People would often ask me what sort of food I ate at home, and I would say western food. They just assumed that we ate African food all the time but we didn’t and that sometimes offended me. When I moved to New Zealand, I lost a part of my Zimbabwean culture. I guess you could say I got westernised and forgot my roots. At one point it seemed like a cool thing, because you so want to fit into the new culture you have found yourself in. I didn’t want to be associated with anything African, it’s almost as if I was embarrassed of where I came from.
But as time went on, I realised that it wasn’t about me not being proud of my culture but painful past experiences. I wanted to forget, block everything and go on like my past never existed. So the people, and the culture was a constant reminder so I subconsciously disassociated myself from everything that reminded me of that past. But then somewhere along the way I had an awakening, and learnt to embrace my past and use it as a reminder of how far God has brought me and not let it have a negative impact on my life. Once I made peace with my past, I was able to go back to my roots and embrace my Zimbabwean culture.
I now take pride in the foods I grew up eating and I want to cook Zimbabwean food for people and show them how beautiful our traditional food is. I love it when I cook for people and see them enjoy the food.
The dish I chose to share with you today is a Zimbabwean delicacy, and in shona we call it “mupunga une dovi”. My grandmother used to make it a lot, and she would serve it on it’s own or with a beef stew and sautéed greens. I made it for dinner over the weekend, and my whole family loved it especially hubby, it took him down memory lane. It’s so simple to make yet so flavourful and deliciously good. You simply stir in some peanut butter when the rice is almost cooked and let it simmer, that is all.
1 1/2 cups rice
2 1/2 cups water
3 Tablespoons peanut butter
1 teaspoon salt
Rinse the rice and bring salt water to a boil in a saucepan. Add the rice, turn down the heat, cover and simmer until rice is almost cooked.
Then stir in peanut butter, and mix well. Cover the rice and let it simmer until cooked. And that’s it, you have just made peanut butter rice. Now enjoy it with a spicy curry, or stew and sautéed greens.