Uganda is a melting pot of cultural diversity, it prides itself in culinary delights as part of the culture mix. Today we shall be looking at the Acholi people also known as Acoli. This is an ethnic group from the districts of Agago, Amuru, Gulu, Kitgum, Nwoya, Lamwo, and Pader in Northern Uganda and Magwe County in South Sudan.
The Acholi, in Northern Uganda, pride in a delicacy known as the ‘dek ngor’, relished by the people there and eaten mainly with sheer butter (moo yaa). It is one of the traditional dishes that has stood the taste of time. This dish is especially served to the in-laws on the first day they arrive in the home of the girl to bring dowry. This dish has earned its place in the annals of Acholi’s history of food, if there is such a thing, given its popularity with people from all walks of life in the region. Given its nutrition value, it has broken the boundaries of culture and is a dish that can be prepared -by anyone.
Process of making ‘Dek Ngor’
Dek ngor preparation is a step-by-step affair that can be done by almost anyone.
You will need pigeon peas for this dish and the local grinding stone.
- The pigeon peas are dried in the sun then crashed using the grinding stone and then cleaned as the peas are being put on fire. A cooking pot is used for this process of cooking
- After stirring for some time, you add sim sim or ground nut paste as it’s cohesion ability to stiffen will enable the sheer butter (moo yaa) to float on top
- Using the grinding stone, crash the pigeon peas into halves. The peas are then boiled till it becomes soft, and crash to make a smooth paste of source
This source is served millet, sweet potatoes or any other food that you may deem fit.
Like you have noted already, this particular dish bursts with countless nutrients that are used as ingredients. The peas are an excellent source of proteins and like this is not enough, simsim or groundnut paste is added which serves as additional value all in one pot.
The process of crashing the peas not only makes the process of cooking the peas faster but it also breaks the peas further of any phytates that may be in there. The texture which is a puree texture to which the soup is formed into not only makes the dish delicious but makes it an excellent dish during weaning.
This is a dish worth a try