi Woman

  • The quarrelsome fool does not inherit from his relative.

  • Those who play with fire have yet to be burned.

  • A biting fly has no friends.

  • The mouth of a fool is responsible for discord among people.

  • Freshly cut firewood laughs at the one that is already burning, not knowing that the same fate will befall it.

  • The mother deprived of her wits will open her door to a hyena.

  • A falling tree will cause others to fall.

Did you know these are our favorite non African quotes about fools? 

Wise men talk because they have something to say; fools, because they have to say something. - Plato 

Fools rush in where angels fear to tread. - Alexander Pope 

Take all the fools out of this world and there wouldn't be any fun living in it, or profit. - Josh Billings 

Arguing with a fool proves there are two. - Doris M. Smith 

There is a foolish corner in the brain of the wisest man. - Aristotle

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Thursday, November 23, 2017

Moroccan Orange Blossom Water Baklava Recipe

Orange Blossom Water Baklava Recipe
Orange Blossom Water Recipe

Baklava is filo dough stacked with honey and nuts drizzled with orange blossom water syrup to make a sweet traditional Moroccan North African dessert. 

Baking pastries in North Africa

The sweet history of Moroccan Baklava is as diverse as the number of ways it is prepared throughout North Africa. Hint: Filo dough and puff pastry are not interchangeable in this recipe. Filo dough is a dough that is stretched to a semitransparent sheet and frozen. Puff pastry is dough thats layered with butter.

Moroccan Orange Blossom Water Baklava Recipe

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture
Moroccan food recipe
Orange Blossom Water Baklava Recipe
Learn how to make an easy Moroccan North African Orange Blossom Water Baklava recipe with filo dough.

Moroccan Orange Blossom Water Baklava Recipe

Serves 12
African food

One 16 ounce package phyllo dough
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups chopped walnuts
1 cup melted butter
Baklava Syrup
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup water
½ cup orange blossom honey
¼ teaspoon orange blossom water

Preheat oven to 350° F. Butter a 9x13 inch baking dish.
Mix cinnamon and walnuts in a medium bowl, set aside.
Unroll phyllo cut into two equal halves. Cover phyllo with a slightly moist cloth while assembling to keep from drying out. Place 2 sheets of phyllo in the bottom of the prepared dish, brush generously with butter, and sprinkle cinnamon and walnut mixture on top.
Repeat layers.
Cut baklava into desired serving sizes bake 45-50 minutes.
Combine remaining ingredients in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring to a boil, and reduce heat to low.
When the baklava is removed from the oven immediately evenly pour syrup over the finished pastry. Allow cooling before serving.

Orange Blossom Water Baklava

Did you know?
Ilma Zhar or orange flower water is a clear strong, distillation of fresh bitter-orange blossoms. In Morocco, orange blossom water is called Ilma Zhar, a phrase in Arabic meaning flower water.

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Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Ngorongoro Crater African Garden of Eden

Ngorongoro Crater African Garden of Eden

Garden of Eden Africa
The spectacular landscape of Ngorongoro Crater together with its remarkable concentration of wildlife is one of the greatest natural wonders of the planet and the African Garden of Eden.
Two zebras playing in the Ngorongoro Crater, Tanzania

African Garden of Eden The Ngorongoro Crater

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

The Ngorongoro Crater is referred to as Africa's Garden of Eden.

Ngorongoro crater is the largest unbroken caldera in the world. The crater, together with the Olmoti and Empakaai craters are part of the eastern Rift Valley, whose volcanism dates back to the late Mesozoic to the early Tertiary periods and is famous for its geology. The property also includes Laetoli and Olduvai Gorge, which contain an important paleontological record related to human evolution.

Facts About Animals of Africa

Buffalo in Ngorongoro Crater Tanzania Africa Ngorongoro Crater is an extinct volcanic caldera about 75 miles or 120 km west of the town of Arusha Tanzania. The caldera measures between 10 and 12 miles or 16 and 19 km across and has an area of 102 square miles or 264 square km. The Ngorongoro Crater has a heavily forested rim which rises 2,000 feet or 610 meters above the caldera floor to an elevation of 7,500 feet or 2,286 meters thus the name the African Garden of Eden. Ngorongoro Crater is thought to have formed about 2.5 million years ago from a large active volcano whose cone collapsed inward after a major eruption, leaving the present massive, unbroken caldera.

