#133: Swaziland

“You and tequila make me crazy…
Run like poison in my blood”

I think my main man, Kenny, summed that one up pretty well, don’t you? “One is one too many– one more is never enough” seems to be the reoccurring theme so many of us have with tequila. Why the theme for this week’s post, you might ask? Well, National Margarita Day is upon us!! As a student of world liquors and a tequila enthusiast (and let’s be real, there are so few of us these days that love and appreciate the liquid courage), I might have made the educated guess that National Margarita Day was one and the same as Cinco De Mayo— but, oh, am I so happy that is not the case! So cheers to that which makes us crazy and that which we love, because if we are being honest, those are typically one and the same fire.

THE DINNER: This week we stopped off in Africa for some of what Swaziland had to offer our stomachs! The national dish, as alluded to at the end of my last post is ostrich steaks. These proved a little to hard to come by state side for these culinary globetrotters. But fear not, we settled into another traditional meal the country had to offer us: Slaai and Mealie Bread. The first of these is a salad that’s traditionally served with a side of the second of these. The bread is basically what we know here in the colonies as “corn bread” with the twist that it’s got actual corn in it. Shock! Awe! I knowwww! The Slaai doesn’t contain anything “exotic” but does have avocados, beets, radishes and peanuts smothered in this very simple lemon-ginger dressing.

Slaai Salad Recipe: http://globaltableadventure.com/recipe/swazi-salad-a-k-a-slaai/
Mealie Bread Recipe: http://globaltableadventure.com/recipe/mealie-bread/

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OVERALL COUNTRY SCORE:

Ease of prep and cooking: ONE STARS out of five this meal!
Not sure how to rank this one. While it was structurally simple and there were no conversions or translations, bread making can be daunting and tricky and drying out cornbread is a true thing that many battle with in the war of “is it done though?”.  Conversely, a salad is a salad is a salad — so apart from dying everything in the kitchen red with beet juice, salad was less than a star for toughness. (it momentarily looked like a scene from Dexter when my mom had her hands covered in beet…).

Best dish of all time scale: FOUR STARS out of five for Meal!!
Alright, Ladies and Gentlemen, let me just lead this with “Beets”. Now, for those that watch The Office, this sounds like something Dwight might say as emphatically as if saying “gold” but I want you to think of me saying it more like Jim might say it. I’m not a fan. But, that being said, the two other judges in the game here –are fans. So it did not effect the results. I can’t rave enough about the dressing on the Slaai. I scoffed at what was literally lemon-ginger-pepper spectacle. I thought as my mom tossed it into the greens… “Please…you can’t be serious…boring” and probably said it out loud because I have no filter these days. I’m a big enough woman to admit when I’m wrong. It was completely the opposite of boring. It was delightful. The peanuts added some salt and texture, the avocados creaminess, the radishes a little zang. It was a lovely salad. The Mealie was definitely the star of the show though, guys. Buttery and corn…y? It was warm and comforting and better than it’s Americanized version for sure. Everyone had seconds on bread.

Off to Lithuania for #134 to round out February!!   

Salt, Tequila, Lime!  😉
– L & K

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