Traditional dishes tend to be less varied than in countries further south and are usually based around millet, rice or niebé, a type of bean that has become an important crop. Beef and mutton are common in the Hausa country and the nomadic regions of the north. AS there are several Muslim populations in Niger, pork meat is not used as extensively as in other regional cuisines. The rivers that cross Niger provide plenty of fish and thus fish meat is an important element in the cuisine of Niger. Because the heat in Niger is high and meat can get rotten in a very short time, it is very common, both with modern and traditional dishes, to use smoked meat. Salted fish meat is also kept for months without going rotten and it can be used in all sorts of recipes after de-salting.