Being born and raised in Kenya, I was very lucky to experience fresh exotic varieties and flavours of fruit and vegetables. We used to get fresh vegetables delivered daily to our house by a ” Mama Boga” meaning vegetable lady, it always amazed me how they used to carry heavy platters of vegetables on their heads without dropping them, it was definitly a skill that I didn’t have. Everyday we had different veg but greens were a must. Infact In Kenya greens were a staple dish for all especially as you found them growing all around, villagers would make a dish called Sukumawiki to accompany their bright white,moist and nutritious “ugali”.My childhood memories of growing up in Kenya are still so fresh, only feels like yesterday I moved countries although it has been 20 years, wow how the time flies. Ugali is made of maize meal and water usually cooked to a porridge or dough like consistency. I used to sit and watch the locals mould ugali in their fist, scoop up their veg or meat and eat eveb I used to join them and the experience of eating it the way they did was so satisfactory. In local villages they used to cook their vegetables, meat, fish, ugali with very simple spices and some could only just manage to afford salt, yet they appreciated and respected the food they were eating, I was very young to have experienced all of this first hand but it was an eye opening experience and those memeories will never part from me.
Most villagers used to rely on affordable and available vegetables to make a feast for their family and one of the dishes which is popular to accompany ugali is called “Sukuma wiki” which means “push the week”. It’s a dish they prepare to help them get through the week and usually made with collard greens which is similar to Kale. Collard greens are cheap to purchase and very simple to prepare usually sauteed with onions and salt.I count myself very lucky to have had the opportunity to experience all that I have and observe life in both ends of the spectrums. I remember visiting villages where there was no light and water and see how locals lived in their huts, at times 5-6 members of the family sleeping in a confined space to me like a box. I got to experience first hand the amount of hard work and labourus jobs kids and adults of the family did to have food on their plate for survival. One thing I did take away from all of this was that no matter what they could or couldn’t afford they would always cook nutritious meals for their kids.Now having kids of my own I feel it’s so important for them to visually experience this side of living but as I’m not in Africa anymore I can only hope to make them understand about importance of valuing and appreciating simple things in life such as food.
Here I have used Kale and spinach to make “sukuma wiki” but with addition of few other spices. Kale is very nutritious and high in iron. I found that by mixing kale and spinach you got the best of both worlds, soft greens and slightly tough greens. This recipe has been made creamy by adding greek yoghurt so no cream involved which makes it super healthy. The beauty of this dish is that it can be used as a standard curry base and you can make your own variations by adding vegetables or cheese.
I served this curry with the Fresh coriander and jalapeno corn bread which went down a treat.
Slimming World Syns per serving: Free
Frylight or 1 cal spray
1 Large onion chopped
4 Cloves garlic finely chopped
1 Medium tomato chopped
300g Fresh Spinach roughly sliced
2 Tsp curry powder
2 Tbsp Cumin seeds
1 Tsp salt or to taste
85g 0% fat Greek yoghurt
1. In a wide pan, spray frylight, add cumin seeds, garlic and onions and sautee.
2. Add the tomatoes and spices and stir together.
3. Add Kale and spinach a little at a time allowing both to wilt slighlty before adding more.
4. once all spinach and kale has been added, cover the pan and let it cook on low heat for 4-5 mins.
5. Take a couple of spoonful of cooked spinach and kale curry and put in a blender together with the yoghurt, blend until smooth and creamy. Add it to the rest of the curry and stir.
6. Curry is ready to be served hot with roti or corn bread.