Githeri is a very authentic Kenyan dish. Its popularity stems from the fact that it incorporates all the food groups making it a balanced diet all in one pot! The fact that maize and beans are widely available in Kenya at very affordable prices also adds to the widespread popularity of the dish.
This is a dish that is the bane of the existence of most high schoolers in Kenya. Where do I start my rant? Will it be the hard maize, or the watery soup, tasteless flat meal, weevils…. the list goes on and on. This traumatizing experience is likely to put off may die hard fans of the dish. However, if you follow my simple, yet very tasty githeri recipe, you will fall in love with the meal all over again.
Githeri is a Kikuyu dish by origin even though it’s cooked through out Kenya. People have come up with various variations of the dish. These include the use of hard or soft (Fresh) maize, dry or fresh beans. I prefer fresh green maize although there are those who would rather eat the hard maize. If you prefer the dry hard maize and beans then you have to soak them for a few hours to soften them before boiling. Or, you could just use a pressure cooker and have them ready in about 30 minutes, like I did. I used dry beans and fresh green maize off the cob.
Every family has their own way of personalizing their githeri. Take a chance and make your githeri to suit your individual palate.
I love adding cream to mine and butter for that extra creaminess, richness and smoothness. If you are lactose intolerant you can use coconut cream as a substitute. The vegetables that you add are a personal choice as well. There are days where I add cabbages while on other I add sukuma wiki or none on some days. Totally depends on my mood.
I also love adding other ingredients like curry powder, garam masala, potatoes, carrots and many more. Feel free to omit any ingredient that you cannot stand from your githeri as you follow my recipe.
- 430g pre boiled maize
- 760g beans
- 2 medium sized tomatoes, pureed
- 1 large onion
- 3 Cloves garlic – finely minced
- 2″ ginger – finely minced
- 3 spring onions
- 1 large potato – cut into small cubes
- 2 Large carrots
- 1/2 green hoho (green bell pepper)
- 300 ml beef stock – optional you can substitute with water
- 1 Chilli beef cube
- 1 Tbs curry powder
- 20g unsalted Butter
- 2 Tbs vegetable oil
- 5 large spinach leaves (optional)
- 100 ml heavy cream (optional) you can substitute with coconut cream
- Heat your sufuria on medium heat and then ad the vegetable oil and butter followed by the onions and cook them until they just turn translucent.
- Add the ginger and garlic and cook for about a minute and then add the curry powder, which you will cook for a minute to cook off the raw taste and aroma.
- Add pureed tomatoes and beef chili cube, stir, cover and reduce heat to a low simmer. Cook for about five minutes or until the mixture reduces and thickens.
- Add potato cubes, cover and simmer until al dente before adding the carrots and spinach. Cover and simmer about 2 minutes for the spinach to wilt and the flavours to marry together.
- Add carrots and spring onions then simmer for about a minute before adding the maize and beans.
- Next, add all the beef stock or just enough to suit your preferences.
- Add salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste.
- Cover and simmer for about 10 minutes for the sauce to thicken and all the flavours to come together.
- Finally, add the dhania and hoho and simmer for just a minute. Turn off the heat and serve.
- Garnish with coriander and spring onions. You can also squeeze fresh lemon juice to awaken all the flavours on your plate