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Archive for September, 2011

African Food

People have always wondered, what do Africans eat? What does a native African food look like? Africa has an unknown number of cuisines. Our meals are rich in dietary fiber and most of the time, organic.  African dishes are made with ingredients easily found in the continent through subsistence farming.

Most of the food we eat in Africa are made from common foodstuffs like cassava, yam, cocoyam, rice, beans, sorghum, maize,  millet, groundnut, coconut, melons, plantain, beef, sea foods, poultry, goat meat, bush meat, vegetable oils, potatoes, lentil, vegetables,  and a wide selection of tantalizing spices. Out of these seemingly few list of items comes a literally unending array of various delicacies.

90% of African food are organic and not processed. They are devoid of refined sugar and additives. Most of the food we eat in Africa are starch based garnished with many vegetables and fresh fish or meat.

People grow most of these food stuffs behind their houses. This is subsistence farming and it also means that they can have these food stuffs all year round. Animals like cows, goats and chickens are reared. From these reared animals, we get our fresh meat which is a good source of protein.  African food is rich and colorful. A taste of African food will make you ask for more.

Have you ever seen this fruit before? It’s called Cashew. People often eat cashew nut but don’t know the fruit.

Cashew

African Culture and Names

African Culture

Africa is rich and diverse in culture. Our cultural activities centers on family and ethnic groups. Our religious and social patterns are reinforced through art, music and oral Literature. The way we cook, eat, speak, dress and the music we listen to is very much different from other cultures. Every African country is made up of several tribes, each with it’s own unique language. For example, Uganda has over 30 tribes. Nigeria has 3 major ethnic groups and so many minor ethnic groups.

Africans are brought up to show respect to parents and elderly ones. A young person cannot sit when an old person is standing, be it in the bus or any public transport. In Nigeria, it’s considered disrespectful for you to serve an elderly person with your left hand. Also, younger ones are supposed to keep quiet until their parents are done talking. Talking back at one’s parent is very bad. There are so many things to share about African culture.

African Names

In Africa, we see children as a gift from God and joy to the family. Most African names have meanings attached to them. Africans do not just wake up one morning and decide to call a child by a name that doesn’t make sense. We believe that names are so meaningful and powerful and can influence a child’s entire life cycle.

The Yorubas (a tribe in Nigeria) believe that a name can affect a child’s behavior, profession and success in the future. For example, a child who bears the name of a well-known thief might grow up to become a thief. Children are also given names according to their birth circumstances. My dad is Yoruba while my mum is Efik. My parents believed I was a gift from God unto them so they called “Oluwabunmi”. This means “God’s gift.”

These are some African names and their meanings.

Lerato means Love (South Africa)

Kagiso means Peace (South Africa)

Morayo means I’ve seen joy. (Nigeria)

Adaeze means king’s daughter. (Nigeria)

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