Cassava

A basket full

This dear lady has walked a long distance to sell her cassava at the market. It is called Umwumbati in Kirundi. In Swahili it is Mihogo.

The cassava plant is a small bush. People use the leaves of the plant, pounding them and cooking them sometimes adding small dried fish called ndagala to the mixture. This dish of boiled cassava leaves is called Sombe in Eastern Congo

The tubers are what the flour is made from. This gluten free flour made from cassava is also called tapioca flour. Raw cassava tubers are poisonous. People grind it and cook it well using it in a variety of ways. Our cook says he sometimes adds the ground cassava to the cooked beans to thicken the sauce.

Bugali, a dumpling type food is a popular part of most meals for most people in Africa. It is made either from Cassava or Maize.

After rice, maize cassava is the third largest source of carbohydrates in the tropics.

Unfortunately these women who have harvested this food do not receive much money for their very hard work. The challenges they face daily are many. I find it a privilege to meet some of them and inspite of these challenges they have ready smiles.

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