Saturday, July 17, 2010

Ugandan Dinner: Main Dish

We're going to Uganda again today!  Last week, my sister shared with us the recipe for Ugandan Chipati.  It's amazing.  A flat bread that I love.

This week, my sister is going to share with us the main dish recipes that she enjoyed with the chipati.


The only meat we had in Uganda was usually goat meat, and on the occasion we had either chicken or beef,
the animals were old and the meat was tough. I tried to get the flavors to be similar but to improve the meat
quality, which overall I believe worked pretty well.

20-25 1 inch cubes of beef
Beef broth
1 T olive oil
1 T onion (minced)
2 cloves of garlic, pressed
2 tsp. corn starch

You can choose any variety of beef you’d prefer for this recipe.
I used 1-2 large beef steaks and cut them into about 1 inch cubes.

In a warm frying pan, combine the olive oil, onion and garlic.  Heat until garlic smells yummy.  Then, add in 1/2 C beef broth.

Once hot, add cubes of beef to pan.  Stir and allow beef to cook for about 7-10 minutes.

Add beef and liquid to a small crock pot. Add an additional ½ to 1 cup of beef broth thickened with 2 tsp. of corn starch, depending on desired thickness.

Cook in the crock pot on low for a minimum of 30 minutes until the meat is done.  Check to be sure the meat is done using your meat thermometer.

Sweet Peas

For this, I simply used a can of sweet peas, but feel free to use frozen peas or fresh peas.

I thickened the juice with corn starch. If you’re making them from scratch, just add a small amount of sugar to make your own sweet peas.


5-10 golden or red potatoes
1 cup Beef broth (may need more)
½ red bell pepper (sliced)
Dried onion flakes

Boil 5-10 small golden potatoes or red potatoes (these are the moistest and have the best flavor) on the stove until soft.

Turn off the stove, but before draining, add slices of red pepper to the boiling water.

Allow pepper to cook for a minute or two.

Drain water off the potatoes and peppers.

Put potatoes and peppers into a crockpot with about 1 cup of beef broth.

Allow to simmer for 30 minutes. Add additional beef broth as needed to keep potatoes moist and about 1/3 covered by broth.

Sprinkle 1 T of dried onion flakes over the potatoes.


White rice is the main food group for our meals in Uganda. There was usually a huge plate full of rice for every two people, way more than we could ever eat. 

I used a rice cooker and cooked about 2 cups of rice for this meal, resulting in about 4-5 cups of cooked rice.

I used water for the rice, but added a bit of beef broth to the water to add a bit of flavor. Chicken broth will add less coloring to the rice.

Use a bit more liquid than usual as you want the rice to be a bit sticky.

For a real Ugandan rice experience, add in 2-3 small stones – part of the adventure of eating rice in Uganda was biting into some rice and discovering a small rock which was missed in the sifting process.


Going right along with the rice was the other main food of beans – rice and beans were probably the most
common food items during our trip.  When I got home, I did not want to see any more rice and beans!

16oz canned pinto beans

 For ease of making this at home, I chose to use canned pinto beans, simply strained and rinsed, and boiled on the stove in beef broth (with a little corn starch for thickening).

Cook to a boil, allow to boil for 1-2 minutes, and remove beans from heat. Serve over the rice.

Serving the meal

Serving spoons were almost always available for our meals, but it wasn’t uncommon for there to be no other
eating utensils.

The art of eating using your fingers was pretty fun and we got pretty good at it. You can also use the chapati to scoop up food as well. Have fun experimenting and learning about other cultures and their food.

These foods generally were eaten at both breakfast and lunch every day for the 1 month we spent in
Uganda, with a few special different meals occurring on occasion.

Fresh fruit – especially the bananas and pineapple – were our favorite parts of eating in Uganda.



  1. I've been enjoying these Ugandan recipes!!!

  2. I love the simplicity and all the different offerings - a little of this and a little of that. Thanks for sharing.

  3. Ugandan dinner, really nice, it's something my family and I could really feast on. We've always loved crockpot recipes, it really has that homey, heartwarming feel to it. More like a comfort food if you ask me. I'd be giving this a go for sure, I'm quite positive that my family is going to enjoy it. Thanks for sharing this :)

  4. I could see myself enjoying eating with my fingers more often.

  5. What's the name of the peas mostly cooked in Uganda. Bought green dried peas but didn't taste the same


Thanks for stopping by! I'd love to hear from you; especially how you're finding JOY in your kitchen.

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