Life. Love. Food

Garlic & Cumin Matoke

Besides potatoes, we almost always have matoke in our house. Every weekend, my dad collects a package form Maragoli delivering traditional veggies such as kunde, mto and mrenda, fresh peas and beans and almost always, matoke. The matoke are usually wrapped in some banana leaves to preserve their freshness. They are usually a bit dewy by the time they get to Nairobi but beaming with the bountifulness and greenness of the emerald rolling Maragoli hills.

Because we have a constant supply of one ingredient means we have to create different ways of  making one thing. One of one of the most mellow matoke recipes is my garlic and cumin matoke. It is so easy and unleashes one hell of a party on your taste buds. #MUSTTRY

garlic and cumin matoke by best kenyan food blogger Kaluhi Adagala of

COOK TIME: 30 MINUTES                                             SERVES:2


9 Matoke, peeled and sliced

2 tomatoes, grated

5 garlic cloves, minced

1 red onion, finely diced

1 teaspoon of tomato paste

1/2 a teaspoon of ground cumin

1/2 a teaspoon of white pepper

Salt to taste



In a sufuria, heat up some vegetable oil and add the onion and the minced garlic.Let this simmer until it is fragrant and slightly brown (Key word: slight)

garlic and oniins simmering for the matoke at the beginning sets the flavor profile of the entire

Add the tomatoes, tomato paste and the spices. Add some hot water to this and let this simmer down for about 5-8 minutes.

tomato paste simmering with tomatoes thickens the entire mixture and sets the consistency of the entire

Add the chopped matoke and mix them in. Add 1/2 a cup of hot water and cover with a lid. Let this cook for about 15-20 minutes. Test with a fork and once the matoke are completely soft and have turned yellow, they are ready.

matoke are very starchy therefore cooking them takes quite abit of time to get them soft_kaluhiskitchen.com_garlic and cumin matoke

garlic and cumin matoke is a delicious kenyan recipe_matoke turns yellow when they are

Serve and garnish.

This savory dish is as welcoming to the eyes as it is to the tongue. The taste of the cumin is the most prominent and it being one of my best spices, this was a feast.

kenyan food blogs_african food blogs_kaluhiskitchen.com_garlic and cumin matoke

My garlic and cumin matoke would also be absolutely comforting to have during a rainy day in due to its soft, alsmost silky feel.

kenyan food_garlic and cumin matoke_kenyan cuisine_african

Whoever said healthy food has to taste boring needs to spend just a week with me and I will change their ming=d for sure! I hope you gove my garlic and cumin matoke a try. :))

Sending good vibes your way


Download the full recipe here:

Kenyan food blog_downloadable recipes Protection Status


  1. Debbie

    I want to go to Maragoli now… I feel sad at times that the furthest i have been is Naivasha… When i will be in Western I will sure holla. Plus, the matoke looks so sweet!

    • kaluhiskitchen

      We should go on a foodie adventure to Maragoli! Every fresh ingredient is there, we would have a ball! LOL! As for this recipe, you have to try it coz you will enjoy it :))

  2. Liz

    I have just discovered your blog n am really enjoying. You are teaching me to make my everyday foods differently n this is exciting n tasty. THANK YOU for sharing

    • kaluhiskitchen

      Hey Liz!
      Karibu sana to the family! I am thrilled to know that my recipes have added value to your life. It is always a pleasure to share :))

  3. Ann

    Great recipes as always Kaluhi, my question is what do you do to prevent the matoke from turning black once they are peeled?

    • kaluhiskitchen

      Thank you!

      About your question, always remove every single bit of the green peel. Do not leave even a single bit. Than after peeling, put your matoke in water up until the time you add them to your sufuria. If you leave them in the air, they oxidize hence the darkening.

  4. Sue

    I love your recipes Kaluhi. Every time l want to try something new, l first refer to your blog as it is authentically Kenyan 🙂 and easy to follow steps.

    • kaluhiskitchen

      It means the world that you hold my work in such high regard Sue! This just shows I am doing this right. Thank you and I hope you enjoy every single recipe you try out :)))))))

  5. Sheila

    Goodness am so excited to find your blog while searching on recipes. Question for the plantains should I use the green plantains or the ripe yellow plantains?
    And if it’s the green once do I need to boil them first before frying them?


    • kaluhiskitchen

      Hey Sheila!
      Welcome to the KK fam <3

      For this recipe I used Matoke, not plantain. Yes, they are different though they are in the same family. You MUST use them when they are green. Ripe ones will give you a totally different result.
      Then, I never boil mine. I allow them to cook in the stew so that they absorb all the flavors. If you prefer, you can boil yours prior, but personally I feel that deprives them of absorbing the flavors of the stew leaving them quite bland. The pictures show exactly that. Plus, do not fry them, stew them or else you will change the recipe entirely love.

  6. Sheila

    Aa madam you want to tell me matoke and plantains are not the same thing? I have died you learn something everyday. I don’t think I can find matoke here but they do have green plantains, I will definitely try this recipe this weekend. Thanks alot

    • kaluhiskitchen

      I also thought they were the same thing.. trust me, I was as shocked as you are. Hope all turns out well with this recipe

  7. Wandia

    Your recipes are amazing!!! Hoping to try the Matoke recipe tonight 🙂

    • kaluhiskitchen

      I am so thrilled you enjoyed this ::))) Cheers to many many more

  8. sandie

    Hi Kaluhi,

    Ever since i discovered your blog i have been trying a new recipe every day. My husband loves the culinary journey i take him on every evening thanks to your easy and super tasty recipes. This matoke rocked.

    • kaluhiskitchen

      Hey Sandie!

      Thank you so so soooooo much for your feedback! And I am even more thrilled that your hubby is enjoying the fruits of your labor. Cheers to many more!

  9. Lucy

    Just found your blog and I like like… Can’t wait to try out the recipes, especially the matoke. Keep up the good work.

    • kaluhiskitchen

      You have chosen such a nice one to start with!! Hope you love it <3

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