Kenyans from all walks of life have at one time or another had the pleasure of eating Mutura or African Sausage. Whether it’s on your way from school or work as you pass by the roadside butchery or during festivities that include goat roasting, you name it! The exciting thing is this,
a portion goes for as little as Ksh. 10 (USD 0.12). No goat eating eating function is complete without mutura, this is normally one of the highlights of the whole event.
The process of making it varies among different people and this is dependent on their backgrounds and preferences. Some people make their mutura with blood in it while some do not.
This was my first time making this succulent dish on my own and I must say the prospects were very intimidating! I consulted a lot of people who gave me versions that had slight variations here and there. Some told me that I had to boil the mutura prior to roasting it, while some said it was not necessary. At the end of it all, I decided to just go with my gut instincts because that is what cooking is all about; your instincts.
500g mince meat
- 1 medium sized green bell pepper
- salt to taste
- 1 table spoon of vegetable oil
- 2 green chilies
- 1 cup of spring onions – chopped
- Handful of coriander leaves – chopped
- First step was to make the mince meat. I heated oil in a pan and added the mince meat while stirring it continuously to ensure that it did not clump together at any point. I cooked the mince meat until it browned and all the water had dried up. At this point I added salt to taste, some beef stock (you can add water as a substitute) let the pan come to a boil, reduced the heat, covered the pan and left to simmer for twenty minutes or until all the moisture evaporated from the mince meat. Lastly, I added the onions, green bell pepper, green chilies, spring onions and coriander.
- I trimmed most of the fat off but left some on. Why would I do that you might be asking. Well, this is the reason why; the fat was going to act as an insulator on the mutura as it roasted. This meant that by the time all the fat would have melted off the mutura would have finished cooking and it wouldn’t be burnt. Another secret I discovered was this, grilling charcoal that just glows and provides heat without flaring up! This was super cool for me because grilling outdoors can be a night mare at times because the flames char the food too much.
- I used a teaspoon to put the mincemeat into the small intestines. I found this to be very challenging because I had never done it before. I had always seen other people do it so easily and effortlessly! But, with practice it became easier and easier. This is the end result of my efforts. I tied the ends with a bit of sisal string. (You can also use some kitchen twine or thread) this will ensure that the contents remain inside and don’t spill out. At this point you could opt to boil the mutura for an hour and then roast or just roast it directly. Like I said earlier, I roasted mine directly without boiling. Next time I’ll boil first then roast so that I find out if there is such a big difference in the two muturas. Another point to note here is this, it is very easy for the mutura to burst as you are cooking it. So to prevent this from happening there are two things you should do. Fill the mutura about 3/4. This will leave room for expansion and will ensure that it will not burst. Secondly, before you start roasting, take a toothpick and poke a few holes to allow air to escape.
- Final part of the mutura cooking process is to roast it. Let the charcoal light properly until it glows. Oil the wire grill to prevent the mutura from sticking. Roast if for about 30 minutes turning it over frequently to prevent it from burning.
- Serve with kachumbari (salsa) and some ugali.
My verdict on this; next time I will add some more oil in the mince meat because the mutura was a bit on the dry side, not as juicy as I would have loved it to be. Other than that, it is a dish that I would make over and over. Flavorful to the core!!