Over eight decades of archaeological investigation of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, which includes the Ngorongoro Crater, provided substantial evidence of human evolution and environment changing aspects of living including footprints dating back nearly 4 million years.

Maasai teen posing for a selfieThe Ngorongoro Crater caldera floor is mainly open grassland home to a diverse range of animals including elephants, black rhinoceroses, leopards, buffalo, zebras, warthogs, wildebeests, Grant’s and Thomson’s gazelles, and the densest population of lions in the world. Lake Magadi, a 40 square mile soda lake during dry seasons is 80 percent covered in soda ash ringed by extinct volcanoes and is world famous as a habitat for great flocks of pink flamingos.

The 2009 Ngorogoro Wildlife Conservation Act placed new restrictions on human settlement and subsistence farming in the Crater, displacing Maasai pastoralists, most of whom had been relocated to Ngorongoro from their ancestral lands to the north when the British colonial government established Serengeti National Park in 1959. However, the Ngorongoro Crater is a major tourist attraction since the 1930s when a lodge was built on its rim.

Ngorongoro Crater caldera floor is mainly open grassland home to a diverse range of animals
Did you know?
From The Journal of Robert Ripley of Ripley’s Believe It Or Not
“After 80 miles of bumping along, which might have aided our digestion, but was a little hard on the tops of our heads, we saw a great expanse of snow. Of course it wasn’t snow. It was lake Magadi, that famous Lake of Soda, and one of the natural wonders of the world.” – Robert Ripley, 1933

The soda from Ngorongoro Crater lake Magadi is a coal color when harvested, but after processing becomes white. Soda ash is used domestically as a detergent and in the manufacture of glass and is an essential salt in giving ramen noodles their distinct flavor.

Facts About Animals of Africa

Zebras and flamingos of the African Garden of Eden in the Ngorongoro Crater

Ngorongoro Crater Facts

The Ngorongoro Conservation Area which includes the Ngorongoro Crater spans vast expanses of highland plains, savanna, savanna woodlands and forests, from the plains of the Serengeti National Park in the northwest, to eastern Great Rift Valley.

Ngorongoro crater documents the development of stone technology and the transition to the use of iron. The area is seen to have the potential to reveal more evidence concerning modern humans, modern behavior and human ecology.
The variations in climate, landforms and altitude have resulted in several overlapping ecosystems and distinct habitats, with short grass plains, highland catchment forests, savanna woodlands, montane long grass plains and high open moorlands.
Ngorongoro Conservation Area is home to a population of some 25,000 large animals including the densest known population of lions.
No hunting is permitted in Ngorongoro Conservation Area, but poaching of wildlife is a continuing threat.

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Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Skin Whitening Creams Erasing All Traces of Dark Skin In Africa

Skin Whitening Creams Erasing All Traces of Dark Skin In Africa

Skin Whitening Lightening in Africa
Light, bright and damn near white, skin whitening creams and soaps are popular in Africa among men and women despite cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes and mercury poisoning health risks.
Skin Whitening Group of Friends in Africa, for centuries there has been an image that if you are pale or whiter, it means you are pretty.

Skin Whitening Creams In Africa Used For Erasing All Traces of Dark Skin

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

Mercury is one of the top ten chemicals of major public health concern however skin whitening and lightening creams and soaps are a billion dollar business in Africa. For centuries there has been an image that if you have pale or whiter skin it means you are prettier or more handsome than you are with dark skin.

The World Health Organization has reported that Nigerians are the highest users of skin whitening and lightening products; 77 percent of Nigerian women use the products on a regular basis. They are followed by Togo 59 percent, South Africa 35 percent, Senegal 27 percent, and Mali 25 percent women reported to use skin lightening products on a regular basis. Studies have found that men are also bleaching their skin.

