The food culture of Burkina Faso, in West Africa, has been shaped by its long history as one of the poorest countries in the world. However, this has also led to some pretty amazing food traditions that are both nutritious and delicious! You can find these traditional meals at most restaurants and markets across the country and you’ll quickly learn why they’re so popular! Let’s take a look at the traditional recipes, cultural significance, and health benefits of four foods commonly found in Burkina Faso: mango, peanut butter, millet, and rice.
Traditional Ingredients in Burkinabé Cuisine
There are many healthy and delicious traditional ingredients used in Burkinabé cuisine. Some of these include: fresh vegetables, fruits, herbs, spices, meat, fish, and grains. These ingredients are often cheap and easy to find, making Burkinabé cuisine a great option for those on a budget. Plus, the variety of flavors and textures in Burkinabé dishes is sure to please even the pickiest of eaters!
One example of a healthy, traditional ingredient that is both cheap and easy to find in Burkina Faso is melon (known locally as molo). Molo is a tasty snack or salad ingredient that can be served alongside a wide variety of dishes for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It’s also quite filling, making it perfect for anyone looking to get more fiber into their diet. Molo has several health benefits including its ability to: reduce inflammation, treat allergies, alleviate thirstiness and hunger pangs, relieve menstrual pains in women and prevent cancer.
Dishes That Are Common In Burkinabé Cuisine
One of the most popular dishes is kedjenou, a chicken stew that is cooked in a clay pot. Another popular dish is griot, which are fried balls of pork that are often served with rice. One of the tastiest dishes is sendegui, a type of okra stew that is made with tomatoes and eggplant. A popular vegetable dish is tô, a stew made with spinach, eggplant, and okra.
Another tasty dish is fufu, a mashed cassava dish that is often served with soup or sauce. For dessert, you can enjoy some fresh fruit or watalappam, a coconut custard pudding. To drink, there is tamarind juice or a cool glass of millet beer. It is also common to end a meal with kane, a hot chocolate drink. Other typical drinks include coffee, tea, or ginger juice. If you have a sweet tooth, you can also enjoy some nougat or ginger candy.
Fufu – Made from Plantain Flour and Cassava Flour
Fufu is a traditional dish in Burkina Faso that is made from plantain flour and cassava flour. It is usually served with a soup or stew, and is a very filling and nutritious meal. Fufu is a staple in the diet of many Burkina Fasans, and is often eaten for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. The dish is typically made fresh, so it is always full of flavor and nutrients.
If you want to try your hand at making fufu yourself, a great place to start is with it’s cousin, known as attiéké. Attiéké is sometimes made with cassava flour or semolina as well. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can also try mafé. This dish is one of Burkina Faso’s most popular desserts and it’s easy to make at home. You mix semolina or wheat flour with buttermilk or water and leave it out in a warm area overnight. Then you add honey, peanuts, plantains, raisins, coconut milk or even palm oil before serving it on a bed of cooked rice.
The food culture in Burkina Faso is rich and varied. Groundnut stew is a popular dish that is made with peanuts, tomatoes, onions, and chili peppers. It is often served with rice or fufu (a starchy paste made from cassava or yams). This dish is not only delicious, but it is also nutritious. Peanuts are a good source of protein, fiber, and vitamins. Tomatoes provide us with vitamins A and C.
African Peanut Stew is often made in large batches to serve guests, which is why you might want to invite friends over for dinner when making it. A good meal should include a starch, such as rice or fufu, in addition to a protein and vegetables. If you’re planning on cooking for your whole family or a big group of friends, you can make more servings by simply adding more ingredients. The recipe below makes around 10 servings so adjust accordingly.
Coco Fish Soup
Burkina Faso’s cuisine is rich and varied, with influences from both its French colonial past and the native Africans who make up the majority of its population. Popular dishes include coco fish soup, which is made with fresh fish, tomatoes, onions, and palm oil. Ingredients are simmered for a few minutes in water or milk before being served. The dish is often cooked with beef, chicken, or shrimp to provide extra protein. Served on a bed of rice cooked in stock, it’s the perfect one-pot meal that is full of flavor and nutrients!
The country is also known for its lokou, a dish that is similar to okra soup. Spicy chicken in peanut sauce is another popular staple of Burkinabé cuisine, as are couscous and grilled meats. Burkina Faso has a long tradition of winemaking, although climate change has made it difficult to maintain traditional vineyards. Fruit wines are most commonly served in villages or as homemade libations at parties.
Mango Millet Porridge
One of the most popular dishes in Burkina Faso is a mango millet porridge. It is made with fresh mango, millet, and ginger. The dish is served with a side of fresh vegetables. The porridge is filling and nutritious. It is also a good source of vitamins A and C. You can find this dish at any time of day for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Mango season lasts from December to March so be sure to try this dish while you are visiting!
Another popular dish is couscous with vegetables. It is a combination of couscous and vegetables served in a tomato sauce that can be paired with meat or fish. This dish is also cooked with saffron. You’ll notice that many dishes are typically cooked in sauces. This is because there aren’t as many spices available in Burkina Faso, so they make up for it by using these sauces instead to give food more flavor.
Even though you may think you’re eating something spicy, it doesn’t compare to what we eat in western countries! Many of our meals are prepared without salt but taste amazing all thanks to different combinations of flavors!