Snapshots on Africa: food, customs, styles, business and more.
Back to Africa
With our cousin's mom, who is wearing a traditional Duala Kaba.
Finally I returned to Africa in January--not for good (yet), but at least I was finally able to go. I'll be writing several posts about the trip, which only lasted 2 weeks, but was full of food (lots of food to catch up!), travel, and meeting with old and new acquaintances. I'll also update older posts with additional photos. Here is a photo of our cousin's mom with me.
On Friday and mostly on Saturday, April 13-14, 2012, Columbia University's School of International Policy held the 9th Annual African Economic Forum. Nick Tattersall, Knight-Bagehot Fellow in Business and Economics Journalism at Columbia University, introduced t he first keynote speaker: Sanusi Lamido Sanusi , Governor of Nigeria's Central Bank. Mr. Sanusi hails from Northern Nigeria; on Wikipedia , he is called "Mallam" (" learned " or "teacher," from the Arabic language), as he is also an Islamic scholar---probably a rarity in the banking world! He spoke softly (a little too softly for some of us, as the microphones were not working too well on the first day of the Forum) and couched his words carefully; however, his goals for Africa in general, and Nigeria in particular were quite clear: self-sufficiency leading to prosperity, and independence from foreign economic interests. I cannot, of course, provide here the full speech; howev
Ndolé with fried plantains Food in tropical Africa, as everywhere in the world, is mainly made with local products. Notable exceptions: tomatoes have become a staple, after being imported by the Europeans who had themselves imported them from South America. Tomatoes are not quite as ubiquitous as in southern Italy, but are the go-to item for sauces when a cook is in a crunch. Another import is salt cod, also known in the Americas as Bacalao . Cooked with what else... tomato sauce! Onions are also very popular, and I don’t think they are originally from the African continent. Ndolé plant Food, traditionally, is cooked. Well cooked. Salads used to be an unknown entity, and older people still call it “goat’s food.” Raw, or insufficiently cooked, would have been—and may still be—dangerous, in the hot and humid equatorial climate, where bacteria thrive, as it is never cold. Snow is a completely unknown entity. Even after a third of his life spent in temperate climates, my hus
Via Amanda Tento, founder of my wonderful online networking group, the 337 group , I met Yeve Sibanda. Yeve is a Zimbabwean native who now calls the United States home. She is a wife, mother, attorney, public speaker, and author, and she founded Philisa Creatives, a media company, that celebrates and amplifies African heritage. Philisa means “to bring to life” in Ndebele; its mission is to create innovative products to enhance multicultural learning. Her debut book is " My First Book of Shona and Ndebele Words ." Just a week before, I had been discussing the need to promote African languages with Elle Charisse , creator of the Speaking Tongues podcast. On a popular language-learning app, until very recently, the only African language being taught was Swahili. I just read that Zulu and Xhosa, spoken in South Africa, will soon be taught, too. There are some apps and websites, such as Mandla (for English speakers) and ParleAfrique for French speakers. However, they often have