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Ibwatu African Energy Drink Recipe

Fermented beverages are a significant part of people’s diets in Africa. Ibwatu is a fermented drink made from grain and is a natural energy drink.

Ibwatu African Energy Drink

Ibwatu African Energy Drink


Fermented beverage Ibwatu is consumed in the southern Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) region and Zambia. Popular similar drinks are Zimbabwe’s chikubu and togwa and South Africa's mahewu drink. 

Locals distinguish Ibwatu plants through their leaves, stems, and root. The roots of the plant are a rich as a source of amylolytic enzymes. Rhynchosia heterophylla or Ibwatu roots is a perennial shrub native to Tanzania, Zaire, and Zambia. The plant also grows in the Sudano-Zambezian Region.

The ingredients of traditional production Ibwatu are sugar, water, starch, and roots of the Ibwatu plant. Maize or corn is the most widely used source of starch however, other plants are used depending on the region such as sorghum, finger millet, cassava, sweet potato, and Irish potato. 

The roots of the plant contribute to the color and the characteristic flavor of the drink. The steps are taken to make the Ibwatu African Energy Drink recipe is first pound roots, and then boil mash, next strain mixture and lastly rest or 24 hours.


Ibwatu African Energy Drink

Ingredients

½ cup pounded Ibwatu roots (substitute one package of yeast but color and taste will not be the same)

1 cup cornmeal

1/3 cup sugar

5 cups filtered water


Directions

In a large pot boil water, add cornmeal simmer about 10 minutes remove from heat and cool mixture slightly. Add the pounded Ibwatu roots to warm mixture, stir, and strain. Let stand for one day, serve cold. 


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Being African in America I have grown up learning about different ethnic cultures. My father and mother are historians of African culture and history and their influence expanded my activities to several best-selling cookbooks, magazine columns, self-branded products, and a popular African culture and food blog.

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