There are certain, specific dishes that are very reminiscent of home. Every person has their own, and several too. For me, the small of mandazi or drop scones reminds me of home. The aroma of pilau reminds me of home. The smell of a baking lemon cake reminds me of home. And the smell of warm uji – particularly on a drizzly morning or late afternoon – also reminds me of home! I have always loved uji (porridge) even as a child. I loved it as part of breakfast or even in place of chai ya saa kumi. Uji ya Ngano (wheat porridge) is very common in the coast, Uji ya Mahindi (corn porridge) common through out the country and my favorite Uji ya Wimbi (millet porridge) most common in the Western part of the country but equally beloved throughout!
Today I show you how I make mine, at it’s most foundational recipe!
One of the many many many gifts my parents bestowed my sisters and I is introducing us at a very young age the wide array of Traditional Kenyan vegetables. We have always enjoyed them as children, and not even as adults with our own homes & with our own babies, traditional Kenyan vegetables are a very frequent appearance. For me, it is what I eat 95% of the time and I often joke if I were to leave the country, our mbogas are certainly top 5 of the foods I would miss.
Each part of the country has their own mbogas but it is the western communities that have the widest array and the riches culture around preparing and eating them. The list of traditional vegetables and possible combinations is endless. But one by one, we shall make one with a special twist of my own. Risudza, also known as Managu, is pretty common and among my faaaaavorite to have. This particular recipe is undeniably delicious, and I am very excited to share it with you guys!
One thing I love more than an early morning during the work week is a late – super late – and super slow- morning during the weekends. A slow morning allows you to take in the beauty of the day. The slower pace of things allows your spirit to merge with the wave of time and ride it. Slow mornings allow you to taste the sweetness of the songbirds. As someone who really goes hard during work weeks, slow weekend mornings are a much welcome relief and calm sweetness. It also allows me to really take time and eat yummy things; and yummy things need not be complicated ones.
One of my current weekend favorites are my mushroom and sausage egg muffins. All my favorite yummy things are things are packed in these little beauties. They are the perfect savory bite, super simple to prepare and a true joy to have!
Long time no post!! Hey my love! How has your year started off? Mine has been slow and fast-paced in equal measure. But so far, I am feeling optimistic about 2023. Life, as we all know, will always hand us near equal amounts of woe and joy. But last year – for me – was almost all woe. It was a heavy year, one whose darkness nearly wore me down to the bone. It ground my feet into pulp but now I am slowly regaining my footing. Laughter is returning to my lips. Calm is returning to my soul. I still have a lot to remedy, but I have hope that soon the sun will shine on my face and joy shall be a regular in my days. Hope. That is what I am feeling. Hope that things will be better. Hope that things will be stable. Hope that love will balm my scars and offer me a steady ground to once again take root in. And in the theme of getting back into the swing of things, let’s kick of 2023 with one of my favorite things I have eaten this far!
I have filmed so much content, so much so that it can last till the last quarter of this year. This was among the last one’s I filmed but I just had to bump it and post it as the first of the year. It captures both the glory of mango season and the perfection of baby back ribs. You will fall in love with this one!
I have always loved mbuzi (goat). It remains among my top five favorite meats to have! I love how Kenyans always have some during literally any celebration, and also during just-because moments. It takes up flavor so well and any chance I get to make some, I dive head first. On the day I made this, my soul was restless and the only thing it craved was some mbuzi. So I had to make it good good and honey it was worth my time!
This recipe is very simple. It brings out the full flavor of the mbuzi all the while allowing all the ingredients used therein to really shine! You will love this beaut so so much!
Easy does not have to be boring. Simple does not have to taste boring! This has been my life gospel and a principle that I have been raised on. We all love quick, simple meals but they too need to pack flavor and make your mealtimes interesting. I would think one of the most common stews in Kenya would be this pea and potato stew. I personally love it too, and I prepare it more times than I could count. It is simple to put together and super hearty too.
I switch thing ups and add different flavor notes depending on my mood. On the day I made this one, I decided to film it and I do hope you enjoy this beaut as much as I did when I made it.
Life is super fast paced, more so now that we are adults and it has gotten real! I have made a conscious choice to stop and smell the roses. It is very easy to get swept by the undercurrent of life. And if one does not deliberately stop and just be, the present business can consume you. Lately I have been reminiscing about my career, especially now that I am nearly reaching my 8th anniversary! Who would have thought that this girl would build a monster of a brand off of her name! Who would have thought I would keep this going for nearly a decade? Who would have thought simple ideas would turn into laughter on your dinner tables? Who would have thought! It has been quite the journey and I am deeply appreciative of every win, every stress point, every steep learning curve, every glorious collaboration and certainly, for every one of you.
