Saturday, March 05, 2016

Food in books: Jollof Rice from Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

A second reading of Adichie’s novel has Kate Young exploring new culinary territory and trying out this homely Nigerian dish

jollop rice
‘He had already told Nigel many times that Nigerian cooking was not cosmetic, with all that pounding. It was sweaty and spicy and Nigerians preferred to present the final product, not the process,’ says character Obinze in the novel. Photograph: Kate Young
She made him the kind of jollof rice he liked, flecked with bits of red and green peppers, and as he ate, fork moving from the plate to his mouth, saying, “This is pretty good,” as he always had in the past, she felt her tears and her questions gathering.
Americanah, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Last month, I spent Valentine’s Day weekend on a bus to and from Liverpool (with a long day in a kitchen in between). I quite like long journeys – especially those on trains – but eight hours on a National Express bus on a gloriously sunny day feels like some kind of horrible punishment. Thankfully, I had Americanah with me


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