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Cape Verdean Cuisine

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Cape Verde - Cooking and Food Edit

Overview of Cape Verdean Cuisine HistoryEdit

Cape Verde is a beautiful island discovered by the Portuguese navigators on the 1st of May 1460. By the time the Portuguese navigators arrived in this country the only economic activity here was the breeding of goats. Few centuries later a new occupation brought many people on the Island. The production and export of salt towards Brazil boosted the entire economy of Cape Verde bringing in this country many immigrants. All these people that arrived on the island brought along many new things for Cape Verde cuisine. Cape Verde cuisine is rated worldwide as being among the best ones because of the exquisite ways of preparing and serving food. All over the country one can always find a restaurant or a household that can offer the unique experience of tasting a traditional Cape Verde meal. In this country every household prepares their own bread made from special flour called semolina.


Due to the fact that this Island has a tropical dry environment and because of its colonization by the Portuguese people in the 15th century this country cuisine shaped during the time its cooking treats. The Africans brought knowledge about the growing and cooking tropical crops in this country. The Portuguese people used this Island more or less like an experiment. They wanted to try growing foods from the Americas, such as hot peppers, corn, pumpkins and cassava. The Portuguese brought also some types of tropical crops from Asia like bananas, Sugar, mangos, and papayas. People from Cape Verde have a special affinity for dishes made with dried corn. One of the most famous dishes on this island is called Catchupa and is a stew made with beans and hominy and with meat or fish. A typical Cape Verde meal is generally starting with a dish called Bstilla, which is a crisp pastry, followed by a typical kebab or brochette seasoned with lab or Beef fat.

Preparation Methods for Cape Verdean Cooking Edit

Cape Verde cuisine uses elements from various cooking traditions borrowed from their neighbors and developed from their own traditional dishes. While there are no specific or unique preparation methods for Cape Verde cooking, we should point out that attention to detail is important in the Cape Verde cuisine. Using the right amount of spices for example is essential – either for spicing up the taste or for coloring the dish. The diversity of vegetables and cereals found in Cape Verde is also noticed in the delicious dishes belonging to their cuisine. The visual attractiveness of the dish is also important, and a balance between colors and proportion differentiates. Each traditional dish has a special cooking method, which is more or less general in all of Cape Verde’s regions. Meat is one of the main elements of most Cape Verde dishes and cured and smoked hams are often parts of delicious dishes.

Special Equipment for Cape Verdean Cooking Edit

Ranging from cake pans, can openers, colanders, egg rings, poachers and holders, food dishers & portioners, food pans & food containers to other kitchen utensils, such as food scales, food scoops and fryer baskets & accessories, the Cape Verde cuisine needs a diverse cooking equipment set in order to produce the most sophisticated Cape Verde dishes. You should consider insulated food carriers if you are transporting the food and a full set of kitchen linens and uniforms if you wish to look like a pro. Here are a few other items that will come handy while cooking Cape Verde food: juicers, kitchen knives, kitchen slicers, kitchen thermometers, measuring cups & measuring spoons, miscellaneous utensils, mixing bowls and skimmers & strainers. Essential utensils like serving spoons; spatulas, forks, turners, scrapers and tongs should also be part of your cooking "arsenal".

Cape Verdean Food Traditions and Festivals Edit

Cape Verde is a small beautiful country situated in the Atlantic Ocean and it is formed by ten Islands. The official language spooked here is Portuguese. Some of the most important holidays and festivals in this country are the Independence Day held on July the 5th, National Day on 12th of September, National Heroes' Day (Jan 20), National Heroes' Day (Jan 20), Labor Day (May 1), All Saints' Day, and Christmas. During any celebration of this country the most consumed dishes are couscous and Cachupa, which is considered to be a national dish. Mixing meat and vegetables with slices of melon and pastries blended with honey and almond makes couscous. Most used ingredients for any dish served during any celebration and not only, are cinnamon, cumin, turmeric, ginger and paprika.

People in Cape Verdean Food Edit

There are many chefs who creatively use the basic ingredients and cooking method for traditional Cape Verde dishes and create original and delicious food variations. Cape Verde chefs are passionate about their traditional dishes and they enjoy presenting them to foreigners who has never tasted them before. Whether they are cooking dishes that go back in time for centuries or brand new, modern dishes, Cape Verde chefs take pride in what they do, and this is readily noticeable in the unforgettable taste of their cooking.

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