What Do Zimbabweans Like To Eat?

By West Africa Cooks, 1 November, 2017

What do Zimbabweans traditionally like to eat? Huku Ne Dovi (chicken and groundnut peanut stew), Nyam Ne Nyemba (steak and bean stew), Mahobho or Sadza Ndiuraye (spicy meat and vegetable stew) Nhopi Dovi (pumpkin with groundnut sauce) and Sadza Dumpling. These are the foods Zimbabweans eat by Dorinda Hafner.

Here are some facts on the country Zimbabwe.

The name Zimbabwe means 'House of Stone'. Lying between the Limpopo and Zambesi Rivers in the southern heart of Africa, Zimbabwe is more fortunate than many other African countries for it is self-sufficient in food. Zimbabwe is the home of great stone ruins built over eight centuries ago by the Shona people, descendents of a culture that flourished during the Iron Age. The Shona still form the dominant racial group in the country, followed in number by the Ndebele. Wonders of Zimbabwe include the Chinhoi Caves and the massive Victoria Falls, known as 'mosi oa tunya' or 'the smoke that thunders'.

  • Official title Republic of Zimbabwe
  • The capital city is called Harare (the name of a former African ruler of the area, it means 'one who does not sleep)
  • Official language English, although Shona and Ndebele are widely spoken
  • Zimbabwe was called Rhodesia until 1964
  • The country has a population of 16.15 million people
  • Currency Zimbabwe dollar (Z$) = 100 cents
  • The country is land locked by eight countries. The borders are :-
    • Zambia to the north
    • Mozambique to the east
    • South Africa to the south
    • Botswana to the west
  • Cash crops for export Maize, wheat, coffee,cotton, soya beans, groundnuts (peanuts) and tobacco
  • Food crops Maize, wheat, soya beans, groundnuts (peanuts), cattle and fish farming
  • Total land area approximately 390,759 sq km

So What Do Zimbabweans Eat? And What Are The Traditional Cuisines?

The answer are vegetables.

Winter Vegetables

Although Zimbabwe is fortunate in its capacity to be self-sufficient in food, its agriculture is still dependent on the seasonal variation in rainfall; the dry season during winter can lead to crippling drought. One method of dealing with this period of little growth is to dry various foods harvested after the rainy season.

Grains such as maize, millet, rice and sorghum can, of course, be stored in a variety of ways, but in Zimbabwe, as in other countries, vegetables harvested during summer and autumn are dried for later use in winter.

There are a number of vegetables treated in this manner in Zimbabwe. Some of them are:

Bowara Pumpkin leaves, excluding the 'nhopi' variety. They can be eaten fresh or sun-dried for storage. The leaves are very soft and are frequently mixed with beef in stews, combined with the flesh of baby pumpkins and pumpkin flowers, or served with dovi (chicken).
Derere This is the Zimbabwean name for okro (okra).
Kovo A large-leafed vegetable the size of a cabbage, but bigger, sweeter and lighter in texture and taste. It too can be eaten fresh after harvest or stored for consumption during winter.
Nyovhi A wild plant indigenous to Zimbabwe with small, narrow, green leaves. It is important to harvest the leaves at the right season or they will be bitter. Early nyovhi shoots usually herald the arrival of summer and the rainy season. Nyovhi is frequently eaten cooked and mixed with mushrooms and baby pumpkins, or in goat stew.

Read Food And Drink In Southern Africa

Zimbabweans Recipes From Dorinda Hafner

  • Huku Ne Dovi, chicken and groundnut peanut stew. This is pronounced ... flour.
  • Nyam ne Nyemba, steak and bean stew is a specialty made with garlic, chilli curry powder tomatoes and kidney beans
  • Mahobho or Sadza Ndiuraye, spicy meat and vegetable stew
  • Nhopi Dovi, pumpkin with groundnut (peanut) sauce
  • Sadza Dumpling. You can serve the Sadza as one large family meal. Serve hot with vegetables and stew or roast meat or fish with the gravy of your choice

Read What Do Zambians Like To Eat?

Source: A Taste of Africa by Dorinda Hafner ISBN-10: 1580084036 and ISBN-13: 978-1580084031


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