Today’s recipe – my ginger sweet corn fried rice – is super simple. This particular one is a better rendition to this one I made and posted in August of 2014. I have no idea why the images are broken on that post, but it is completely worth it that I tweaked it a little bit and posted it once more for you to try out.
Happy Wednesday my love bugs! Isn’t this year going so fast? Or is it that the business of adult life makes it seem as though everything is rushing to anywhere? Here in Kenya the weather is cooling down and things are about to get super cosy! That only calls for all the cosiest of meals and drinks and a bit of spicy ones too to crank up the heat! Regardless of weather, I always have some pipilipi ya kukaanga in my fridge. It is the most perfect relish, that is super versatile too and I would love for you guys to lean into it’s power, hence this post!
Pilipili ya kukaanga would roughly translate to cooked chili. It is a Kiswahili term and the relish itself is very common and enjoyed throughout our coastal regions. It is typically enjoyed with pilau, however I truly feel like it can go with nearly anything else. It is blazing hot, slightly zingy, mildly sweet and a glorious relish full of character you have to make a staple in your home!
I love me a great brunch! I love waking up late, staying in bed for an hour, dragging myself around the house for yet another hour then dressing up and going out for a fantastic brunch with friends. Since the pandemic started, I personally have been eating out aloooot less. I never used to eat out that much to begin with, but the pandemic truly slowed me down significantly. That however does not mean I don’t do my brunches at home. I love brunch at home because I can customize what I want according to what my palate wants. I love a mix of savoury and sweet, but more of the former than the latter. This nutmeg and Cinnamon blueberry French toast casserole is a star and makes for the perfect brunch dish.
She is fruity. She is boozy. She is spicy. And she is your next addiction.
I drove to Maragoli all by myself for the first time ever late last month. What an adventure it was! The night before departure I was so nervous, but once I got on the road, it was pretty stress free and might I say, ironically both relaxing and exhausting as well. I travelled on a Monday, so the roads were pretty clear and it was so smooth! The usual stop is at Nakuru – halfway through the journey- then the next stop is usually when I get home. My main aim of stopping at Nakuru is to see my perfect nephew, hang out for a bit and then get on with the journey. For my recent trip, I had an early lunch at my sisters’ and I had some pilau, a slaw and roast potatoes. My sister cooks so well! This pilau was exceptionally flavorful, and her twist to it has some whole star anise throughout. It was delicious! While continuing driving out west, I was thinking about how I would better use the star anise I had back in Nairobi. It is so versatile, and goes so well in nearly everything! We used in in several soups in my second book, my sister added it to her pilau and for today, we are making it the main note of our cocktail.
Sunny September is now in full glory and this refreshing beauty is for sure about to star in you home brunches! She is perfect and you are gonna love her!
I always get super excited when I make a salad because I know it is always going to be bomb AF!!! It has been a minute since I made one with you guys, but better late than never! I had bought some feta some weeks back which I had planned on using in a certain project (I shall be sharing with you guys in 2 weeks) but never got to use. So instead of watching it go bad, it just made sense to have it in a salad. This apple pecan feta salad has all the right flavors! You can get a rainbow of notes which makes every bite even better!
There is a complimentary YouTube video to this blogpost. But before we get into that, let us get into this exciting blogpost.
One of the things I love waking up to is the aroma of drop scones on a Saturday. My mom makes them once in a while, and when she does, you bet I am always the first to go eat lest my siblings finish everything as i dilly-dully in bed. She makes them so well, and I honestly not only love these, but everything mom makes. Mom’s food always rocks, right? I took her recipe and added a twist on my own. I was kinda nervous when I made these, and wanted her honest opinion on the same. She loved them and asked me for specifics of what I added and decided to make them as I did going forward! My heart melted!
If mom said this recipe is bomb, trust me, it is 100% worth a try!
Traffic all over Nairobi at rush hour is usually mind numbingly crazy. I usually just stop thinking about how much time I will waste, lest it makes me irredeemably angry, and just think about everything else and hope to get home soon. My favorite thing to do is people watching. I wonder what the lady in the next matatu is laughing at while on her phone. I wonder what the school child heading home found most fun while at school. I wonder what everyone is thinking and why they are doing what they are doing and try piece together their lives together from my thoughts. Eventually, I will always make eye contact with the very assertive hawkers in traffic. Most I will not purchase anything from, but when I can, I can never let a good deal pass me by. A certain lady was selling enormous sweet potatoes, at a pretty affordable price, and I took just one as I knew it would feed many. I like having sweet potatoes for breakfast, and also as a soup, but this time round I decided to make something different and so glad I settled on sweet potato fries!
This recipe is fiery, sweet and herby all in one and your soon-to-be favorite!
wa! wa! wa! wa! wa!
FAILING IN THE KITCHEN IS REEEEEEAAAALLLLLLLLLLLLLLL!
