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Typical food of Cameroon

Cameroon offers a plethora of different tastes to explore.

28 May 2010

Cooking Equipment
In Cameroon, most families have mud stoves outside their homes for cooking and because smoked fish is such a vital part of the diet, most homes will also have a smoking stove.

Dried fish is a firm favourite which is why, in most Cameroonian kitchens, a biltong box can be found, it’s used for drying large strips of fish.

In rural Cameroon, the fuels used for cooking are firewood, charcoal, kerosene, cow dung and crop residues.

Cuisine of the Northern, extreme Northern and Adamaqua regions
Cereals, maize and millet are the staples here.

The most commonly eaten meat is beef from the huge herds that make northern Cameroon so wealthy. Insects (termites, the karite caterpillars) and small hunting animals like field mice, squirrels, frogs and local rats are also eaten here.

Cuisine of the Littoral regions

This province is home to many cultures and culinary traditions, the Bassas and Bakokos who adore palm nut (mbanga) soup, made with either fish or meat and eaten with cooked cassava rolls.

The Dualas tribe’s staple dish is bitterleaf soup, served with boiled plantains on the side.

The regional speciality of the Littoral province is Ekoki – a dish made with vigna beans and voandzou (matobo) seeds served with plantains, cocoyams or kolokashia.

Yellow soup served with cocoyams is another speciality that get’s the juices flowing.

Cuisine of the Western, South Western and North Western regions
Here fufu is the staple food and it's made with maize.

Over and above maize, tubers like yams, cocoyams, sweet potatoes and cassava are traditionally eaten.

In some parts of this region the locals eat more exotic dishes featuring snakes, insect larvae (considered delicacies) and an unusual fruit known as mbu (a purplish-blue fruit resembling a small plum).

Nkui - A delicious groundnut sauce that is often a basis for fish or meat dishes.

Over and above the normal cooking methods, Cameroonians employ some rather interesting methods:

Fish can be consumed either fresh, sun-dried or smoked. Large types of fish are chopped into small sections and dried in the sun, either flat, on mats or suspended.

When smoked, the fish is subjected to such intense heat that they are slightly charred.

Cameroonians heat a variety of roots as well as shoots and the young shoots of the Palmyra palm are very popular. They are simply boiled and cooled, then sucked as a thirst quencher.

Millet, after being harvested, is stored in granaries.

Once ground, a paste is made. The pastes are made by pouring the flour in boiling water and stirring the mixture with a stick, leaving it to cook, covered, for a few minutes.

Throwing a Cameroon-style party? Click here for Food24's scrumptous Cameroonian party menu!


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