We live in Mwanza, Tanzania, serving with Emmanuel International helping local churches in physical and spiritual ministry.

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

What's Cookin' with Mama Kiri

Yesterday I got cookin' with Mama Kiri on one of our jikos! Mama Kiri is a lovely lady who lives very close to us. She is a good friend, a good cook and also speaks Swahili in a way I can understand (slow and simple!) It is her nephew, Stout, who is working with Tim. I enjoyed a morning learning from her as we prepared and cooked some Tanzanian dishes and talked about local food. As well as the very different cuisine here, Tanzanian cooking  is so culturally different as well. It is slow process, enjoyed with company. Sitting outside on the mat in the shade of the sun, five of us ladies peeled potatoes, sorted rice, stemmed the mchicha leaves .... There is no Ainsley with Ready Steady Cook here! Slowly, peas are shelled, garlic is peeled and ground in the pestle and mortar, groundnuts are roasted, peeled and ground. And then when everything is prepared, it's time to cook on the jiko (stove). Lunch is ready when it is ready, there's no clock! And it was delicious when it was ready! And with fresh mango juice as well! 
Mama Kiri preparing the rice

Some of you on facebook may have seen our "solar conversations". We had a day without sun, and I was as cold as I have ever been here! The rainy season has finished here and it is a sobering thought, knowing the next rain will not come until December (especially when with all the recent cuts in running water we must use our precious rainwater). But the sun is out again now (and the water happens to be on again too) and so the girls and I have been able to continue with our science studies on solar power! It was suggested to us that we try candle power rather than solar power when the sun disappeared. And so we did. And discovered that heating 250ml water to a temperature of 30C took 15 minutes in the sun and took 4 minutes held over a candle! So candle power is quick, but you have to buy the candle and it does make your arm ache holding the pan!

Today's experiment proved that ice melts most quickly on black card (and also shiny card), and most slowly on light card. So with black as a proven good sun absorber, we are making our solar oven and dryer to feature lots of black and aluminum foil!

And one final note, please remember Tim in your prayers on Friday. He has the first official meeting in Magozi to discuss the stove project with the village leaders. We hope to get the official go-ahead to begin the project with the church in this village.

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