Fruits and Foods Native to Africa

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When most people picture Africa in their minds, they see grassy plains, desert landscapes and fierce animals. Far from a place where fruit and other foods grow in abundance—but, Africa is a surprising land of plenty in many, many ways. Much of African culture revolves around the delicious food that is produced by the diverse peoples that make up the continent. South Africa, in particular, is abundant in plant food sources. This is most evident when tourists taste the world class cuisine that chefs put together using local sources. Once you experience an African safari vacation, you will never think of this place in the same way again. Here are some of the native fruits and foods native to Africa.

  1. Amaranth

The lowlands of Africa are associated with the stunning gorillas that many tourists travel around the world to see. The countries that comprise this area are hot, humid and full of thriving plant life. This plant diversity includes the edible greenery, Amaranth. Amaranth thrives and grows quickly in the humid environment and is used by the locals, as well as others around the world, for a variety of uses. As an excellent source of protein, essential minerals, iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc and other vitamins, this plant plays an important role in the diets of people who call the African lowlands home.

  1. Cowpea

Thousands of years ago, the hearty people who called Africa home grew a major crop that is still a staple in the land today. Cowpea is a legume that could not be more perfect for life on the diverse continent. Not only is it efficient in drought, but it can also be grown successfully in poor soil conditions.

  1. The Spider Plant

The Spider Plant is to Africa what lettuce and other leafy greens are to many areas of the world. This plant is grown throughout the continent and plays a significant role in the diet of the people who live here.

  1. African Eggplant

Like many other plants that are grown in Africa, the African Eggplant can thrive in poor soil and drought conditions. It is also very easy to store and is long lasting. Most importantly, second to being a very nutritious vegetable, this plant is the fiscal lifeline for many African families. While tourism plays a giant role in the economies of many African nations, agriculture is also a driving force. This plant, in particular, is a multi-beneficial staple in many areas.

Book Your African Safari Vacation

Are you ready to try some of these native fruits and vegetables for yourself? You can get your questions answered and begin booking your African safari vacation by visiting our safari page or contacting a representative with Rohoyachui today.

Jill LIphart for Roho Ya Chui, Travel Africa

Must Try African Dishes

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It’s no secret that indulging in delectable new foods is one of the greatest parts of exploring a place you’ve never been before, and your journey to Africa will be no exception. Crispy barbecued meats, spicy sauces and rich flavors are just a few aspects of the cuisine you can start looking forward to. These delicious African dishes will undoubtedly get your palate just as excited for the big trip as the rest of you.

Briouat

Briouats are a must-try. The baked or fried Moroccan pastries boast a variety of stuffings: beef, lamb, chicken, cheese, lemon, vegetables and spices like coriander and paprika. Get them as an appetizer, or try every flavor and make them your whole meal.

Pap en vleis/Shisa nyama

A South African favorite, pap en vleis means “maize porridge and meat.” You can try steak, kebabs, chicken, sausage or chops. The meat is barbecued and served with gravy or chakalaka, a spicy vegetable relish with a fiery flavor. Eat it with a local South African beer and you’re in for an unforgettable experience.

Kachumbari

This flavorful dish is especially popular in East Africa.  It consists of raw chopped onions, tomatoes, salt and chili peppers for flavor and heat. Some enjoy it with pilau rice, a dish cooked with cumin, cardamom, cloves, turmeric and cinnamon. Even better? In Kenya, Kachumbari is eaten with roasted goat or beef.

Piri piri Chicken

A dish most commonly found in Mozambique, just reading about Piri piri chicken will likely get your mouth watering. Cooked with lime, garlic, pepper, coconut milk and cilantro, this meat and its marinade make for an amazing dish. We promise that the crisp, spicy roast chicken and its succulent center is delicious beyond belief.

Muamba de Galinha

Originally from Angola, Muamba de Galinha is a chicken cuisine made with palm oil or butter, garlic, okra and chilis. It’s often served with white rice and cassava leaves in the Congo River region, or macadamia or palm nuts in Gabon. If you’re looking for rich and spicy, Muamba de Galinha is the right choice.

Bobotie

South Africa’s national food, Bobotie is a combination of spicy ground meat, chutney, curry powder, raisins and apricot jam generally topped with baked eggs and milk. It tastes as incredible as it sounds.

Fufu

Fufu is a paste created from starchy root vegetables like plantains, cassava, or yams. Originally a West African dish, the vegetables are pounded into a doughy substance and then rolled into tiny balls that are served with a variety of sauces or aside the main course. The starch perfectly complements spicy gravies or stews.

Cholent

Also a Jewish tradition, Cholent is frequently eaten in Northern Africa. It typically consists of potatoes, pinto or kidney beans, onions, barley and meat. Beef is usually the meat of choice, but chicken or sausage can be substituted. Garlic, paprika, pepper and cayenne create the dish’s irresistible flavor.

So many spectacular dishes are just another sign that Africa could be your best vacation yet. Find out how Roho Ya Chui can help you make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Jill Liphart for Roho Ya Chui, Travel Africa