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Mali (Malinese Recipes)

World Cuisine Recipes


   Malinese cuisine consists mainly of millet, corn, or rice porridges served with a large variety of "sauces". Sauces can be made of ground peanuts, okra, baobab leaves, or sweet potato leaves. A variety of meats and vegetables are added to the sauces, which are then served with porridge, couscous or rice. Beef, lamb, chicken, and fresh or smoked fish are popular proteins. Common vegetables include onions, tomatoes, eggplant, plantain and yams. Common West African dishes, such as poulet yassa and foutou are popular in Mali as well. Mangoes, bananas, lemons and watermelon are common fruits.
   All meals in Mali are prepared by women. And food is eaten with the right hand. Eating with the left hand is considered highly improper in this mostly Muslim nation. Meals are often finished with strong, sweet tea. Tea service in Mali, as in many countries, is a highly ritualized affair. Three rounds are served: the first for life, the second for love, the third for death.
Couscous de Timbuktu
1.8 kg stewing beef or lamb, cut into 5cm chunks
80 ml vegetable oil
1 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tbsp finely-ground black pepper
1 x 400ml tin whole tomatoes
1 tsp ground cinnamon
3 tsp salt
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/3 tbsp ground cardamom
2 tbsp cayenne pepper
500 ml water
200 g dates, pitted and puréed in a food processor
freshly-milled black pepper to taste
1 tbsp ground cumin
2 tbsp ground ginger
1 tsp grated nutmeg
3 medium onions, diced
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
Cooking Instructions:
Season the mat then heat the oil in a large metal casserole over high heat. Add the meat and garlic and cook until the meat is well browned. Add the spices and stir-fry for a few minutes. Add the tomatoes and enough water to just cover the ingredients and bring the mixture to a boil. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for about 1 hour, or until the meat is tender. Add the onions and dates and simmer, uncovered until the sauce has reduced by half its volume (about 35 minutes). Adjust the seasonings, transfer to a serving bowl, sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve with couscous.
Jollof Rice with Lamb
3 large tomatoes, blanched, peeled and mashed
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 large onion, sliced
1 large onion, chopped
2 hot chillies, finely chopped
60 ml groundnut oil
2 garlic cloves, sliced
450 g lamb cut into 3cm cubes
salt and pepper to taste
200 g cooked rice
300 g vegetables (cabbage, turnip, carrot etc)
Cooking Instructions:
Combine the tomatoes and tomato paste and set aside. Brush the sliced onions with oil then grill for about 3 minutes, or until just browned. Mix the onions with the chillies and pound to a paste in a pestle and mortar. Fry the chopped onion in oil until golden then add the garlic and meat and fry until the lamb is browned on all side. Reduce the heat to a simmer and stir in the tomato mixture before adding the onion and chilli mixture. Season with salt and pepper and add some 125ml water and the vegetables. Stir well and allow to simmer on very low heat for some 45 minutes, or until the meat is cooked. Stir-in the rice and allow to warm for 5 minutes before serving.
Lemongrass Tea
1.2 l water
250 g lemongrass, cleaned and cut into 5cm lengths
Sugar to taste
Cooking Instructions:
Bring the water to a boil and use to rinse and heat-up a teapot. Add the lemongrass and cover with the water. Allow to seep for a while then pour the tea into small cups and add a little sugar if desired.
Sweet Millet Fritters (Maasa)
6 tbsp milk
3 tbsp active dry yeast
1 tbsp baking powder
6 tbsp cold water
400 g millet flour
vegetable oil for frying
1 tbsp caster sugar
400 g brown rice flour
Icing sugar for dusting
Cooking Instructions:
Combine the milk and water in a small pan and gently heat. Pour this mixture into a bowl and add the caster sugar. Add the yeast and place in a warm spot until the yeast begins to froth. Sift the millet flour, rice flour and baking powder together in a large bowl. Add the yeast mixture and mix. Allow to stand in a warm place for some 40 minutes until risen. The mixture should have the consistency of a thick pancake batter by this point. Add the vegetable oil to a frying pan or wok so that it's about 3 cm deep. Heat on low heat for about 5 minutes then add spoonfuls of the batter and cook for 5 minutes, turning frequently to prevent burning. Drain on paper towels, dust with icing sugar and keep warm. Serve either as a snack or as an accompaniment to soups.
Malian Fish Stew
500 g dried, salted, fish
3 large yellow onions, finely chopped
20 okra pods, par-boiled
1 l cold water
3 fresh red chillies, pounded to a paste
6 tbsp oil
4 tomatoes, diced
Cooking Instructions:
Soak the fish overnight in water. Drain off this water the following day, remove any bones then add the fish to a large pan with 750 ml water. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Heat the oil in a frying pan and fry half the onions and chillies until golden. Add the tomatoes and cook for 3 minutes before adding the final 250 ml of water. Simmer slowly for 15 minutes. Pound the remaining onion and okra to a paste in a pestle and mortar then add to the fish. Stir in and allow to simmer for 25 minutes. Combine the fried ingredients with the fish and cook for a further 5 minutes. Traditionally this is served with potato dumplings.
Sesame-Honey Sweet (Meni-Meniyong)
200 g sesame seeds
240 ml honey
4 tbsp unsalted butter
Cooking Instructions:
Place the sesame seeds on a baking tray and toast in an oven pre-heated to 220C for about 10 minutes. Add the honey and butter to a small saucepan and heat over a medium-low flame until the mixture begins to bubble and starts to darken (about 5 minutes). Stir the sesame seeds into the honey mixture and spread out some 5cm thick onto a buttered baking tray. Allow to cool until just warm and cut into sticks. Allow these to cool completely then serve.
Chicken in Peanut Sauce (Tigadeguena)
Groundnut oil for frying
1 chicken, cut into bite-sized pieces

