So the last two weeks have been a rollercoaster. First I had my Mother’s 60th birthday party and was working for weeks to make it perfect. Not sure if it was perfect but it seemed that everyone enjoyed it. I made way to much food, but at least I didn’t need to worry about what to eat a week.
Then my Mother was leaving for a two month trip to China and Vietnam so I was helping her with last minute preparations and just when I thought life would get back to normal the world came crashing down on Wednesday.
My family cat Mozzy has been sick for some time with (probably) cancer and has not been getting better regardless of how much we tried to do for him so on Wednesday when he was brought into the vet the decision was made that he would not live past the end of September, even though he was a fighter.
We didn’t want him to suffer any more and it was selfish of us to make him hold on just because we couldn’t say goodbye. We all knew it was time and we made an appointment for Friday. The last two days with him were the hardest and we did everything to make him happy and loved. He got lots of candied salmon which he devoured happily. On Friday I couldn’t face the appointment so did not go with him and my Mother.
The minute I said my last goodbye and locked the door I began to cry because as anyone who has lost a loved one, animal or human, knows that it is difficult to say goodbye.I definitely was not up to do anything but eat chips for the rest of the day and therefore did not feel like posting anything on my blog. As I write this my eyes are getting misty with tears so I think I should end this part and get on with the real reason I write this blog.
As I stated in my last blog post I have started to push myself to eat better and exercise more. So far I have been going strong and really getting into the swing of things. I am only feeding one person right now I thought it would make sense to make some meals which could be made in bulk, divided and stored in the freezer, essentially creating my own healthier version of a TV dinner.
One of the best types of recipes to make in large batches are stews, chills, curries, etc. Today I want to share a new favourite of mine and what I have been eating for dinner the last 7 days: Groundnut Stew.
Groundnut Stew, also known as Maafe or Domodah, is a Western African dish hugely popular in several countries such as Senegal, the Gambia, Mali and Core d’Ivorie. It is believed to have originated from the Mandinka and Bambara people of Mali. It is likely to have been created due to the expansion of the groundnut cultivation industry.
It is similar to peanut soup, another popular dish in Africa but is thicker and the ingredients are more separated and less blended up. Both do have the same four basic ingredients: peanuts, onion, tomatoes and chillies. In addition to the staple ingredients anything from chicken to mutton can be added as a meat ingredient or you can leave meat completely out.
Basically any vegetable can be added yams/sweet potatoes are the most commonly added ingredient followed by other type of root vegetables (turnips are another popular addition). Carrots, cabbage, eggplant or bell peppers can also be used.
Groundnut is also known as peanuts which is probably best known as a crucial ingredient to make peanut butter. To make groundnut stew you need to have peanut paste but as I was not about to grind up my own peanuts I opted to use a natural peanut butter.
If you are going to make this with a store bought peanut butter make sure it has no added ingredients, my favourite brand is Adams. Chillies are important to this dish and as I love spicy food I added quite a bit to my recipe but feel free to cut back on the heat or add more depending on your preferences.
While rice is commonly served with it I decided that as I had already added in yams rice would be too much. I also found that it was not lacking the addition of rice and was very filling on its own. You could also serve with couscous, another common way to eat groundnut stew.
This recipe is basic and only has the addition of one vegetable I steamed some snap peas and zucchini to go along with it. I also did some steamed kale with garlic for the first two days which I though went really well with it. A simple salad would also be a perfect side.
- 2.5 Yams, cubed
- 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 Can crushed tomatoes
- 1 Onion, diced
- 1 Clove garlic, minced
- 1 Tsp coriander seeds
- 2 Tbsp crushed chilli peppers
- 3 Pounds skinless chicken breast, cubed
- ½ Cup natural peanut butter
- 1½ Cups water
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Add ½ water and yams to a large pot and turn heat to low-medium. Steam until yams are just starting to turn soft, about 8 minutes
- Add in onions and garlic and cook until translucent and fragrant. Add in tomatoes and rest of water.
- Add in rest of ingredients except for peanut butter and stir to combine. Turn heat down to simmer and cover with a lid. Let cook for 10-12 minutes or until chicken is easy to pull apart with a fork, stirring occasionally.
- Add in peanut butter and stir thoroughly. Simmer for a further 3-5 minutes before serving.
- Serve on its own or with some plain rice.
- Keeps in refrigerator for 3-4 days or freeze for one month.
For anyone who would like to know when I divided this into 8 serving it came out to 411 calories per serving.