How skin whitening and lightening creams and soaps work

Mercury is a common ingredient found in skin lightening soaps and creams. Mercury salts inhibit the formation of melanin, resulting in a lighter skin tone. Skin lightening soaps and creams are commonly used in certain African among dark-skinned populations. Skin lightening products come in different forms, including soaps and creams; the soap is often sold as antiseptic soap. These products are supposed to be applied to the skin to dry overnight. It is reported that some women use skin-lightening products for as long as 20 years. The main adverse effect of the inorganic mercury contained in skin lightening soaps and creams is kidney damage. Mercury in skin lightening products may also cause skin rashes, skin discoloration and scarring.

A story by the BBC on Congolese hair stylist Jackson Marcelle says “He has been using special injections to bleach his skin for the past 10 years.” Each injection lasts for six months. Marcelle - known in this busy community as Africa's Michael Jackson - says his mother used to apply creams on him when he was young in order to make him appear "less black".

Black mans hands

The World Health Organization has reported that Nigerians are the highest users of skin-lightening products"I like white people. Black people are seen as dangerous; that's why I don't like being black. People treat me better now because I look like I'm white," he adds.

"I pray every day and I ask God, 'God why did you make me black?' I don't like being black. I don't like black skin," Jackson Marcelle says.

Ugly Dark Skin 

Psychologists say there are also underlying reasons why people bleach their skin - but low self-esteem and, to some degree self-hate, are a common thread. Entrenched in the minds of many Africans from a young age is the adage "if it's white, it's all right", a belief that has chipped away at the self-esteem of millions. Until this changes, no amount of official bans or public information campaigns will stop people risking serious damage to their health in the pursuit of what they think is beauty.

Mercury containing skin lightening products are hazardous to health and as a result have been officially banned in many countries throughout Africa. In 2015 Ivory Coast or Côte d'Ivoire banned all skin-whitening creams and lotions over fears that the cosmetic products can cause long-term health problems.

Côte d'Ivoire is not the first country to impose a ban or take action against the products. In South Africa, products containing more than two percent hydroquinone have been illegal since the 1980s. However, mercury-containing skin lightening products are still widely available on the internet. Also, these products are sometimes illegally smuggled into Africa and sold at local markets in towns and villages. These soaps and creams may contain about 1 - 10 percent of mercury, and just 1 percent mercury levels pose a serious health hazard.

The amount or concentration of mercury in a product may be labelled on the packaging or in the ingredient list.

However, companies selling products that contain mercury, do not always list it as an ingredient.

Names to look for include
· Mercury
· Hg
· Mercuric Iodide
· Mercurous Chloride
· Ammoniated Mercury
· Amide Chloride Of Mercury
· Quicksilver
· Cinnabaris
· Mercury Sulfide
· Hydrargyri Oxydum Rubrum
· Mercury Oxide
· Mercury Iodide
· May Say “Poison”; Directions to avoid contact with silver, gold, rubber, and aluminum

Did you know?
Hg is the chemical symbol of Mercury. Mercury is contained in many products, including: Batteries, Measuring devices such as thermometers and barometers, Electric switches and relays in equipment, Lamps (including some types of light bulbs), Dental amalgam for dental fillings, Skin-lightening products and other cosmetics, and Pharmaceuticals.

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Friday, November 17, 2017

Zimbabwe Military Courteous Coup of Robert Mugabe

Zimbabwe Military Courteous Coup of Robert Mugabe

What's Going On With Zimbabwe Robert Mugabe

Zimbabwe Executive President Robert Gabriel Mugabe has been in power since December 31, 1987 and his 40-year reign is ending with a courteous coup courtesy of Zimbabwe Army General Chiwenga and staff. However Mugabe as of November 18, 2017 has rejected stepping down as Zimbabwe President, Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe first prime minister, has been the country's only ruler as president since 1987. On November 22, 2017 Mugabe announced he is stepping down as Zimbabwe president.

