701. Githeri

September 21, 2017mayurisjikoni
Blog post


When one mentions Kenya, marathon runners, safari and wildlife comes to ones mind. Kenya is no doubt a beautiful country. From Mountains to beaches. Mount Kenya, the 2nd tallest mountain in Africa, is a mountain climbers dream with jagged peaks. Grasslands or Savannah, pristine beaches, The Rift Valley, every part of the country there is something to see. Kenya is well known for its wildlife like lions, cheetahs, leopards, zebras, gazelles, elephants, buffaloes, hippos, giraffes, rhinos and so much more. Shrubs to baobab trees, filled with all sorts of flora and fauna. The famous song in Lion King, Hakuna Matata means no problem. Simba means lion in Kiswahili and Rafiki means friend. You’ll always be greeted with a friendly Jambo.

Why am I talking about Kenya? Well, rafikis today I’m going to introduce you to a very famous wholesome,one pot meal called Githeri. My protein rich dish blogging marathon would be incomplete without a dish from Kenya. Githeri is a Kikuyu dish consisting of beans and maize. Traditionally, both were boiled in water till they were well done and the water had evaporated. Before serving salt was added and if available then some oil or fat was added to it. Both the beans and maize used can be fresh or dry. Here my reference to the maize is the white variety and not sweet corn. Other names for Githeri are muthere or muthiri. Sometimes meat and vegetables like potatoes, greens were added. Over time this dish has become famous amongst other tribes too and is one of the staple foods in Kenya. With influence from other cultures, Githeri takes on new forms but the basic equal combination of beans and maize are the core ingredients. Nowadays a variety of vegetables, meats and spices are added to make it a nutritious, healthy, wholesome meal rich in protein, carbohydrates and fiber, besides vitamins and minerals.

Here are some vegetables that you can add to Githeri to make it into a stew:
Carbohydrates : potatoes, sweet potato, plantain. cassava
Greens: spinach, collard, amaranth leaves, green beans, peas, carrot, fresh pigeon peas
Beans: Kidney beans, Cowpeas, Pinto beans, dried pigeon peas, dried peas

I chose to take the easy way out to prepare this dish. I bought a tinned githeri mixture. If you want to make this dish then you need equal portions of beans and white maize, either fresh or dried. Its best to soak the dried ones overnight. When tinned githeri is not available I used fresh kidney beans and maize.

Protein sources in this recipe are beans, maize, pigeon pea, spinach.

By no means am I claiming or supporting any sort of fad diet that are the latest craze in the fitness world. I’m just trying to include non meat non fish dishes from which you can get your protein source. 

Sunset at English Point Mombasa



Bamburi Beach Mombasa



Serves 2

1 cup mixture of boiled beans and white maize kernels
1 medium onion, finely chopped
4-6 cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
2 medium tomatoes finely chopped
1 cup peeled and diced cassava (use a starchy veg of your choice)
1 cup finely chopped spinach
½ cup fresh pigeon pea (tuvar)
1 tsp salt
1 tsp coriander powder
½ tsp cumin powder
¼ tsp turmeric powder
1 tbsp oil
2 cups water

  1. Heat oil in pan over medium heat.
  2. Add chopped onion and stir fry till it becomes soft.
  3. Add garlic and stir fry for a few seconds.
  4. Add tomatoes, salt and the spices.
  5. Mix well. Cover the pan and let the tomatoes cook over low heat till they become soft.
  6. Mash the tomatoes up a bit with the spoon.
  7. Add the beans, maize, cassava and pigeon peas.
  8. Add water and mix well.
  9. Cover the pan and let the mixture cook till all the vegetables are cooked. If required add more water.
  10. Cook till most of the water is evaporated.
  11. Add chopped spinach and mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes and serve hot githeri. Its usually eaten on its own.
  • To reduce the cooking time, boil the beans and maize beforehand.
  • As mentioned above you can add your choice of vegetables.
  • Can add meat or fish.
  • Most people use the ready made curry powder that is available in the market. However, I didn’t have any so added the spices that usually go into making the curry powder.
  • I’ve not added any chillis in the dish. However, if you prefer you can add either fresh green chillis or red chilli powder.
  • Githeri should not be mushy.

Check out what other Mega Blogging Marathoners have made for Day 18:

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  • Sharmila- The Happie Friends Potpourri corner

    September 21, 2017 at 5:43 pm

    Healthy bowl of protein.. Makes a absolute filling meal..

  • Sowmya :)

    September 22, 2017 at 3:45 am

    Never heard of this dish before…it looks so wholesome and flavourful. Bookmarked!!!

  • vaishali sabnani

    September 22, 2017 at 6:54 am

    Wonderful pick ! I was watching a show on telly which featured this dish , somehow these shows on travel never give you the recipe ! Great share , bookmarking .

  • Archana Potdar

    September 22, 2017 at 8:33 am

    Wow, Mayuri now I want to visit Kenya.It sounds so beautiful and Simba and his friends bring back such beautiful memories of my daughter and her childhood.
    This is delicious bowl of healthy food. One bowl and I am done. Can I substitute fresh pigeon peas with peas?

  • Srivalli

    September 22, 2017 at 10:30 am

    So wonderful to read about Kenya, such lovely things you have to share..this one pot meal sounds very filling and good to enjoy any time!

  • Impera Magna

    September 22, 2017 at 3:44 pm

    This sounds delicious! Not sure I've ever seen dried white corn here in the US but will be on the lookout because I'd like to try this recipe. Could you suggest a substitute if I am not able to locate the white maize kernels? Thanks!

  • Sapana Behl

    September 22, 2017 at 7:52 pm

    I love these kind of bean based one pot meals. Looks very healthy and inviting.

  • Gayathri Kumar

    September 22, 2017 at 11:23 pm

    That is an interesting read. This looks like a filling bowl of githeri. With beans and corn I guess, it is absolutely yum..

  • Priya Suresh

    September 23, 2017 at 7:53 am

    Such a hearty Githeri, glad to know about Kenya and their Githeri, a complete meal Mayuri, hope i will give a try to this beautiful dish.

  • Ruchi Indu

    October 5, 2017 at 6:35 am

    HEalthy bowl of protein. And an interesting read…

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