I called my friend who is an incredible chef in Malawi to let her know I would be in town for a couple of weeks. She insisted I join her family for dinner. I was very excited and when she asked what I wanted I said, “just mushroom soup.” I asked her to keep it simple and that I just wanted to see her and catch up. She agreed.
When I arrived the house smelled amazing! I knew it was way more than soup. I left feeling like I would certainly not need any more food the rest of my visit, especially with the treats she made me take with me.
She usually cooks for the US embassy, but when I bring my teams over, all of her attention is on us.
I am not a big meat eater, but if she cooks it, I will eat it. Everything she makes is delicious. Over the years, she has learned my personal favorites and spoils me rotten.
She makes sure there is nothing wasted. When my team and any other guests we invite to eat are finished she takes any leftovers into the local homes and shares. She also sources most of the ingredients for our meals from the local community. It is a win-win situation.
One of my team members is a chef in the US, It was such a treat to watch the 2 of them share their trade secrets with each other. In the video below they are making nsima, the staple food in Malawi, a maize flour porridge. I am grateful that I can have my American chef friend make this as a treat for me in between my trips to Malawi. (*the maize flour we purchase here is not as good as the original in Malawi)
I cry when I have to leave her and crave her cooking until I arrive at the next trip. I think we are a rare team that travels to Africa that worries about gaining a few extra pounds during the trip.