Monday, November 2, 2009

this is totally vegetarian but it looks like fried fish. it is fried corn meal mush that is hard.
very yummy

Nestor and his son Salomon.
6 months old

step by step pictures of cooking tubani

Tubani: Is a food that is found cooking on street corners early in the morning. It is made with bean flour and salt mixed with water and steamed. The ladies who sell it use 400g tomato paste cans lined with plastic bags. It is a heavy food and thus usually sticks with you a long time. (well not with me but with others). I don’t like waiting for the hour or so that it takes to cook the cans of tubani so I use leaves. We have a tree here that has leaves that are perfect for this, they grow folded over and become like a little pocket. It can also be cooked in plastic bags or in cans or whatever you want.
You need bean flour. Whatever kind you can get or grind. We just take it to the mill and it comes back flour. Take however much bean flour you want (if you want enough for about 4 people or leftovers take 2 cups of bean flour.) add about a teaspoon of salt. And add water bit by bit until it gets to be gloppy. You know, it doesn’t run off your spoon but it glops off.( for those who make cakes, a little thinner then cake batter.) Then heat up a bit of water (about an inch or inch and a half) in the bottom of a kettle. You need either a steaming rack or spoons and forks stacked in the bottom so the stuff doesn’t have to sit in the water. When the water is boiling or almost boiling, start stacking the leaves or whatever you chose to put it in. I just stack up the leaves with the batter in it. If you have a real steaming kettle .. wonderful. You can also use the pressure cooker if you want. Bring it up to the high mark or 3rd mark for my old prestos and turn off the fire. If you are on a gas stove you will need to bring it up to steam again. If you are on an electric stove, probably the hot burner will keep the temperature up until it is cooked. If you cooked them in small portions then it will take about 20 min on a rolling boil, if they are bigger portions then longer. You can test it by using a knife. Same as checking a cake. If it comes out more or less clean without batter on it.. it is done. Take it off the stove. If you are cooking it in an unsealed kettle then you will need to add some water periodically while it is cooking. Bit by bit but not enough to stop it from boiling.
The sauce: Often it is eaten with hot oil and powdered hot red pepper and salt. One sauce I make to go with it: Sautée sliced onions and tomatoes in the oil (several tablespoons) and then add some seasoning salt and other salt. Add a bit of water and cook it down. You can add fresh hot pepper or powered . Each pepper has a different flavor.