“Let us not forget that the pride of any family is in the well-being of its members and that one way in which to achieve this is through being well fed with delicious and nutritious foods.” –Alice Taabu
Last week, I shared that for Black History Month, I’ll be sharing recipes created by black African Women.
This week I want to share with you a culinary creative, Alice Taabu.
Many of my Kenyan family members and friends probably have heard of her because she hosted a cooking TV show for 20 years! I, on the other hand, stumbled upon her work and cookbook last year.
What stands out for me as I explore, recreate, and play with her recipes is that she shares recipes with indigenous ingredients and ingredients that came in during Kenya’s colonial times. I don’t know if she did it intentionally, but for me, this book encapsulates the fusion that happened as well as the resistance and reverence for what fortified her ancestors long before colonization.
This cookbook “Mke Nyumbani” also helped me realize the truth, that not only have foods indigenous to my people been beneficial to my healing but also ones the colonizer brought in, and I’ve learned from other people’s cultures.
It helped me realize that what I’m learning and sharing through my work are the practices we need to be able to discern which foods are healing for my/your unique body.
The recipe I want to highlight for this book is Alice’s Stewed Fish. It’s one of my go-to meals when I don’t want to cook, but we done ate everything so I chose to cook something quick, simple, delicious and fortifying.
The Key ingredients:
- Fresh Water: Hydration, supports distribution of nutrients in body, and elimination of toxins Fresh Water is found in various parts around the world
- Coconut Milk: Not included in Alice’s recipe but I added coconut milk because I love creamy rich sauces, it pairs beautifully with tomatoes, and my mind + body benefit from it’s fats. Coconuts are native to Indo-Malaya.
- Tomatoes – supports cardiovascular system, antioxidant, anti inflammatory properties Tomatoes are native to the Americas
- Iodine free Sea Salt – balances fluid in blood, provides trace minerals. Salt is found in various parts of the world
- Wild Caught Fish: I use salmon because it is US (less travel to where I currently am) caught fatty rich fish. Rich in Omega 3 & 6 in anti-inflammatory proportions. Fish is found around the world
- Lemon: Vitamin C rich, supports release and absorption of minerals. Lemon is native to South Asia.
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 20
Recipe adapted from: Mke Nymbani by Alice Taabu’s Cookery Book
1 can full fat coconut milk
½ c water
1 13-15 oz can of organic diced tomatoes or 1 cup of fresh tomatoes diced
2 cloves garlic minced
½ tsp – 1 tsp salt
1 lb of fatty fish (salmon, mackerel, sardine, Anchovies..)
1 tablespoon cilantro
Juice of one lime or lemon
- Over medium heat, heat a wide deep pan with coconut milk, water, tomatoes, salt and garlic for 12 mins, cook with a light rolling boil.
- Now, add fish to cook for 8 mins.
- Then, turn off heat , move the pan to a cool burner and stir in cilantro and lime juice.
- Enjoy with cooked greens and steam sweet potatoes or avocado and rice of your choice.