Onecompelling feature of Marcus Samuelsson’s The Soul of a New Cuisine is how he translates these African staples into side dishes that appeal to a global audience. Sadza becomes eye-catching with the addition of avocado and fresh corn, while fufu is glamorized with coconut milk and white wine. I’ll explore a couple of these transformations in the next two posts.
First up is irio, a dish prepared by the Kikuyu (also called the Gikuyu), the largest ethnic group in
Chunky Mashed Vegetables
Adapted from The Soul of a New Cuisine
Serves 4 to 6
6 cloves of garlic, peeled
2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch / 2½-centimeter cubes
½ cup / 125 milliliters peanut oil
1 pound / 450 grams green beans, ends trimmed and cut into quarters
8 tablespoons / 225 grams unsalted butter
1 3-inch / 7½-centimeter piece of ginger, peeled and finely chopped
3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into ½-inch / 1¼-centimeter dice
1 medium red onion, coarsely chopped
2 jalapeno chilies, seeds and ribs removed, finely chopped
1½ cups / 375 milliliters water
1 tablespoon / 15 milliliters Berbere or chili powder
1 tablespoon / 15 milliliters chopped chives
1 teaspoon / 5 milliliters salt
2 tablespoons / 30 milliliters olive oil
Pre-heat the oven to 350° F (180° C). Toss the garlic and sweet potatoes with the peanut oil in a roasting pan. Roast for 20 minutes, or until the garlic is tender. Remove and reserve the garlic. Continue roasting the sweet potatoes until tender, about 25 minutes.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Prepare an ice bath by filling a large bowl with ice and water. Add the beans to the boiling water and blanch for 2 minutes. Drain the beans and plunge into the ice bath to stop cooking and set the color. Drain and set aside.
When the sweet potatoes are done, transfer them to a large bowl, add the roasted garlic, and mash with a fork to a chunky consistency.
Melt the butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the ginger, carrots, onion, and jalapenos and sauté, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, about 10 minutes. Stir in the water and bring to a simmer, then reduce the heat and simmer gently until the carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.
Stir in the Berbere and mashed sweet potatoes, and then add the blanched green beans and cook, stirring, until heated through. Stir in the chives and salt and transfer to a serving bowl. Drizzle the vegetables with the olive oil and serve.Tags: