Around the World in 12 Dishes--Kenya

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This month we are "traveling" to Kenya with Around the World In 12 Dishes. Now we have explored Kenya a bit before. Last week we found our Flat Stanley was in Kenya dressed as a Massai warrior. Then we had the pleasure of exploring Christmas in Kenya for the Christmas Around the World Series last year. And thanks to Andrea over at Ziezo, we were able to extend it with a book she sent us from Kenya last February. Finally last summer we exchanged postcards with Andrea's children and we shared a bit here.

Now Kenya is known for it animals and the savannah. How many people dream of going on a safari and let's face it, Kenya is where you do this. It is home to the lions, giraffes, elephants, leopards, buffalo, rhinoceros and many more. It is also home to the Massai, which is the group of indigenious people most recognized throughout the world due to their distinct clothes and jewelry. You can learn more about the Massai in our Flat Stanley post.

This month we did our normal exploring with some cooking, stories and music. We did not get a chance to do a craft yet, but we did for our Christmas post. The stories we read are from the three books pictured above. We of course also read the Christmas stories at Christmas time or when we got them. The best part of the Creation book is that there is also a story from Egypt in it and Egypt is our country to explore next month so we have a headstart already.
Music was a little harder to find, but we found some Kenyan songs on these CD's. We got all of our out of the library. Then we used the following books as references to learn more about Kenya and get ideas for what to make. Since we have already made kaimati and mandazi, I thought we would try something that was not a treat. In the book, A Kenyan Christmas by Auntie Kiko, I discovered how popular kale is in Kenya and thought it would be interesting to try a Kenyan kale dish. Now I like kale, but my family does not usually. Steve will eat it when it is cooked with other flavors. Hazel will barely try it (and she tries just about everything).

While looking for a kale recipe, I came across a recipe for irio. I decided to check and see what was available on line for irio and found this recipe from Serious Eats. There are slight difference between the various recipes I found, but I had all the ingredients in this one and knew my family would like it so I went with it. They loved it and asked me to make it again. Or course being made with peas, corn and potatoes--three of Hazel's and Steve's favorite vegetables basically guaranteed they would like it.

Then a few days later I made a recipe for sukuma wiki. Now sukuma wiki means stretch the week. Apparently most Kenyans grow kale or some sort of greens to use in this recipe. Again there was a huge variation in the recipes I found. Some used kale, some used collard greens or just called for any greens; some used fresh tomatoes and some used tomato paste; etc. I decided to go with this one on the Kitchn. For us it involved a trip to the farmer's market. We were able to get the kale and tomatoes there. I did not use cumin (only because I forgot to buy some and I am out of it). I liked the recipe and Steve said it was ok. Hazel did not like it though.

I am joining these amazing blogs to bring you Around the World in 12 Dishes and to include a blog hop where you can share your own recipes and activities! 

For the wonderful Kenya Passport that Glittering Muffins puts out click here and the wonderful Kenya Placemat is here.

Now it is your turn to share a recipe, craft, activity with a Kenyan theme. Or if you do not have one, you can check out the other great ones on this blog hop!


  1. You are doing quite a lot for Kenya! I might try the first dish as everyone in our family enjoys these ingredients too.

  2. Looking great! I am feeling right at home :-)

  3. You always find such wonderful resources! And so interesting that kale is important to Kenyan cooking, since greens are a big part of African-American traditional cooking as well. Thanks for sharing at the Culture Swapper!

  4. Very complete post once again. Thanks for participating again :)


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