Dziwala Recipe |Malawian African Fried Grasshoppers


Dziwala is a traditional dish enjoyed in Malawi. The delicacy is prepared using grasshoppers, onions, and tomatoes. Research has shown that adding grasshoppers to your diet can offer excellent health benefits. Grasshoppers are rich in protein as compared to milk, meat, and fish. Better still, the amazing insect is loaded with essential minerals to keep your body well-nourished and strong.

In Africa, insects like grasshoppers have been consumed for over a hundred years. Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Nigeria, and Cameroon are the leading consumers of grasshoppers.

Get to know the benefits of adding Dziwala to your diet and Malawian culture. Take a look!

Health benefits of eating grasshoppers

  • Grasshopper skin is loaded with Calcium which is good for your bones and dental health
  • Eating locust meat helps improve memory and intelligence levels
  • Loaded with proteins which are great for fetal brain development
  • Helps stimulate the production of red blood cells minimizing chances of being  anemic
  • Keeps the body well-nourished and strengthens the immune system

[bctt tweet=”Eating grasshoppers helps promote fetal brain development”]

Malawian Culture

Malawi is home to diverse ethnic communities. Each ethnic group has its culinary art, but one common thing is the main ingredients of the cuisine. Potatoes, sorghum,  meat, fish, corn, sugar are the main staples.

The country is also famous for its creativity and artistic skills that have baffled many across the globe. The country has managed to keep its cultural heritage with music having strong cultural roots. The traditional music has some infection from Zulu, Yao tribe in Tanzania, and South Africa.

Traditional dances are part of cultural ceremonies with each event featuring different songs, dancing styles and drum beats. One of the most important dances is Vimbuza. It is popular among the Tumbuka people and is usually performed during cleansing rituals.

[bctt tweet=”In Malawi, Vimbuza dance is performed to cast away evil spirits”]

Gule Wamkulu is another popular dance in the country.

Gender roles in Malawian Culture

Men take leadership roles in Malawian society and especially at home. Women, on the other hand, are generally expected to manage household chores and take care of the children.

Like many under-developed and developing nations, gender roles are highly hierarchical in Malawian society, and women are expected to defer to their husbands, brothers, and fathers. Since it’s a male-dominated society, women cannot, and do not have control over money- including theirs.

[bctt tweet=”According to Malawian culture, women are expected to be submissive to their husbands, fathers and brothers. Doing otherwise is a form of disrespect, and a taboo”]

Another striking feature about Malawian culture is the dowry-opposite. Unlike in many other societies where a traditional dowry is expected to be paid by the groom’s family to the brides’ family, the opposite is the case in Malawi. When a couple gets married, the bride’s family gives dowry to the groom’s.

Talk about curvy-sexy and plum beauty, plus size women are mostly preferred by suitors in Malawi, but the key reason for this isn’t necessarily for those curvy anatomic beauty leverage. Traditionally, plus-size women in Malawi are viewed to have come from wealthier families, and can offer a more plush dowry payment. The “groom” price can range from livestock, farm crops, and other valuables.

[bctt tweet=”In Malawi, when a couple gets married, the bride’s family gives dowry to the groom’s. Plus size women are preferred as they are viewed to have come from wealthy family and could offer handsome dowry payment”]

Now that we’ve got you into some places unknown, let’s get down to this post recipe: 

Dziwala recipe

  • 1lb locust meat (canned)
  • Olive oil
  • 1tbsp. cayenne pepper
  • ½ cup lemon juice
  • 4 garlic cloves (crushed)
  • Diced onion
  • 1tbsp. chilli pepper
  • 1 lemon
  • Salt


  1. Pour your lemon juice in a large bowl and add your pepper. Stir well and add your locust meat. Make sure the juice covers the meat. Leave it to marinate properly for one hour
  2. Sauté your onions, and garlic for one minute and remove the pieces from the oil
  3. Remove your meat and sauté it on the oil until it turns crispy
  4. Remove your meat and squeeze your lemon juice and enjoy

Consuming Dziwala can help keep you well-nourished and healthy. To those who think eating grasshopper is creepy, weird, and disgusting eww…, uhnnnn, don’t know what you are missing!

It’s nutritional benefits far surpass those french fries, ketchup, and cheese you eat with or without guilt. Deep fry some grasshoppers soon, and enjoy a taste that is just out of this world. Feed back, and let us know how you feel about it!

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