This recipe is adapted from an old cooking magazine I have, but I made it with a few changes. I chopped the okra instead of using it whole and also added in many more vegetables than the original recipe called for, as well as peanut butter.
It’s easy to make, colourful and flavorful. It takes time though, as you let the different vegetables cook slow and release their individual sweetness and distinct flavor to meld into a thick, rich, hearty stew that sticks to the bones.
Our ingredients are:-
500 g stewing beef. Rub it with a little bit of ground mixed spice. (The blend I had had some cinnamon, clove, and cardamom).
3 tbsp cooking oil.
2 chopped onions.
1 tbsp paste of grated ginger and grated turmeric and smashed with garlic.
1 tsp coriander seeds.
1 celery stalk, chopped.
Chopped bell peppers (I used green, yellow and red).
1 handful of fresh okra, chopped.
1 tbsp tomato paste.
1 tsp each of paprika, mixed herbs
1 tomato, 1 carrot, I small courgette, all chopped.
1 tbsp chopped dry fruit (I used raisins and apricots).
1 small bunch of coriander, leaves and stalks separated and chopped.
2 tbsp smooth peanut butter, mixed into a 1/2 cup of water to dissolve.
Salt and pepper to taste.
Pinch of sugar.
Clean and chop all your vegetables.
Toast the coriander seeds in a dry pan then crush roughly, ensure they do not burn. Set aside.
Heat oil in your pan. Once hot add the beef and brown it on high heat. Do not let it cook through though, or crowd the pan. Just brown then remove and set aside.
Follow in with the coriander stalks, paprika and mixed herbs, let cook fast without burning, then add the tomato paste and tomatoes. I like adding some salt and pepper at this point then lower heat to let the tomatoes cook into a mush.
After the tomatoes cook down, add the carrots and let them cook a while, before adding the courgettes. Once they both cook a little while, in go the bell peppers. This whole process takes a while as you want each added vegetable to be able to release its own flavour into the sauce. Do not rush it.
The vegetables will also release their water into the sauce; hence the need to keep the heat on medium low.
Once the vegetables are soft, add the beef, okra, and your dried fruits. If its too dry, you can add a cup or two of water or stock. Cover and let simmer for about 30-40 minutes.
The sauce will thicken as well as the beef, as all the ingredients also absorb the yummy and rich peanut flavour.
Once ready, squeeze some lemon juice onto the stew and as always, garnish with the chopped coriander leaves.
This is a very filling meal. The perfect comfort food if you ask me.
It is so delicious. Good enough on its own or with some rice on the side. Either way, it is a perfect meal.
Potato Bhajia are a favorite snack in Kenya. Thinly sliced potatoes dipped in a spicy gram flour batter then deep fried till a bit crispy and golden ; Total potato perfection!
If you’ve lived in Nairobi, visiting the food court at Diamond Plaza is a must to sample the world famous “Maru Bhajia” from the stall by the same name. That is the only place whose bhajia I have faith in.
I am sure many of us who love their bhajias have tried to replicate it at home but can never quite get the exact taste. 😂
Doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try though right?
Let us get started.
Our ingredients are:-
1 kg white potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced.
Oil to deep fry them in.
1/4 tsp ground tumeric.
1 tsp roasted cumin powder.
1 tsp paprika.
Juice of 1 lemon.
Salt and freshly ground black pepper.
1/2 cup of besan (chickpea aka gram or garam flour).
1 heaped tablespoon rice flour
1 bunch of finely chopped coriander.
A pinch of fenugreek leaves – optional.
small pinch of baking soda.
Peel, clean and slice your potatoes into thin rounds.
In a a large bowl, add the potato slices, all the ground spices and herbs except the baking soda.
Add the flours and mix well.
Let the mixture stand for about 15 minutes, please do not add any water.
Heat your oil.
Add the baking soda just before frying. I got this tip from Fauzia’s Kitchen Fun blog.
Deep fry the potato slices on medium heat until cooked through, and turn golden.
To avoid them clumping together, add the slices to the oil individually.
Once ready, drain on kitchen towel to remove extra grease then serve with ketchup, chutney or chilli sauce.
They are a great snack to make as well as a fun weekend dinner with some roasted chicken or grilled meat and salads on the side.
They are crispy but fluffy inside, well cooked, well seasoned, delicious and you cannot get enough of them!