The Shabab: An Imaginary East African Inspired Sandwich

This past week I had my very first (and hopefully last) battle with food poisoning. So I spent the majority of last week sleeping and unable to eat; slowly but surely becoming more bitter towards Nairobi. However, the dark clouds swirling in my brain parted on Friday and I finally got back in the kitchen. Yes! Able to keep some food in my system! To get more on topic about where I am going with this post, the current political situation in Kenya has been very present in everyday life. For those who are not up to speed, Kenya has occupied Somalia in opposition of Al-Shabab as a response to tourist abductions that have occurred in the past few months as well as a couple of grenade bombings in Nairobi that have been linked with Al Shabab. Obviously it is a lot more complicated than my description but the recent events have created a considerable amount of anxiety among Kenyans. Security has increased; I regularly receive emails about what to do in a grenade attack and general safety tips. However, along with all the extra precautions, the jokes about “The Shabab” at work and at home are rampant… and hilarious.

In our house if anything goes wrong, it’s the fault of the terrorist organization.

“I can’t find my keys” – “Al-Shabab.”
“Where did all the cookies go?”- *gasp* “Its… Al-Shabab!”
The power goes out – All girls chime “Al Shabab!”
No hot water for the shower – *loud groans and fist shaking* “AL SHABAB!”

Then yesterday when a friend told me her boss blamed Wednesday’s giant thunderstorm on “THE SHABAB,” a lightning bolt hit me… That sounds like a delicious sandwich!
I have tried to pick ingredients for this imaginary sandwich/wrap that will illustrate some of the foods I have been introduced to while in Kenya. Here is my attempt at a delectable menu description…

THE SHABAB A delicious wrap made of chapati flatbread topped with an ample serving of goat meat marinated in a pili-pili sauce with a thin layer of Nundu meat topped with fried onions, diced tomatoes, cilantro and a squeeze of garlic cream sauce.

Nundu is fatty meat that is found in the hump of cattle… and it reminds me of bacon. mmmm bacon!

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