What's Going On With Zimbabwe Military Coup of 93 year old Robert Mugabe In Africa

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

Many leaders do not support Mugabe staying in power, saying "We are presidents, we are not monarchs"

Robert Mugabe, Zimbabwe first prime minister, has been the country's only ruler as president since 1987 and has dominated the country's political system since independence in 1980. His chaotic land redistribution campaign, which began in 1997 and intensified after 2000, crippled farmers and thus the economy, and ushered in widespread shortages of basic commodities. Ignoring international condemnation, Mugabe was said to have rigged the 2002 presidential election to ensure his reelection.

In 2005, the capital city of Zimbabwe, Harare embarked on Operation Restore Order, supposedly an urban justification program, which resulted in the destruction of the homes or businesses of 700,000 mostly poor supporters of Mugabe opposition party.
A group of Zimbabwe expatriates protest against the dictator Mugabe outside the Zimbabwe embassy.

Mugabe in 2007 instituted price controls on all basic commodities causing panic buying and leaving store shelves empty for months. General elections held in March 2008 contained irregularities where once again Mugabe opposition party protested. Mugabe was reelected president in 2013 in balloting that was severely flawed and internationally condemned. In 2017, Zimbabweans are cautious, but hopeful that, after almost four decades of often-brutal rule, Mugabe who has governed for longer than many of his fellow citizens have been alive could be coming to an end.

Military vehicles were spotted on roads leading to the Zimbabwean capital Harare on Tuesday November 14, sparking rumors that a military coup was in the air. Later, soldiers seized the headquarters of Zimbabwe's national broadcaster ZBC and loud explosions and gunfire were heard.

Major General Sibusiso Moyo then read out a statement on national television, assuring the nation that President Mugabe and his family were safe. The military was only targeting what he called "criminals" around the president, he said, denying that there had been a coup.

According to a government source with direct knowledge of the talks, Mugabe had pushed back on a deal to replace him with an interim leader, arguing there would be a constitutional crisis if he left before his term expired.

On Thursday November 16, 2017 Mugabe was pictured smiling as he took part in talks with an army general and South African government ministers at State House but sources suggested he might be resisting pressure to resign. It is clear General Chiwenga and the army is in charge in Zimbabwe. However, in public, Mugabe is still referred to as his Excellency, in Zimbabwean culture; the elderly are treated with respect. Mugabe made his first public appearance since Zimbabwe army took over. The 93-year-old Mugabe had been under house arrest for days. Mugabe walked slowly up a red carpet and joined the crowd in singing the national anthem, then opened the graduation ceremony at Zimbabwe Open University, where he is chancellor. The event was apparently designed to convey a business-as-usual atmosphere the generals pulling the strings in Harare are desperate not to give the impression they are orchestrating an unconstitutional coup.

The talks with the General Chiwenga and current Zimbabwe President Mugabe have broken down. Frustrated with the lack of progress, the commander of the defense forces, General Chiwenga, set a deadline of Friday November 17, 2017 for Mugabe to agree to a deal, "or we do it the hard way," the source said. The military has denied that the events of this week amount to a coup, but residents were still unclear as to who is leading the country of Zimbabwe. On November 22, 2017 Mugabe announced he is stepping down as Zimbabwe president.
A woman waits to be tested at a cholera treatment centre in the Budiriro District, that was badly affected by cholera, in Harare, Zimbabwe

Robert Mugabe's ex-deputy “the Crocodile” Emmerson Mnangagwa, the man he fired last month is sworn in as Zimbabwe's president in Harare, Zimbabwe, November 24, 2017.

Did you know?
Zimbabwe takes its name from the Kingdom of Zimbabwe of the 13th-15th century and its capital of Great Zimbabwe, the largest stone structure in pre-colonial southern Africa.

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Thursday, November 16, 2017

Growing Apples In Africa

Growing Apples In Africa

Africa Apples,
Homegrown apples are growing well in African countries such as Egypt, Morocco, Southwest Cameroon, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Libya, Tanzania, Uganda, Nigeria, Madagascar, Algeria, Tunisia, DR Congo, South Africa, Rwanda, and Zambia.
Growing Apples In Africa

Growing Apples In Africa

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

Apples love to grow in African soil.

