Connecting to another culture is often remembered in the people you meet and the food you share with them. Sampling unique taste sensations with new friends, is all about the regional ingredients, the recipes passed on from one generation to the next… to the laughter and stories shared around the table. At Ga-Malahlela, you are welcomed into the Ramorawsi household with warm smiles and friendly faces. Ivy and Mary have prepared a feast for you to sample – traditional pap, the ground corn staple of the Pedi diet and three kinds of Morogo or wild spinach – kgobabe, bolotse and black-jack as relish. Amongst the peanuts and pumpkin seeds are mopane worms harvested in season from the Mopane Woodlands before they transform into moths. These worms are cleaned and soaked before being fried up into colourful crunchy snacks. In between sips of strong-tasting traditional beer, you can try the walkie-talkies, or chicken heads and feet along with samp and beans. If you don’t fancy the cow heels or tripe, you can just enjoy the delicious home-baked bread instead.
If you don’t have a lot of time, your traditional food-tasting just gives you a sample of what you can enjoy but if you have the opportunity to stay overnight, you will get the chance to harvest some of the ingredients for the evening meal, pick up some essentials from the market and the last-minute items from the Spaza shop at the end of the road. Sitting around a crackling log fire cooking dinner, you can hear the sounds of kids playing in the streets, music spilling out from the nearby tavern and the low clanking of cow bells as the herd returns home for the night. Learning how to use the pap to make a spoon for the stew, you become part of the family and the rhythms of daily life in this Sotho village.