A Re Jeng Dijo Tsa Setso

Inside Chellz's Kitchen
Inside Chellz's Kitchen

The Independence Day of Botswana, commonly called Boipuso, is a national holiday observed in Botswana on September 30 of every year. The date celebrates Botswana's Declaration of Independence from the United Kingdom on September 30, 1966.

A very exciting and eventful day for as long as many Batswana can remember. Blue, Black and White flags flying high, bogologolo there was also rainbow coloured bantons put up in the streets, very festive! Then there was of course the highly anticipated activity at the National Stadium and flying jets. Due to Covid -19 some of these are just memories.

This doesn’t bring Batswana down, the 30th of September rolls around and the excitement in the air is purely electric. Both kids and adults don their national colours and sing the national anthem with pride. ChellzKitchen built up to Spring season with a baking competition, and had a lot of fun with some fellow bakers online who engaged in confectionary sport.

One of the competition entrants known as @Ohfortheloveofcake on Facebook won the #SpringBake competition earning themselves the 1st place prize; 4 cases of Delta Fresh Milk and some fancy baking utensils. Chellzkitchen has decided to dedicate the month of September to Discovering and exploring Dijo Tsa Setso. This idea was sparked by a post which went semi viral a month and a half ago. We shared a picture of Leswabi and captioned it; ”I was today years old, when I found out what this is”. I then asked if I was the only one who had never encountered it. The post had mixed reactions, as many thought I was joking, a few questioned how much of a Motswana I was (Ao! Go na le ngwana hela wa Motswana yo o ka reng ga a itse leswabi!?), and a good number, like myself were happy to learn something new.


For those who chose to be negative, I found it very important to put in line because you must never allow yourself to be bullied for asking questions. Inquiring is how we all grow and learn and no one has the right to shame anyone for asking. Another compelling reason for discovering and learning the many traditional foods found in Botswana is that my late mom used to make the best beans. Different ones, Letjhotlho, Samp (Setampa) and Beans (Dinawa), (Jugo Beans) Ditloo and a couple more others.

I never learned how to make these from her and that’s something I really wish I had. There is a joke Jonny Pula made a while ago that I heard, a re; “Cooking Tswana food is simple, you use the same method for all dishes, you boil it!” I found it hilarious. I want us all to spend this month discovering the different foods that Batswana love to eat. Food and drink make up a huge part of heritage and culture and every Motswana deserves to explore and excite their palate with home-grown food and products.

We will be learning as much as we possibly can about different beans and the different dishes they make. We currently have Botlhe Sugar Beans, Sarona Samp, Sechaba Black Eyed Beans and Dry Cow Peas from foods Botswana to play around with. I am excited to try out different recipes, ultimately making them in the traditional way as well as sprucing them up and adding our own twist.

Please share some of your favourite recipes on the Chellzkitchen facebook page for us to try and get inspiration from. Also keep an eye out for our upcoming competition within this month and some of the exciting prizes we will be giving away to those who take part in this journey. Today we share is one of our favourites.

INGREDIENTS

15 ml Oil for frying

2 cups Botlhe sugar beans

1.5 Onions chopped

1 Tbsp Mild & Spicy curry powder

2 Tomatoes chopped

1 Green pepper chopped

1 Chopped Carrot

2 cups water

1 Stock cube salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

Sort the Botlhe Sugar Beans and soak in water overnight. Boil in clean water for 1 hour or until soft and drain. In a pot, brown the onion in vegetable oil. Add Mild & Spicy curry powder and simmer for 2 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and the beans, turn down the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with Spekko Basmati Rice.

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