'On the road stories and images' Food, food and more food - Gambian style.
We were fortunate enough to be walking around The Gambia during the harvest season so food was pretty abundant. Our daily staple diet, however, seemed to consist of consuming a lot of tapalapa, which is akin to a french baguette but much denser and heavier (leave it to go dry enough, and with a well-aimed over-arm throw, we probably could have taken out one of the many Red Colobus monkeys we encountered along the way! If we were that way inclined of course!!). But, the bread served as a great source of instant energy when we needed a boost on the road - and, if we were lucky enough to come across a street vendor, we could buy it stuffed with locally made sauce of fried chili, onions, tomatoes, spices and black beans ‘niebbe’. Failing that, tinned sardines, mayonnaise or chocolate spread (a particular favourite of our Gambian team mates!) would suffice.
And, if we were especially lucky to find it, a steaming mug of instant coffee, mixed with syrupy sweetened condensed milk! *A rare treat indeed!
Images by: Jason Florio, 2009 - taken whilst on ‘A Short Walk in The Gambian Bush - a 930km African odyssey’
*coffee made this way is found much more in the Senegal border regions of The Gambia. Coffee drinking is prevalent among the Senegalese. And its not just the drinking but the ritual of making the coffee the way that they do. This ritual is not dissimilar to how the Gambians make their ‘attaya’ Chinese Gunpowder green tea - pouring the mixture from glass to glass until just so (along with copious amounts of white sugar!).