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Maffé, a savory peanut stew, is the national dish of Gambia and a staple dish in West Africa overall, with many variations within the region. It's the perfect introduction to African cuisine, layering natural peanut butter with savory garlic, bright ginger, fresh lime juice and a touch of sugar for a robust, balanced sauce. Mushrooms and tomato paste give this sauce deep, umami-rich flavor, so that it can easily be used for vegetarian or vegan meals without sacrificing robust meatiness. Use Maffé Peanut Simmer Sauce as a stand-alone sauce for peanut stew with your protein and vegetables of choice (for a thinner soup, add chicken or vegetable broth). Serve with fresh garnishes such as cilantro, lime and fresh tomato over a bed of rice or couscous. You can even use it to make an easy, delicious dip: Mix with mayonnaise or sour cream, a squeeze of lime juice and a dash of hot sauce.
Jainaba Jeng was born and raised in The Gambia, a small country on the west African coast bordered on three sides by Senegal. When she moved to North Carolina in 1997, she noticed that she could find ready-made sauces for some international cuisines, but none from her native country—or, in fact, from Africa. So she took matters into her own hands, creating a line of small-batch simmer sauces that draw on flavors from West Africa to Jamaica. “When you taste our foods, I hope you will feel the warmth, love and soul of all women of Africa to whom I pay tribute on our packaging,” says Jeng. “They are responsible for most of the cooking in Africa.”
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