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Malawi (Malawian Recipes)

World Cuisine Recipes


   With the exception of the introduction of cassava, peanuts and chillies, Malawian cuisine has remained relatively free of outside influences. The traditional staple food is a thick maize porridge (replacing millet) that's shaped into patties and served as an accompaniment with beans, meat or vegetables. Rice and futou (mashed plantain and cassava) and fufu (fermented cassava) are also staples. Fish is the main source of protein, with many of these fish being derived from lake Malawi itself. Tilapia is the country's speciality fish and the local catfish is also frequently cooked.
Banana Bread (Nthochi Bread)

100 g butter
90 g sugar
400 g flour
1 egg
250 ml milk
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
5 ripe bananas, peeled and mashed
Cooking Instructions:
Cream the butter and sugar together then add the egg. Add all the remaining ingredients and beat into a smooth batter. Tip into a well-greased loaf tin and place in an oven pre-heated to 160C. Bake for about an hour, or until the cake has set. Allow to cool, tip out of the tin then cool completely and slice.
Banana Fritters (Zitumbuwa)

3 ripe bananas
1 tsp sugar
100 g ufa (cornmeal)
Generous pinch of salt
Oil for frying
Cooking Instructions:
Mash the bananas and mix thoroughly with the salt, sugar and cornmeal. Heat the oil to a depth of about 3cm in a wok until very hot. Add teaspoonfuls of the banana mixture to the oil and fry until golden brown. Drain on kitchen paper and serve hot as a snack.

1 small pumpkin or squash or sweet potato or cassava or plantains
300 g peanut flour
700 ml water
Salt, to taste
Cooking Instructions:
Cut the vegetables into large cubes and add to the salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until just tender. Add the peanut flour and allow to simmer for 10 minutes. Serve with rice or Nsima.
Malawi Curry Powder

10 dried piri-piri chillies with stems removed
3 tbsp coriander seeds
1 tbsp black peppercorns
3 tbsp poppy seeds
2 tsp black mustard seeds
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp turmeric
10 cloves
2 tsp ground cinnamon
Cooking Instructions:
Heat the whole ingredients in a dry frying pan until lightly-toasted and aromatic. Then transfer to a coffee grinder and grind in an airtight container. This hot chilli powder will keep for several months.
Mkhwani with Groundnut Flour

600 g pumpkin leaves de-veined and chopped
120 ml water
1 tsp salt
3 tomatoes, chopped
100 g peanut flour or finely-ground peanuts
Cooking Instructions:
Bring the water and salt to boil in a saucepan then add the chopped leaves and simmer for 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes and ground peanuts, stir to mix well and allow to simmer for 5 minutes more. Serve with rice or Nsima.

400 g ufa (either cornmeal or ground, dried cassava)
1.5 l water
Cooking Instructions:
Heat the water in a large pan until lukewarm then mix a little of the ufa into the water, stir rapidly to ensure there are no lumps then bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for a few minutes. Sprinkle the remaining ufa over the top of the music, a little at a time stir rapidly with each addition.Keep adding ufa and stirring until all the ufa is used-up and the nisma is smooth and well cooked. Add a little butter amd serve with African hot sauce or a pumpkin leaf relish.
Peanut Puffs (Mtedza)

150 g finely-chopped peanuts
100 g margarine (or butter)
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
220 g flour
Icing sugar
Generous pinch of salt
Cooking Instructions:
Cream together the margarine (or butter) and sugar then add the peanuts, vanilla extract, salt and flour. Knead lightly then break-off small pieces and roll into balls. Place on a greased baking tray and bake in an oven pre-heated to 170C for about 35 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately roll in the icing sugar. Allow to cool then roll the peanut puffs in the icing sugar once more before serving as a snack.
Sweet Potato Biscuits (Mbatata Biscuits)

180 g mashed sweet potato
60 ml milk
4 tbsp melted butter
250 g sifted flour
2 tsp baking powder
4 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
Cooking Instructions:
Mix together the sweet potato, milk and melted butter. Blend well then add all the remaining ingredients. Bring together to form a dough then tip onto a floured surface, knead and roll out until it's just over 1cm thick. Cut with a pastry cutter then place on a well-greased baking tray. Place in an oven pre-heated to 160C and bake for 35 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the oven, dust with icing sugar and set aside to cool.
Sweet Potato Pudding (Mbtata Pudding)

2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
3 tsp honey
Grated zest and juice of 1 orange
2 tbsp butter
1 egg, separated
Cooking Instructions:
Add the sweet potatoes to a pan of salted water, bring to the boil and cook until soft (About 10 minutes). Drain, place in a bowl and mash. Add all the remaining ingredients (except egg white) and mix together. When done beat the egg white until stiff and carefully fold into the mixture. Spoon in to a greased 22cm dish or casserole and bake for about 45 minutes at 170C or until golden brown in color.
Vegetable Ndiwo

600 g mixed greens (eg cassava leaves, sweet potato leaves, bean leaves, pumpkin leaves, chines cabbage, mustard leaves, rape leaves, kale, cabbage, collard greens) finely chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 tbsp oil
2 tomatoes, chopped
250 ml water
Salt, to taste
Cooking Instructions:
Fry the onions in the oil until soft then add all the remaining ingredients, bring to a boil, cover the pan and reduce to a simmer. Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes until the greens are tender. Serve with rice or Nsima.

World Cuisine Recipes


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