2 onions, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 small tin tomato paste
250 ml peanut butter
250 ml water
Cayenne pepper to taste
Salt and black pepper to taste
Cooking Instructions:
Heat about 3 tbsp oil in a deep pot. Add the chicken and fry on both sides until well browned. Remove the chicken and set aside. Fry the onions and garlic in the same pan until just softened then add the tomato paste. Reduce the heat and simmer for a few minutes then return the chicken to the pot. Add the peanut butter and reduce the heat to low. Now add just enough water to form a smooth sauce. Add spices to taste, stir to mix and simmer until the chicken is done. This dish is traditionally served with fried or boiled plantains or on a bed of rice.
Spicy Fish and Okra Stew
500 g dried, salted, fish
90 ml vegetable oil
3 large onions, finely chopped
2 red chillies, finely chopped
4 medium-sized tomatoes, chopped
15 medium-sized okra pods, tops removed
Cooking Instructions:
Add the fish to a bowl and cover with plenty of water then allow to soak over night. Drain the fish, wash under cold running water before flaking and removing any bones. Add the fish alonh with 750ml water to a pan and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook gently whilst you prepare the other ingredients. Heat the oil in a pan and use this to fry half the onions and the chillies. Continue cooking until the onion is golden then add the tomatoes and cook for 3 minutes before adding 250ml water, bringing to a simmer and cooking for 15 minutes. Simmer or steam the okra until soft (you can do this in the fish water if you like) then mash the okra to a paste along with the remaining onions and add this mixture to the fish. Simmer the fis mix for about 30 minutes, or until the fish is soft then add the tomato mixture to the fish mixture and stir to combine. Typically this stew is served with Gari or FuFu
Fried Bean Balls (Akara)
2 cups black-eyed peas
4-1/2 cups cold water
1 to 2 fresh red chiles, finely diced
1 yellow or red onion, finely diced
1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs
6 cups peanut or vegetable oil, for deep-frying
Cooking Instructions:
Soak the black-eyed peas overnight in 4 cups of the water. There are two methods for preparing the beans. If you decide to peel the beans, alternately thresh the soaked beans between your palms and rinse them in water so the skins wash away. Repeat the process until all the beans are skinned and you are left with white beans. If you choose not to peel the beans, simply rinse them several times. In a blender, puree the beans in small batches, adding the water, 1/2 cup at a time, to make it easier. Blend the first batch of beans with the chiles, onion, salt, and eggs. When all the beans are pureed, place the thick puree in a bowl, adjust the seasoning, and whisk for 3 to 4 minutes with a hand whisk to aerate the mixture. Heat peanut oil in a deep skillet until it is very hot. With clean, wet hands, form balls of mixture, gently drop them into the oil, and fry until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Be careful that the oil does not splash your hands. You may prefer to use a long-handled spoon. Fry the balls quickly in batches, and drain them in a fine-mesh sieve lined with paper towels. Serve hot or cold.
Stew with Dates and Couscous (Couscous De Timbuktu)
4 pounds stewing beef or lamb, cut in 2-inch chunks
3 teaspoons salt or to taste
freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/3 cup vegetable oil
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1/2 tablespoon ground cardamom
2 tablespoons ground ginger
1/2 tablespoon finely ground black pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon grated nutmeg
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes
2 cups water
3 medium onions, diced
1-1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 cup dates, pitted and pureed in a food processor (about 6 dates)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley for garnish
Cooking Instructions:
Season the meat with salt and pepper. Heat the oil in a large Dutch oven or deep heavy pan over high heat, and sear the meat, along with the garlic, in the hot oil (you may have to do this in two batches). Add the cumin, fennel seeds, cardamom, ginger, black pepper, stir-fry for a few minutes. Place the meat and the spices in a large pot. Add the tomatoes and enough water to cover, and bring to a boil. Lower the heat and simmer, covered, for about 1 hour. Add the onions, cinnamon and dates, and simmer, uncovered, until beef is tender and the sauce has reduced and thickened, about 40 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings, sprinkle with the chopped parsley, and serve with couscous.
West African Kebabs
2 pounds (1 kg) medium-lean steak or liver
3 green bell peppers, seeded and cut into 1-inch squares
1 tablespoon unsalted, dry-roasted peanuts, ground to a powder
4 onions, diced
2 teaspoons peeled and grated fresh ginger
1 tablespoon flour
2 tablespoons unsatled, dry-roasted peanuts, ground to a powder
2 large, very ripe tomatoes, blanched, peeled, and pureed
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon fresh Chile Sambal, or Tabasco sauce, or chile paste
Cooking Instructions:
Remove any excess fat from the meat, wipe it with a clean damp cloth or paper towel, and cut it into bite-size cubes. Mix all the seasoning ingredients together in a bowl. Combine the meat and half the seasoning and mix thoroughly. Let stand for a minimum of 1 hour before grilling. Skewer the seasoned meat alternately with the bell peppers, and grill until cooked and browned on both sides. If you use liver, be careful not to overcook it and dry it out. Remove the skewered meat from the heat, sprinkle with the peanut powder, and serve.
Peanut Biscuits (Kulikuli)
3-1/2 cups peanut paste or peanut butter
1/2 cup warm water
Peanut oil, for deep-frying
Cooking Instructions:
Peanuts can often be freshly ground for you at health food stores. Put the peanut paste in a bowl, and use your hand to knead and squeeze the paste to coax out excess oil. Add small amounts of the warm water from time to time to help extract the oil. Continue the kneading and squeezing process until most of the oil is extracted and you get a smooth paste. Season with salt. Add the extracted oil to the oil you will use for deep-frying. Shape the paste into rings or small, flat biscuits. Heat 1 inch of peanut oil in a skillet and fry the biscuits until golden brown. Remove from the heat, drain, let cool, and store in an airtight container until needed.
Chicken and Peanut Stew (Maafe)
1/2 cup peanut oil
3 white or yellow onions, diced
1 whole chicken, cut into serving pieces, rinsed and patted dry
2 fresh red chiles, minced
4 tomatoes blanched, peeled, and diced
2 tablespoons tomato paste blended with 1/4 cup cold water
6 cups boiling water
1 cup peanut paste or peanut butter
8 okra pods, topped and tailed
2 sweet potatoes or yams, peeled and cut into 2-inch cubes
1 cup corn kernels
4 carrots, peeled and each cut into 4 to 6 chunks
1/4 bunch spinach
1/2 cup sliced parsnips or other firm, root vegetable
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
Cooking Instructions:
Heat the peanut oil in a large, heavy-based pot, and saute the onions and the chicken pieces (seasoned with salt) until the chicken is sealed and browned. Stir in the chiles, tomatoes, and tomato paste. Blend the boiling water and peanut paste together until the mixture is smooth, and add it to the pot. Stir and simmer for 40 minutes. Add the okra, sweet potatoes, corn, carrots, spinach, parsnips or other root vegetables, cinnamon, and paprika. Season with some salt. Stir well and simmer gently on low heat until the chicken is cooked, the volume reduced, and the sauce thick. Serve hot.

World Cuisine Recipes


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