Loaded Bean and Dodo (Amaranth) Salad

Starting this blog, I was young and naive. All I knew is that I wanted to cook exciting, interesting and delicious food. Years later,  I now understand the value of food, using local produce,  using fresh produce and being creative.  This salad was conceived after binge watching the amazing Fat Salt Acid Heat docu-series. I was blown away by the beauty of how the most basic of ingredients yield some of the best flavors.  When you think of beans and dodo and potatoes individually, a salad rarely comes to your mind.  But when the same ingredients are transformed through different techniques, what you get is a beautiful vibrant salad that is so satisfying and complex in flavors.  This is one of the main reasons I keep slaving away in the kitchen like a mad woman because the ecstasy of discovering something else a common produce can be is unmatched! I had a hard time naming this salad because it has dodo,  masala potatoes, sweet and charred carrots,  beans, green onions for a spicy kick, pumpkin seeds for a crunch and a sprinkle of cheese to marry all the flavors together. This would have made a really long title. Ha!
What you will need: 
1 C. Beans, boiled and drained
1C. Potatoes, cut into wedges
1 C. Carrots, julienned
A handful of dodo(amaranth greens), steamed
1/4 C. Green onions, chopped
1/4 C. Nuts
1/4 C. Cheese, grated (optional)
Juice from half an orange
1 Tsp. Soy sauce
1 Tsp. Ground cumin
1 Tsp. curry powder
1/2 Tsp. chili flakes
Black pepper
Salt
Observations: 
  1. Using cheese is optional.
  2. Use salt carefully keeping in mind that all the individual salted components will be combined. With that said, I salted only the potatoes. Then sprinkled salt on the finished salad.
  3. You can use any type of beans. I used red beans.
  4. You can use any nuts available to you.
  5. I recommend a non-stick pan to avoid burning
Method:
  1. Place a pan on fire, Wait for it to get hot. Add about a teaspoon of oil.
  2. Add the potato wedges. Shallow fry the wedges till half way cooked. Make sure you keep stirring to avoid burning.
  3. After they reach the half-way cooked point, add the salt, cumin, curry powder and black pepper and mix well. Let them cook till tender.
  4. Remove the potatoes from fire and set aside.
  5. Using the same pan, add a half teaspoon of oil.
  6. Add the carrots to the oil. Add the juice of half an orange.
  7. Let the carrots  shallow fry till the orange juice has reduced to a thick sauce and the carrots start to slightly char.
  8. Remove the carrots from the pan and set aside.
  9. Using the same pan still, add half a teaspoon of oil and saute the green onions.
  10. Add the soy sauce, and chili flakes to the frying onions.
  11. Fry the onions till they turn a bright green but still have a crunch.
  12. Remove the onions from fire
To assemble the salad
Layer the salad by starting with the boiled beans. Next add the potatoes. Next add the steamed dodo. Add the caramelized carrots on top. Next add the onions. Sprinkle your nuts/seeds on top. Finish off with grated cheese.
Serve with a glass of wine or iced tea.
Share you creations using #AkitchenInUg

How to Make Ugandan Daddies

Last week, the craving for bagiya hit so hard that I attempted to make some at home…. only to realize I don’t really know how they are made. *insert face palm emoji* I had a vague idea of soya flour and cassava flour but besides that I totally knew nothing. I was frustrated and a bit guilty because this is one snack I have had from childhood but had never bothered to find out how it was made or what went into it. I took to Instagram and was surprised to find out that almost no one knew how to make bagiya too! For the next coming months, I am on a quest to research about and make bagiya but in the meantime, we can indulge in daddies.

What are Daddies? Daddies are also a childhood snack that just bring back all the memories. Boarding school grub at its finest…If you have been through the Ugandan education system.  I am yet to find out the origin of the daddies and how they came to be called that in the first place. If you don’t know daddies, they are small bite-sized sweet fried flour cubes. Their composition is similar to mandazi although very crunchy since a lot of shortening is used. Since it is still citrus season (check out my last post), I infused orange juice and zest into these daddies to give it a fragrant aroma and fruity taste. They can be eaten on their own or as parfait, or in porridge and anything you like really. There are no rules.

 

What you will need:

4 C. All Purpose flour

4 Tbsp. Sugar

3 Tsp. Oil/Margarine/butter

1/2 C. Orange juice

1 C. Cold water

1 Tsp. Orange zest

1/2 Tsp . Nutmeg

1/2 Tsp. Ground cloves

1/2 Tsp. Salt

 

Observations:

To create layers in the daddies,  use the puff pastry technique of rolling and folding the dough. . Fold it three times before cutting.

Method

  1. In a clean bowl, add flour, sugar, salt, nutmeg, cloves, orange zest and mix well.
  2. Rub in the oil/butter/margarine til the flour mixture is coarse.
  3. Pour in the orange juice and mix well. Next pour in the water gradually until a firm dough is formed. Set aside the dough for about 10 minutes.
  4. After 10 minutes, knead the dough till smooth.
  5. Flour your rolling surface and roll the dough to about half an inch in thickness. Using a sharp knife cut the dough into small bite-sized squares.
  6. Place a pan on fire. Add oil and wait for it to get hot.
  7. Add your daddies and fry them till golden brown. Remove from oil and drain.
  8. Serve. Preferably with tea or hot cocoa.

I would like to know, what Ugandan snacks are you able to make at home? Which one do you struggle with?

Also do you think I should make a video for these daddies or not?

Tangerine Lemongrass Iced Tea

Happy New year Family! How is 2019 coming along? January was a crazy month and I wrote about it on Instagram.
It seems it is citrus season all over the world. At least Instagram says so. My feed for the past two days has been filled with beautiful images of different citrus fruits and it makes me happy. I have been enjoying buying fresh tangerines from the local fruit seller and man are they juicy!
I figure since almost everyone has citrus in abundance, its time to get out the blender and make this tangerine lemongrass iced tea. It is so refreshing, fragrant and easy to make. I have made lemongrass iced tea in the past but when I got a chance to try it with fresh juicy tangerines, I could not resist.
What you will need:
4 large tangerines
4 C Water
A handful of lemongrass
Sugar/honey
Ice
Here is a short video detailing the process.
Method
  1. Bring the 4 cups of water to a boil. Add the lemongrass and let it boil till a sweet aroma is released and it has changed color. This may take about 20 minutes. Remove the tea from fire and let it cool completely.
  2. While the lemongrass tea cools,  cut the tangerines into half and squeeze out the juice. Sieve the juice and set a side.
  3. Once the lemongrass tea has cooled down, combine it with the tangerine juice, sugar and ice in a blender and blend till frothy. Fill your glasses with ice and pour the iced tea into the glasses.
  4. Serve cold.

Tag #AkitchenInUg to share your creations with me.