Lorna’s Gin-spiring Prompt #2 – Autumnal Food Memories #Ginspired

The lovely Lorna over at Gin & Lemonade With A Twist Blog has started a new writing prompt.

She hasn’t named her challenge, so I have Lorna’s Gin-spiring Prompt!

This week, we have the words: Fall/Autumnal Food Memory.

Okay, so this isn’t going to be a post filled with thoughts of pumpkins… I’m Indian, Punjabi, remember! But not only that, my life has a huge Kenyan influence on it too since my parents were both born and brought up there. Then they married and moved here to the UK.

Stands to reason that my childhood would be littered with a real smorgasbord of international influences!

My autumn food memory is Ugali and Saag.

What the heck is that?

Yup. I hear you.

Well, ugali is my Kenyan influence. It is a type of maize porridge, almost polenta-like, as maize is an easily available grain to most folk out there. It is mixed and cooked, sometimes steamed. My mum would turn it out, and cut wedges of it to put as an accompaniment to the saag.

Saag is the Punjabi element, a spinach dish, highly nutritious and rather like the sukumawiki that is in the picture below. Sukumawiki is the greens based curry that the Kenyans would eat with their ugali.

But I’m Punjabi so we would have saag.

I remember the nights mum would make this dish and it was a full-on eat-with-your-hands experience.

We would take a small piece of the ugali, and roll it into a ball, like you’d do with playdough. (There are times when playing with your food is allowed!) Then we’d depress our thumb into the middle to create an indentation. This was our spoon, or scoop, which we would dip into the saag, and then devour.

Roll, press, dip, eat – Repeat!

It was such a warming dish, great to eat in the cooler evenings… I never learned how to make it and doubt that my kid would even try it, but we loved it.

Some of my other family would have ugali with a chicken curry too, but for me that was sacrilege! It had to be saag!

Thinking about it now is making me really hungry. I wish my mum was closer so I could make a special request!

Image result for ugali and saag

Google Image of Ugali and Sukumawiki



32 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Lorna
    Sep 18, 2018 @ 17:37:37

    I used to eat spinach and potatoes mixed up and saag is the only vegetarian food I’ll eat.

    Liked by 1 person


  2. ellenbest24
    Sep 11, 2018 @ 23:55:13

    We should starve in the summer months, heat could sweat us and make us lean. Then we can eat everything, comfort food in Autumn and winter. Another great post that has made me hungry. Iidly, I loved and Dhal; when I worked in India.

    Liked by 1 person


  3. Rebecca Moon Ruark
    Sep 11, 2018 @ 13:58:28

    Great post–yum, now I’m hungry too!

    Liked by 1 person


  4. Erika Kind
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 20:04:12

    I love spinach. You really need to ask your mum how to make it just in case I visit one day… lol!

    Liked by 1 person


  5. Jacquie Biggar
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 18:24:53

    Thanks for sharing this piece of your culture, Ritu. I’m not a fan of spinach (I know-my bad!) but the ugali sounds interesting 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


  6. CarolCooks2
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 17:51:53

    This sounds like how we eat sticky rice and fingers were here before forks…lol..Sounds nice I love spinach 🙂

    Liked by 1 person


  7. syl65
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 16:38:49

    Something interesting to try but can I have spoon please 😜

    Liked by 1 person


  8. OIKOS™-Redaktion
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 16:34:14

    I dont like spinach, maybe saag will work for me?! 😉 But i love maize in every way. 🙂 Great information, Ritu! Have a nice rest of the Sunday, and a good start into another nice week with increasing loudness. lol Michael.

    Liked by 1 person


  9. Annette Rochelle Aben
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 15:44:50

    Spinach and corn… I mean basically to an American’s pallet. Works for me!

    Liked by 1 person


  10. pranabaxom
    Sep 09, 2018 @ 15:28:51

    Try making the Kenyan Indian Punjabi dish and see if your kids will try it or not. Otherwise don’t blame them.

    Liked by 1 person


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