African recipes are versatile and Thieboudienne from Senegal is an example of staple rice dish that is as recognized as the country flag.
By Yollande Deacon
A business trip to Senegal in 2007 and long-lasting friendships with the Senegalese community has taught me a great deal about the Senegalese culture and African food. I have been privileged to learn some staple African food recipes of Senegal including Thieboudienne, or ceebu jen along with, Soupoukanja, Thiou poisson and Yassa which I will feature in subsequent posts on Honestcooking. Traditionally presented in a large dish, today, I feature modern deconstructed Thieboudienne showing differents adaptations of this eclectic dish that has been transformed and re-adapted overseas. It is made from fish, rice and tomato sauce. Its other ingredients include onions, carrots, cabbage and which ever vegetable you prefer.
- 3 Tilapia cleaned and cut into 4 pieces each
- 3 branches of parsley finely chopped
- 3 branches of cilantro finely chopped
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon of thyme
- 3 green onions finely chopped,
- 2 tablespoon of Afro Fusion Cuisines’ All Purpose Seasoning
- 4 ounces of tomato paste
- 2 plum tomatoes finely chopped
- 3 medium onions finely chopped
- 3 lb broken rice (broken one once or twice)
- 1 cup of oil
- salt , black pepper
- Vegetables of your choices
- 2 large carrots root cut into 4 inches pieces
- 1 eggplant root cut into 4 inches pieces
- 1 cassava or yucca root cut into 4 inches pieces
- 3 okra
- Clean the fish very well and set aside
- Prepare the special marinade called "Nokoss" by mixing in a blender all your spices and herbs
- With a sharp small knife make small cut on the fish. Using ½ of your marinade in step 2 stuffed the fish and immediately broil or fry then set aside
- Parboil or steam your rice and set aside
- In a heated pot, using 4 tablespoon of the oil used to fry your fish, put a dash of salt , add onion, tomato paste and plum tomatoes (cook for 5-7mn stirring) .
- Add 6 cups of water to the pot, add the cut veggies, add the fish already fried and lastly add
- The remaining half of the marinade Let simmer for 15 minutes for the fish and Juices to blend
- Remove the fish roe from the pot and start plating
- Then remove from the sauce the cooked veggies and add it to the plate.
- Add the pre-cooked or steamed broken rice to the boiling sauce
- Put the fire on low and let it reduce...should take about 15-30 mns depending on the nature of your rice. Your Thieboudienne is ready!
Yollande Tchouapi Deacon, is the founder of Afro Fusion Cuisine, a trusted passport to explore Central Africa culinary beauties. She is a cookbook author, African Chef and contributor to two foreign online lifestyle magazines including Goducamer in Cameroon and MamaMag in France.