3-Strand Braided Bread with Sweet Black Bean Filling Video

Tasty and soft 3-strand braided bread filled with sweet sticky and spiced black bean paste. Great on its own, for tea and as dessert. Includes a how-to video. 

Let’s face it, this pandemic has made us stock up on beans more than we would like to admit. And this is not to sound like an insensitive person because the fact that I am saying this or that you are agreeing with me means we are both privileged enough to even think it.

So what happens when you have too many beans and have had your fill of this incredible bean stew? You start to wonder what else beans can become. I am here to answer your question with this 3-Strand Braided Bread with Sweet Black Bean Filling that you won’t even recognize has beans as a filling until someone tells you. I told you. Imagine a soft loaf of bread filled with sweet paste except this is bean paste. Yes. It is as good as it looks in case you are wondering. You are welcome. because I wanted you to believe for yourself, I even created a video for it. 



Observations

  1. Black beans add a beautiful contrast but you can use any other type of dark/red beans. 

3-Strand Braided Bread with Black Bean Filling Video

What you will need:

Bread Dough

3 C. Flour

4 Tbsp. Sugar

1/2 Tsp. Salt

2 Tsp. Yeast

1 C. Milk, warm

1/4 C. Oil

Additional cup of flour for kneading

Filling

1 C. Black beans

1 C. Sugar

1/3 C. Condensed milk

1 Tbsp. Vanilla essence

1 Tbsp. Cinnamon

1 Tsp. Allspice

1 Tsp. Ground Cloves

1/2 Tsp. Nutmeg

1/2 Tsp. Salt

Method

Bread dough

  1. Combine all the dry ingredients (flour, sugar, salt and yeast) in a large bowl. In a separate small bowl, add the milk and oil and mix well.
  2. Slowly pour the milk oil mixture in the bowl of dry ingredients while mixing gradually.
  3. Mix till a dough is formed. Cover the dough with a damp towel and set aside to rise for 1 hour

Filling

  1. Soak the beans for 6 hours or overnight till they are soft. Boil the beans till they are tender. This can take about an hour in a regular pan or 25 minutes in a pressure cooker. 
  2. Once the beans are boiled, divide them into two equal parts. Keep the other part for stews. add half a cup of water into the remaining beans and let them simmer
  3. Add sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, ground cloves/ allspice, nutmeg and salt. Let the beans simmer till all the liquid has reduced. Keep stirring while mashing them. Add condensed milk and continue stirring while mashing the beans. 
  4. Remove the beans from fire and let them cool. Using either a glass or a wooden spoon, mash the beans until they turn into a thick rich paste. If you want it to be very smooth, you can use a blender or food processor. Set your paste aside. 

Braided Bread

  1. After the dough has risen for an hour, punch it down and knead it for about 5 minutes or until it is smooth and not sticky.  
  2. Divide the dough into 3 equal parts and roll out each part. Spread the filling on each rolled out part of the bread and roll it into a log. Braid these three ‘logs’ into a braided bread. Make sure to seal the edges so the filling doesn’t come out when baking.  Set on a greased baking tray and let it rise for another 20 minutes. 
  3. Bake at 350 degrees F 45 minutes. The bread will double in size and had a golden brown exterior. 
  4. Serve the bread when cool.  

Use #AkitchenInUg to share your creations. 

Classic Bean Stew Video

How to make classic Ugandan bean stew with tips and tricks on how to achieve a balanced and rich stew all the time. 

I have made so many recipes on this blog and sometimes looking back I become overwhelmed by the recipe index (which I need to update soon!). One thing I have realized is that it has been a while since I share a classic bean recipe and I have no reason at all. But thinking about it, it is probably because I have taken beans for granted. Because at this point I assume everyone knows how to make beans or has a family recipe they stick to. This thinking was challenged when a viewer on my YouTube Channel requested for a bean stew recipe and now here we are. You see beans play a huge role in our diet as a country and continent. It is one of the first things and easiest to learn how to make because beans are a staple in many households and schools! Now each person has a varied recipe for their beans and often times it changes based on what is available. Talk about cooking from scratch.  Sometime they are tangy because maybe that day you will happen to have more tomatoes. Sometimes it is very garlicky because garlic is available while onions are not (true story). Sometimes neither onions nor tomatoes are available but people still need to eat. One thing with beans is that they are a life saver, not to mention a source of protein and the dry ones store well.

