The other day we were walking along a beach road when a friend spotted a type of spinach growing on the dune. We stopped to eat it, but while it didn’t taste great, it did spark an interesting discussion on mfino, something I had not heard of or tasted before. But after a quick Google search, I’m determined to find someone to cook me up some of this local wild spinach! Rich in vitamins C & A, as well as calcium and iron, mfino’s something of a wonder plant, and is an important source of nutrition for people living in rural areas, who grow their own food. Traditionally thought of as something of an effeminate food by men and older boys, the dish is now widely enjoyed by men and women alike. While it’s most often served with onion and chillis, or maize meal, a number of contemporary versions of the dish have become popular as the idea of cooking with indigenous plants grows.
If you’re adventurous in the kitchen then click on the links below to read about some of the mouth-watering dishes that you can make with this nutritious indigenous veggie:
- Mfino & ricotta quiche
- Mfino fritters
- Maize with mixed vegetables (Umfino)
- Fluffy Ricotta & Mfino Gnudi
Photograph courtesy of www.janicetripepi.co.za.