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African Peppers and Acarajé Sauce

Acarajé (a popular street cart food in Brazil) with mango salsa; I am a mango salsa guy but traditionalist love it with the hot and spicy acarajé sauce, recipes below.

Acarajé is a sort of blacked-eyed-pea dumpling fried in dendê or palm oil served with a hot spicy sauce made with malagueta pepper. In doing research for my book Hog and Hominy http://cup.columbia.edu/book/978-0-231-14638-8/hog-and-hominy I learned that Black-eyed-peas, palm oil, and malagueta pepper are made from plants indigenous to Africa and which arrived in the Americas via the Colombian exchange and African slave Trade. For instance, we know that, as early as 1742, South Carolinians cultivated Ethiopian or Guinea Pepper from an African tree that planter and slave owner Eliza Lucas Pinckney claimed a “good Ingredient” in seasoning some southern delicacies. Malagueta pepper proved just as popular in colonial Brazil. Below are recipes for acarajé sauce, a mango salsa, and two recipes for acarajé, one traditional and the other vegan.

Acarajé sauce recipe

4 dry malagueta peppers
¼ cup Dried ground shrimp
1 small Chopped onion
½ teaspoon Salt
½ teaspoon Ginger
2 tablespoons Dendê oil (palm oil) or try olive oil

Pound first 5 ingredients together and mix thoroughly or put through blender. Heat in the oil for about 10 minutes serve over a great tasting acarajé.

Mango salsa recipe: http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/mango_salsa/
Traditional acarajé recipe: http://www.whats4eats.com/appetizers/akkra-recipe
Vegan acarajé recipe: http://recipes.wikia.com/wiki/Acaraj%C3%A9

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