‘In the past before chemical preservatives, there were two categories of beans: Beans for food and beans for seed. Beans for food were, well, used for food and were mostly the lesser quality while beans for seed were the better quality since they were to be preserved for longer periods of time for future planting. One iconic method of preserving the seed was by wrapping them securely in dry banana leaves and nearly drowning them in ash. Ash acted as a preservative and prevented the weevils from eating and damaging the seed.  Because beans are fairly easy to make and everyone is expected to know how to make them, there are small details that can take it from a bean stew to a great bean stew.

What you will need:

3 C. Beans, cooked and drained

3 Large tomatoes, chopped

2-3 C. Water

1 Medium-sized green pepper, chopped

1 large onion, chopped

2 Garlic clove, crushed and chopped

1/2 Tsp. Grated Ginger

1 Tbsp. Curry powder

1/2 Tsp. Cumin powder

1/2 Tsp. Coriander (cilantro) powder

1/2 Tsp. Black pepper

2 Tbsp. Cooking oil

Salt

Observations:

  1. The number of tomatoes and onions you use will determine the outcome of your stew. It is advised to use at least 1 whole onion and and 2-3 tomatoes.
  2. Tomatoes, when cooked well, add an umami taste to the stew
  3. The key is to caramelize the onions and cook down the chopped tomatoes until they separate from the oil. If you are using tomato paste, the same technique applies.
  4. Add water depending on the consistency you are going for.
  5. The longer the stew simmers, the better the taste

Method

  1. Place pan on medium heat. Add cooking oil and let it heat up.
  2. Add the garlic and onions into the hot oil (careful not to burn yourself) and stir well. Reduce the heat slightly so that they can cook till translucent.
  3. Add the chopped tomatoes. Let them cook till they are soft and tender and have separated from the oil
  4. Next add your green pepper, ginger, curry powder, cumin, coriander, black pepper and salt. Mix well.
  5. Add the beans to the tomatoes and mix well.  Pour in about half a cup of water and mix well. Increase the fire and let the beans cook till that water is almost completely done.
  6. Add the remaining water into the beans and let them cook for 15 minutes on high heat. Reduce the hear after 15 minutes and let that the stew simmer until the water has reduced down into half and it has a creamy oily layer on top.

Serve with your favorite starch. I like to have my stew with chapati in form of kikomando.

I an working on a video that I will be sharing soon.

How do you cook your beans?

Share your creations using the #AkitchenInUg on social media

PS: Have you checked out this book Cool Beans? 

My Vegetarian Kitchen Cookbook is Finally Here!

Hello Friends! It’s been a minute. I have been up to so much lately and as you can tell form the blog title I have a surprise for you! Been working on compiling the  blog’s best vegetarian offerings which you can now get as an e-book. I have always wanted to write a cookbook and I have said it multiple times. Putting together this e-book helped alight my goals and gave me a taste of  what it feels to put a valuable product out there in world. I am now so excited to be sharing this token of love with you!

GetMy Vegetarian Kitchen: 34 Delicious and Wholesome Dishes from A Kitchen in Uganda’.

With most of A Kitchen in Uganda’s food stories vegetarian celebrations, there are so many exciting, memorable and valuable dishes that have been created on the blog for the past 5+ years. This book is a compilation of some of the best of those dishes. The purpose for this book is that you can always have these creations whether you have access to the blog or not.

Who is this book for?

Whether it is planning a big gathering, needing an instant dish to satiate your cravings or looking for an idea for your next potluck or food business idea, this book is for you.

This book is for the vegetarian and/or foodie who would love to explore the endless possibilities that come with using less mainstream local produce and ingredients.

This book is for the creative ‘thinking-out-of-the-box’ individual who wants to make their food journey a little more exciting and fulfilling at the same time with ingredients that are easily accessible.

This book for the Ugandan and anyone on the continent of Africa that has to battle with the government imposed social media taxes. My blog has thrived because of the unlimited access to the internet that I have enjoyed and I realize this is not the same story for everyone which is why I took the time to compile these recipes so that you can have them at the tip of your fingertips with or without  the internet!

What is inside this 77 page book:

  1. 34 Delicious and Wholesome Dishes and Recipes from A Kitchen in Uganda
  2. 2 Menus
  3. Tips on How to Have a Successful Meal Gathering
  4. A Weekly Meal Plan Template

Go grab yourself a copy and start cooking!