By admin
15 December 2013


Serves 6 – 8

In many Xhosa households, Wednesday is umngqusho day. It’s the way we all  grew up. Like Fridays in the Eastern Cape are always dumplings with meat day.  Even if it’s not a Wednesday, Tata gets sad if days go by and I haven’t cooked  umngqusho. He will call me to come and ask “Where’s umngqusho?” In this  recipe I have used butter, but in rural communities people often use what Jewish  families call schmaltz and we call amafutha enkuku (chicken fat left over from  cooking) to add a richness at the end of the dish.


500g samp (crushed maize), well rinsed

800g dried sugar beans, well rinsed

water, to cover

2 beef stock cubes

salt and white pepper, to taste

45ml (3 tbsp) butter or amafutha enkukhu

INSTRUCTIONS Place the samp and beans in a pot, cover with  water and bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and cook until soft, at least 2 hours. Do not stir or it will become excessively starchy, but keep checking to see that the mixture is not sticking to the bottom of the pot and add water if necessary. After about 1 hour add the stock cubes.  When the mixture is soft and cooked through,  strain off the remaining water.  Season and stir in the butter.  Serve with boiled meat such as umleqwa.

Madiba’s favourite meals  from Ukutya Kwasekhaya: Tastes from Nelson Mandela's Kitchen by Xoliswa Ndoyiya, who  cooked for Nelson Mandela and his family for close to two decades