I have always very honestly spoken about moments recipes backfire on me. I detailed some of my fails on this post but trust me, there are many more LOL! The first time I tried making vitumbua, they failed their way straight to hot hell. They did not even hold together, they were just a pulverized, oily, cat-food-esq disaster. I was sad, not only coz of the backfiring, but because I wasted my afternoon and nothing fruitful came out of my effort. But you know what, my mama never raised a quiter y’all! I went through every little step I made and realized I made about 4 mistakes, not even 1, THREE mistakes hence the initial first disastrous recipe. I gave this another shot and they turned out pretty well! And here we are now! With a new recipe, a new video and plenty of lessons learnt. To you too, when you fail kidogo in the kitchen, get right back up. It happens to everyone and no one reading my blog should give up easily. No sir!
Without further ado, my nutmeg and clove vitumbua! <3
My boarding school was one of those super strict, super structured, super rigid catholic boarding schools. I often say, if it weren’t for my friends, who are my forever friends, and for the company they offered, I would have gone crazy. Most rules never made sense, but you know, we just went with it. We were not allowed to carry much junk food, which I personally did not mind since I have never been a sweet tooth anyway. But what we had ,we made sure to make use of. Most people went overboard with milk powder, making biscuit sandwiches with them , heck even licking it as it was. We were desperate! 😀 It was eventually banned as well. I decided to get a pack and relieve those days. It did not taste as good as it did back them, but since I was not going to waste it, I decided to prepare a snack with them.
Labania za maziwa can be classified as a sweet. They are chewy in texture, just as a fudge would be. They are easy to make right at home, which is always a plus since you can control how much sugar goes into them. This is what we are getting into today and I am so sure you will love them as much as I do! <3
My eldest sister cheredi has always been the baker of the family. She always does really make the sweetest baked treated and very very effortlessly they turn out perfectly! Best believe I am always the one to push my sisters out of the way whenever she brings home one of her cakes. This year i have challenged myself to do more baking. I hardly ever do, I do not know why, but it is about time I dipped my feet into it, don’t you think so? And for today my orange ginger cinnamon rolls will be the first of many delicious treats you will see this year. I had plenty of fun making the video as well. This recipe was inspired by a cake my sister made some time back, that I shared a picture with you guys on Instagram. Needless to say, they turned out extra delicious and for that, I am thrilled!!! Here we go!!
One of the most infuriating things about Nairobi is how much traffic we have to endure day after day. It is either there is not traffic or you are stuck in a hell hole of none moving vehicles. But one person’s nightmare is another persons dream!!! While we hate the snarl up, most hawkers make the best of the situation, woo potential customers and try to sell as much of their merchendize as they can. And when luck is on your side, you too can be able to make some pretty dope purchases; which for me, I always gravitate towards fresh produce. After brunch with my friends this past Saturday and being stuck in traffic for about 45 min, the only nice thing I can say about that situation is that I managed to get some really fresh maize, the sweetest sweet bananas, new sunglasses and a great portion of tree tomatoes. I got some for my mum as well since she loves them and majority of the ones I got for myself went into the milkshake I am sharing with you today!
There are some days I eat way too much and indulge more than usual. The day I went to Picazzo with my sister was one of those days. My morning began with a hearty breakfast of fresh cardamom maandazi my mom had made, eggs and sausages. Since I had promised my youngest sister I would take her out for lunch to Picazzo that day, that also became another opportunity to indulge. Later that evening, I was taking my bestie out for dinner for her birthday celebration at my favorite restaurant in Westlands, that she had never been too. I literally spent the entire day eating. I proudly waddled all over Nairobi with my food baby and truly tried my best to suck in my food pregnancy for the photos. Can you tell? I’m sure you can LOL!
It being my first time at Picazzo, and the restaurant being pretty new, I decided to turn it to a review for you guys. Remember, a review is an opinion, hence is subjective, so remember what one likes may be what you hate or vice versa since we are all different and that’s ok and normal. I encourage you to check it out yourself nonetheless and see how you like it <3.
So here we go!
I live for mango season! I always make sure that as much as I can, I eat as many of them while they are at their sweetest! They are now super easy to find now (duh!!) but sometimes, you can buy some that are not as sweet since different vendors buy them from different sources. I finally fount a vendor close to home who sells the absolute sweetest mangoes in the entire world, and each time I leave home, I make sure I pass by his spot, and get me some. He is my new best friend!! Because of the large stock at home, I also try as much as possible to incorporate them into my recipes so that they do not go bad. From pancakes, to salads, to possets, it is a true mango extravaganza!!! Now that it is 3 billion degrees in Nairobi, the best way to cool off for me these days is by having nice cream! Super easy to make, dairy free and you will not need any special gadget to make it.
I hope you love this as much as I do <3