107. Kenya: Lentil Curry with Peanut butter

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Kenya, the vibrant beating heart of East Africa! The original ‘sun, sand and safari’ destination.  Kenya was always the go to destination if you were going to Africa, until December 2007. In December 2007 there was an election the top candidates were the current president Kibaki and his ex-secretary Odinga. Kibaki won the election but Odinga accused Kibaki of election fraud. A thorough investigation proved Odinga was right, which of course led to rebellions.

These rebellions had massive consequences, for instance, travel agencies stopped sending their clients to Kenya, and canceled the trips that were already booked… Since a lot of Kenyans work in the tourism sector was this a devasting result, which led to even more poverty… Eventually, Odinga and Kibaki made a compromise to let Kibaki stay on as president and Odinga serve as prime minister.

Schermafbeelding 2017-09-04 om 01.31.48

Things you didn’t know about Kenya:

  • Scientists have estimated that the Great Rift Valley found in Kenya was formed over 20 million years ago when the Earth’s crust began to split.
  • Dowries are still traditional in Kenya. The groom’s parents must pay a dowry to the bride’s family otherwise their son will not be able to wed his bride. Dowries start at 10 cows.
  • Coffee is a huge export in Kenya, but it is not consumed in the country. Kenyans believe that all of the coffee they produce should be sold outside of their country, so they drink tea or beer.
  • Scientists believe that Kenya may have been the birthplace of human beings. Bones of early ancestors were found in the Turkana Basin.
  • It is free for children to attend school in Kenya, but many children do not go, they are too busy helping their families work the land, fetch water and other necessary tasks.

The yogurt gives acidity in this curry which it really needs because of a number of spices, so the freshness of yogurt is a good move! In the original recipe they use okra, but I couldn’t find any at the supermarket, so I just left it out.



  • 2 cups of lentils
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 cup chopped onion
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp minced ginger
  • 1 tbsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • ½ tsp chili powder
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 tbsp natural peanut butter (unsweetened)
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 cup crushed tomatoes
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tsp garam masala
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Yogurt
  • Scallions
  • Cilantro
  1. Soak the lentils in water 10 minutes before cooking. Drain before cooking.
  2. Heat the oil in a heavy pan over medium high heat. Add the onions, garlic, and ginger and cook until the onions become translucent. Add in the spices and cinnamon stick and cook for 30 seconds until fragrant. Stir in the peanut butter and cook for another 30 seconds.
  3. Pour in stock, tomatoes, water and drained lentils and simmer uncovered for 20-25 minutes until lentils are cooked through. Add the garam masala and stir.
  4. Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a shallow frying pan over medium heat. Fry the okra slices in the oil, being careful not to crowd the okra, about 1 minute on each side. Once okra begins to brown, remove from the oil and place on a plate to cool.
  5. Top the lentil curry with yogurt, cilantro sprigs, Serve with naan and extra cilantro.

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