Kinolo Banana Bread

Ark of taste
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Mkate Wa Ndizi

Kinolo is a type of bread-like product that is made from ripe, sweet bananas and corn flour. Any local banana variety may be used. The bananas are peeled, placed into a kinu (mortar), mixed with the corn flour, and pounded using an mchi (pestle). The paste obtained is rolled into its shape using banana leaves, and arranged in a cooking pot. Hot water is added to cover, and the covered pot is left to cook over a moderate fire. The resulting cooked breads may be purple, brown or pink in color, depending on the corn variety used to obtain the corn flour.

Kinolo was created as a way to preserve excess bananas that were harvested in season when they were too abundant to be eaten before going bad. It is a way not only to preserve the bananas, but to also create a value added product. It was once a common favorite local snack. Kinolo is mainly made in coastal regions of Kenya, and sold at at least one local market. However, recently the traditional technique of making this bread is undergoing changes. Typical kinolo has a high ratio of bananas to flour, producing a bread with a sweet taste and fragrant aroma. The bread loses these qualities when made with too much flour. In addition, younger generations are now more used to eating wheat breads, and are less aware of breads like kinolo.

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Bread and baked goods

Indigenous community:Giriama (Mijikenda)