Finding Africa in Edinburgh

When Agnes Ngulube Holmes goes shopping for World Food Day she finds herself transported from an Edinburgh street to the African continent.  This is what she found.

One autumn afternoon in Edinburgh, I join Meena and Mark at Out of The Blue Drill Hall for a brief meeting about World Kitchen in Leith plans for World Food Day. We agreed we would produce a menu based on seasonal foods from local shops. For African  dishes that could be a challenge!

I decided to take a walk along Junction Street on the lookout for small businesses that source their products locally. I wandered across James Anderson Butcher, where I got engaged in an interesting discussion about where foods were sourced from at some supermarkets.  The friendly staff informed me that their products were sourced from the Highlands, Orkney and places in Scotland.  I left the butchers very satisfied with what I had purchased.

Where to get my other ingredients?  I went to Gorgie Road where I came across Shumba Meats and African Crest two African owned businesses; I can only describe my experience in these two businesses like suddenly being back on the African continent for brief period. Then I walked out of the premises back into Scotland.  It was a great feeling, and made me realise how interconnected we are (I like both).

For World Food Day, my contribution to was nshima (maize meal thick porridge), which meant good team work with Alice as this needed a lot of stirring to get the nshima nicely thick and smooth with no lumps. Then there was cabbage cooked with peanut sauce, tomatoes, onions, mixed peppers and spices; and beef stew cooked with onions, tomatoes, matoki (green bananas), mixed peppers, spices.

Some more good teamwork went into preparing Alice’s contribution: beans with coconut dish.  Also Temeka and Leija helped with the mandzi and serving the food to the customers.

We all enjoyed being part of the World Kitchen in Leith…making the day a brilliant experience for everyone who attended the event. GREAT SUCCESS!!!

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