Congo – Republic of

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Unusual fact: The most famous Congo rainforest people are the Pygmies. The average height of Pygmy men is just 4 feet 10 inches (1.45 meters). The average height of Pygmy women is just 4 feet 1 inch (1.33 meters).

Just like last week with the Democratic Republic of Congo, we are onto another Congo. The Republic of Congo.

Image - LA Progressive
Image – LA Progressive

For the Republic of Congo we made black eyed pea fritters and a colourful chickpea salad. Both recipe were from this site. Unfortunately we couldn’t find any black eyed peas so instead we bought some white beans which we used for Burundi. At least I though we did, turns out they were cannellini beans.

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We ended up adding an egg and some breadcrumbs so that they would stay together a bit better. I personally didn’t enjoy them, I though they were a bit bland.

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I quite liked the chickpea salad. Especially the cabbage. It is all tied together at the end with some lemon juice and olive oil. All the flavours work together really well. I wouldn’t change anything in this recipe.

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Finally, for dessert we had peanut butter mousse with the recipe form 196 flavours where I have cooked some recipes from before. This was interesting. Where it says to mix for two minutes after adding the peanut butter to the cream, its a good idea. I on’y mixed it for about 30 seconds and out mousse ended up being very lumpy. Even if it wasn’t lumpy I don’t know if I would have enjoyed it much. The flavour was different and a bit strong for me.

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Fritters:

Mum 6

Dad 7.5

Angus 2

Me 5

Chickpea salad:

Mum 4

Dad 8

Angus 2

Me 6

Peanut Butter Mousse:

Mum 2

Dad 6

Angus 1

Me 3

Black-eyed Pea Fritters (Akara)
Ingredients:

400 g dried black-eyed peas (cowpeas)
1 onion, finely chopped
1/2 tsp salt
1 scotch bonnet chilli, finely chopped
1 green pepper, finely chopped
cayenne pepper, to taste
1/2 tsp fresh ginger, peeled and minced
groundnut oil or palm oil for frying
Cooking Instructions:
Clean the black-eyed peas under running water then soak them over night. After soaking rub them together between your hands to remove the skins. Rinse to wash away the skins then drain in a colander. Crush or grind the black-eyed peas to from a thick paste. Add just enough water to form a thick batter that clings to the back of a spoon. Add the remaining ingredients (except oil). Place the batter in a refrigerator for two hours before use. Heat the oil in a deep frying pan or wok, beat the batter with a wire whisk or wooden spoon for a few minutes to aerate it then make fritters by taking-up a tablespoon full of the batter then using your finger or another spoon quickly push it into the hot oil. Deep fry the fritters until they are golden brown in colour. Make sure you turn them frequently whilst frying so that they colour evenly. If the fritters fall apart whilst frying add a single beaten egg to the batter.

 

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Colourful Chickpea Salad

Ingredients:

2 cups chickpeas

1 tablespoon butter

1 cup savoy cabbage, thinly sliced

2 spring onions, sliced

8-10 sun-dried tomatoes, chopped

2-3 cloves garlic, minced

3 tablespoons olive oi

1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1/2  lemon, juice of

Salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Instructions:

Melt the butter in a small saucepan and then sauté the cabbage for 2-3 minutes, until it has softened but is not completely wilted. Mix the cabbage in a bowl with the chickpeas, spring onions, garlic cloves and tomatoes. Whisk the oil, cayenne pepper and lemon juice separately and pour it over the salad. Sprinkle over some salt and pepper and mix. Chill for a couple hours before serving.

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Peanut Butter Mousse

Ingredients (for 6-8 people)

– 5 oz of peanut butter
– ¾ cup sugar
– 3 tablespoons agar-agar (or 3 tablespoons gelatin)
– 6 egg whites
– 1 cup heavy cream
– Cocoa powder and/or chocolate chips for garnishing

Preparation

Beat the egg whites until stiff while gradually incorporating the sugar.

Dissolve the agar-agar in a little water (hot or cold according to the instructions on the package).

Melt the peanut butter over low heat and stir in gelatin.

Let cool for 10 minutes.

Whip the heavy cream.

Stir the peanut butter and gelatin mixture and beat for 2 minutes.

Gently fold the beaten egg whites.

Refrigerate for at least 6 hours.

Sprinkle with cocoa powder and/or chocolate chips before serving.

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