Category: Food legacy

Whistle stop tour of African food in NYC

#African #cuisine on the streets of NYC.

Having lived in New York, I know what a diverse city it is. Unfortunately, I didn’t sample what it’s African food scene had to offer but after watching this, I definitely will when I go back!

What do you think? Comment below…

Eritrean food making waves in London

“Do not despise these small beginnings” – a modest Ethiopian / Eritrean café in Woolwich, London may be a small fish (at the moment) in a big pond, but it’s getting noticed!

The Blue Nile Café has had good reviews on travel website and other restaurant review sites; its owner Hagos (who came to London in the 80’s as a refugee), opened the establishment in 2014 with the help of her sons.

As a former Italian colony, Eritrean food also has Italian influences.

vegan food, injera flatbread
Blue Nile Cafe, serving the fermented injera flatbread – a staple in Eritrean / Ethiopian cuisine. Photograph: Linda Nylind for the Guardian

East African food is still trying to make its way onto the London food scene, but this Eritrean restaurant in London is going full stream ahead!

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Nigerian food pop-ups in London

The African diaspora is a main contributor to the melting pot of one of the most famous cities in the world. However, the streets of London know little about Nigerian food – so a change is on the way!

See who else is making culinary waves in the UK capital!

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Can West African food make it in France?

The French restaurant scene is notoriously fierce, but that’s not deterring chefs who want to put African cuisine on the table.



Join the discussion here


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Spicy Jamaican Ginger Cake

There’s nothing like a moist and crumbly slice of ginger cake to satisfy the soul. As a child I loved ginger biscuits and that is when my ginger indulgence began. Jamaican ginger is renowned for its intense flavour and as the main ingredient in the popular Jamaican ginger cake recipe, this Caribbean cake has become a must have in many parts of the world.

I must say, I didn’t expect Caribbean desserts to feature at the annual Pop-up Africa event at Spitalfields Market in central London at the end of May, but thinking about it, Africa and the Caribbean do have an intertwined history, so it made perfect sense…

Described as “A unique interactive shopping experience inspired by Africa; ‘Africa at Spitalfields’ – promotes and celebrates all things African and African inspired.” I was looking forward to all the festivities and food on display from the African/Caribbean diaspora in London.  Having a sweet tooth my first point of call was to check out the desserts; you can never stock up on too many desserts!

spicy jamaican ginger cake receipe
Ginger spice: Photo: Stock Xchng (jeff1980)

A bit of food history….

It’s said that the roots of Zingiber officinale the tropical herbaceous plant, which produces the ginger spice originated in Asia. Used by the Indians and Chinese for its healing properties over 5000 years ago, you can guess that the rest of the world wanted a taste of this intriguingly pungent spice and Arab traders brought it to Europe. Once the Roman Empire fell, ginger nearly became obsolete. Between the 11th-13th centuries ginger made a European comeback and was said to be imported to the New World by Spanish conquistadors.  Ginger is s now grown in tropical countries across the Caribbean and Africa. From 1585, Jamaican ginger was the first Asian-originated spice to be grown in the New World and exported back to Europe.

spicy Caribbean ginger cake
You can never go wrong with some good old ginger cake…

While walking around the market I was scoping out which stalls to visit; Tantie Lorraine’s ginger cake was calling out to me. I love all things ginger and was eager to try this Trinidadian version of the ginger cake. A friend told me that ‘Tantie’ is a version of ‘Auntie’ used in some part of the Caribbean. In some African cultures the term Auntie is also used to address an older woman, who may not necessarily be your blood relative (as a sign of respect).

tantie def

There were various other cakes and cookies on offer but I only tried the ginger cake. I do regret not trying the chocolate Guinness cake though! An unusual combination which I’ve never had before; I’m not a fan of Guinness on its own, but do like it when mixed with something sweet, like Caribbean Guinness punch. If I knew Tantie Lorranie won a Great Taste Award for her rum and raisin brownies, I would have tried those too!

Jamaica ginger and Guiness cake recipe, Caribbean ginger cake

Caribbean ginger cake has been a staple dessert in the UK for years. On British Chef, Jamie Oliver’s YouTube channel, a quick recipe is demonstrated, but is it a real traditional Jamaican ginger cake recipe?

Have your say; watch the video and vote below…If you have a better recipe, post it in the comments section!

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