Somalia is unusual, especially among Islamic countries, in passing a law to allow women to sue for divorce. It is also unusual in having a high literacy rate (around 80 per cent) since the introduction of a script for the previously unwritten Somali language. Hosting the world’s fourth largest refugee population is another Somali distinction (mostly ethnic Somalis from Ethiopia). Nomadic livestock rearing is the main way of life, with animals the prime export.

For this stew, you can use a mixture of virtually any seafood; the recipe just gives a few suggestions.


2 pounds / 900 g seafood eg shrimps, prawns, mussels, shelled

cup / 60 ml peanut oil

2 medium onions, finely chopped

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1 teaspoon curry powder

1 red bell pepper, finely chopped

1 pound / 450 g tomatoes, cut in wedges

2 tablespoons peanut butter



To make the stew, first pour the oil into a large pan and lightly brown the onions and garlic for a few minutes. Stir in the curry powder, ginger, red bell pepper and salt.

Next, ad the tomatoes and peanut butter and simmer gently for 2 - 3 minutes. At this point, put in the seafood; cook lightly for 10 minutes, stirring from time to time, and then spoon the stew onto hot rice and serve.


Serves 6 - 8


country : Somalia

course : main course


source : The New Internationalist Food Book : Recipes from Africa, Asia and Latin Americafor Western kitchens with country information and food facts / Troth Wells