Apples cannot grow in Africa, this belief, as well as many others about Africa, are falsehoods. Being predominantly a temperate fruit requiring very low temperatures, the apple fruit has for a long time been considered exotic but yes, Apples are grown commercially for local consumption and export within numerous East, West and Southern African countries. Homegrown apples are growing well in African countries such as Egypt, Morocco, Southwest Cameroon, Kenya, Zimbabwe, Libya, Tanzania, Uganda, Nigeria, Madagascar, Algeria, Tunisia, DR Congo, South Africa, Rwanda, and Zambia.

Currently, there are more than 1,000 farmers in Kabale Western Uganda who have started growing apples to supply local markets as well as the neighboring Countries of Burundi, DR Congo, Rwanda, and Tanzania. During the 2015 production season, Africa accounted for 29 percent of total apple exports from South Africa, which makes Africa the country’s second-largest apple export destination.

The majority of South African apples are grown in the Elgin Valley in the Western Cape South African whose apple exports in Africa are destined for West Africa, Europe, and Asia. South African most popular apple varieties are Golden Delicious, which accounts for 75 percent of the total volume shipped. The remaining varieties Starking, Granny Smith, Galas, Pink Lady, and Cripps Red make-up the remaining 25 percent of South African apple exports. Fuji apples are also popular.

Apples growing in Uganda Africa

Commercial growing of apple, a major crop in temperate countries, is slowly taking shape in Kenya, as improved varieties are unveiled. Arguably the most famous apple grower in Africa is Peter Wambugu Kago from Nyeri County Kenya who trained as a mechanic after working as a farm hand for several years. At first, Wambugu started by growing coffee, tomatoes, tree tomatoes, and passion fruits among other crops on his two-acre piece of land but then he decided to try his hand in apple business after he won a bid to supply fruits to Mt Kenya Safari Club in Nanyuki Kenya.

Kuffel Creek Apple Nursery located in Uganda explains growing apples in Africa as "It is a shock to many people that yes, apples can be grown in a tropical climate, and have been grown by the millions for decades. This goes against the conventional wisdom that apples need between 800-1,000 hours below 7° C. (45° F.) in order to break dormancy and set fruit. However, experience has shown that using tropic apple culture methods can fool the tree into thinking that its chilling-hour needs- whatever they may be- have been satisfied and it will then blossom and fruit. You still must be choosy about which varieties to plant and the tree will act much different from in a cold climate, but the result is crisp, juicy, tasty apples.”

Did you know?
Starking apple variety originated in the USA in the 1920s and was introduced to South Africa in the 1940s. It is a mutation of Red Delicious and is harvested in early March in South Africa.

Golden Delicious was found as a seedling in West Virginia, USA, in the 1880s and introduced into South Africa in 1930 by Molteno Brothers of Grabouw. Golden delicious is harvested from late February to mid-March in South Africa.

Granny Smith apples derive its name from a real granny Smith, Mrs. Maria Ann Smith, who discovered this seedling in her garden in Australia in the 1860s. The first plantings in South Africa date back to 1919. Granny Smith is in full bloom from middle to late October and is harvested from late March to late April.

The Real Granny Smith Apple
Read more facts and food recipes about Africa
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Brinjal and Eggplant are two different words that refer to the same fruit.

An apple tree can grow up to 30 feet tall and can take 6 years to bear its first fruit or a dwarf or semi-dwarf trees which can grow from 6 to 20 feet tall.

West African Ginger Beer Recipe

Cape Malay Chicken Curry Supermarket Meal Recipe

How to Cut a Mango

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Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Chicken Alecha Mild Ethiopian Stew

Chicken Alecha Mild Ethiopian Stew
Chicken Ethiopian Stew Recipe

Chicken stew

Chicken Alecha Mild Ethiopian Stew

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture
Chicken Ethiopian Stew
African food recipe
Making bread in Ethiopia
Healthy Chicken Alecha is an Ethiopian stew that is not spicy and nothing like it's tremendously spicy cousin Ethiopian Doro Wat stew.

