Tanzanians relish Ndizi-nyama or Ndizi na nyama, a popular dish made with plantains or bananas and meat.
Tanzania grows and exports about four million bananas and plantains each year. Bananas and plantains are a delicacy for many people in the country, as such, you will find them in many homes and restaurant menus.
They are either fried, made into chips, or used in cakes and in stews like the Ndizi-nyama. At times, they are brewed into beer.
In Swahili, Ndizi is the word for plantains or bananas and Nyama is for meat and these are the main ingredients for the stew. Other ingredients like tomato paste, coconut milk, pepper, onions, curry powder, cayenne pepper, and oil are featured to make the meal complete.
For vegetarians, there is an option to make the meal without meat and that is known as Mchuzi wa Ndizi or plantain curry.
These ingredients are combined and cooked over a short period and usually served with ugali or rice as a side dish.
Here’s how to prepare the popular Tanzanian meal:
- 1 cup water
- 1 pound of beef, cut into bite-sized cubes (thin cut)
- 1 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- ½ teaspoon curry powder
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper
- 3 tablespoons cooking oil
- 1 onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tomatoes, chopped
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 cup coconut milk
- 1 tablespoon oregano
- 4 plantains, peeled and sliced
- In a pot or pan, bring one cup of water to a boil.
- Add the meat, salt, black pepper, curry powder, and red pepper. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer. (20 minutes)
- While meat is simmering heat oil in a separate pan.
- Fry the onions in the oil until golden brown.
- Add the tomatoes and tomato paste and cook for ten minutes or until tomatoes are soft. Reduce heat.
- Add coconut milk and oregano. Cover and simmer. (10-15 minutes)
- Add sliced plantains to meat.
- Cook for ten minutes or until meat is done and plantains are tender.
- Combine the onion-tomato-coconut mixture with the meat and plantains. Stir for ten minutes.
- Adjust seasoning to taste and plate meal.