Cassava leaves are viewed as poor man’s delicacy but what most people don’t know is that they are loaded with nutrients to keep your body nourished. History has it that this amazing plant was first introduced in Africa by the Portuguese in the 16th century. Countries like Central Africa, Congo, Gabon, and Cameroon are the leading consumers of cassava leaves. Due to their nutritional content and the health benefits they offer to the body, more and more countries have introduced it to their meal plan. You can also enjoy a variety of cassava leaves recipes in most international restaurants. But if you get time, you can prepare yours at home and customize it to suit your needs
And the best part is, they are versatile, and you can get creative around the kitchen with numerous recipes. Here is a lowdown of tasty African cassava leaves recipes you should try out.
1. Curried Cassava Leaves with Salted Fish
Most people do not like adding spices to vegetables, but with cassava leaves, throwing in some traditional spices can enhance its flavor. Not that it tastes awful without them! You know how spices can make a huge difference.
This delicacy is popular in Cameroon and Congo.
2 bunches of pounded baby cassava leaves (freshly harvested)
1tsp black pepper
1tsp curry paste
1 pound of salted fish (fried)
4 shrimp (adequately cleaned)
1 packet of coconut milk
- Heat oil in a skillet, and add your curry paste and cook it until you get an intense aroma.
- In a separate cooking pot, bring your pounded leaves to boil for 5 minutes. Pour the water and set aside
- Add coconut milk, shrimp, pepper, and the boiled leaves. Stir for about five minutes. Add your salted fish and stir for three minutes, then serve with pap or white rice.
2. Kigwada Recipe
Kigwada is a tasty and nutritious delicacy popular among the Mijikenda community in Kenya. The word Kigwada means cassava leaves in Mijikenda. Typically, the treat is enjoyed with ugali while hot. When perfectly prepared, we can bet, you will drop those regular greens recipes you’ve been following.
3 bunches of cassava leaves (freshly harvested)
1 large onion (chopped)
3 cup of coconut milk
2 tomatoes (large)
6 garlic cloves (minced)
1tsp black pepper
1 bunch of coriander
- Clean your cassava leaves and finely chop them. Put a small quantity in a motor and pound them with a mortar until you attain a fine paste. You can add some water to make the process less straining. Empty the pounded leaves in a bowl and repeat the process for the remaining quantity
- Boil the paste for five minutes and drain the water. Sauté your onions and garlic in a saucepan. Add salt, black pepper, and tomatoes and stir for two minutes, then add your pounded leaves. Stir and cook them for one minute. Add your coconut milk and simmer for five minutes. Turn the heat and garnish with coriander
- Enjoy hot with Ugali
3. Cassava Leaves with Peanuts
If you love the nutty flavor, this cassava leaves with peanuts recipe one won’t disappoint. The dish is popular in Congo, Cameroon, and Chad.
2 bunches of fresh cassava leaves (finely chopped)
1 cup of ground peanuts
1 tsp black pepper
1 large onion (cubed)
Benny spice 1 sachet
3 cloves of garlic (minced)
- Add your minced garlic in a basin and add water. Season the chopped cassava leaves in the garlic water and leave it for two to three hours. Drain the water and set aside
- Sauté onions in a saucepan until you get a slightly brownish color. Add your black pepper, Benny spice, and salt. Stir for about two minutes and add two cups of water, your cassava leaves along with ground peanuts. Cook for thirty minutes
- Enjoy with pap or boiled white rice
4. Plain cassava leaves
You don’t have to add spices to enjoy your cassava leaves delicacy. You can prepare them plain and still enjoy the same health benefits. Countries like Kenya, Congo, Uganda, and Gabon populary love enjoying this delicacy.
3 handfuls of fresh cassava leaves (finely chopped)
Two large tomatoes
1 medium-sized onion
- Place your chopped cassava leaves in a motor and pound them into a thick consistency
- Transfer the pounded leaves to a cooking pot, add water and salt and cook for one hour
- Drain the water and rinse twice. Sauté onions in a saucepan for one minute. Lower the heat, add your tomatoes and keep stirring for two minutes.
- Add your boiled cassava leaves and cook for 15 minutes while stirring to avoid it from sticking. Add water if needed
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