Chicken Alecha Mild Ethiopian Stew Recipe

Serves 4
Ethiopian food

4 chicken skinless thighs
1/2 small head red cabbage, shredded
2 onions, sliced
2 cups baby carrots
2 large tomatoes, diced
1 large sweet potato, finely diced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon cayenne powder
Salt and pepper to taste
Water to cover
One peeled hardboiled egg

In a large pot with a lid, add all ingredients except egg, placing the meat on top, cover with water, place lid and simmer covered for one hour. Serve with boiled egg on the side, Ethiopian Injera bread.

Chicken Alecha Mild Ethiopian Stew Recipe

Did you know?
Ethiopia is the second most populous country in Africa and imports a large portion of its goods from China 30 percent, US 8 percent, India 7 percent, and Kuwait 5 percent.

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Wednesday, November 8, 2017

History of Rice in West Africa No One Knows About

History of Rice in West Africa No One Knows About

Rice, a staple food in many African countries. Rice has been cultivated in West Africa for over 3,000 years, however, about 450 years ago, the Asian species, Oryza sativa, was introduced to Africa from Asia and the demand for Asian rice has outpaced the demand for African rice among Africans.

Working in East African rice fields

Secret History of Rice in West Africa

African rice, whose scientific name is Oryza glaberrima, is unique to Africa.

Rice is not only a vital part of African culture but also a favorite food. Long-grain white rice imported from Thailand and Vietnam are more widely consumed by most West Africans.

Since 1960, when most West African countries were gaining independence, the total population of the region was just over 90 million but in the course of over 50 years, the population nearly quadrupled, reaching 342 million by 2015. Such huge population growth has a major impact on agriculture and on the demand of its food resources, especially rice.

African rice, whose scientific name is Oryza glaberrima, is unique to AfricaAccording to the Africa Rice Center, long-grain white rice dominates the markets in most of West Africa. Preferences for broken rice differs between countries. In Ghana, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Mali Senegal and Mauritania most consumers prefer rice broken.

Broken rice is sold as a low-quality; low-cost product in most markets, but is the preferred rice product. Parboiled rice can be either of high quality with a golden tinge or low quality with a dark color.

Burkina Faso transforms a large share of its rice production into parboiled rice; this is done mostly by women. Nigeria is one of the largest importers of fully milled, high-quality parboiled rice and Liberia is one of West Africa’s top importers of low-quality parboiled rice.

Since 60 percent of West Africans are projected to live in urban areas by 2020 and the number of cities with more than 100, 000 inhabitants will grow from 78 in 2006 to more than 200 in 2030, demand for imported staples such as rice is likely to increase. This requires a significantly upgraded staple food processing capacity in the West African region.

In Mali, rice is the third most important commodity in value terms, after livestock and cotton. Since 1985, rice production in West Africa has doubled, but consumption of rice has increased even more rapidly. This has resulted in the increasing dependence of West African countries on rice imports.

A population of 80 percent farmers live on the Danyi plateau in Togo cultivation of upland red and white mixed colors rice is a specialty. The Danyi plateau farmers use the indigenous African rice, which was domesticated about 3,500 years ago in West Africa. 

African rice, whose scientific name is Oryza glaberrima, is unique to Africa. About 450 years ago, the Asian species, Oryza sativa, was introduced to Africa from Asia. A few African farmers, such as the villagers in the Danyi plateau, have continued to grow African rice because of its adaptability and its ceremonial and cultural value.

Cooking rice in SenegalAfrica eats 13 million tons of milled rice per year, of which 40 percent is imported. Nearly 21 of the 39 rice-producing countries in Africa import between 50 and 99 percent of their rice for consumption. 

According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, Africa's inability to reach self-sufficiency in rice is the result of several major constraints in the rice industry which requires urgent addressing. In order to stem the trend of over-reliance on imports and to satisfy the increasing demand for rice in areas of West Africa.

African rice did you know?

Rice has been cultivated for more than 3,000 years in parts of Africa.

