Manioca, fresh from the boiling wok.

Manioca.

Manioca is a vegetable that tastes extremely like potato, has the same colour when cut but is darker on the outside and longer in shape, it almost looks like a tree branch in appearance (have a look in google images). I ate it on the streets of Malindi, Kenya – Africa.

Shorts on, pale legs out and drinking from coconuts in the city (Malindi) I felt refreshingly like a tourist again. The search for cheap, tasty and local Kenyan food had begun. Although, after finding an endless supply of white polenta, legumes and dried fish, I began to get a little worried and thought that I was going to have to live on a diet of coconuts for the next 2 weeks.

The first thing I noticed in Kenya was the Italian influence (my particular favorite being the Italian supermarkets dotted around). Strolling the streets of what should really be renamed ‘Africa’s little Italy’ I began to feel a slight sensation of panic… Was I going to have to eat pizza?… in Kenya?
During my food panic I wondered if I was in fact just lost in Italy somewhere. Visibly stressed I immediately calmed upon sighting an elderly lady and her son on the side of the road cooking something from a wok. As my thighs ran towards her she smiled and dropped more pieces into the boiling oil.
Manioca. She served the pieces hot and rubbed a tangy pepper and lime mix over them. Tasting the pink coloured mix by itself was bitter and salty but combined with my piece of Manioka was delicious.

Manioca and its pink tangy, salty, peppery mix
Manioca and its pink tangy, salty, peppery mix

 

Trooping our way back to Watamu with the local bus, we found a shack selling the best samosas I have ever tasted. We also ate African pizza (nothing like a pizza) and bought many skewers of meat served from a very proud cook. We ate all varieties of the freshest seafood, millions of mangoes and drank many bottles of Tusker. But nothing compared to my Manioca food experience, served in a piece of greasy newspaper.

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