Craving some new flavors to spice up your cooking? Well, start the year off right by expanding your palette with these fresh ingredients. Rich in nutrients and flavor, you won’t want to miss these 6 staples of African cuisine. While you’re at it, you might even pick up a few new recipes!
Sick and tired of eating potatoes? Looking for a low fat, high protein alternative to that starchy favorite? A popular Central African starch is cassava. Found primarily in the tropics, Cassava can be boiled, fried and baked just like potatoes. You can even cook its leaves, adding some color to your meal. Try Congolese Saka Saka yourself.
Originally found in wild, West African grass, Pearl Millet is a staple grain to African diets. It’s gluten free and high in protein and fiber, making it an even healthier alternative to quinoa. So consider shelving that quinoa for a while and try millet. Start your breakfast off right with Nigerian Millet pancakes.
Rich in a variety of nutrients and high in fiber, coconut milk is a favorite curry thickener in many African dishes. And unlike cow’s milk, coconut milk is lactose free. Try your hand at Tanzanian coconut chicken, it only takes 30 minutes to prep!
Egusi is a large melon, similar in shape and pattern to a watermelon. However, unlike sweet watermelons, egusi is more bitter. But egusi seeds are the true prize. Usually ground into a thick paste, egusi seeds are used to make a flavorful Nigerian soup. The seeds even contain a nutrient that helps you maintain healthy skin! Try this Nigerian Ibo favorite here.
You’ve had your fair share of avocado in guacamole, but what if this fruit was not only a relish but also a dessert? South Africa has a love of avocados using it in salads, drinks and even in an ice cream! Rich in proteins with an even higher rate of potassium than bananas, avocado is a great fruit to experiment with. Try your hand at a famous South African Avocado-Mint Shake.
Indigenous to East Africa, Tamarind is both a sweet and sour spice that can be added to any dish. Tamarind has a variety of ayurvedic benefits including protecting against gastric problems and taken as a Vitamin C alternative. Get your nutrients in a refreshing Tamarind juice.