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Mafe (Tomato and peanut butter sauce)

Maafe is common to much of West Africa. It originates from the Mandinka and Bambara people of Mali. Variants of the dish appear in the cuisine of nations throughout West Africa and Central Africa.  


Stewing beef, cut into cubes -- 2 pounds
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Oil -- 2 tablespoons Image result for oil
Tomato paste -- 2 tablespoons Image result for tomato paste
Tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped -- 2 cups Image result for shredded tomatoes
Onion, garlic, ginger (minced) Image result for minced onion garlic ginger
Natural, unsalted peanut butter -- 1 cup Image result for peanut butter

Water or stock -- 1 to 2 cups

Salt and pepper -- to taste

* Protein can be fish, chicken, lamb or beef

How to Make it

  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high flame. Add the beef and saute until lightly brown on all sides, 5 or 6 minutes. Remove the beef into a bowl and set aside.
  2. Add the onion to the oil in the pot and saute until translucent, about 3 or 4 minutes. Add garlic and ginger and saute another 1 or 2 minutes.
  3. Return the beef to the pot, add the tomato paste and cook for about 1 minute. Add the chopped tomatoes and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes.
  4. Add enough water or stock to loosen the dish to a stew like consistency. Simmer for another 10 minutes.
  5. Stir in the peanut butter and add salt and pepper to taste. Cover loosely with a lid and simmer for another 40 minutes, or until the beef is tender and oil rises to the surface of the dish. Add water as necessary to keep the dish stew like.
  6. Add seasoning and serve with rice or couscous.


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