How to Make Sazda; African Cornmeal….

They say if you want to know about certain people, take a look at what they eat and how it is prepared. Fasten your seatbelt for a trip to Zimbabwe, a landlocked country in southern Africa known for its dramatic landscape, diverse wildlife, reserves, safari areas and yes food!

Image ref: Geoff Gallice

Sadza is a staple in many African countries, especially South Africa.

It is a very thick porridge made from finely ground white cornmeal and is usually served as an accompaniment to meat and vegetable soups and stews.

Sadza is Zimbabwe’s version of Nigeria and Ghana’s Fufu usually made from ground maize (corn), or Zambia’s Nshima or Eastern Africa’s Ugali.

In Zimbabwe, the word sadza itself is practically synonymous with lunch or supper. Once you say you’re having sadza, it implies you’re having a vegetable or meat dish to accompany it.

When it comes to preparation, the people of South Africa like theirs a bit on the softer side while most people in East Africa like it a little thicker. 

How to make Sadza:

Image ref: Cheflolaskitchen

Although Sadza is very easy to prepare, it might be a little tricky if this is new to you. If it is not well prepared, there are chances that it turns out with tiny lumps of cornflour in the dish. 

The first thing to do to prevent the lumps is to make the corn dust into a paste before making the ugali proper. The Pap is a soft porridge made by boiling some cornflour in water.

Image ref: Instructables

After making the paste:

Prepare the soft Porridge by placing the mixture over medium heat and boil continually stirring until the Pap is formed and then, leave to Pap to boil for few more minutes. Once the pap has been prepared, add more cornflour to the porridge stirring continuously with a ladle until you get the desired consistency or firmness.  At this point, the sadza should begin to pull away from the sides of the pot and form a large ball. Cook for a few minutes more.

Transfer the sadza to a large bowl and serve immediately. To serve, wet hands or a serving utensil to cut into one large ball for family-style or smaller serving sized-portions for individuals. Serve immediately with any soup or stew. 

Image ref: Cheflolaskitchen

More modern people with a curious taste like to add milk or butter to make it tastier, especially for special occasions. While these are not traditional, they add a bit more flavour. When one or a combination of these are added, the Sadza is almost as good enough to eat on its own.

What is that unique local cuisine that you enjoy? Do tell us about it in the comment section.

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