Sunday, June 07, 2020

Akpi Seeds

There has been a continued interest in locating an online source for akpi seeds.

This morning I discovered over a dozen replies in the comments section of my postings
by a source I can neither confirm nor deny, but for all who are interested, here it is:
"You can order Akpi seeds, Wholesale/Retail @NATURYTE (Call/WatsApp +2347080890865 or DN www.instagram.com/naturyte)"

Good luck.

Monday, February 03, 2020

Oh, Happy Day! A New (Ethiopian) Cook in Town

Ever since Nigerian Sore Shields moved from State College to go back to school and closed The African Market (near Websters, back around 2009), State College has boasted no source for authentic Ethiopian cuisine. Sore used to sell frozen stews to Ethiopian students. Even then, there was  NO local source of authentic locally made teff injera, the wonderful but perishable stable of Ethiopian meals.

That has  all changed with the arrival of Chef Etayehu Zenebe in Centre County! Etayehu has been in the area over a year now, and quietly begun preparing and selling her injera to individuals and groups, requiring only that orders be placed 4 days in advance (to allow proper fermentation of the  dough), AND that customers pick up their orders themselves since she works out of a rented commercial kitchen. She is very hard-working and generous.





She prepares both vegetarian and nonvegetarian dishes, as well as injera. I envy her her skill which far surpasses my own. Here is a typical example of some vegetarian dishes she shared with us yesterday (from right to left).

Tikur Gomen (black cumin seeds with collard greens)
Tikil Gomen (cabbage)
Misir wat (red lentil stew)
Azifa (green lentil dip)

And, of course, Injera (Ethiopian sour flatbread) at the top.

Her food has been featured at  Tap Root Kitchen. 



For more information, she may be reached by phone at 717-618-2346 or email at   zenebeetayehu@gmail.com.

Thursday, August 22, 2019

Finally

Hello, friends, for an update on the BETUMI adinkra cookie stamps, check http://betumi.com/betumi-market/. A Limited Edition selection of the stamps are currently available. 

Monday, July 22, 2019

Workshop Tomorrow, July 23rd!



Naomi helping get ready today. I had more requests than I could accommodate, but expect 10 folks to come for the 2-hour workshop. 

Wish us luck! I've never actually baked the biscuits/cookies in Ghana before (never even used my electric oven), so it will be exciting to see how it goes.





Mawusi (the seamstress staying here) helped out with the pot holders and some of the aprons. It's a cooperative project.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Biscuit Project Update

I feel kind of like that old saying "all dressed up and nowhere to go," except it should be "all set up and no way to start."

After a several day delay (due to United and South African airlines), I arrived in Ghana determined to discover why the solar panels and inverter were not working at my house. It's a long process, and the power has been off twice in the interim.

I'm reluctant to go ahead with the workshop until I know we have reliable power for the refrigerator and oven, so . . . someone is coming again tomorrow  (Saturday) to take the 8  batteries to be charged (at least a 3-day delay) and we can investigate further. I'm still here for 2 more weeks, so IF we get the power issue fixed, will schedule the workshop sometime during the week of the 22nd of July to the 27th. Let me know if you have a preference for the day and time. Right now, I'm very flexible.

The house is in Community 18, Tema (Baatsona), and I can send you my phone number if you give me yours. I'm planning on about only 5 or 6 people, so let me know if you are still interested.



As you know, two of my favorite proverbs are: "the road doesn't stop the bird," and "little by little the chicken drinks water." Here's to innovation paired with culture!

Monday, June 10, 2019

Adinkra Shortbread (vegan, gluten-free) Biscuits: One, Two, Three


After almost two years working on the Ghana-friendly flour mixture and recipe, and perfecting the Akinkra stamps, BETUMI now has a (copyrighted) version of two stamps ready to be shared (commercial manufacturing is in the works). Fran plans to be in Ghana (Tema) during July, and if time, stove, and electricity cooperate, is  planning a workshop (free, but invitation only) while there.

Why "Ghana-friendly," you ask? It's sad to me that folks think they HAVE to import cutters,  wheat flour and butter in order to have delicious, crispy biscuits with indigenous designs on them. Vegan, because  shortbread biscuits (cookies) need no eggs, and this version needs no butter.

The workshop (assuming it happens) will begin with a discussion of gluten-free baking and the chemistry behind it. Believe me, one cannot just substitute any old flour for wheat. It's an art.

We'll then discuss:

#1) Preparing the gluten-free flour mixture: the various flours, starches, and flavors



#2) Preparing the biscuit (cookie) doughs using the flour mixture (Hint: think flavors like coconut, ripe plantain, pure vanilla, chocolate, sugar. . .)





3. Chilling, rolling out, cutting and baking the biscuits (vanilla or chocolate):
                                                           







Enjoy with a cup of tea or coffee or juice!


Contact me  at fran@betumi.com if you'd like more information, or are interested.



Tuesday, April 16, 2019

Food from Uganda: Achiro's Taste

While lamenting the paucity of Ugandan cookbooks to some new acquaintances at a recent wedding, Dr. Brenda Okech said,  "Oh, I can send you one when I go back home to Uganda."

This was in December, 2018. In March another woman confirmed my address and said months ago she was given a book to mail to me.

It arrived soon after, and I'm pleased to present it as the latest addition to the Africa Cookbook Collection. It is by Ugandan writer Achiro P. Olwoch from Gulu, in Northern Uganda in 2013. Thank you to all involved in getting it to me: Dr. Okech, the friend Faith, who mailed it, and my new family member Bigz who provided the link among us.

It includes 92 recipes, some featuring Uganda's matooke (green plantains/bananas) or gonja (ripe plantains) [one of my favorite foods], and includes snacks, main dishes, desserts, including puddings, many kinds of stews, meat dishes, cassava, mushrooms, and fish, salads and sauces. Some are very traditional and some are more contemporary. I'm very grateful and eager to try some of them.

In addition, she gives information on how to stock one's kitchen and cooking guidance and tips. Throughout the book, as well as at the end,  she dispenses advice on life and living.

Thank you to all who helped get it into my hands!