Sukuma Wiki (Kenyan stewed greens) and Ugali

I first had this dish while in Naivasha, Kenya.  If you like greens of any kind, you will absolutely love this dish.  Sukuma Wiki is Swahili for, “to push the week”.  This dish is used to stretch the limited food supply through the week.    I have used several different greens in this dish.  While in Kenya we used Spider Weed.

You CAN’T have Sukuma Wiki without it’s traditional and delicious side, Ugali.  I also call it the Kenyan biscuit.  I do so because it is used just like we in the South use a biscuit.  You hold it in your non fork hand and use it to sop up whatever is on the plate.  Here is a pic I took of Jael making Ugali.

Now, on to the recipe.

1 – Large bunch of greens (I prefer mustard greens)

1 – Onion

2 – Tomatoes

2 – Cloves of garlic

2 – Tbs of canola oil

Salt and pepper to taste

The first think I do is take the stems out of the greens.  Fold the leaves over and pinch the stem.  Begin pulling the stem apart from the leaves working your way down.  You just need to go as far as the stem lets you.  After this I wash the greens.  I rinse them each under running water rubbing away the grit.  It is extremely important to wash the greens well.  I’m sure there are better ways to clean them, this is just how I like to do it.  The next thing to do is chop the greens.  The greens I had in Kenya were very thinly sliced.  The best way to to this is to stack several leaves on top of each other and then roll them up like a cigar.  Using a very sharp knife start shaving off the end as thin as you can.    Here is a pic demonstrating.

Once this is complete go ahead and dice the onion and tomato.  If I use anything other than a roma tomato, I rinse out the seeds.  Also, don’t forget to dice on mince your garlic.

Finally, start with a medium to medium high skillet.  The leaves really cook down so a 10 inch pan would be fine.  Add the oil and begin to give the onions some color.  After a couple minutes add the tomato and garlic.  You can do an initial seasoning at this time as well.  After a couple minutes add a good hand full of the greens.  Once they cook down some, a minute or so, add another hand full.  Do this until all the greens are in the pan.  Once they are all in add about 2 cups of water.  From here simmer for about an hour on medium low.  Keep an eye on the water lever and add some if needed.  Once it’s done check the seasoning one last time.  Enjoy

The ugali is really easy to make.

1 – Cup Corn Flower (not meal)

2 – Cups Water

Bring the water to a boil and add the corn flower.  Immediately reduce the temperature to medium or so.  It gets thick very quickly so you may need to pull it off the burner till it cools a bit.  Stir with a wire whisk pretty much the entire time, about 12 minutes.   Once it is done scrape it out onto a plate.  Spread it out evenly keeping it a bit thick.  Once it cools a bit slice it up and enjoy it with your Sukuma Wiki.


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