Cameroonian Traditional dishes may be falling out of favour in the Central African country, but that is if one fails to factor in this new initiative: Generations: Partners of Progress (GPP) and the African Investment Corporation (AIC) are working together to begin the process of standardizing and codifying Cameroonian cuisine [and later African], thereby positioning these age-old flavours, like others, on dinner tables across the globe.
Generations: Partners of Progress association, based in Yaoundé, in partnership with the American-based African Investment Corporation, has launched the Diaspora Kitchen project to protect Cameroon’s culinary heritage and instill respect and love for traditional food.
The Diaspora Kitchen project is featuring 20 talented chefs from Cameroon and the US, coming together to build bridges and exchange their delicious takes on Cameroonian traditional cuisine. Traditional dishes are usually looked down upon as less appetizing or take too long prepare. Yet, this is the type of food that modern families need to eat more – since it is not only returning to their roots but also because it is healthier and more sustainable nutritional option. Traditional dishes are more organic given that their recipes are of natural ingredients without preservatives and chemical additives.
The Diaspora Kitchen event will take place from 9 to 10 March 2023 in Mouanko, a coastal town of the Sanaga-Maritime Division in the Littoral Region of Cameroon, – a two-hour drive from Douala.
There will be exhibitions, a colloquium, storytelling, poetry, and proverbs in the evenings. Visitors to the event will be spoilt for choice, with a wide variety of delicious dishes and drinks to pick from.
Some of the high-profile chefs include Chef Christian Abegan, an expert in gastronomy strategy and food security; Chef Emile Engoulou, ambassador of Cameroonian cuisine and the creator of distinctive recipes; Chef Antoine Belinga, Executive Chef at the Djibouti Sheraton Hotel; Chef Mashama Bailey, an American chef trained in French
technique who specialises in southern United States cuisine, Chef Michael Twitty, a culinary historian and gastronomy writer; and Chef David Thomas, Executive Chef and owner of Ida B’s Table in Baltimore, USA.
The President of GPP Ama Tutu Muna, who is also a former Minister of Culture, says: “This unprecedented initiative has been supported by the government and private sponsors. We need to draw from generational wisdom and work together to preserve Cameroon’s culinary heritage so that it can be enjoyed for generations to come.”
For more information about the project or to find out how you can get involved visit www.diaspora-kitchen.com