In Guadeloupe in the Caribbean a pineapple symbolizes hospitality. It has been said that when Christopher Columbus and his Spanish fleet first landed on Guadeloupe at the end of the 15th century, they knew they were welcomed if a pineapple had been left at the entrance to each village.
I was surprised to discover that rosella, or roselle (Hibiscus sabdariffa), is pervasive throughout Zambia because it was originally a species of hibiscus native to the west of Africa.
A self-seeded rosella plant in our garden.
Indigenous people in this semi-arid region of southern Africa have been nourished by Mongongo nuts for over 7,000 years. Which is amazing when considering that on my many attempts I failed to crack open even one of their Fort Knox-like shells.
I may be one of the last foodies to discover this foolproof method of making homemade mayonnaise, yet such is the difference it’s made to my cooking life out here in the bush, I felt compelled to share it with you.
The versatility of mayonnaise means that I love having it available as and when I need it.
The decoration of our house, the tin box, is to be found outside, not inside. The finger-like evergreen branches of the surrounding teak trees provide us with year-round sun parasols.
I thought 12 years at boarding school had put me off any sort of bean, except the Heinz baked variety, for the rest of my life. Along with “frogs’ eggs,” a.k.a tapioca, “chameleon guts,” an ersatz, puke-colored jam, beans were near the top of a list of foods I begged my mother to tell the school’s kitchen I was allergic.