Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Money can solve all problems, so we all should be rich

In America and Africa, I hear one thing in common. Apparently we are all limited by the money we have. We cannot do, we cannot help because we do not have enough.

That’s why I like Peace Corps. We are trained to work with community members to appreciate their accomplishments, to identify issues that can be fixed, and to train/capacity build them in areas they identify they need assistance.

Commentary by Finda

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Botswana Homemade Bread - A Taste of Botswana Food

Here is a recipe that I use almost every week to make homemade bread. Try it at home, and take photo's, and lastly comment below and let me know how it went. Diphaphata (Dee-pa-pat-ta) is very popular in Botswana because it tastes great. Happy cooking :D


Diphaphata - Botswana Homemade Bread   

Diphaphata is a great tasting bread that be eaten as hamburger bread to dinner roles. There are many creative ways to use this bread. Additionally, extra ingredients can be added to give Diphaphata a different taste, look, etc.


4 cups of white or brown flour
10g or 1 pack of yeast
1.5 cups of warm water


1.       Add flour, yeast, salt and/or sugar in a mixing bowl.
a.       Note: Add enough salt and sugar to your personal preference
2.       Add warm water to your mixing bowl and mix ingredients into a dough
3.       Continue to add warm water until the dough is soft and without any bumps
4.       Let dough sit for 10 to 15 minutes in order to allow the yeast to raise the dough
5.       Separate dough into 8 to 12 round balls
6.       Pre-heat oven to 250 degrees
7.       Lightly grease your baking pan and place dough balls onto the pan
8.       Bake the dough for 10 to 15 minutes or until the dough is lightly golden brown
9.       Serve with butter, jelly, tea or by itself

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Food...how many of us eat it?

Coming from an African Family, and being first generation African American the food from Botswana has not drifted too far from my diet back in the states. Check out some of the awesome local dishes some of us volunteers get to experience:

Phaletšhe is pictured on the left, chicken is pictured at the top right, and morogo is pictured on the bottom right
Morogo (mo-row-ho)
Morogo are leaves from beans that are cooked similar to spiniach. Tomatoes and onions are normally added to the dish to provide additional flavour.

Phaletšhe (pa-lay-she)
Phaletšhe is pictured on the left in the photo above. It is made out of corn and tastes similar to foo foo. Corn is the staple crop in Botswana, which is similar to the United States. Unlike the United States, sugar is still used in most products in Botswana

Motogo is porridge made out of sorghum. According to Wikipedia, sorgum is a genus of grass that is raised for grain. It can be found in countries with warm weather. Motogo reminds me of oatmeal, rice pap, or porridge made in the states.  


Kabu is pictures on the left,
dithotse is pictured at the bottom right,
 manoko is pictured
Kabu (Ka-bu)
Kabu is dried corn. It is cooked than air dried in the sun.

Dithotse (dee-clo-say)
Dithotse are dried and salted watermelon seeds. They remind me of sunflower seeds.

Manoko (ma-no-ko)
Manoko are peanuts...enough said :D

 Dikogbe (di-kho-bey)
Dikogobe is a dish made from beans and sometimes kabu. The dish reminds me of cooked black eyed peas. In fact, sometimes black eyed peas are used to make this dish.

Magwinya (Ma-gween-ya) aka Fat Cakes
Fat cakes are like donuts. They are made out of dough, sugar, and yeast. They are an awesome dessert and taste great with soup.

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Donkey Files

Speaking of animals you have to chase out your yard, I would like to introduce exhibit A, the donkeys.

Unlike Eeyore on Winnie the Pooh, these donkey's (in simple terms) just don't care. Donkey pregnancy is rampant, and people rarely use their donkeys. With this in mind, they are free to roam wherever and whenever they want. Additionally, donkey meat is the lowest quality type of meat you could eat. So on my side of town they run things, and they know it.

Example 1: 
Unlike other animals, donkey's have somehow found out it is a fine or even jail time to kill another persons animal. They have decided with their new found knowledge to stand in the middle of the street, or to start crossing nonchalantly across the road. Yes sir, these donkey's are smart, and they look at us as if we are stupid.

Example 2:
 Why might you ask why I would need to chase donkey's out my yard. Well it's for two things. The first reason is that they like to eat grass and other shrubbery. While this is fine, donkey's also have no problem pooping where they eat. This is my first issue with having donkey's eat the grass in my yard. The second less obvious reason is that they will turn on your tap outside, crowd around the tap, and have a small party all night long. Once again they are aware they are doing wrong. How do I know? Well because when you wake up in the morning and see the remnants of the donkey party which include water running all night and tired donkeys they will quickly run outside the gate. Even though most donkeys will run, they are some donkey's (in simple terms) that just don't care, and will only leave your yard after chasing them out your yard. Outside your gate, these donkeys tend to look  at you as if you did something wrong.

Oh Donkeys :/


Thursday, May 3, 2012

Who has baboon's hanging in her yard...this girl

So I didn't really believe it when I first heard it, but seeing baboon's in my yard the other day was unbelievable. I woke up early, expecting to have a regular Monday morning when I decided to looked outside the window. They were running as a pack, and I nearly panicked. "Oh my gosh" I said to myself and ran for my camera. I started to take pics from the safe distance  of in my house. I then decided I wanted to see this with my own eyes. So I searched for my glasses, but first I wanted to tell someone. So I searched for my phone. In between searching for my phone and glasses, I asked myself, "Why am I not just experiencing this?" Who knows when I will see them again. They looked so cute, until they started jumping fences. Then I realized I had another animal who is a pest in my yard. As cute as baboons look far away, there is something scary about them when they are in your yard.

- Finda

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

A Highlight on music in Botswana

 I don't have to go far to be reminded of America. By simply turning on the radio I can hear some of the most popular songs that are currently in the states. House music, Pop, Hip Hop are very popular in Botswana, but outside of House Music and the Top 100 I wanted to highlight four types of music that is also heard in Botswana.

 Kwasa Kwasa/Rumba: Kwasa Kwasa and Rumba can be easily be identified here because the beat encourages people to dance with their hips. It has more guitars in the music. Normally when people dance at parties and even traditional dancing there is a focus on the feet. I find this to be an interesting observation because in some West African countries there is a focus on the hips, and in some East African countries there is a focus on the shoulders. Beyonce's music video "Girls" is a great example of a mixture of various different dance styles that have originated in Africa. Kwasa Kwasa/Rumba originated in Northern Sub-Sahara Countries.

  Artist: Franco
  Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TMAhbztQ_hA

Disco: Disco has never left Botswana, and I strongly think it never will. There are many music classics in this genre. Evonne Chaka Chaka, a world renowned singer, can be heard on the radio.

  Artist: Evonne Chaka Chaka
    Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k9lwA3sfWQ0

Kwaito: Similar to Kwasa Kwasa, Kwaito music can encourages people to dance with their hip. It has more of a hip hop flavor when it comes to the sound. Check out some of Vee's music linked below to get a taste of Kwaito.

   Artist: Vee
     Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Pw9f7-OE7Y

Traditional Music: Traditional Music is music unique to Botswana. It utilizes traditional instruments but with modern technology Traditional Music can easily be mixed and remixed to have a hip new flavour. Culture Spears is a popular traditional music artist. Check out some of his video's below:            

Artist: Culture Spears