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Sunday, November 5, 2017

Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engravings

Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engravings

Matsieng Footprints
Learn all about the Matsieng Footprints of a Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engravings in southeast Botswana.
Matsieng Footprints of a Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engravings in southeast Botswana.

Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engravings

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

Matsieng where life began in Botswana Africa.

Botswana Matsieng Footprints of a Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engraving

About a 45 minute drive from the capital of Botswana, Gaborone, just after the village of Rasesa in the Kgatleng District of Botswana lays a Giant One-Legged Man Rock Engravings u-shaped footprints. Matsieng is one of the sacred ancestors of the local Southern Sotho Tswana people.
Footprints of a Giant One-Legged Man
Local Botswana folklore tells of the Matsieng Footprints in a slab of sandstone punctured by two deep holes and sacred rock engravings are that the first ancestor of the Batswana, Matsieng who was a one-legged giant man who climbed out of one of the deep holes followed by his people, and their livestock and wildlife.

The Matsieng Footprints are now very faint were probably made by Khoe herders, and date to the beginning of the second millennium. Rock engravings or petroglyphs are the main attraction at the Matsieng Footprints site but there is controversy.

Petroglyphs are images created by removing part of a rock surface by incising, picking, carving, or abrading, as a form of rock art. Respecting sacred history, the Matsieng animal and human footprints are thought to really be petroglyphs created by the ancestors of the Khoisan (San) people during the Late Stone Age. Water holes and caves are sacred to the Khoisan people especially for rainmaking ceremonies and rituals.

San people rightly choose to call themselves KhoisanThe oldest gene pattern amongst modern humans is that of the Khoi-San; the Khoi San are descendants of the first people who ever lived in South Africa.

Today there are about 100,000 Khoisan people, speaking 35 Khoe-San languages across southern Africa demanding to be referred to by their indigenous identity, San people rightly choose to call themselves Khoisan. The Khoisan people are the descendants of the original Homo sapiens who have inhabited Southern Africa for more than 150,000 years.

Interesting Fact - The Southern Sotho people were unified as the Basuto during the reign of King Moshoeshoe in the 1830s. Moshoeshoe established control over several small groups of Sotho and Nguni speakers, who had been displaced by the difiqane. Some of these communities had established ties to San peoples who lived just west of Moshoeshoe's territory. As a result, the South Sotho language or seSotho, unlike that of North Sotho, incorporates a number of click sounds associated with Khoisan languages.

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Petroglyph vs Hieroglyph
A hieroglyph is a stylized picture used to represent a word, sound or idea in writing petroglyphs are images made by removing part of the rock surface by incising, pecking, carving, and abrading the rock surface.

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Saturday, November 4, 2017

Botswana Imbuya Spinach Vegetable Stew

Botswana Imbuya Spinach Vegetable Stew Recipe
African Vegetable Recipe

Botswana Imbuya Spinach Vegetable Stew

Real Botswana Imbuya Spinach Vegetable Stew Recipe

Vegetable Stew cooked the Botswana African way with Imbuya Spinach, peppers, tomatoes, onions, garlic and rich spices.

Explore and Understand Africa Through Her Food and Culture

Botswana Imbuya Spinach Vegetable Stew

Cooking Botswanan Imbuya Spinach Vegetable Stew
African Recipes by

Fresh sautéed onions and peppers along with a rich blend of spices create a flavorful Botswanan Imbuya spinach vegetarian stew recipe. 

Prep time: Cook time: Total time:

3 handfuls wild African spinach
2 medium chopped onions
1 medium chopped red bell pepper
1 medium chopped green bell pepper
4 medium chopped tomatoes
1 teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon tamarind paste
2 teaspoons red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon minced garlic
¼ cup olive oil
2 cups vegetable stock

Except spinach, sauté vegetables in olive oil with the rice and spices add stock, simmer for 15 minutes add spinach and simmer 5 additional minutes. 

Wild African spinach photo by Eugenia Loli
Imbuya in the Tswana language is African spinach. Imbuya is a tropical leaf vegetable grown in most tropical regions of Africa and is an important traditional vegetable crop in the cooking lives of millions of Africans.

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