I met Edward Kabaka a couple of years ago and we have worked together on several projects in the Migori region of Kenya. On the weekend, Edward came to pick me up and we went to Migori where I was able to visit three CanAssist project partner groups.
On Monday, Edward invited me to his home for dinner and his wife prepared a huge spread of food. After dinner the three youngest girls daughters and some of their neighbour friends sang and danced and recited poems for me. I thought how similar kids are all around the world, remembering my own putting on “shows” after dinner and thinking of my granddaughter, Emma, twirling around and showing me ballet moves.
I took the opportunity to get a photo of the food before we dug in. I am often asked what i eat while in Kenya. This meal had many of the common staple foods that i am offered here, although not usually all together as in this spread. In addition to rice and beans which were on another table we were served chapati, chips, tilapia, sukuma wiki (shredded kale), tomatoes and onion, indigenous greens, bananas and papaya.
The other common staple for Kenyans which we did not have this night is uglali, a corn meal boiled doughy mixture that replaces our bread and is usually served in a huge mound. In addition to being a filling basis for a meal, uglali often acts as an edible utensil. The dough is rolled in one hand, a thumbprint cavity is made in the ball and used to scoop up other foods. It all pops into the mouth.
I came away stuffed with food and friendship and lots of smiles.